What Is Dual Channel RAM? Here’s the Complete Guide [MiniTool Wiki]

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RAM (Random Access Memory) is an indispensable part for a computer. With proper amount of memory, the computer can run quickly and smoothly. In fact, RAM comes with various types including GDDR6, RRAM, NVRAM, DRAM, as well as SRAM, etc.

Due to the amount of channel, memory can also be categorized as single-channel memory, dual channel memory, triple-channel memory, and so forth. The RAM has eight channels at most. Now, let’s look at dual channel RAM.

What Is Dual Channel RAM

Dual-channel RAM is also known as multi-channel memory and dual-channel memory, which is a DDR, DDR2, or DDR3 chipset on the motherboard with two dedicated high-throughput data channels. The two channels allow data to read from and write to memory to take place on remote channels.

Tip: To obtain more information about dual channel RAM, please keep reading this post of MiniTool.

The early dual-channel architecture combined two 64-bits buses into a 128-bit bus that was called the ganged model later on. However, the performance improvement is not obvious after the combination. After a period of time, producers found that two independent buses get more performance. So, the modern processors are set as the dual channel mode by default.

dual channel RAM

Dual-channel memory is built for reducing the potential performance limit between the CPU and memory controller. It will be enabled when a pair of identical size memory modules are installed into proper memory banks.

Is it necessary for a computer? As learned from the above information, the answer is for sure. With dual channel memory, your computer can run and respond quickly.

Recommended reading: RAM vs ROM: They Key Difference Between the Two Memory

The Working Theory of Dual Channel RAM

All the versions of multi-channel RAM accelerate data transfer speed by adding more communication channels between the memory and the memory controller. The RAM on the memory module usually communicates with the rest of computer via memory controller on the CPU (Central Processing Unit) with the help of a bus.

Some memory controllers have more than one channels for communicating with the memory module, which can boost data exchange.

In essence, if you run one stick of RAM computer, the RAM will run in a single channel configuration. While you run a computer with two RAM sticks, they will run in dual channel configuration.

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However, if you run a computer with three RAM sticks, triple channel configurations are not utilized on many computers. In this case, the three RAM sticks would utilize two sticks in the dual channel mode and one stick in the single channel mode.

Tip: The memory modules have several standards including one channel, two channels, four channels, six channels, as well as eight channels. Only a few motherboards run triple-channel memory modules.

In order to take advantage of dual-channel platform, ensure that you buy memory in identical pairs. To be specific, if you are going to upgrade to an extra 2GB memory, you should buy two 1GB memory modules that are exactly identical.

Though you are not required to install a memory chip with the same speed as the others, you’d better install one with matching speed. If the speeds are different, the motherboard will run the memory chip at the speed of the slowest one.

If you install two memory modules at a time, make sure that the memory is installed into the correct memory slots. Generally speaking, memory slots will be color-coded in the motherboard. The first channel usually is slot one and two, while the second channel is three and four. So, if you want to utilize the dual-channel platform, make sure the RAM is installed into the same colored slot when installing memory in pairs.

Bottom Line

What is dual channel RAM? You may have a further understanding of this RAM after reading this post that provides you with comprehensive information about dual channel memory. Here comes the end of the post.

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