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Do RAM heatspreaders work?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Irvine, 14 Dec 2004.

  1. Irvine

    Irvine New Member

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    I always see the new, high-quality RAM shipped with heatspreaders. Since I got my RAM OEM and crappy and cheap and crappy (did I mention cheap?), I have wondered if the heatspreaders really have an effect on their temps. Do these $6 things help with O/Cing or stability?
     
  2. TMM

    TMM Modder

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    They (usually) don't do anything other then make the ram look better. Most are applied with thick thermal pads between the chips and the heatspeader, which does nothing but insulate the ram chips making them hotter :duh:
    Even so, System ram gets barely hot at speeds of 400DDR and the like, when you have 800DDR on a graphics card, That runs hot ;)
    If you want to cool your ram, chuck a fan over them, that will cool them far better :thumb:
     
  3. Kameleon

    Kameleon is watching you...

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    Couldn't have said it better myself :thumb:
     
  4. Howitzerflagz

    Howitzerflagz New Member

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    i buyed two vantec copper heatspreaders i made a lot of test with my hardcano themometer and they d nothing ! but i have to say thats the sticks looks cool so if you wanna cool down your ram... get ventilators ! may be the thermaltake with a little vent would work better than mines.... :eyebrow: if somebody has one and he has make a tests please say it ! here !
     
  5. Bboy_Jon

    Bboy_Jon New Member

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    hey i have a question, i got this ram heatspreader

    http://coolerguys.com/840556041429.html

    it was free with a coupon code (doesnt work anymore) and i wanna get another one for my new stick of ram (whenever i get it)

    its aluminum, this is copper

    http://coolerguys.com/840556041436.html

    shoulda gotten that when it was free but i didnt notice the blue wasnt copper so should i just get the copper one or since it doesnt really help just get the blue one since its prettier?
     
  6. Kameleon

    Kameleon is watching you...

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    The difference between "no help" and "no help" is rather insignificant, certainly not large enough to merit a discussion over whether aluminium or copper is better ;) If you must have one, go for whatever suits your colour scheme :)
     
  7. Mace

    Mace Ohh, it stings.

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    LOL kame ;)
    Anyways, yeah... listen to this dude(kameleon), he knows his stuff... Your ram doesn't really get hot enough to need cooling in the first place, even if it does, a heatspreader isn't going to do much if there isn't any airflow over the area... and there's definitely going to be minute differences from the copper to the aluminum...
     
  8. Bboy_Jon

    Bboy_Jon New Member

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    so just go with the blue one?? KK

    im thinking about putting a fan there, but i just dont have room, my giant atx psu cable is right there hehe

    edit: well i have a raidmax scorpio 868, and well dont have alink right now, but im sure youve all seen it, the side fan is right infront of the ram, is that good enough?
     
  9. Highland3r

    Highland3r New Member

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    Any airflow is better than noting, just depends on how hot the ram is getting.
    How much overclocking are you doing, and what sort of volts are you feeding the mem?
     
  10. TheCleaner

    TheCleaner Back again...

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  11. Bboy_Jon

    Bboy_Jon New Member

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    well my athlon 3000 is at 219fsb so my ram is around 438, and im giving it 2.9 volts (havent tried lower) and 2.5-3-3-6 timings (havent tried lower)

    ya id do that fan if i had a 60 but i dont hehe

    heres a pic of the fan

    [​IMG]

    its right over the ram
     
  12. blknoel

    blknoel New Member

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    With heatspreaders, those chips run about 10 degree C cooler guys, so u cant say that the thing over it is for cosmetics only :)

    50 compared to 60 is hell lot better.

    But for best, I agree on direct blowing air over them.
     
  13. Bboy_Jon

    Bboy_Jon New Member

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    so would it be better to just get the blue one or get the copper?
     
  14. Kameleon

    Kameleon is watching you...

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    Tests for this, please? :)
     
  15. blknoel

    blknoel New Member

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  16. Kameleon

    Kameleon is watching you...

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    And where was that temperature taken from? If he's stuck a sensor on the side of the heatspreader, of course it will be cooler, all the heat is being trapped underneath! If he's stuck the sensor between a chip and the heatspreader TIM (less likely, that's going to lead to worse contact and mounting problems for the reviewer) then that would lead to a better reading, but I strongly suspect the former. Without any kind of testing procedure given you can't tell. There are reviews that will tell you equally that heatspreaders have next to no effect if any (here, here).

    The fact is that overclockers the world over prise the heatspreaders off their RAM - any airflow over the chips will lower temperatures far more without heatspreaders than with, and even without any airflow the TIM used on these heatspreaders is poor enough that more heat is being trapped than being dissipated - all the effect that the heatspreader is having is distributing the heat evenly between the ICs (as the name suggests) - cooling is an occasional byproduct depending on the rest of the setup, and usually doesn't happen.

    Threads like this one are what I was talking about - halfway down the page the heatspreader debate starts. My own BH5 gained about 5MHz at 3.3v when I took the heatspreaders off...it's at high voltage and high speed (they went from 253MHz to 258) that the poor cooling starts to become apparent - at normal voltages it just doesn't matter, but it definitely doesn't help.

    In conclusion, heatspreaders aren't useless, and I never said they were - they sell RAM because they look pro. That's their function.
     
  17. ConKbot of Doom

    ConKbot of Doom New Member

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    I would think that the heatspreaders would also help the manufacturers tell if the ram has been tampered with, and also help prevent static from killing the ram during handling. So that may be another reason for them.
     
  18. Kameleon

    Kameleon is watching you...

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    Yep, you're right. All warranties as far as I know of are voided if the heatspreaders are removed, so it helps companies there too :)
     
  19. AngelOfRage

    AngelOfRage Member

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    what about those miniture heatsinks you can buy? do they make a difference?
    how about Graphics card ram, are they worth getting for that?
    also whats the temp. difference between copper and aluminium ones?

    (i saw a packet of 8 aluminium ones for £3.50 in PC world and thought i may get them on payday)
     
  20. RotoSequence

    RotoSequence Lazy Lurker

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    There is still the point that Heat Spreaders are basically pointless anyway ;) RAM Sinks are just as pointless. DDR RAM doesnt get hot enough to warrant a heatspreader, let alone heatsinks. If you are looking for cosmetic improvements, get some heatspreaders. Otherwise,theres no real reason to get either heatspreaders or RAM sinks.
     

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