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One of the core values of Puget Systems is transparency

We detest hype in the midst of an industry that is full of it. Our mission is to provide the highest quality hardware and consultation services to our customers, and to back up our decisions by freely sharing what we've learned along the way. To earn a place in our product line, a computer component undergoes rigorous testing. We apply the results of our testing, along with our years of experience in learning reliability trends and manufacturer characteristics, to make prudent decisions about what we can put our name behind, whether that's an individual part or an entire computer. With the following articles, we are writing up the results of these internal processes and discussions, and taking them public. We feel we can take this on with a unique perspective as we evaluate each topic with the experience, resources, and objectivity of a system builder. If there is a topic you'd like us to write about, email us at !
Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/589
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Tech Primer: DDR4 RAM

Written on August 29, 2014 by Matt Bach

DDR3 is almost seven years old, but is finally starting to be replaced with the new DDR4 memory. Featuring lower operating voltages, higher frequencies, and increased storage densities DDR4 is shaping up to be a very capable successor to the aging DDR3.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/560
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ECC and REG ECC Memory Performance

Written on May 13, 2014 by Matt Bach

Recently, a workstation PC was reviewed on a well-known review site that included a Quadro video card, but no ECC memory. In the comment section of that review, a heated discussion occurred with some readers stating that ECC was bad for workstations since it is slower than standard RAM. In this article, we will be running a series of benchmarks on different types of RAM to see if ECC RAM is indeed slower than standard RAM.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/520
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Advantages of ECC Memory

Written on November 5, 2013 by Matt Bach

ECC RAM is very popular in servers or other systems with high-value data as it protects against data corruption by automatically detecting and correcting memory errors. In this article we will go over the advantage of using ECC memory.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/462
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How to Check ECC RAM Functionality

Written on April 3, 2013 by Matt Bach

ECC (error-correcting code) RAM is essential in servers and many workstations as it dramatically improves the reliability of the system's memory. This is great, but we have learned that it is very difficult to verify that ECC is working correctly. In this article, we will go over three methods that we have found to at least semi-reliably show if ECC is working as it should.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/182
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Adobe Photoshop CS6 Memory Optimization

Written on February 5, 2013 by Matt Bach

We at Puget Systems have always held the belief that a computer's hardware should be specifically tailored to match what the computer will be used for in order to maximize its effectiveness. Different programs make use of hardware in different ways, and knowing how the program behaves is important to determine what pieces of hardware need to be more powerful, and which are not as critical. In this article we want to determine if the speed and configuration of RAM affects the performance of Photoshop CS6 and if so by how much.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/173
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Optimizing AMD Trinity for Budget Gaming

Written on December 11, 2012 by Matt Bach

AMD's Trinity APU - essentially a CPU and GPU combined into one unit- is a great way to create a budget gaming system when using a discrete video card is not an option. However, due to the limited performance available with any onboard graphics, it is important to thoroughly optimize it to get the best possible performance. In this article, we will be looking at the components that have an influence on the performance of the integrated graphics in AMD's Trinity APUs.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/150
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Technology Primer: Low Voltage RAM

Written on July 16, 2012 by Matt Bach

Voltage is not typically thought of as a key specification for RAM, but can have a significant impact on system stability as it runs much cooler than standard RAM. In this article, we will be looking at Kingston Lovo and G.Skill Sniper RAM to see how well low voltage RAM performs compared to standard RAM and if it has a measurable impact on power draw and system temperatures.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/142
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Breaking the Hype of High Frequency RAM

Written on April 2, 2012 by Matt Bach

High Frequency RAM is often touted as being essential for high-performance computing, but in our experience has little to offer in actual performance gains. In this article, we will be using a large set of benchmarks across both Intel and AMD platforms to show that RAM running at higher frequency at the cost of increased timings gives little to no real-world performance improvements.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/8

Pentium4, AthlonXP, DDR, RDRAM -- How to Choose?!

Written on November 9, 2002 by Jon Bach

We have a lot of processor and memory combinations to choose from today, and it is causing considerable confusion amongst our clients. With the disappointing performance gains of the newest Athlon XP processors and the recent price cuts in the high end Pentium4 line, the processor competition is as close as I've seen it in a long time. On top of that, questions of price vs. performance make memory selection a second difficult task. In this article, I will lay out the situation as clearly as I can, to help assist you in deciding what direction to take with your next computer!


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/6

New Technology - ATA133 and DDR333 - Performance or Hype?

Written on November 1, 2002 by Jon Bach

It is always going to be expensive to be on the cutting edge when you purchase new hardware. Is this extra cost worth the performance gain? When new technology is released, it is important to take an objective look at how the new technology compares to its predecessors. In this article, we take a look at the new features of the KT333 motherboards -- ATA133 and DDR333, and separate the true performance from the hype.


Read this article at https://www.pugetsystems.com/guides/2

System RAM Comparison

Written on January 1, 2002 by Jon Bach

What are differences between SDRAM, DDR SDRAM, and RDRAM? What are the typical uses of each, and what is the best configuration at this time? We will take a look at the two most popular configurations, and what the future may look like for this topic.