Fuss Free Upgrading of Your Laptop
You’ve probably landed on this page because you’re either looking to use DDR laptop memory, or you’re currently looking to upgrade your laptop but don’t know what to do. Well, you know what? You may have landed on a page that can help you!
An introduction to DDR laptop memory is a good place to start…
DDR laptop memory types
DDR stands for Dual Data Rate and is an advanced (faster) form of SDRAM (Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory). Almost all laptops sold today, as well as those sold since about 2002, use some (older or newer) version of asus 2-in-1 q535 laptop memory. Put it in standard English DDR memory, which is faster than standard SDRAM because it can transfer data on both the falling and rising edges of each clock cycle, hence the “double” in its name. There’s absolutely no reason to remember this, but be aware that if you ever see DDR SDRAM somewhere, make sure to appreciate that it’s exactly the same as vanilla DDR.
Read: Clevo NH70 Laptop Review: Specs, Buying Guide, Price, & Feature
So what kind of laptop memory do we have?
Laptop memory DDR better known as DDR1 (although this is not the official name, it is just called DDR) or DDR SDRAM is the oldest and the slowest. It is mainly available with capacities up to 1 GB (per unit) and speeds up to 400 MHz (effective).
DDR2 is an evolution of DDR with some internal optimizations to improve performance and is typically available in capacities up to 2GB (per unit) and speeds up to 1066MHz (effective).
DDR3 is currently the latest form of DDR memory for laptops, and is a further development of DDR2 that increases speed even further. They can be found with capacities up to 4 GB (per unit) and speeds up to 1600 MHz (effective).
Note that we could say DDR2 SDRAM the same as DDR3 SDRAM. For simplicity’s sake, remember there’s DDR, DDR2, and DDR3, because honestly, that’s what you’ll come across the most! Fortunately, the industry seems to prefer the acronym convention.
You can also learn more about DDR, DDR2 and DDR3 laptop memory.
How do the above types relate to your laptop? We will check this further!
What type of DDR laptop memory do I need?
When upgrading your laptop memory, you need to choose the type of DDR memory that your laptop uses and supports. If it fails, the upgrade fails for a very simple reason – all DDR versions are not compatible with each other and use a different type of slot connector that differs in pin count (and many other technical aspects).
Speaking of memory slots, we need to introduce memory modules. Unlike desktop computers, laptops use a smaller memory slot that takes up less space.
Consequently, the memory modules used in laptops are also smaller. You may have heard the term DIMM (Dual Inline Memory Module) before, especially if you’ve upgraded your desktop computer (now is a great time to upgrade your memory!). Laptops use SO-DIMMs – just plug in a “small outline” DIMM. The name doesn’t really matter, except for what it means in practice, i.e. you can’t install a DIMM in a SO-DIMM memory slot and vice versa. DIMMs are much longer than DIMMs and are not designed for use in laptops. Before we go any further, we should also point out that you may come across SO-DIMM spelled SODIMM – it’s exactly the same thing!
In summary, we know different types of DDR that are not mixed up in different versions of DDR, and we can’t use any DIMMs in our laptop that we have at home and/or office (if we have one). Next, we need to determine what type of DDR memory we need, in particular, what will work in our clevo pa71 laptop.
A good indicator of which type is right for you is the age of your laptop. It is very likely that laptops manufactured in 2001-2003. were based on the DDR. Laptops manufactured between 2004 and 2007 will be DDR2, and finally, laptops manufactured since 2008 will be DDR3 (although some use DDR2). With this information, you will know whether to buy DDR SODIMM, DDR2 SODIMM, or maybe DDR3 SODIMM.
Another aspect that you need to evaluate is the memory controller in the laptop. An easy way to find out (and tell us what DDR is right for us) is to run some diagnostic software on our machines. In fact, there are dozens and dozens of alternative ways to go about it. We recommend downloading and running CPU-Z, it’s completely free – download CPU-Z here. This simple and useful application will, among other things, tell us what memory your laptop uses and therefore supports (remember what we said about not mixing up DDR types?). Click on the “Memory” tab as well as the “SPD” tab. There you will find the name DDR, DDR2 or DDR3 followed by various odd numbers such as memory frequency and various timings.