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SDRAM Support & SDRAM Test Results

  1. Q. What is SDRAM Technology? Can RAMCHECK support SDRAM modules without an adapter?
    A. Synchronous DRAM technology emerged in the mid nineties and provided a revolutionary change in the way DRAM interfaced to a computer. It synchronizes all the read/write transfers to a system clock, thus providing significantly faster transfer rate for contiguous (same Row Address) group of data. A Synchronous DRAM can burst up to a full columns length of continuous data at the device clock rate (currently 150Mhz and higher rates). RAMCHECK has a built-in 168-pin test socket and will support SDRAM modules without an adapter.

  2. Q. Can RAMCHECK support PC-133 (and higher speed) modules?
    A. Yes. RAMCHECK's test engine can reach maximum internal frequency of 200MHz, and can test SDRAM modules up to 166MHz. You will need to download the latest firmware revisionand also to review Application Note 13 that discusses PC-133 determination.

  3. Q. Can RAMCHECK support slower SDRAM modules including the PC-100 or PC-66?
    A. Yes. RAMCHECK has a much higher range than our previous SIMCHECK II technology and it supports older SDRAM modules running at 66MHz or 100MHz, as well as the state-of-the art faster modules.

  4. Q. Does RAMCHECK identify modules that support the Athlon processor?
    A. Yes, RAMCHECK identifies this module by displaying "SPD=CL2 at 100MHz" in the last summary screen as well as in the Test Log. .

  5. Q. How can I set stricter test conditions when testing SDRAM on RAMCHECK?
    A. You can elect to use the speed setup feature to set a specific frequency rate for your tested module. This will insure a locked setting that will force the module to work at only this speed. Please refer to your owner's manual under Section 5.3.2 to review the information on TESTING DUT AT SETUP SPEED. Alternatively, you may also use the Change-On-The-Fly feature (described in Section 4 of your owner's manual) to set a one-time speed setting.

  6. Q. Can I use the RAMCHECK to program the SPD codes of my SDRAM memory?
    A. Yes. Advanced users, including memory manufacturers and memory repair technician may use RAMCHECK's extensive support for editing and programming SPDs. Regular users should not try to alter the SPD as it may crash the system if wrong data is set.

  7. Q. The RAMCHECK shows the speed, Tac access time, and Page Burst. Which is the most accurate parameter for determining PC-100 compliance?
    A. There are various parameters that are needed to qualify a module for PC-100 compliance. Currently all of these figures are taken into consideration before RAMCHECK declares the module to be PC-100. You may review Application Note 13 for an explanation on how RAMCHECK determines PC-100 compliance. Future firmware revisions may add some additional parameters to this determination.

  8. Q. The SPD on the module tested says PC-66, but the test log shows that it is PC-100 Range, will the module work as a PC-100?
    A. All of the parameters measured indicate the module to run at a PC-100 level, and it may very well operate as PC-100, however, please remember that modules react differently under different loads. Some modules when used in a complete bank will slow down to the PC-66 level. Please review Application Notes INN-8668-APN13 and INN-8668-APN3 to review what the individual measurements mean.

  9. Q. The SPD on the module says PC-100, but the test log reports it to be PC-66, is the module PC-100?
    A. Due to the possibility of loading, some modules may exhibit a slow down in speed. We recommend checking the Tac access times for further reference on PC-100 range. Also, refer to Application Notes INN-8668-APN13 and INN-8668-APN3 to review what the individual measurements mean.

  10. Q. What Tac range is appropriate for PC-100 devices?
    A. Please refer to Application Note INN-8668-APN13 for an explanation of these limits.

  11. Q. During the Extensive Test, the SDRAM module under test now runs at 83MHz. Does this mean that it is not PC-100?
    A. The only test that determines PC-100 compliance is the BASIC Test, so we ask that you check the results after BASIC Test. The frequencies used in the Extensive Test are for other tests altogether. Please refer to Application note INN-8668-APN13 for further information on PC-100 determination.

  12. Q. Why do some SDRAM modules test faster than others even though they are the same size, and why does the PAGE BURST (red) LED flash on some modules and not on others?
    A. Some SDRAM modules employ a FULL PAGE BURST feature. SIMCHECK II takes advantage of this feature found in some SDRAM components and uses it to test the modules at a faster rate (shortening the overall test time). The Page Burst LED (red) will flash vigorously throughout the test if the module employs this feature. Please note, however, that a full page burst is not a requirement for PC100 or PC133 compliance. Also, those modules having such a feature will not have an advantage in systems over those not employing this Page Burst characteristic.

If you have additional questions, please feel free to email us at support@innoventions.com. Please remember to include your phone and fax numbers.

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