|Not only are older laptops susceptible to a decrease in performance, but after a while, even newer laptops can also begin to run slower. When a laptop or notebook has too many programs running at once, it has to store some of the data on the slower hard drive rather than the faster RAM. Since accessing the hard drive takes more time than accessing the system's memory, this will degrade performance and make programs run slower. One way to help speed up the laptop is to upgrade the memory, or RAM. A laptop memory upgrade allows more programs to be loaded at once, with better performance and speed. Replacing laptop memory is one of simplest upgrades you can make, and also has the most dramatic effect on performance.
The main factors that differentiate memory are capacity, which is how much memory is available in the chips, the configuration and number of pins, and its clock speed. Since there are many variations in memory chips and numerous different standards, it is a good idea to use a parts locator tool for finding compatible laptop memory. Many websites have such a tool, which lets you enter the specific model number of your laptop or notebook, and be shown parts that are compatible with your model, thus ensuring compatibility and avoiding costly returns or damage.
The main types of laptop memory are SDR (Single data rate SDRAM) and DDR (double data rate SDRAM). SDR RAM was most common in older machines, which ran at speeds from 66 MHz up to 133 MHz, known as PC133, before it was replaced by DDR. DDR or double data rate RAM, so-called because it effectively doubles the data transfer rate of traditional SDR RAM. DDR that is rated at 333 MHz actually operates 166 MHz, but since the module can transfer data on the up and down cycle, it basically doubles this speed. As DDR improves in speed, it has taken on the names DDR2, DDR3, and beyond.
One other term you may encounter is ECC, which stands for Error Checking and Correcting. This type of memory is able to correct errors, and is mostly used in servers and other computers that are left unattended for long periods of time. Because it is more expensive, it is often not recommended for consumer use.
When upgrading notebook memory, it is advisable to add the maximum amount of memory supported by your system, to ensure the best performance boost. Since you will likely only upgrade your notebook memory once in its lifetime, you might as well get the most out of the notebook memory upgrade.
When choosing between OEM or third-party compatible laptop memory, you should consider that third-party memory from a trusted reseller is designed to meet or exceed the same standards as the OEM memory. This allows buyers to get the same performance and capacity for a much lower price. Look for a seller with a satisfaction guarantee, who stands behind the products they sell and offers a lifetime warranty which is a standard in the industry.