Memtest86 won't necessarily tell you if the RAM itself is bad. In fact I've only ever seen it mark failures when the issue was the memory controller. (That is known bad sticks passing extended memtest86 runs but BSOD'ing every computer it was put in. On the other hand I've seen failures in memtest86 where the stick lived happily in another system.) For example my uncle had a laptop which was rated to take 2GB of memory, but would fail memtest86 if you put 2GB in it. Reduced to 1.5GB and put the other 1GB stick in another laptop and neither machine had a problem.
So to me it seems way more likely to be a memory timing issue. The likelihood that he has more than one bad module seems awfully slim to me. It's unfortunate that prebuilt computers lock down their BIOS so much, and IMO this is one of the biggest reasons to build your own system. No OEM BS.
edward850 wrote:Indeed. I can't actually find PSUs at such a low rating in my local market, as most motherboards expect a higher rating. It should be noted that if your RAM really is maxing out your PSU, you are stretching your power requirements dangerously thin already.
I bought a few 80-plus gold 360W
PSUs for my Atom based file servers and that was the smallest I could find. Even ran my HD5770 on them for fun without issues. Of course even though 360W would probably be enough for most people they would be crazy to buy these things since you can get an equally good 500W for the same price or less. Power supplies have definitely crept up in wattage when dual GPUs combined with over clocking was all the rage and never really came back down.
XanderK9 wrote:Example, my model of MacBook Pro cannot take RAM higher than 1333 Mhz even if it's ram made for Apple computers due to an limitation of the chipset. Another one: the RAM I originally bought for my previous motherboard, regardless of the settings I was using, made my computer crash on completely random basis, even if that was memory made for Intel motherboards and I know they were perfectly good. It turns out that the motherboard's chipset didn't like the RAM's memory chips and switching to something that was listed with the motherboard's known good list made the problem go away.
Apple's memory support is stupidly picky. I bought some faster rated RAM because it was the same price for my Mac Mini and it of course didn't work. The good news was that my brother had a module of equal capacity and correct speed in his Lenovo W700ds so I yanked that and paired it with one of the faster modules. Since the speeds differed the Mac underclocked the new module and is running happily. The Lenovo also works just fine and he got bumped up to 5GB of memory by using the old Apple module as well.