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I'm planning on upgrading memory on my i5 HP Pavilion dv6 laptop since it seems to be the cheapest way to increase its speed. Right now I have 4GB with 70+% of memory used with Chrome(10 websites open) + MetaTrader + MetaEditor which is fine and doesn't cause any inconvinience at all. 70% mem usage already looks scary though. When I work in something more memory consuming like Photoshop things start being laggy. It's probably not horrible and generally bearable but I wanted some impovement.

So long story short, since not all the memory is used will installing another 4GB do any good?

And also, I have no idea if my motherboard supports the second module. I mean, there's a slot for it. Motherboard is: HP 1657 and I believe Chipset is HM65 (Cougar Point) b3. Memory: DDR3 1333MHz in Single mode. I have searched the net to find the info but I couldn't locate any straightforward info that says "Yea your motherboard supports DDR3 up-to 8GB"

I'm using 64bit Win7

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You do not say but can we assume you have a 64bit OS installed to use the added RAM? If a 32bit OS is used then the added RAM will not do anything except drain your wallet.

In addition, it seems that RAM is not a bottleneck for you as you mention it is not all used and therefore system is not swapping to disk.

Given that, I would think an SSD would be a big improvement for performance. You cannot upgrade the processor easily nor the video system so an SSD would be a good option to improve performance. This would be especially true if your system uses a 5400RPM drive rather than a 7200RPM unit

  • +1 for suggesting an SSD, but please note that the OP did mention using Photoshop, which does like RAM. – Andrew Morton Sep 27 '14 at 20:23
  • Well SSD is the dream really. I move quite a lot, so I really have to use my laptop rather than buying PC. SSD would be number 1 on my list. On my laptop I have 500GB HDD so I dont think buying SSD is an option. External HDDs failed me, so I wouldn't go for less internal storage and then just carrying data with me. Thanks for the suggestion though – akalikin Sep 27 '14 at 20:27
  • Have you determined speed of existing 500GB drive? – Dave M Oct 1 '14 at 12:40
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Bearing in mind that you should check for the exact model number, it appears that 8GB would be the maximum: HP Pavilion dv6-3079TX.

Important: is it running a 64-bit version of Windows? If not, adding more RAM will not help.

If you do change the RAM, it would be a good idea to get an 8GB kit (two 4GB modules) so that the memory sticks are matched. Also, using two memory sticks usually has the advantage that the processor can interleave its access to them, which makes 2x4GB (dual channel) faster than 1x8GB.

  • So I already have one module, I thought I could just buy another 4GB with matching freq. Or should I buy two completely new modules? – akalikin Sep 27 '14 at 19:38
  • You really should buy two new modules: when they come as a "kit" they are pretty much guaranteed to work together. If you just add another one, they might each be reliable, but not work together properly all the time. If your budget really really will not stretch to buying a 2x4GB kit and you don't mind chancing it, you could install just one extra 4GB memory stick. I've done that in the past, but I cannot in all good conscience recommend it. – Andrew Morton Sep 27 '14 at 19:46
  • Two identical modules would work better in dual channel mode, but performance gain from having dual channel would be barely noticeable. If you have one 4 GB module already installed then just buy additional 4 GB one. – gronostaj Sep 27 '14 at 20:18
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I have just updated by probook 4530s i5 from 8 gb RAM to 16gb RAM. It is working fine. It has improved boot time. The system is much cooler and quit. My bios version is F60

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    So does this definitively mean that the OP's Pavilion can be upgraded to 8 GB? – fixer1234 Apr 29 '15 at 11:51

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