SDRAM Bank Interleaving – What is It?

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So Why Don’t I See a Big Performance Gain?

Cache, that’s why. In the normal course of things, 90~95% of the time, your CPU is getting data from your CPU’s Level 1 or Level 2 cache. The CPU doesn’t go to memory at all. At other times, the data accesses are too small or too random to benefit from interleaving. Only in certain conditions will you benefit. You may actually benefit more from memory interleave as CPU’s get faster, because this would magnify the waiting time, but this is only speculation on my part.

If you want to see how much performance you can get from interleaving, you might find the following article (over at Ace’s Hardware) interesting – The KT133A Decision, Part 1. The actual information of interest is on the fourth or fifth page.


The short of the matter is that bank interleave support, or the lack of it, is determined by the chips that make up the memory module. Bank interleave doesn’t give you earth shattering performance benefits, but it does give some benefit.

I hope this clears a few things up. If you have any questions, there’s always the forums.

Further reading:

At the risk of sounding like a bad sci-fi movie, want to know more? I suggest these two articles to get you started.

RAM Guide Part I- DRAM and SRAM Basics over at Ars Technica, and

Ace’s Guide to Memory Technology over at Ace’s Hardware.

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