I recently acquired an HP Z800 with two Intel Xeon X5650 (Gulftown) 6 core processors. The person that configured the system chose 16GB (8 x 2GB DDR3-1333). I'm assuming this person was unaware these processors have 3 memory channels and to optimize memory performance one should choose memory in multiples of three. Based on this information, I have a question:
By entering the BIOS, can I disable the bank on each processor that has the single memory module? If so, will this have any adverse effects or behave differently than physically removing the modules? I ask due to the fact that I prefer to store the extra memory in the system if it truly behaves as if the memory is not even there. Also, I see this as an opportunity to test 12GB vs. 16GB to see if there is a noticeable difference.
Note: According to http://www.delltechcenter.com/page/04-08-2009+-+Nehalem+and+Memory+Configurations?t=anon, the current configuration reduces the overall data transfer speed to 1066 and in addition, the memory bandwidth goes down by about 23%.