This is a new series dedicated to getting down to the nitty-gritty of what makes identical pieces of Hardware actually different on closer inspection. Just like my Doctor Electo series, this blog isn’t going to be as active since it’s mainly just to inform you of minor details about certain things related to content in main topics such as my “Killa’s Surprise OnBoxings” series for example.
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Now what gave me the idea to do this blog, was because of certain things i realized when I was looking to get my own stuff, mainly PC parts, and I came across a series of these components that all were very similar but had some minor strong points and weak areas that caused them to vary in price etc, and these kinds of scenarios often made me wonder why that was. In some cases, I realized that prices has more to do with competition than anything fundamentally significant, but in some cases I came to realize that there were actual interesting features on some devices, that made them actually more valuable for certain applications than their identical counterparts, this the reason why I feel a topic like this, can be pretty helpful for those like me, who are ambitious “do-it-yourselfers” that often have similar questions about things :D
Case-in-point today would be some things I realized about A version of the Motherboard I have and another identical motherboard in the same exact series, and these would be the ASUS Z10PE-D8 WS and the ASUS Z10PE-D16 WS. On the surface, you will immediately know that there has to be some difference between the two since they have “numeric” designations (ie; D8/D16) in their names that indicate that they are not exactly the same but are still very similar. But sometimes depending on where you look, you may not get a clear description of the two, that would clear up your curiosity as to why the D16 may cost “less” than the D8 even though the 16 in the D16 suggests that it may be better than the D8 since it has what can be considered a higher numeric specification which makes it seem of higher quality or “status”, or of higher value, compared to the D8 which may have lower properties to offer.
On closer research, these numbers after the “D”, only specify how many RAM slots are on each version of each of these boards, and it is marketed that way because of what these mother boards were originally designed to do, which is to mainly be utilized in WORKSTATION environments, where the optimization and availability of RAM to manage various graphically demanding tasks is often almost a very high priority, so one of the key features for these boards is that they were developed primarily as workstation motherboards (which is why the carry the “WS” abbreviation at the end of their names too) that have above average capacity for high bandwidth, very high speed DDR4 RAM, to help deal with tasks that rely alot on how much RAM you can throw at them, so in one case, there is a version of these boards that can accommodate 8 sticks of ram, that can be configured to reach upwards to about 500GB of total DDR4 system memory hence (the 8 in the D8 version), then and the other one which actually has 16 memory slots that can hold up to 16 sticks of DDR4 RAM, which can be configured to have upwards of around 2-Tarabites of total DDR4 system memory.
All of that is very awesome stuff, but there was one technical issue that I could not really understand at first, and that was way then if the D16 was actually better at its way of handling what these motherboards are designed for in terms of memory, did it on average, cost slightly less than the D8 version, because I was not going to by the D8 version, knowing that the D16 was essentially the same thing and possibly better because it had 16 more RAM slots and it costed less, so I knew there was probably more than meets the eye, and considering many people were actually buying the D8 version even though it costed more, I knew that something wasn’t adding up and that infact I was missing something.
After careful analysis to get to the bottom of what was actually going on with these boards, I found out that while the D16 actually was better in the memory department which was a feature that is very critical when it came to most workstation oriented operations, the D8 actually had more USB ports PLUS one extra very useful PCIe slot. So depending on what you are doing, the D8 version would actually be of bigger value to you because of these minor extra features that are not that obvious if you were just concerned with the initial prioritized fundamentals concerning the RAM capacities between the two, and not much else.
That’s why I eventually got the D8 even though it costed slightly more over the D16 even though the D16 had more available RAM slots, since I ultimately found the extra PCIe slot and more USB ports alot more useful for my personal objectives and what I have in mind for my own computer.
So for those of you who may not be quite sure or up-to-date on the minor differences between the ASUS Z10PE-D8 WS and the ASUS Z10PE-D16 WS, just keep in mind that one has an extra PCIe lane and more USB ports and things like that, while the other one is much better in terms of RAM and Graphical capabilities, so according to which one is more beneficial to you in specific situations and areas, you can make your decisions based on the minor details and specs I have shared. There is alot more minor details about the features on these boards than I have detailed here, but I just thought I would share a couple of key details, just as an example, to give you a better understanding as to why the monetary market value of them vary, even though at face value one looks like it should be the clear choice, but yet the other is slightly more favored, but you maybe confused as to why. You could also obviously use these tips and method of looking closely at details between types of products that are similar, to help you decide on things when shopping in other areas.