Why is XMP DDR5 not recommended?

Hi - payment for me FW16 (Batch2) has just been taken, so looking to order RAM and SSD…

Anyone know why Framework recommend “avoiding” XMP DDR5? It seems the main brands (Crucial, Kingston, Corsair?) all supply XMP compatible RAM?

Other than the (very expensive?) Framework options, anyone found compatible DDR5 5600 RAM without XMP?

TIA, Nick

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Likely because RAM that utilizes XMP / EXPO often has quite low JEDEC timings out of the box (The FW16 doesn’t support XMP / EXPO yet)

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I believe XMP is an Intel thing. So if you, for instance, get DDR5-5600 RAM that will only hit the advertised speeds when using XMP, then it won’t run at those speeds in the Framework laptop. It’s not so much that the RAM won’t work, but it will run at its base speed.

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The memory compatibility list mentions that some users have reported XMP modules not working. The Kingston and Crucial modules on that list (and their other capacity variants) are non-XMP 5600 and should both be fine (the Kingston ones are slightly lower latency if you care about that).

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I doubt the FW16 will support XMP/EXPO without an upgraded motherboard, since AMD only supports EXPO on the HX-series chips.

Edit: AMD does support it on the 7940HS, so if you have that CPU it may be possible on the future. If you have the Ryzen 7, it won’t be possible without upgrading.

I suppose because the framework does not support xmp/xpo and 5600 xmp modules often don’t have 5600 jdec profiles. Probably easier to tell people to avoid them than to tell them to go figure out what the jdec profiles on the xmp sticks are.

Most ram with XMP/EXPO profiles have two speeds: A default JEDEC speed and a faster XMP/EXPO speed.

The Framework 16 does not support running ram at the XMP speed and will try to run it at the JEDEC speed.

There have also been many reports indicating that the Framework 16 often (not always) has issues booting if the ram has a JEDEC speed other than 5600 MT/s, however many high performance ram modules have a fast XMP speed but only a 4800 MT/s JEDEC speed, leading to issues.

However with DDR5 specifically it has become common for ram modules to have a XMP profile even if it’s the same speed as the JEDEC profile. This is because many processors (not the ones Framework uses) are limited to 4800 MT/s when not using an XMP profile, however those modules use the XMP profile in order to bypass the processor’s 4800 MT/s limit but don’t have an XMP profile faster than the JEDEC profile. That doesn’t seem to cause any issues.

Framework has a list of officially tested ram that works. Of the modules on that list the Kingston and G.Skill kits are lower latency than the rest so I recommend those. I have the G.Skill kit from that list. Also, different capacity versions of kits on that list will probably also work fine.

AMD does officially support EXPO on the 7940HS (one of the chips available in the FW16), however Framework’s firmware doesn’t seem to allow it.

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It may do so in future; as per - What DRAM/memory is supported by Framework Laptop 16?

" We do not currently have XMP memory support on the Framework Laptop"