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What makes a phone more speedy? the processor or the ram?

Discussion in 'Motorola Milestone' started by chad_petree, Jun 27, 2010.

  1. chad_petree
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    chad_petree New Member

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    After i overclocked my milestone to 800 mhz, all i notice is the phone being more "responsive" but still some apps have lag and takes 3-4 seconds to load ,i thought it would be more "snappy" so what would actually make the phone feel faster? more ram? more cpu speed, like1.0 ghz? 512 mb of ram?

    I really cant wait to get froyo o see if theres really a NOTICEABLE difference , the thing i envy the most from the iphone is the fluidness and speed :icon_evil:
  2. Szadzik
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    Szadzik New Member

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    Try 1/GHz first.
  3. Croak
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    Croak New Member

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    One of the biggest culprits in a Milestone/Droid feeling laggy is the way the stock Android UI works. Swipe from screen-to-screen and each screen needs to be reloaded and redrawn pretty much from scratch. The Nexus one has the same problem.

    Get a home screen replacement like LauncherPro or ADW (or Sense UI for that matter) and notice the immediate "speed increase", a much more fluid feel to the UI, without changing anything else. Why is it faster? Because they're using RAM to cache the bitmaps, making for faster redraws. Stock Android doesn't do this, and that's where it feels laggy.

    That caching is the real secret behind Sense phones feeling so much faster than Google Experience phones like the Droid/Milestone and Nexus One. It's not that HTC went through and fine-tuned Android, or that the Snapdragon is some Jesus processor. It's all about the caching. Which is also why they stuck a bit more RAM in the HTC Desire/Incredible compared to the N1, to make room for this cache.

    So, get a memory manager app like MemFreeManager, set it to Agressive, use LauncherPro v0.6.2 (or higher) and set memory usage to High (to take real advantage of some of that freed-up RAM), and enjoy a much more responsive basic UI. Too many widgets or a Live wallpaper can still bog things down though.

    As a side effect, having more free RAM means other apps will run better and smoother at all times, the downside being marginally longer load times for stuff that's been swapped out of memory more aggressively (keyboards are the most obvious things to suffer from this).

    Good news is, this is offset by shorter load times for most non-resident apps because the memory that would have normally been swapped out starting when you launched it (and the overhead of clearing this RAM) was already done in advance.

    Then you can overclock the hell out of it and really fly. :)
  4. aisvo
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    aisvo New Member

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    True!
    Overclocking is perhaps the only option since you can't change the RAM size without altering the phone's hardware.
  5. chad_petree
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    chad_petree New Member

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    I already use launcherpro and i stopped using the live wallpapers because they slowed down the system noticeably, now i have better speed in the homescreens but what about the speed opening apps? task managers and "closing apps" make the system slower ,so what we really need is new ui that handles the ram differently? seems to me 512 mb is the answer to a "faster android experience"
  6. Darkseider
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    Darkseider New Member

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    Well there is another reason Android UI is a little sluggish. The Android UI does not use the GPU in any way whereas the iPhone UI does make some low level calls to the GPU in oreder to accelerate the desktop thus giving it a more fluid response. Now as to the OP's original question. Processor speed will always improve performance and memory, possibly. The reason I say possibly on memory is that if the OS + Apps you are using are not using all of the memory to begin with than the extra memory, in Androids case, would be used for caching and nothing else.
  7. chad_petree
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    chad_petree New Member

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    thats what i was thinking, the ram is not the problem most of the times, even after i reboot the phone i get lag in simple apps like the music player or the messaging apps, google better improve this on gingerbread u.u
  8. Croak
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    Croak New Member

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    That's what apps like MemFreeManager do. It adjusts the thresholds that Android uses for its task killing/garbage cleanup functions. This app rewrites tables (either for this boot session, or at boot, you have the choice) and then goes away. Android now handles the rest.

    On my Milestone, if I use MemFreeManager with "Aggressive" settings, I go from about 25-35mb free to 45-65mb free, depending on what I'm running at the time.

    Having that much extra free RAM means much faster loading of "cold" applications and smoother system performance, but a hair longer load times on stuff like keyboards and Search (that would normally already be running). It's a fair trade-off in my book.

    And yep, 512mb > 256mb, no doubt about it, but you can still squeeze a lot of performance out of the Milestone.

    EDIT: Oh, and try ditching SetCPU if you're using it, you will most likely see a lot of unexplained pauses and hitches go away in day to day use. Really.
  9. joa
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    joa New Member

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    Fantastic post, thanks very much :)
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