How To Choose RAM For Your Pc

How To Choose RAM For Your Pc
How To Choose RAM For Your Pc

Random-access memory, or RAM, is a form of transient memory used by computers. RAM’s purpose is to allow a CPU to access relevant data without storing it indefinitely quickly. It is constantly overwritten and refreshed, unlike an HDD or an SSD. A PCB (printed circuit board) with graphics chips attached is the most cost-effective RAM. 

More costly models have metallic heat spreaders and heat sinks for ventilation, while some have LED lighting and other cosmetic features. Since it has a direct link to the motherboard, RAM is much quicker than longer-term storage, and it eliminates the latency caused by cables or headers. As a result, RAM will serve as a large cache for the most critical data that the CPU and other components need right now and shortly.

How To Choose RAM For Your Pc | 12 Features To Consider Before Buying

The amount of RAM in your machine and the memory configuration decide how many programs can be run at any given time. Since Random Access Memory affects your day-to-day computing, you must pick it carefully. Take a look at the essential features listed below before making your decision.

1. Good RAM According To Your Budget For Purchasing

8GB is appropriate for gamers and those doing simple mainstream productivity activities. However, many open window windows and other running programmers will quickly deplete this resource. Given that 16GB costs just $25 more than 8GB, most people can choose 16GB. Many who are passionate about content production would almost certainly want more.

The vast majority of current computers use fourth-generation DDR4, which became widely available in 2016. In the meantime, DDR3 memory and DDR3-compatible motherboards are still available, but DDR3 is rapidly becoming obsolete.

2. Different Types Of RAM Available In The Market For Different Processors

These are the following rams that are available in the market for the best working. You can choose according to your processor compatibility.

1. DDR (double data rate) 

2. DDR2 SDRAM (double data rate synchronous dynamic random-access memory) – originate in very outdated machines between the years 2003 and 2007 

3. DDR3 SDRAM (double data rate type synchronous dynamic random-access memory) – can be established in devices made between 2007 and 2015 

4. DDR4 SDRAM (double data rate fourth-generation synchronous dynamic random-access memory) – presently used in computers and laptops after 2015 

5. DDR5 SDRAM – predictable to arrive in markets by late 2021and will be a revolution in impacting heavy applications and processes, most likely computer design, video processing, encoding, etc.

3. How To Check RAM Compatibility

Before you start worrying about RAM size and frequency, make sure your motherboard and processor are compatible. The incorrect type of modules will simply not fit, and RAM with the incorrect specifications for your PC will underperform.

1. DDR Generation

Older generation DDR memory would not fit with motherboards designed to accommodate newer generation DDR memory and vice versa. DDR3 memory cannot be installed in a motherboard with DDR4 DIMM slots, and DDR4 memory cannot be installed in a motherboard with DDR3 DIMM slots.

2. Motherboard DIMM Slots

It’s also important to keep track of how many slots the motherboard has. Some motherboards with smaller form factors (micro-ATX and mini-ITX) only have two DIMM slots. So, a 4x4GB flash kit would not fit in them. In any case, you can only have two RAM sticks mounted. As a result, make sure you don’t buy more memory than your motherboard can handle.

4. How To Choose RAM Frequency/Speed

As this is measured in mega transfers per second (MT/s), it is sometimes referred to as the speed in megahertz (MHz), even though it is not the same as clock speed. Higher speed ratings indicate a quicker response time to read and write requests, and therefore better efficiency. 

If you don’t have a dedicated graphics card, using faster (supported) memory will give you slightly better frame rates. However, suppose you need to spend more on components to maintain that speed, such as faster memory. In that case, it could be more cost-effective to invest in a dedicated card that will have improved overall gaming performance.

5. How To Choose Ram Timings/Latency

The timing or latency of RAM is represented as four numerals separated by dashes. Typically, lower numbers mean better performance. Many who find tinkering with machines to be a fascinating game will get down in the weeds and change the tiniest of memory timings.

CAS, tRCD, tRP, and tRAS are the key timings you’ll see most often. They’re written in double-digit numbers divided by hyphens, like 16-18-18-38. These numbers are smaller (or “tighter”) at lower frequencies, where lower latency is feasible and more prominent (or “looser”) at higher frequencies, where maintaining the same latency is more complicated. The best RAM value comes from striking a balance between lower latency and higher frequencies.

6. Single and Dual RAM

The main difference between a Single Channel RAM and a Dual Channel RAM is that a “Single Channel requires just one module of RAM, while a Dual Channel uses two.”

You use one comprehensive capacity module with a single channel RAM and will cram data you need to pass between the CPU and the RAMif you want to do it all at once. When you have a Dual channel, you can transmit data using two power units, potentially transmitting twice as much data. A single channel RAM would do for games, but a Dual channel RAM is recommended for transmitting large amounts of data in a technical environment. Bottlenecking can also be avoided with dual or quad-channel RAM. 

7. Aesthetics and Cooling

Memory heat sinks will improve the aesthetics of your system. They are, though, frequently merely aesthetic. Like any other component, RAM produces heat, but it doesn’t get boiling unless used at unusually high speeds. If you’re not severely overclocking your RAM, you should miss the heat sink. However, as with any part, it’s still a good idea to check that your memory is getting enough airflow.

Memory modules with RGB lighting can also provide a touch of personalization and increase the visual appeal of the device. Only make sure the RGB memory sticks you use are consistent with the motherboard brand you have.

8. Heat spreaders

To help keep temperatures down, RAM sticks almost always have a heat spreader or heatsink. However, unlike a CPU or GPU, RAM does not get hot as long as it has any precise airflow, even though overclocked slightly. As a result, you won’t need to buy a memory kit with a large heat spreader to ensure decent working temperatures and component lifespan.

Strong overclocking at extraordinarily high voltages will result in a device stability advantage from using a memory heat spreader in certain severe situations. It’s also helpful to design a PC with a minimal footprint or reduced airflow over your memory modules. In most cases, however, a heat spreader isn’t needed.

9. Bandwidth (Single Channel vs. Dual-Channel vs. Quad-Channel)

Multi-channel RAM has been around for a bit, and its primary selling point is increased bandwidth. In other words, the amount of data that can share between a CPU and a single RAM module is restricted. 

Dual-channel and quad-channel setups are added to the mix to avoid bottlenecking. Dual-channel configurations use two RAM buttons, while quad-channel configurations use four. Since more components are involved, it will significantly increase the bandwidth and performance.

Two RAM buttons are used in dual-channel configurations, while four are used in quad-channel configurations. Since there are more elements involved, the bandwidth and efficiency would increase dramatically. However, though dual and quad-channel RAM performance advantages are minor in games, having many RAM modules has certain benefits? Purchasing several low-capacity modules is usually less expensive than purchasing a single high-capacity module.

10 XMP Vs. SPD

Serial Presence Detect (SPD) is the technology that detects a tiny ROM (read-only memory) chip that has been programmed with a timings table and provides the right frequency and timings to a motherboard. The Joint Electron Device Engineering Council (JEDEC), a business body that comprises organizations from the memory controller and CPU sectors down to DRAM IC suppliers and assemblers, defines industry-standard timings.

Intel’s “Extreme Memory Profiles,” which incorporate an overclocking table to memory, have been moved to the point that some of the fastest DDR4-4266 DIMMs have used DDR4-2133 ICs. If your motherboard supports XMP, you can generally get a pack like DDR4-3200 CAS 14 with a modest data rate and tighter-than-standard latencies.

Intel’s “Extreme Memory Profiles,” which have an overclocking table for memory, have been pushed to the extent that DDR4-2133 ICs are already being included with several of the fastest DDR4-4266 DIMMs. If your motherboard supports XMP, you will usually get a pack with a moderate data rate and tighter-than-standard latencies, such as DDR4-3200 CAS 14.

11. Module Type

RAM comes in the form of sticks or memory modules that snap into the motherboard’s memory slots. Incompatible RAM will either not work or will not perform properly in your system.

Current motherboards support DDR4 RAM. DDR4 is not to be confused with DDR3, the previous SDRAM generation. They’re not compatible, so you can’t swap out 8GB of DDR3 for 16GB of DDR4, for example.

 12. DDR4 and SDRAM

SDRAM is a type of RAM used in computers (Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory). Synchronous DRAM is synchronized with the processor’s pitch. SDRAM has evolved to have advantages such as lower power usage, higher data transfer speeds, and more efficient data delivery.

For modern computers, DDR4 SDRAM is the latest format. DDR4 is the fourth generation of DDR technology, which replaced SDR (Single Data Rate) SDRAM. DDR4 has higher data transfer speeds, more significant sizes, and lower voltages than its predecessor. 

You’ll be working with the latest norm of DDR4 SDRAM if you’re building a new PC or updating RAM in an older machine. It has various timings, voltage, and pin count, among other features.  the prominent notch on DDR4 modules is placed after a different pin than DDR3 modules, preventing it from fitting into DDR3 slots.

How To Choose The Best RAM For Gaming

Lower resolutions in gaming usually mean you’re more CPU bound, which means it’s the weakest link in your rendering chain. In that case, memory efficiency and CPU performance will significantly impact the average frame rate. Device memory speed is less critical at higher resolutions, where you’re more likely to be GPU bound – but the speed of your card’s GDDR memory will make a big difference.

Changing from an entry-level memory speed of 2,666MHz to 3,200MHz would not double the frame rates in most games, but it would be visible and worthwhile if you want to improve your gaming performance. Moving up to 3,600MHz can result in minor improvements, but these will be intangible. The gains will be in the single-digit percentage points as you get up to and beyond 4,000MHz, and will need considerable overclocking to exploit fully.

High-speed memory with tight timings is the way to go, whether you have an Intel or AMD PC. You can save money by using Chillblast’s own 2,666 MHz memory, or you can pay a bit more for a slight performance upgrade by using 3,200 MHz packages.

How Much RAM Do You Need?

In mainstream work-related programming activities, 16 GB is called the sweet spot for price-to-performance considerations. And if you have many windows open at the same time and a dozen Chrome tabs open, you should have plenty of headroom before experiencing any performance issues.

Workstation computers used for graphics processing, science simulation, and CAD applications should have more than 16 GB of memory. 3D modeling workstations of up to 32 GB of RAM are not rare.

May You Like: Best RAM for i5 8400

Frequently Asked Questions

What factors should I consider when selecting RAM for gaming?

When playing sports, RAM can help with frame rates and frame pacing. When choosing RAM, consider both power and pace. Understand the differences between DIMM and SO-DIMM type variables. You’ll need at least 16GB of RAM and more if you multitask to play modern games.

Is 32GB of RAM excessive?

Those rendering massive files or performing other memory-intensive tasks can opt for 32GB or more. However, most of us should get perfectly fine with 16GB outside those types of use cases.

What criteria do I use to determine the RAM to purchase?

If you’re designing a new computer, 8GB of RAM has become the industry standard. However, if you’re developing a device for games, 16GB to 32GB of RAM should suffice. If you’re developing a framework for production work, I’d recommend 32GB or even more to ensure the program load quickly.

What factors influence RAM speed?

The speed of RAM built-in in your device is limited by the speed of your processor and the bus speed of the system motherboard. RAM updates are restricted by the system’s capacity and the number of expansion slots available.

Are there any RAM speed limits on motherboards?

RAM (memory aka DIMM) speed limits exist on all motherboards and CPUs. RAM (memory aka DIMM) speed limits exist on all motherboards and CPUs. The lower of the two-speed limits would apply to you. However, depending on the applications, you might be able to get away with using 2133 MHz.


Finally, we should mention that, while various versions are potentially interchangeable, doing so is not advised. Combining RAM modules from different manufacturers will result in unexpected compatibility problems, crashes, and overall sluggish results. Prioritize power over speed and latency, opt for kits rather than individual high-capacity units, leave space for expansion if necessary/possible, and avoid mixing and matching different versions if you decide to upgrade your RAM later.

Then, based on the particular use case, you might want to invest a little more (if your budget allows) to get quicker RAM with tighter timings. Finally, the considerations mentioned above can assist you in selecting the best RAM for your budget and requirements.

Avatar of Muhammad Nadeem

My name is Muhammad Nadeem. Just complete my graduation in computer science. I love to play games. I am working as a computer hardware seller in the offline and online marketplace.