RAM memory is an essential component in all computers, laptops and all devices which have processors and storage drives. Basically, this element of a computer will store data which will be used anytime soon. The difference between RAM and storage space is massive. Storage space is a place where all the files are kept and RAM is a place where computers store file when they are opened the first time and stay there until we turn off a computer. More RAM is always better, especially for gaming, so let’s discover why.
How does RAM affect gaming? What does it do for gaming?
The first thing to know is that even if you add more RAM, you won’t get graphics improvements. RAM memory doesn’t have anything to do with visual performances of the game, so you shouldn’t believe otherwise. On the other hand, RAM memory is essential for all games, especially for those who have a lot of details, massive engine and etc.
All games are massive in size, meaning that they have a lot of different files. If you open a folder of a game, you will see that there are thousands of files. When we run a game, some of those files will be transferred to the RAM. More files require more RAM capacity, meaning that you get better, overall performances of the game, simply because it can provide all the features and all the advantages developers have built.
Don’t forget that computers run dozens of processes all the time, meaning that some amount of RAM is already occupied. In order to make sure you get the most of your PC or a laptop, you need more RAM if you are into gaming. For example, a computer will run some minor processes and game processes at the same time. That’s why computers with 1GB of RAM are useless nowadays.
Importance of graphics card
Here we must add the fact a graphics card is more than just important. All of them have dedicated memory, which means that games use that memory, rather than RAM. For comparison only, laptops with integrated graphics cards use RAM memory instead of the dedicated memory of graphics card. What this means is that a graphics card will literally borrow RAM.
All of this suggests that a graphics card with 4GB of memory will provide much better results than another type of graphics card, with less dedicated memory. In other words, a low amount of RAM can be compensated with a graphics card with more dedicated memory, obviously.
Some files are transferred directly to the dedicated memory of a graphics card, while some are kept in the RAM. Each game is different in this matter and each one determined when and why this is done, therefore we cannot generalize this matter.
Graphics card is, however, mostly responsible for video performances, so if you are looking for a way to get HD game quality, this is an improvement to make. Other than that, RAM is mandatory.
Don’t think that RAM is less than just important for gaming. In reality, it is equally important as the processor or graphics card, so act accordingly when it comes to choosing a new computer or improving the old one.
How Much RAM is needed for gaming?
You need an amount of RAM which is going to be used. Because games use far more of it than any other type of software (except video editing software), higher amounts of the memory are mandatory, but how much precisely? We will start with 2GB. This amount of RAM was sufficient a few years ago, but now it isn’t, so you shouldn’t even pay attention to it. The situation with 4GB of RAM is slightly better, but you will either be able to play older games or those that don’t require a lot of RAM, which is rare.
The unwritten rule is that you need as much RAM as you can afford. The importance of it is defined in the number of slots on the motherboard. Because each computer has 4-8 of them, and they are only used for increasing the RAM capacity, we can determine how much RAM is actually important.
In essence, you need a lot of RAM. Nowadays, it is possible to find computers with 32GB of RAM, which means that they are capable of running almost any game.
Now you may know that most games recommend 4 or 6GB of RAM for playing. As such, you will deduce that this amount of RAM is sufficient for playing those games. The truth is different. Theoretically, you will be able to play them. In reality, you won’t! First of all, there are a lot of factors that determine this. The processor, the graphics card, motherboard and even drivers! That’s being said, a computer with a better, faster processor can run more demanding games, with less RAM. The situation is opposite with a computer that uses the slower processor.
But, the main thing to know here is that games which recommend 4-6GB of RAM will start and barely run on some, poor screen resolution. As such, this isn’t desirable nor ideal for all gamers. You should always check the recommended RAM amount and even go a bit more than the recommendations. For example, a game which recommends 4GB of RAM will run much better on 8GB of RAM.
Nowadays, you will need at least 8GB of RAM to play some games. As we have mentioned, this also depends on other factors, which we have included above. With 8GB of RAM, most games will run smoothly and perfectly.
Still, 8GB of RAM isn’t ideal. 16GB is. There are a lot of articles on the internet where you will discover that 16GB is overkill, meaning that you will have more RAM than you actually need. All of them are wrong, simply due to the fact they are obsolete. New games won’t even run on 8GB or they will be unplayable. So, if you are looking for the minimum amount of RAM to play games, 16GB is the amount you will need. It definitely isn’t overkill and we can even say that it is a mandatory amount of memory.
The Difference in performance and stability between 8GB VS 16GB RAM for gaming
When it comes to simpler and ordinary computer use, there are no differences between 8 and 16GB of RAM. As a matter of fact, most users won’t even tell a difference and even if there is one, it will be minimal. On the other side, we have differences in gaming. As we have mentioned, the differences in visual performances are minimal, but differences in possibilities are mandatory.
A computer with 16GB of RAM will work smoother and be more stable while performing demanding tasks. Did you know that Chrome, a web browser is one of the more demanding software used today. Check in task manager and you will see that it uses more RAM than any other software which runs at the moment. Add several other tasks and start playing a game will reveal how much RAM you actually need.
A computer with 8GGB of RAM will show some imperfections at some point. The one with 16GB won’t. It will stay perfectly operational at all times and even when playing demanding games. It isn’t hard to understand that 16GB is something most users want and actually need at this point.
Then we have a matter of smart investment. If you have 8GB of RAM today, you will have to upgrade it soon. If you have 16GB, you will have to upgrade much later in the future. This is how things work with computers. Every day we have new games and new software which uses more and more RAM and processing power to operate. The situation can be better explained with smartphones. Those which were top-notch 2 years ago, today are almost useless. The situation is the same with computers, just less obvious.
Don’t forget that there are other elements which are needed for gamins Processing power, graphics card and an SSD drive are all equally important as RAM. When all of this is top-end, gaming will be much better and far more desirable than when you have all mediocre components. Furthermore, one component will try to minimize a defect of others. So, a processor will try to reduce the issues regarding the RAM memory, RAM will be used more when graphics card has an insufficient amount of dedicated memory and etc. The main thing to know here is that 16GB of RAM, paired with other, high-end components will provide you an excellent computer, capable of running all games you want to play.
RAM isn’t something your computer may need, it is something that is used all the time and something that can make a major difference in a computer with poor performances and superb ones. Gaming requires more RAM than other tasks performed on a computer, as such we must deduce that the overall importance of the RAM capacity is one of the top priorities for gamers.