How much RAM do I need for my laptop?
If I started with Comparisons of RAM, Is 8GB RAM enough for my laptop?
The most frequent question often comes in my mind when I used to suggest my readers when they decide to buy or upgrade their PCs. I have some reasonable stock of answers that usually people like to listen but I personally think that there is not one size that fits the frame with the word “RAM”.
Today I will present some testing blocks that may be according to your taste. In such blocks, we will test a variety of cases with the question” how much RAM do I need on my Laptop”.
What is RAM and how does it work?
Let’s start with the most common word “RAM” probably you would be confused about. “RAM is all about data which needs to store before processing”. RAM stands for Random Access Memory. It consists of dynamic memory chips that can be written and rewritten with data very quickly.
However, the memory used for RAM is also volatile, Unlike your hard drive which means that it only holds onto that data while the chip is powered, and is not designed to hold information for long term.
In other words, we can say that RAM is the memory that actually lets you work with the data needed to run programs and mostly to open files. Simply, we can say that whenever your computer loads a program or try to open a file, it opens up the desired data in RAM. Even your operating system also uses RAM when it’s running.
For instance how your laptop boosts after having RAM of 16GB.
For instance, “If I want to run a program, it pulls the data from long-term storage to short-term storage in RAM, where it can be accessed quickly enough for smooth operation”.
Read more About: Why say no to Touch-Screen?
How much RAM do I need on my Laptop – [Case Study]
To help you in finding the best answer for you, we tested five specific use cases, each is common but distinct in its memory demands:
- Office productivity
- Web browsing
- Media streaming
- Photo editing
With different hardware and memory demands. Want to edit photos, but you’re not much of a gamer?
Want to do some document work and web browsing but still want the option to do more?
In other words, whatever your mix of uses is, we can give you a very good idea of how much Ram can my laptop hold. Usually, laptops have Built-in RAM, but gaming laptops need some high RAM.
Review Cheap gaming laptops with more RAM options.
Can More RAM Improve gaming? [RAM for Gaming Laptops]
Our case study represents these five points through the table, to find the memory demands for both basic and heavy uses, and matched that to common allotments of RAM.
However, only Chromebooks have only 4GB of RAM specially designed for light duties and streaming.
Review the best collection of Chromebooks If you use it for light functions.
Case Study About RAM Recommendation
Maybe my case study helps you in selecting RAM needed for your Laptop depending on usage. RAM and Processors are the two most important components when approaching towards new machine no doubt.
Assumptions Regarding Case study of How much RAM do I need for my laptop
Office productivity Key takeaway: You can do a lot of work with only 4GB of memory, but if you need to work with extremely large files, definitely you’ll want to bump up to 8GB or more.
Web Browsing key takeaway: If you’re a heavy web user, you can get by with 4GB of RAM, but will definitely see a benefit from a larger allotment of course, such as 8GB. If your open tabs routinely hit the 30+ mark, you’ll want at least 10GB of memory; more if you want to multitask in other programs as you browse.
Media Streaming key takeaway: If your primary uses for a system will be streaming media, a basic 4GB should do the trick just fine.
Photo Editing Key takeaway: You can use Photoshop CC with the minimum of 2.5GB required, but you’ll see a smoother performance and better photo handling with larger allotments of RAM. So, we would recommend a minimum of 8GB for anyone who expects to regularly edit photos.
Gaming key takeaway: Opt for 8GB of RAM only if you want decent performance on less demanding titles, but you have to go for 16GB if you want to play the latest and most resource intensive hits. If you want to do things like a stream to Twitch, we’d recommend opting for the 32GB options offered on many gaming PCs.
Now the question arises here, Do I need 32gb of RAM for gaming?
Note: If you are king of multi-tasking you should really go for 8GB of RAM and those who are running applications along with a ton of tabs surely go for 16GB. How much RAM 64 bit needs? A 64Bit operating system needs 4GB of RAM.
Some guidelines regarding how much RAM do I need for my Laptop with respect to the budget, OS demands and in the professional area.
Laptop Ram vs Desktop Ram performance
Mostly, we can’t get the answers at the right time when we want to know about What differentiates the notebook RAM from desktop RAM is its form factor? It is said that, its physical size and its pin configuration. A full-size DIMM has 100, 168, 184, or 240 pins and is usually 4.5 to five inches in length. In contrast, a SO DIMM has 72, 100, 144, or 200 pins and is smaller — 2.5 to 3 inches.
How to check RAM in your Laptop? [Steps to Know] [In windows]
Reviews of Allotments – How much RAM can my Laptop hold
- 2GB: Only really found in budget tablet designs. Fine but you need more in a laptop or desktop.
- 4GB: Level memory that comes with even budget notebooks. Fine for basic Windows and Chrome OS usage.
- 8GB: Excellent for Windows and Mac OS systems and for most games.
- 16GB: Ideal for professional work and more demanding games.
- 32GB: Enthusiasts and purpose-built workstations only.
The flow of data between the Hard disk and the RAM is controlled by the computer, which manages the writing of data to physical locations on the memory chip. For such tasks, it needs some amount of free space to function. For each program you want to run, it will actively use some of the space for in-use memory and allocate some of the reserved space to memory, for potential operations.
The bottom line is that RAM is essential to the smooth operating of your computer, for multitasking and accessing multiple files at one time. While your overall performance directly affects the capabilities of your processor and graphics hardware. Too little RAM creates a bottleneck that slows everything down, and the basic rule of thumb is that more RAM is always better.
Little RAM slows down everything so we can say “More RAM, Enhanced Performance”.
A big series of question arises which RAM should I buy for my laptop or How much RAM Do I need? To answer this big Bang I will travel with you on this RAM oriented journey.
How to upgrade your RAM
What does upgrading RAM do? [Upgrading RAM in your Laptop]
By upgrading RAM means your computer will do many tasks( increased the number of tasks) but doesn’t enhance the speed or make it faster for some specific applications.
The RAM slots are adjacent to the CPU socket. Look for the big heat sink at the top of the motherboard, and you’ll see either two or four memory slots next to it. These are the motherboard slots you insert your RAM into. Before you can install the new memory you’ve purchased, you have to remove the old kit.
How Much RAM Do I Need
Do I need 32GB RAM?
Streaming laptops, however, needs moderate RAM for watching online videos and streaming Twitch and streaming Netflix.
Every gaming configuration should have at least 8 GB of RAM, with 16 GB being a more future-proof variant. Anything beyond 16 GB is simply an overkill unless you plan on using the PC for more demanding tasks such as video editing or 3D modeling.
The answer to the question of how much RAM do I need on my laptop always will come back to what you want to do with it. While opting for more RAM is always good advice, it doesn’t answer the more specific questions of how much RAM is needed for specific uses, or what you can reasonably expect to do with the RAM your laptop already has. To answer these questions we performed some testing, looking at specific use cases, identifying the basic memory requirements for each and providing some hard numbers to back our advice.
How much RAM should my graphics card have?
What is ECC?
ECC (which stands for Error Correction Code) RAM is very popular in servers or other systems with high-value data as it protects against data corruption by automatically detecting and correcting memory errors. Standard RAM uses banks of eight memory chips in which data is stored and provided to the CPU on demand.
Types of RAM
- Static RAM (SRAM)
- Dynamic RAM (DRAM)
- Synchronous Dynamic RAM (SDRAM)
- Single Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM (SDR SDRAM)
- Double Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM (DDR SDRAM, DDR2, DDR3, DDR4)
- Graphics Double Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM (GDDR SDRAM, GDDR2, GDDR3, GDDR4, GDDR5)
1. Static RAM -SRAM
Popular Products Using SRAM: Digital cameras, routers, printers, LCD screens
Static RAM is one of the basic memory types and requires a constant power flow to perform tasks. Because of this aspect, SRAM doesn’t need to be ‘refreshed’ to remember the data being stored. That’s why SRAM is called ‘static’ or no change or action that keeps data intact. However, we called SRAM a volatile memory, which means that all the data that had been stored becomes lost once the power is cut off.
Advantage: We can get an advantage in a sense of lower power consumption and faster access speed.
Disadvantage: Lesser memory capacities and higher costs of manufacturing.
Because of these characteristics, SRAM is typically used in:
- CPU cache (e.g. L1, L2, L3)
- Hard drive buffer/cache
- Digital-to-analog converters (DACs) on video cards
2. Dynamic RAM -DRAM
Popular Products Using DRAM: Video game consoles, networking hardware.
Dynamic RAM requires a periodic ‘refresh’ of power in order to function. The capacitors that store data in DRAM gradually discharge energy which means if we have no energy the may data becomes lost. That’s why DRAM is called ‘dynamic’ or constant change or action which is needed to keep data intact.
Moreover, In other words, we say DRAM is also a volatile memory, which means that all the stored data becomes lost once the power is cut off.
Advantage: lower costs of manufacturing and greater memory capacities.
Disadvantage: slower access speeds and higher power consumption.
Because of these characteristics, DRAM is typically used in:
- System memory
- Video graphics memory
3. Synchronous Dynamic RAM -SDRAM
Popular Products Using SDRAM: Computer memory, video game consoles
As its name defines that it operates in sync with the CPU clock. It means that it waits until the user responds to data input. But if we compare it with DRAM, it responds immediately to data input which is the property of asynchronous.
One of the top benefits of synchronous operation is that a CPU can process overlapping instructions in parallel, or in the form of ‘pipelining’. We can say it’s the ability to receive (read) a new instruction before the previous instruction has been fully resolved (write).
4. Single Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM -SDR SDRAM
Popular Products Using SDR SDRAM: Computer memory, video game consoles
SDR SDRAM is the expanded term for SDRAM. The ‘single data rate’ indicates how the memory processes one read and one write instruction per clock cycle. This labeling helps to clarify comparisons between SDR SDRAM and DDR SDRAM
“DDR SDRAM is essentially the second generation development of SDR SDRAM”
5. Double Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM -DDR SDRAM
Popular Products Using DDR SDRAM: Computer memory
When we talk about twice fast as SDR SDRAM we called it DDR SDRAM. It is capable of processing fast in terms of using two reads and two write instructions per clock cycle. Although it’s similar in function, have some physical differences (184 pins and a single notch on the connector) as compared to SDR SDRAM (168 pins and two notches on the connector). DDR SDRAM also works at a lower standard voltage (2.5 V from 3.3 V), that prevents backward compatibility with SDR SDRAM. And then updated versions gives us more enhancements in processing.
Like then it is upgraded to DDR 2, then DDR 3 and finally the latest use is DDR 4.
Let us check its time of evolution:
DDR2 SDRAM is the evolutionary upgrade to DDR SDRAM. DDR2 SDRAM is faster because it can run at higher clock speeds. Moreover, it provides standard memory modules separately for DDR and DDR2.
DDR memory modules top out at 200 MHz.
DDR2 memory modules top out at 533 MHz. However, DDR2 SDRAM runs at a lower voltage of (1.8 V).
Now coming towards DDR3 SDRAM, more advanced allotment of RAM that improves performance over DDR2 SDRAM with advanced signal processing (reliability), greater memory capacity, lower power consumption (1.5 V), and higher standard clock speeds (up to 800 Mhz).
DDR4 SDRAM improves performance over DDR3 SDRAM through more advanced signal processing (reliability), even greater memory capacity, even lower power consumption (1.2 V), and higher standard clock speeds (up to 1600 Mhz almost double than DDR3).
The physical difference between ddr2 and ddr3 ram
DDR2 RAM provides 4 data transfers per cycle, while DDR3 increases the number to 8. Assuming a base clock speed of 100Mhz, DDR RAM will provide 1600 MB/s of Bandwidth, DDR2 provides 3200 MB/s, and DDR3 provides 6400 MB/s.
Graphics Double Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM -GDDR SDRAM
[Designed for video Graphics]
Popular Products Using GDDR SDRAM: Video graphics cards, some tablets
GDDR SDRAM is a type of DDR SDRAM that is specifically designed for video graphics. It is designed for modern PC games to push the envelope with incredibly realistic high-definition environments, and the best video card hardware in order to play.
Similar to DDR SDRAM, GDDR SDRAM it shows improving performance and lowering power consumption.
Despite sharing very similar characteristics with DDR SDRAM, GDDR SDRAM is not exactly the same. What differences did we observe?
GDDR SDRAM operates, particularly regarding how bandwidth is favored over latency.
GDDR SDRAM is expected to process massive amounts of data (bandwidth).
“Laptop memory won’t fit in desktops (and vice versa)”
How Much RAM Do I need for my Tablet
Mostly, tablets are not designed for heavy-duty software tasks, so it requires a pretty low range. Currently, it researched that 2GB- 16GB is the most suitable allotment of RAM with keeping in mind its battery life and processor Speed.
Similarly, If we talked about iPads, 2Gb RAM is considerably enough for it.
Note: “A device like the Microsoft Surface Book 2, you get a default 16GB because it’s more laptop than a tablet”.
How Much RAM Do I need for my Laptop
Mostly, laptops come with 8GB of RAM but still, our mind searches for “ how much RAM do I need for my laptop”. Some offers 4GB and some 16GB.
- For Gaming notebooks the requirements level is 32GB
- Chromebook goes for 4Gb when buying it.
- Windows and Macbook complete its travel with standard 8GB.
How much RAM Do I need for my Desktop
8Gb is a good place to start. Moreover, an upgrade to 16GB is recommended for enthusiasts, hardcore gamers, and the average workstation user. Serious workstation users may go further to 32GB, but always be prepared for high cost if you want speed or fancy features like RGB lighting.
Remember its the easiest component to upgrade in a desktop PC.
How to upgrade RAM on my desktop
Here we have some steps to upgrade RAM on your desktop.
- Turn off your computer. Open Start.
- Unplug any cables or other attachments.
- Ground yourself.
- Remove the laptop’s bottom panel.
- Remove the original RAM cards.
- Remove the new RAM cards from their protective bag.
- Install your new RAM.
- Replace the bottom panel, then turn on your laptop.
How much RAM do I need on my Laptop – [Highlighting Issues]
- Benefits of upgrading your RAM
- How much RAM do you really need?
- Choosing RAM speeds
- Your PC’s RAM configuration
- Best RAM for your PC
Benefits of upgrading your RAM
Upgrading your system with RAM does not mean that it will process the tasks faster. However, it aids your system in multitasking and performing heavy duties like gaming and multimedia editing.
If you traveling with PC having a beefy graphics card (GPU) and fast processor (CPU) but still you can’t figure out why 17 browser tabs won’t simultaneously load then you probably need to upgrade RAM.
How much RAM do you really need?
Another most important question that how much RAM you need in your PC depends? It depends on your day to day tasks. If you have a computer and you want to shift gears into a different daily task that requires better performance, upgrading your RAM as part of the process is a great idea.
When we talk about gaming keep in mind that I’m not talking about Solitaire but about heavy PC gaming at acceptable performance levels requires some amount of RAM. Popular e-sports titles like DOTA 2, CS:GO, and League of Legends will allow you to deal with 4GB, but other popular titles, like Fallout 4, Witcher 3, and DOOM, will need at least 8GB to run properly.
If you’re a gamer and wants to have enough RAM for some current titles and future titles, go with at least 16GB but If your budget allows, push it up to 32GB.
Here I will notify the recommended RAM for some famous games.
Some games required minimum of 4GB :
|Games Title||Minimum GB||Recommended GB|
|League of Legends||2GB||4GB|
|Stars Wars: The old Republic||2GB||2GB|
|World of War craft||2GB||4GB|
Some games required RAM up to 8GB:
|Games Title||Minimum GB||Recommended GB|
|Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain||4GB||8GB|
|The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim||2GB||4GB|
|Dark Souls 3||8GB||8GB|
|Dragon Ball FighterZ||4GB||8GB|
Mostly games required RAM up to 16GB:
|Games Title||Minimum GB||Recommended GB|
|Far Cry 5||8GB||16GB|
|Star Wars: Battlefront||8GB||16GB|
|Mass Effect: Andromeda||8GB||16GB|
|Forza Horizon 3||12GB||16GB|
Virtual reality (VR)
VR is a relatively new medium in technology and it requires a good chunk of RAM to run smoothly. Here we refer some VR
- 1HTC Vive
- Oculus Rift
- Windows Mixed Reality (WMR)
All of these should have at least 8GB of RAM on the associated PC to run smoothly.
The Vive only recommends 4GB, but, honestly, go with at least 8GB.
Video and photo editing
If you’re editing a lot of HD video, go for 16GB or more. If you’re working with photos and a bit of video thrown in, 8GB should be enough.
Editing apps will work on lower amounts of RAM.
The most important thing to mention about VRAM.
VRAM is referred to Video RAM. That is used to store image data for the computer.
Choosing RAM speeds
RAM’s frequency affects the maximum bandwidth. If you want to move more data back and forth at once, you need to go with RAM with a higher frequency. Latency, on the other hand, is how fast your RAM realizes it needs to act when the CPU calls on it.
If you’re doing a sort of high-performance task on your PC, opting for a higher frequency that is measured in megahertz (MHz) is the best plan of action.
Your PC’s RAM configuration
RAM configurations differ depending mostly on your motherboard. Some motherboards have four dual inline memory module (DIMM) slots for RAM, some have two, some have a lot more. Here’s how to see how much RAM you currently have, what type of RAM is compatible with your PC, and how many slots you’re currently working with.
How to check your PC’s current amount of RAM
This method will simply and quickly tell you how much RAM your PC currently has installed:
- Right-click the Start button.
- Click System.
- Verify the Installed memory (RAM) line. (In this case, you can see I have 8GB of RAM installed.)
How to check RAM configuration and compatible RAM using Crucial System Scanner
It is the most important measurement that you should have to take care of. Crucial System Scanner is a great app that will scan your computer and show you how much total RAM your motherboard and processor can handle, how many slots are available for RAM, and some options for purchasing compatible RAM.
- Navigate to www.crucial.com/usa/en/system scanner.
- Click the checkbox next to Agree to the terms & conditions.
- Click download the scanner.
- Click Save. The download will begin.
- Click Run when the download is complete.
How to Upgrade the RAM (Memory) on a Laptop
- If you can upgrade your laptop’s memory, it won’t cost you much money or time.
- You’ll get an even more detailed view by clicking on the “Open Resource Monitor” option at the bottom of the Task Manager window and navigating to the Memory tab.
- Crucial also lists memory modules you can buy for your laptop.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What does RAM do for gaming?
Ans. RAM is an important consideration because it is an active participant while gaming. While the processor and graphics card do all of the calculations, the RAM is the area that stores needed variables and content. Besides loading time, top performance from a hard drive is nonessential because that’s all it does
Q. Is 8GB enough for gaming?
Ans. 8GB is just fine for gaming .16GB is suitable for gaming as compared to 8GB.
Q. How much Ram do I have windows 10?
Ans. If you have a 64-bit operating system, then bumping the RAM up to 4GB is a no-brainer. All but the cheapest and most basic of Windows 10 systems will come with 4GB of RAM, while 4GB is the minimum you’ll find in any modern Mac system. All 32-bit versions of Windows 10 have a 4GB RAM limit.
Q. Is 8gb RAM enough for programming?
Ans. Often, 8GB of RAM is enough for most programming and development needs. However, game developers or programmers who also work with graphics may need RAM around 12GB. 16GB is max RAM at the moment and only heavy graphics designers and video editors need that much.
Q. What RAM is best for gaming?
- Best RAM: Corsair Vengeance LED.
- Best DDR4 RAM: G.Skill Trident Z RGB.
- Best DDR3 RAM: Kingston HyperX Predator.
- Best Budget RAM: Kingston HyperX Fury.
- Best High-end RAM: Corsair Dominator Platinum.
- Best RGB RAM: HyperX Predator DDR4 RGB.
Ans. Random access memory is a vital hardware component used by your Windows 10 PC to store temporary data that can be accessed quickly by software, speeding up processes and keeping you from banging your head against the desk in frustration. Essentially, the more RAM you have, the more you can have going on at once.
The amount of RAM you need in your PC depends on what you plan on doing gaming, for instance, takes a generous amount of RAM, and media editing can take a lot of RAM. Let’s find out how much RAM you currently have, what type of RAM is compatible with your system, and how much RAM you should have for specific daily tasks.
Q. How much RAM is enough?
Ans. A lightweight system today can get by with 4GB of RAM. 8GB should be plenty for current and near-term future applications, 16GB gives you comfortable space for the future, and anything over 16GB is likely overkill unless you specifically know you need it (such as for video editing or audio post-production).
When the scan is complete you will see on the left side of the window a memory section with the number of slots for RAM and the maximum amount of RAM your PC’s motherboard can handle. In this case, the motherboard has two slots and can handle up to 32GB of RAM.
Q. Where to go? DDR3 or DDR4?
Ans. DDR4 is still much more expensive than DDR3, but it also hits higher clock speeds. … Another big difference between DDR3 and DDR4 is speed. DDR3 specifications started at 800 MT/s (or Millions of Transfers per second) and some went as high as 2133. DDR4, meanwhile, starts at 2133 MHz.
Q. What is memory and storage types?
Ans. Examples of non-volatile memory include read-only memory (see ROM), flash memory, most types of magnetic computer storage devices (e.g. hard disk drives, floppy disks, and magnetic tape), optical discs, and early computer storage methods such as paper tape and punched cards.
Q. What is the highest ram capacity?
Ans. 128 GB is the highest capacity of ram module available for enterprise Use to the date, which is manufactured by companies like Crucial and Samsung. 64 GB ram module for consumers
Putting it all together
In search of the title “How much RAM do I need on my Laptop” is no doubt a research-oriented task. But I tried to cover all the points in my article related to RAM.
You have read all specifications of RAM about 4GB up to 32Gb. so without wasting your time, I will suggest going for 16Gb the most reasonable and fulfill your all needs. from your simple tasks to live streaming and gaming. and you will answer yourself ” how much RAM do I need for my Laptop”.
Keep in mind, RAM isn’t all that expensive, it’s the easiest component to upgrade in a laptop/desktop PC. Buying or allotment of RAM is a wise and generous decision, but don’t go crazy. Make sure a gamer exceed 16GB of RAM limit for now, and no reason exceed 8GB if you want to do is to watch Netflix. So always go for RAM selection according to your usage.
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Last update on 2020-01-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API