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What Does RAM Do For Gaming? Just How Important Is It?

What Does RAM Do For Gaming? Just How Important Is It?

As a recreational gamer, I always look for ways to improve my gaming experience.

This article will detail how RAM affects gaming, how much RAM you need for gaming, and some of the best RAM for gaming. Here’s what you need to know!

What Does RAM Do For Gaming?

RAM is important for gaming because it helps to keep your games running smoothly. This is because the processor is constantly using your RAM to store data about the game environment and its objects. If you don’t have enough of it, your game will start to lag and may even crash.

Here’s an example:

You’re playing a game that requires 8GB of RAM. If you only have 4GB of RAM, the game will have to store some application data on your hard drive, which is much slower at moving around data than your RAM. This can cause the game to stutter.

However, if you upgrade to 16GB of RAM, the game will be able to load all the data it needs into the temporary memory (RAM). Since RAM is much faster than your hard drive, this will improve the performance of your game.

Games aren’t the only applications that use RAM. In fact, all applications, including your PC’s operating system, rely on RAM in order to operate efficiently.

Therefore, having sufficient RAM is crucial in order for your PC to multi-task efficiently.

If you don’t have enough RAM, you may come across problems when trying to run multiple applications simultaneously, such as running OBS, Fortnite, and Discord at the same time.

Upgrading your RAM does not guarantee a smooth experience! If you’re playing a poorly optimized game, or your CPU or GPU are bottlenecking your performance, adding more RAM will do nothing.

To view how much RAM your PC is using:

Open the task manager by pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL and selecting Task Manger

Open the Task Manager by Pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL

From inside the task manager, select the tab for “Performance” then click the label for “Memory”

Click the Performance Tab then Click Memory on the Left Side

There, you will see how much of your RAM is currently in use by your PC. If you are constantly using 85% or more of your PC’s memory, then you may need to add more RAM to your PC.

How Much RAM Do You Need For Gaming?

How much RAM you need for gaming is determined by the games you want to play and your budget. Most casual games can run perfectly well with 16GB RAM. However, more intensive games require 32GB RAM, so your PC can run all its other programs without issue.

For most games, 16GB of RAM is enough. For example, the minimum requirements for Fortnite are 4GB of RAM and an Intel HD 4000 or better GPU (graphics processing unit).

You can make it work with 8GB RAM if you only do a few things at a time, but 16GB is usually the sweet spot for this situation. If you’re planning on playing more demanding games like Witcher 4 or Doom Eternal, you may need to upgrade to 32GB of RAM.

I have 32GB of RAM in my gaming rig, and I can tell you that it is overkill for most games out there. It does come in handy when I’m streaming games or using other memory-intensive applications like Photoshop and Archicad.

This upgrade works perfectly for me because I already had a powerful processor and GPU installed. 

Best RAM For Gaming?

The best RAM for gaming should be fast, low-latency, and have enough capacity for all your games and other programs. 16GB of RAM allows for smooth gameplay. A good example is the Xtreem 16GB C14 stick.

The Corsair RGB 32GB DDR4 3200MHz is another excellent choice for gamers. It has a low latency of CL16 and a high capacity of 32GB, which is enough for even the most demanding games.

The G.Skill 32GB DDR4-3600MHz is also a solid option, with a high capacity of 32GB and a speed of 3600MHz. You can also get it in a lower capacity of 16GB if you don’t need that much RAM. 

These three options are just a few of the many great choices out there for gaming RAM. So, if you’re looking for the best RAM for gaming, be sure to consider these and other options to find the most suitable fit for your setup.

Does RAM Increase FPS?

RAM will not increase your FPS in most cases. Your FPS is determined by your GPU and CPU, not your RAM. However, if you are running low on RAM, your system may start to use your hard drive or SSD for storage, leading to lower FPS. So, it depends on your system and how much RAM you have.

If you’re looking to increase your FPS (frames per second), you should first focus on upgrading your GPU or CPU. However, if you’re already using the best possible GPU and CPU and still not getting the FPS you want, adding more RAM may help.

Take this as an example:

You have an Intel i5-12600K CPU and an RTX 3080 Ti GPU. You’re getting around 100 FPS in most games, but you want to increase that. Upgrading your RAM from 16GB to 32GB may help, but it will not give you a considerable boost. 

Is 16GB RAM Enough For Gaming?

16GB of RAM is enough to play most games. However, if you’re planning to play more demanding games or use memory-intensive applications, you may need to upgrade to 32GB of RAM. This allows the computer to handle heavy games with ease.

Here’s the thing:

Most games require between 2GB and 8GB of RAM. Some may need more (I’ve seen 12GB), but those will be the exception. For example, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare requires a minimum of 8GB of RAM, which calls for 16GB of RAM. If you’re looking to play that game, you’ll need at least 10GB of DDR4 RAM.

Upgrading RAM from 16GB to 32GB will result in a noticeable difference. Not only can you play more demanding games, but you’ll also have more programs open at the same time without your computer slowing down. You can have Photoshop, Firefox, and Call of Duty open simultaneously without noticing any slowdown.

If you’re looking to upgrade your RAM, I would say go for it. It’s a cheap way to get a noticeable performance boost, especially if you do a lot of multitasking.

How Much RAM Do You Need For 4K Gaming?

At least 16GB of RAM is needed for 4K gaming. If you’re looking to future-proof your system or want to be able to run multiple programs in the background while gaming, then 32GB is a good idea.

4K gaming will also require a powerful graphics card and a monitor to support the resolution. Most games will look great at 4K with a high-end graphics card, but you may need to lower some settings to maintain a smooth framerate.

The processor also plays an instrumental role in 4K gaming. A powerful CPU is needed to render the extra pixels at 4K resolution. If you’re looking to game at 4K, you’ll need a processor that can handle it.

An excellent example of a 4K-ready processor is the Intel Core i5-12600K. This processor can handle 4K gaming and is well suited for other demanding tasks such as video editing and 3D rendering.

Can You Have Too Much RAM?

You can’t have too much RAM. It’s better to have too much RAM than not enough. The only issue is that you may not use the higher-capacity RAM to its full potential if the other components in your computer can’t take advantage of it.

For example, if you have 32GB RAM and a graphics card that can only use 8GB, the other 24GB will go to waste. In this case, it would be better to get 16GB RAM.

That being said, if you do a lot of multitasking for things like video editing or streaming video games, then you may need the extra RAM to keep things running smoothly.

It’s all about finding the right balance for your needs.

What About RAM Clock Speed?

RAM clock speed is essential, but it’s not as important as the amount of RAM. Clock speed is measured in MHz – the higher the number, the faster the RAM. However, your gaming experience will benefit from having more RAM than from having faster RAM.

A stick of 8GB DDR4-3600 RAM will be faster than a stick of 8GB DDR4-2133 RAM. The difference in speed is not huge, but it is noticeable. If you’re looking for the highest possible performance, you should get the newest RAM you can afford.

You can think of clock speed as the speed limit on a highway. The higher the speed limit, the faster you can go. But, if there’s no one else on the road, there’s no need to go fast.

The same is true for RAM. If you’re not using all of the RAM in your system, there’s no need to get faster RAM. When you’re using all of the RAM or close to it, the higher clock speed will be beneficial- but you won’t need it until then.

Final Thoughts

RAM is an important component for gaming, but it’s not the most vital one. The amount of temporary memory you need will depend on the games you’re playing and your other system components.

If you’re looking to future-proof your system or want to be able to run multiple programs in the background while gaming, getting a 32GB is a good idea. However, 16GB of RAM is enough for most games and will be plenty for most gamers. 

There’s no need to overspend on RAM. Just get the amount you need and the fastest RAM your budget will allow.

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👋 Hey There, I'm Eric!

Since 2018, I've been making streams come true.

I like gaming, streaming and watching other people stream. I created this website to help streamers, viewers, and gamers answer questions they have regarding live streaming, gaming, and PCs. I am a Twitch affiliate and currently stream on Twitch 3 days a week. I also have a Youtube channel where I make videos about streaming. I hope you find my content helpful. Feel free to stop by one of my streams to say hi.