Why RAM Matters for Gamers: Exploring the Impact on Performance

by Prime Tech Support

What is RAM?

RAM is an acronym that stands for "Random Access Memory". It's used to store relatively small amounts of data that the CPU and GPU need to access quickly, making sure everything on your computer runs smoothly. While RAM is a type of storage like HDD (Hard Disk) or SSD (Solid State Hard Drive), it's much faster than even SSDs. But unlike HDDs or SSDs, RAM is volatile. This means it only stores data as long as it's powered. The moment the power goes off, everything stored in the RAM disappears. So, even with its speed, it's not meant for long-term storage like HDDs or SSDs. We will teach you about different types of RAM and specifications, and its uses.

How Important Is The RAM In A Gaming PC System

Diagram explaining the structure and functions of RAM (Random Access
    Memory) highlighting its significance in computing processes for Gamers in
    Miami, FL by Prime Tech Support.

Source: Prime Tech Suppor

For a gamer's system, memory or RAM plays a pivotal role. Its primary function is to ensure your CPU, and for those using onboard graphics, your GPU receives high-speed access to the assets needed to run your game fluidly. The moment you resort to swapping files to an SSD, or worse, a hard drive, you're prone to issues like slower loading times, random stuttering and FPS drops, FPS stands for "frames per second." In the context of gaming, it refers to the number of frames (or images) that are displayed per second in a game.

A higher FPS will result in more fluid gaming, think it like this, the human eye can normally discern about 60 and 120 images per second. If you were in a room and somebody turned the lights on and off very slowly you would not be able to see much, but if instead they do it very fast, you'll see more, it’s the same with frame rate, the faster the easier for you to see what's happening on your gaming. However, once you have adequate RAM, adding more might not enhance performance.

In our experience, Without adequate RAM, a game can experience slowdowns, lagprevented hirings when poorly installed, crashes, as the CPU struggles to retrieve data, you can trust us on this matter as we very often receive units with ram configuration mistakes or RAMs that are incompatible with the Motherboard, a lot of the times these units seem to work fine but very quickly they stop working at all, then they think that the issue is something else as the RAM worked well at the beginning, they bring us the unit and we have to go in and fix BIOS and any other issue that would've been prevented hiring the services of a professional, like us!.

How Much RAM Do I Need In A Gaming PC System?

The first and most important question when it comes to ram is the volume, everything else is secondary. As far as volume is concerned, how much you need is dependent on what you need it for. The general consensus is that you should get at least 32GB of RAM if you're building a Gaming PC but we recomm if you really want you investment to last (later we will talk to you DDR5 but there are many DDR4 on the market that still is being used and works pretty good), this is more than enough to run all the latest games and it offers a nice future-proofing.

Anything more than this is simply excessive for gaming unless you're also streaming or doing graphic design and rendering. However, if you are on a tight budget and all you can afford is 32GB of RAM, it can work, but be ready to upgrade soon. We recommend the Corsair 64GB kit at 3600MHz kit if you want to save some bucks.

We can observe on this performance test screenshot that while playing Fortnite at 1440p Gaming there's a noticeable difference in performance when increasing RAM capacity, this will be far more noticeable if you want to scale to 2k or 4k gaming, especially with open world games.

What Types of RAM are used in Gaming PCs in 2023?

DDR5 and DDR4 are the dominant types in 2023. DDR5, being the newer generation, offers better performance and efficiency. However, DDR4 is still prevalent in many systems due to its affordability and ample performance for many gaming scenarios.

DDR5 And What Is New About It

DDR5 brought significant advancements over its predecessor, DDR4. DDR5 offers double the bandwidth, meaning it can transfer data faster. It also operates at a lower voltage, which means reduced power consumption and heat output. These features make DDR5 a top choice for the latest gaming PCs.

as the preferred choice for gamers. While a 7,600 and 7,800 mega transfers per second DDR5 kits will perform well, the marginal increase in fps don't justify the significant price difference. The relation between memory bandwidth and spending more is not always linear, as applications vary in their demand for bandwidth.

Do We Still Use DDR4 In 2023?

Do We Still Use DDR4 In 2023?

Source: Prime Tech Suppor

We think DDR5 offers notable improvements but DDR4 remains the choice of a lot of gamers even in the pro space. The full adoption of the new DDR5 will take a few more years, but it will speed up as DDR4 might no longer provide the balance between cost and performance that it used to.

When testing, in many games, fast DDR4 still holds ground. However, the price-to-performance advantage previously seen with DDR4 seems to have diminished. Comparing a 3,600 mega transfer per second DDR4 kit with a DDR5 JEDEC kit, the DDR4 surpasses the latter by an average of one to 10 fps. However, the price of the DDR4 kit was notably higher. When equating the price between DDR5 and DDR4, DDR4 loses its edge, especially in the crucial 1% lows. (source)

The term "1% lows" refers to the lowest frame rates you experience 1% of the time during your gameplay. While average frame rates are informative, nuances between rates such as 311 and 315 fps are almost imperceptible. The 1% lows are more vital as a difference of 5 or 10 fps can be quite discernible. This metric depicts how a system will fare during intense gaming moments.

DDR5 differs significantly from DDR4. Instead of using a single 72-bit BUS like DDR4, DDR5 modules have two 40-bit BUSes. This means while the total data width remains the same, each half functions semi-independently.

Ram Configuration

Using RAM sticks in pairs can double the communication between the memory and the memory controller, boosting performance. For this you need to use matching sticks. Dual channel refers to the memory controller on a computer's motherboard being able to access two RAM modules simultaneously, effectively doubling the data bandwidth between RAM and the memory controller.

In most motherboards, RAM slots are color-coded to indicate their channel. For instance, slots A1 and B1 might be one color (e.g., black) indicating one channel, while slots A2 and B2 might be another color (e.g., blue), indicating the second channel.

The exact performance gain from dual channel can vary depending on the programs you use. For memory-intensive tasks or apps, dual channel can offer notable improvements, about 5-20%, but for tasks not bottlenecked by memory bandwidth, the difference might be minimal. One of the primary advantages of dual channel is the doubling of memory bandwidth. For instance, DDR4 2400MHz RAM will have increased bandwidth when utilized in dual channel mode.

Why are Memory Clock Speed and Latency Ratings key for Gamers?

We've work with a staggering amount of Gaming PCs in our 25 years' experience in the Miami, Florida area, and we've consistently found that higher clock speed is always better, RAM clock speed determines how fast RAM can read or write data, and latency is the delay in data transfers, apart from clock speed, RAM latency can affect performance. CAS latency (CL), for instance, is a crucial metric, a RAM with a CL of 15 at 3000 MHz might sometimes perform similarly to a RAM with a CL of 16 at 3200 MHz.

In productivity tasks, the performance impact of faster memory modules varies. Some tasks show significant gains, while others display negligible improvements or even regressions.

The Impact of RAM on Gaming PC Performance

RAM is very important in determining gaming performance. Insufficient RAM will lead to longer game load times and cause in-game flickering, especially when navigating software heavy in-game environments or data-intensive sequences. The smoothness of gameplay is often directly proportional to the amount of available RAM, especially when operating at higher resolutions or when utilizing detailed textures.

Open-world games are particularly RAM-demanding. Additionally, the classic dual-channel RAM configuration will enhance bandwidth, resulting in performance improvements in certain scenarios. Finally, memory frequency/speed and latency can also impact the efficiency of RAM during gaming; higher speeds improve data read/write speeds, while lower latency reduces data transfer delays.

Tips for Selecting the Right RAM for Your Gaming PC Setup

  1. Capacity: Don't skimp on RAM capacity. Go for 64GB if you can but consider your needs; if you do heavy design and stream while you play, you might want to jump to 128GB.
  2. Type: If your motherboard supports it and budget allows, opt for DDR5 for future-proofing and better performance.
  3. Speed and Latency: Look for higher clock speeds, lower latency, and ensure your motherboard can support the speeds you're
  4. Compatibility: Always ensure the RAM is compatible with your motherboard. Some motherboards might support DDR4 but not DDR5, or vice versa, ALWAYS check the Qualified Vendor List (QVL) for your Motherboard model, you can easily find it at the manufacturer's web site.
  5. Brands: Stick to reputable brands that offer warranties. Based on our expert opinion we recommend in order: Corsair, Crucial, G.Skill and finally Team for a budget option.

Take aways of RAM importance in a Gaming PC

The early data from DDR5 suggests that focusing on first word latency, especially on lower transfer speed modules, is key. For AMD's current generation, there's little benefit in going beyond 6,000 to 6,400-speed memory.


Gaming PC Diagnostic

Book now!
  • Memory RAM and the impact while you are gaming are crucial. At PRIME tech support we help you with your hardware upgrades for gaming and custom build PCs

    Explore DDR4 vs DDR5 RAM for gaming & workstations in our 2024 guide, tailored for Miami's tech enthusiasts. Optimize your...

    DDR4 vs DDR5: Best RAM for Gamers & Pros in 2024

    Explore DDR4 vs DDR5 RAM for gaming & workstations in our 2024 guide, tailored for Miami's tech enthusiasts. Optimize your...

  • Gaming laptops and PCs at Prime Tech Support, Miami's top tech hub for gamers and professionals.

    Explore the revolution in gaming laptops with our guide to the best of 2023. Discover top-tier GPUs, high-refresh displays, and...

    Best Gaming Laptops of 2023: Gamers on the Go

    Explore the revolution in gaming laptops with our guide to the best of 2023. Discover top-tier GPUs, high-refresh displays, and...

  • Assortment of high-end PC components on display at Prime Tech Support in Miami, FL, including ASUS and Intel products

    Unlock the mysteries of computer technology with Prime Tech Support's comprehensive glossary. From CPUs and GPUs to SSDs and virtualization,...

    Tech Glossary Unlocked: Master PC Concepts with Prime Tech in ...

    Unlock the mysteries of computer technology with Prime Tech Support's comprehensive glossary. From CPUs and GPUs to SSDs and virtualization,...

1 Translation missing: en.general.slider.of 3

From our Gaming PC Customers


Amazing work there very smart techs, anything you need done explain and your wish will be granted. I needed my power supply optimization, and the tech had no issues doing it. Thank you so much for the support. Click here to read the review on Google

Google review icon after a customer experienced first hand the prime support and repair solutions by our expert team in Miami Dade County.
Joshua Sewell
Miami, FL

I brought in my gaming PC for high CPU temperature issues. I was beyond pleased with the service I received. They kept me informed through out the diagnostic process and repair by sending pictures and also the diagnostic reports. The location is super clean and the staff and tech experts were super friendly, polite, and informative through out the process. I was informed they do gaming pc builds and offer a lot services and maintenance for gaming PCs, which is good to know and have in the miami area. Their services are reasonably priced. Highly recommend and will be coming back for any future needs. Click here to read the review on Yelp

Yelp Reviews for Prime Tech Support a Computer Repair and IT Support Company
Miami, FL

This is the place for any of your gaming pc build needs. I recently purchased a 4090 Founders edition graphics card and a LIAN LI XL case and needed them to transfer my components from my old case to my new case along with my new graphics card. I called Prime tech support, and they were excited to do the install Darian and Augustus greeted me when I arrived and finished the job the same day! Darian was the tech that did the installation, and he did an amazing job and offered to run some tests for me when I came to pick it up in person, to show my PC was running at a premium level. I recommend this place for any gaming pc needs and builds.
I am attaching pictures of my build.
thank you! Click Here to read th review on Google

Google review icon after a customer experienced first hand the prime support and repair solutions by our expert team in Miami Dade County.
Jorge Marrero
Miami, FL