What does faster RAM mean?
1. RAM and RAM speed
Before talking about RAM speed, let’s see what is RAM?
RAM Retrieve data from hard drive, including data of programs and games, and store these data when you are active. The reason is that RAM is often faster than standard hard drives, even SSDs. The data that RAM stores is then put into the CPU.
That means the higher the RAM speed, the higher the performance. But the end result is not clear. The problem is that no matter how fast RAM can send data to the CPU, it has certain limitations because the CPU can’t process all of that data in a timely manner.
Fortunately, processor manufacturers have done various tests to find the speed that best suits their CPU. All you need to do is carefully research the specifications of each chipset.
For example, Intel says the fastest RAM support for Intel i9-9900K is DDR4 2666MHz; AMD, meanwhile, says its Ryzen 2600 CPU can support up to DDR4 2933MHZ RAM. So, why do RAM manufacturers sell RAM at higher speeds? The reason is because overclocking can still achieve higher speeds.
What does that mean? This means that when you don’t overclock, increasing the speed higher than 2666MHz for Intel or 2933MHz for Ryzen will be of no benefit. So if you do not want to use the BIOS, you should only select the MHz limits mentioned above. You can choose a higher speed if the price is the same for two products with different speeds, but you won’t really achieve that speed.
2. Overclock for faster RAM speed
Now, if you want to overclock or use the BIOS, increasing the RAM speed will bring certain benefits. By turning on XMP in the BIOS, you can achieve higher RAM speeds. However, it should be remembered that you can only do this when the motherboard is supported.
The end result is that choosing a faster RAM speed after enabling XMP can help improve frame rates in some games, while others won’t have any significant changes at all. It depends on your game, but many games also have higher minimum frame rates.
Based on the results of Linus Tech Tips, we can see the difference, but not significantly; maybe 20 – 30 frames on average, but it could just be 5-10 frames.
When evaluating the performance of non-gaming related tasks, such as video editing, it is difficult to determine results. But it seems like it will be a similar story: the performance improvements are very small when the RAM speed is faster.
3. Should buy RAM with higher speed or not?
With the above information, you may still be wondering whether to buy RAM with higher speed or not. If you’re ready to overclock and don’t have to worry about fixing any issues, you can buy high-speed RAM.
However, it is only valid if the price difference is not too large. For example, in some cases, a 2x8GB 2666MHz kit on Amazon is exactly the same price as the 2x8GB 3000MHz kit, about $ 70 for example. However, you should not buy RAM with higher speed when the price difference is too much. For example, buy a 2x8GB 4266MHz kit for a price 269USD. The difference 200USD should be used to upgrade the CPU, GPU, or slow down to buy more RAM, instead of buying higher speed RAM.
Whether you’re using 2666MHz RAM or faster, it makes more sense if you spend the money to upgrade other components before you consider buying RAM at a higher speed.
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