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RAM upgrade? 16GB too much?

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June 28, 2012 1:41:22 PM

Hello all,

I currently have 8GB DDR3 installed and was wondering what are your opinions on having 16GB of RAM.
I mainly use my computer for gaming, web browsing and office... so nothing too heavy. BUT, my concern is who knows what the future will bring. Do you foresee the need for 16GB RAM in the next 2-3 years?

I currently have a kit of these installed (http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=58952) but I was thinking, since RAM is so cheap, should I just double up and max out before they discontinue that particular kit of RAM (I can't imagine mixing different types of RAM at a later date).

Also, what is your take on a RAM/memory fan? I've noticed my DIMMs get 'warm', but if I get 16GB, it'll get 'warm-er' so I was looking at some of those 2x60mm fans that clip over the RAM sockets. They're can be had for like $10, but I was wondering if they even do anything.. or just add noise.

Thanks,

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June 28, 2012 2:04:44 PM

I dont see the need for it. If it does arrive just get 8 gbs more then.
June 28, 2012 2:09:58 PM

More RAM = more disk cache, can never go wrong there
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June 28, 2012 2:13:50 PM

What version of windows do you have?

Windows 7 64bit HP will support a maximum of 16GB of system memory.
June 28, 2012 2:20:06 PM

what i normally say about that much ram is if you dont use close to 8GB, then by the time you would need to upgrade to 16GB to use for everyday tasks, you will end up buying a new system or ram will be A) dirt cheap or B) more expensive (due to new ram coming out, like what happened with all older ram types).

really its never bad to have more just to have it. I stick with 8GB so if i want to overclock a bit i can easier with two rather than 4 sticks.

Im currently running win8 RC 64-bit, and i have only ever seen my memory usage hit up to about 3-4GB running games and other programs, so looking forward, OS' are trying to limit Memory usage as much as possible to make them quicker but games and programs are getting bigger and more task intensive.
June 28, 2012 2:22:20 PM

Thanks for all the replies.

I am using Win7 Ultimate 64-bit, so there should be no problems there.

I'm not too knowledgeable about the whole disk cache thing. But I am using an SSD as a boo drive at the moment. To prolong the life of an SSD, you're supposed to try to eliminate as many unnecessary writes as possible.... would increasing quantity of RAM help in doing so ... ? I really have no clue LOL

Thanks
June 28, 2012 2:51:34 PM

If you aren't saturating 8GB now, then 16GB won't be much of a help. Since you said you don't run too many heavy applications, 8GB is plenty enough for you.
June 28, 2012 3:16:34 PM

Correct. If 8 is fine then 16 will get you nothing but more power draw. And by the time you need 16GB you might need 16GBs of DDR4 and not 3. I wouldn't bother with this "upgrade".

As for the fan question its probably a waste as well. Ram at stock voltages shouldn't get very hot. And if it is your case probably needs better cooling. There were some ram kits that needed higher voltages to achieve their settings but now with the memory controller on the CPU I haven't seen them in quite some time. I wouldn't worry about the ram fan either.
June 28, 2012 3:52:53 PM

Alright, I think I'll just be ditching the idea altogether. Saves me $50 essentially for bragging rights .. haha.

Best solution

June 28, 2012 3:56:31 PM
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rex000 said:
Thanks for all the replies.

I am using Win7 Ultimate 64-bit, so there should be no problems there.

I'm not too knowledgeable about the whole disk cache thing. But I am using an SSD as a boo drive at the moment. To prolong the life of an SSD, you're supposed to try to eliminate as many unnecessary writes as possible.... would increasing quantity of RAM help in doing so ... ? I really have no clue LOL

Thanks


The rumors of SSDs having a short lifespan are grossly over exaggerated. Most SSDs come with a 3-5 year warranty during which functionality is guaranteed. Typical life expectancy is between 7 and 10 years even under heavy load.

Windows will automatically use uncommitted memory to store copies of stuff that it has read, so the more the merrier. Unlike SSD caching the DRAM cache is reset every time you reboot your computer and cached data will be destroyed when those memory blocks are allocated to applications. The performance impact is most noticeable on platter drives for obvious reasons.

To see the effects of Window's DRAM cache take a look at Task Manager -> Performance and look under the Physical Memory block at the bottom. You'll see "Total", "Cached", "Available" and "Free". Total is the amount installed in your system less holes, shadows, and reserves (don't worry about these). Cached is the amount of DRAM that has been committed to disk caching. Available is the amount of DRAM that is available for applications to use. Free is the total amount of uncommitted DRAM (application, cache, or otherwise). You'll notice that 'Available' is ever so slightly less than 'Cached + Free". Cached memory can be freed and committed to applications as it is needed, but a small amount of memory must be free for proper operation at all times.
July 31, 2012 3:59:32 PM

Best answer selected by rex000.
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