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Which is better: RAM drive or SSD for gaming?

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January 25, 2013 3:34:28 PM

Hi!

I'm not highly tech-oriented, and I've been puzzling over something.

In a quad channel mobo system incorporating a fast i5 or i7 quad cpu and dual HD6950 graphics cards running Win 7, which would give the most game-playing speed for the buck (short-term and in the long run): investing in, for example, Corsair Vengeance 32GB (4x8GB) DDR3 1866 MHZ RAM (currently $194.99 at Amazon) and setting up and loading games into a RAM drive to play...or...investing in, for example, a SanDisk Extreme SSD 240 GB SATA 6.0 Gb-s 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive (currently $179.99 at Amazon) and playing games loaded onto it?

I'm not that familiar with RAM drives...never used one...but, theoretically, wouldn't playing games loaded on one provide the ultimate speed, compared to using an SSD or fast HD? ...Or would some configuration based on an SSD or fast HD make more speed/$$$ sense?

More about : ram drive ssd gaming

January 25, 2013 3:45:11 PM

stereoeggs said:
Hi!

I'm not highly tech-oriented, and I've been puzzling over something.

In a quad channel mobo system incorporating a fast i5 or i7 quad cpu and dual HD6950 graphics cards running Win 7, which would give the most game-playing speed for the buck (short-term and in the long run): investing in, for example, Corsair Vengeance 32GB (4x8GB) DDR3 1866 MHZ RAM (currently $194.99 at Amazon) and setting up and loading games into a RAM drive to play...or...investing in, for example, a SanDisk Extreme SSD 240 GB SATA 6.0 Gb-s 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive (currently $179.99 at Amazon) and playing games loaded onto it?

I'm not that familiar with RAM drives...never used one...but, theoretically, wouldn't playing games loaded on one provide the ultimate speed, compared to using an SSD or fast HD? ...Or would some configuration based on an SSD or fast HD make more speed/$$$ sense?


PS/ Is mobo RAM at frequencies higher than DDR3 1866 MHZ *ever* worth the large extra cost with today's top cpu's, mobo's, and graphics cards? If so, when? :ouch: 
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January 25, 2013 4:40:24 PM

I would go for the SSD. You will see a huge bump in performance and load times for just about everything.
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January 25, 2013 5:28:30 PM

AMD APUs benefit from 2133, 2400 RAM when running on the integrated graphics.
Get the SSD, more general benefit overall and no need to load 15 GB of gaming data into your RAM drive before you start playing.
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January 25, 2013 8:47:48 PM

I definitely see the advantage of not having to load gaming data repeatedly into a RAM drive. Theoretically, though, would a game run noticeably faster loaded on a RAM drive rather than on an SSD?

I'm saving $$$ to buy parts for a "dream computer" in the next 4 to 6 months...so I'm wondering if I should buy the Sandisk 240G SSD for $180 now or wait for a lower price. Normally I'd expect prices to drop over time, but I'm wondering if SSD prices might rise instead of fall over the next 4 to 6 months. ...Any predictions?
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January 25, 2013 9:37:09 PM

At worst, the price won't go up. So I would just wait - you never know what you can get for that kind of money in a few months. You might be able to get a better brand or a new model.
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January 25, 2013 9:42:57 PM

There's no such thing as quad channel i5 boards. Only X79 platform offers quad channel memory controller and all the LGA2011 CPUs are i7.
Obviously the RAM drive will be way faster than SSD but it's limited by the capacity and the fact that you lose the contents of it on each reboot, having to copy your game to it every time.
Get an SSD, preferably 240/256GB if you plan on having more than 10 games installed at one time.
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January 26, 2013 12:17:02 AM

Thank you all for your help, advice, and clarifications. I very much appreciate it!

Hmmm..... I want to mark this thread as "solved," but how can I give an "award" to just one responder when several kind people have contributed different pieces to solving my puzzle? ...Eenie meenie? <grin>
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January 26, 2013 12:18:30 AM

Best answer selected by stereoeggs.
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