Does Memory Performance Bottleneck Your Games?

Results: 3DMark And Aliens Vs. Predator

Though it doesn’t represent the performance of a real-world game, 3DMark does give us an easy way to compare numbers with enthusiasts and their systems. It also shows us that the Physics test runs slower as memory data rate drops. This makes sense, since the Physics suite taxes all available processing cores. Starving them of data is a surefire way to reduce their performance.

Aliens vs. Predator demonstrates negligible differences between our various memory configurations, even as its moderate 2560x1600 frame rate appears to be GPU-bottlenecked by a powerful pair of Radeon HD 7970 graphics cards.

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  • cumi2k4
    so....bottom line: don't bother buying higher clock memory unless it cost nearly the same?
    41
  • Crashman
    fkrIf you are down to your last twenty dollars do you put it towards better ram or CPU. i5 3570 or a 3570k. I think the k edition is better money spent, but maybe somebody cares about f1 2012, crash"in my mothers basement"man.jk
    That comment shows how much you know, I own my basement :p

    Well, technically the bank owns it until I'm 70, but after that I'm home free!
    26
  • esrever
    CrashmanWow, talk about not reading the article! Here's a hint, from the article you didn't read:Bottom line: Buy the fastest memory you can afford, AT LEAST DDR3-1866, unless you're certain that the slower memory you're buying can be overclocked.

    unless you care about 150 fps vs 120 fps I don't see the point
    24
  • Other Comments
  • SteelCity1981
    Well considering my Core i7 840QM cpu can only support a max of DDR3 1333 i'm pretty at a dead end in terms of upgrading to faster ram.
    0
  • cumi2k4
    so....bottom line: don't bother buying higher clock memory unless it cost nearly the same?
    41
  • Crashman
    cumi2k4so....bottom line: don't bother buying higher clock memory unless it cost nearly the same?
    The bottom line is that the price difference is ALREADY so small that anyone who can afford a pair of high-end GPUs should bother to get the good DRAM as well.
    -10
  • mayankleoboy1
    if i was the owner, i would fire the programmers who developed the memory bottlecked game engine.
    17
  • esrever
    CrashmanWow, talk about not reading the article! Here's a hint, from the article you didn't read:Bottom line: Buy the fastest memory you can afford, AT LEAST DDR3-1866, unless you're certain that the slower memory you're buying can be overclocked.

    unless you care about 150 fps vs 120 fps I don't see the point
    24
  • hero1
    Nicely written. My next rig which is going to be in couple months will have the DDR3-1866MHz in it. That's as far as I will go with RAM.
    12
  • itzsnypah
    So the point of this article is with a $2k (8gb ram) computer spend an extra 1% ($20) for 1% gaming performance increase that you only get sometimes? Very linear scaling me thinks, sometimes.
    13
  • fkr
    Am I reading this correct when I see in metro that dual channel is faster than quad channel. Also crashman I am pretty sure that very few people care how many fps you get in f1 2012 since the game is pretty terrible, metacritic user score of 6.8/10. reading through the reviews of that game it seems to not even be updated since 2011 edition, at least not the physics. I also thought the article says unless your doing eyefinity and intel hd whatever it makes little difference. I also seem to remember about a year ago another article stating how little difference ram made in a system, ram speed that is.
    1
  • fkr
    If you are down to your last twenty dollars do you put it towards better ram or CPU. i5 3570 or a 3570k. I think the k edition is better money spent, but maybe somebody cares about f1 2012, crash"in my mothers basement"man.
    jk
    0
  • jase240
    I would like to see how faster RAM effects loading times, that's the ONLY reason I can imagine paying a little more. And even then 1866 would probably be fine, considering most will overclock to 2133 well.

    Although in reality 1600 can do the job just fine and it could overclock nicely too if you get the right RAM.
    6
  • Crashman
    fkrIf you are down to your last twenty dollars do you put it towards better ram or CPU. i5 3570 or a 3570k. I think the k edition is better money spent, but maybe somebody cares about f1 2012, crash"in my mothers basement"man.jk
    That comment shows how much you know, I own my basement :p

    Well, technically the bank owns it until I'm 70, but after that I'm home free!
    26
  • iam2thecrowe
    there is so little price difference between 1600 and 2133, you may as well get the faster ram.
    18
  • Crashman
    iam2thecrowethere is so little price difference between 1600 and 2133, you may as well get the faster ram.
    BINGO! I can't believe the second poster turned that around to an "unless" statement, nor can I believe anyone gave him a thumbs up for it.
    -1
  • Anonymous
    CrashmanBINGO! I can't believe the second poster turned that around to an "unless" statement, nor can I believe anyone gave him a thumbs up for it.


    well call me the glass is half empty guy. if there is no real world difference then it is NOT worth spending one penny more.
    21
  • Crashman
    fkrAm I reading this correct when I see in metro that dual channel is faster than quad channel.
    It looks like it's within the margin of error when I go back and forth between different resolutions and settings. Some games are just that GPU-bound.

    Even though this post appears an innocuous and observation based, I'm certain that the same group of people who are sabotaging this thread will also give this one the thumbs down.
    2
  • mayankleoboy1
    CrashmanIt looks like it's within the margin of error when I go back and forth between different resolutions and settings. Some games are just that GPU-bound.


    In an older Xbitlab review i read, in a non memory bound scenario, the 4 channel RAM is always slower than the 2 channel RAM.
    0
  • silverblue
    "F1 2012 is actually the raison d’être for today’s test. We stumbled upon significant performance improvements as we turned up memory bandwidth and cut into latencies."

    Perhaps another reason as to why FX is so far behind; AMD's memory subsystem is horribly outclassed.

    Is it entirely possible that a quad-channel memory architecture has to make compromises, such as how many DIMMs you can run per channel at a rated speed?
    0
  • bison88
    iam2thecrowethere is so little price difference between 1600 and 2133, you may as well get the faster ram.



    When you're working within a budget though and every dollar counts. Plus you have to take into consideration what your CPU/MOBO support. At the end of the day you shouldn't go busting your ass to work in super clocked memory when building or looking for a new PC. Bigger and faster is always what we want, but it isn't always necessary I think is the point some are trying to make.
    7
  • Crashman
    bison88When you're working within a budget though and every dollar counts.
    ...then you won't be buying all this other expensive hardware. Nobody needs Crossfire to play games, nobody needs Eyefinity to participate in the gaming experience, and anyone who has that much money to spend on gaming can probably justify a few dollars extra for RAM.
    3
  • mayankleoboy1
    just a guess, but the performance 'boost' you get by using DDR3 1866 memory can be achievd by DDR3 1333 + OC your CPU by 100/200 mhz.
    4