RAM Benchmark Hierarchy: DDR5, DDR4 for AMD, Intel CPUs

RAM Benchmark Hierarchy
RAM Benchmark Hierarchy (Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Our RAM benchmark hierarchy will help you find the fastest DDR5 and DDR4 memory kit for your system. Consumers often overlook RAM (Random Access Memory). However, memory is one of the most critical pieces of hardware in any system. The right or wrong memory kit significantly impacts your system's overall performance in gaming, productivity, and (if you don't have enough of it) general sluggishness. Of course, you can always reference our Best RAM list to find the best deals on memory.

Companies regularly release new memory kits with different speeds, timings, capacities, and ranks, making sifting through seemingly endless models surprisingly time-consuming. Our RAM benchmark hierarchy aims to provide a simple database that ranks the best memory kits based on pure performance.

We use a geometric mean of our memory benchmarking results to keep the ranking objective and discard the intangibles, like aesthetics and overclocking headroom. We've got those details in the individual RAM reviews. Furthermore, we suspect many of you would value performance over anything else. However, the geometric means don't always tell the whole story: If you're looking for performance in a specific workload or gaming, we recommend looking at the full review of the memory kit you have in mind.

The score results originate from the geometric mean from our RAM benchmark suite, which consists of scripted and real-world tests. They include Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Premiere, Adobe Lightroom, Cinebench 2024, Corona 12 benchmark, Blender 4.0 benchmark, V-Ray 6 benchmark, 7-Zip compression and decompression, HandBrake x264 and x265 conversion, LuxMark v4, Windows AI inference, and Y-Cruncher.

For simplicity, we've separated the memory kits into different categories according to their densities. Then, we ranked the memory kits for each capacity from best to worst for both Intel and AMD systems.

The score on our hierarchy may differ slightly from the geometric mean in the individual review. The discrepancy is because we strive to provide results on the most recent and relevant Intel and AMD platforms. Keeping the metrics in the table as up-to-date as possible involves retesting every memory kit. We rest when there's been a substantial change in either of our test systems, such as a new processor, motherboard, or graphics card (or even new firmware revisions), to name a few.

Memory pricing is very volatile. We've restrained ourselves from providing a price-to-performance value since it only captures the pricing for one static moment, and memory pricing fluctuates far too much. So, while you can see up-to-date pricing in each table below, the performance measurements don't consider the price tag.

If you're undecided between two particular kits, it's easy to evaluate the options by dividing the real-time pricing by the geometric mean. Naturally, you'll want the lowest value possible, as a lower number represents more bang for your buck.

Update 23/05: We've updated our test suite and systems and are benchmarking every memory kit again. The rankings are still valid within the same capacity. In the meantime, don't compare memory kits with different capacities since we haven't updated all the scores. We're working on updating the remaining memory kits.

Best DDR5 RAM For Intel CPUs

Best 32GB (2x16GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

Why you can trust Tom's Hardware Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB3347.27DDR5-720034-45-45-1151.40F5-7200J3445G16GX2-TZ5RK$132.99
Klevv Cras XR5 RGB3344.65DDR5-800038-48-48-1281.55KD5AGUA80-80R380S$208.99
TeamGroup T-Force Delta RGB3343.05DDR5-720034-42-42-841.40FF3D532G7200HC34ADC01$121.99
Corsair Vengeance RGB3331.70DDR5-700034-42-42-961.45CMH32GX5M2X7000C34$157.99
Adata XPG Lancer RGB Mera Edition3329.11DDR5-720034-46-46-1161.40AX5U7200C3416G-DCLARMLBKN/A
GeIL Evo V DDR53303.06DDR5-620034-38-38-801.25GAESG532GB6200C34ADC$169.99
Predator Hermes RGB3272.80DDR5-680032-45-45-1081.40BL.9BWWR.399N/A
Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB3272.66DDR5-660032-39-39-761.40CMT32GX5M2X6600C32$177.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB3269.74DDR5-640032-39-39-1021.40F5-6400J3239G16GX2-TZ5RK$109.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB3266.38DDR5-680034-45-45-1081.40F5-6800J3445G16GX2-TZ5RK$129.99
G.Skill Ripjaws S53261.93DDR5-600032-38-38-961.35F5-6000J3238F16GX2-RS5K$94.99
Klevv Cras V RGB3255.45DDR5-640032-38-38-781.35KD5AGUA80-64A320G$106.99
Corsair Vengeance RGB3255.22DDR5-600030-36-36-761.40CMH32GX5M2B6000Z30$119.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB3253.92DDR5-600036-36-36-761.30F5-6000U3636E16GX2-TZ5RS$239.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 Neo RGB3252.77DDR5-600030-38-38-961.35F5-6000J3038F16GX2-TZ5NR$114.99
Patriot Viper Venom RGB3249.82DDR5-620040-40-40-761.35PVVR532G620C40K$105.11
PNY XLR8 Gaming Mako3248.40DDR5-620042-42-42-881.30MD32GK2D5620042MXR$112.99
Corsair Vengeance RGB3245.66DDR5-600036-36-36-761.35CMH32GX5M2D6000C36$119.99
V-Color Manta XPrism3244.81DDR5-620036-39-39-761.30TMXPL1662836WW-DW$109.99
Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB3232.18DDR5-640038-40-40-841.35CMT32GX5M2X6400C38$174.99
Lexar Ares RGB3231.73DDR5-600034-38-38-761.30LD5FU016G-R6000GDGA$99.99
TeamGroup T-Force Vulcanα3228.73DDR5-600038-38-38-781.25FLABD532G6000HC38ADC01$86.99
TeamGroup T-Force Deltaα3225.96DDR5-600038-38-38-781.25FF7D532G6000HC38ADC01$92.99
TeamGroup T-Force Delta RGB3223.90DDR5-600040-40-40-801.35FF3D516G6000HC40ABK$99.99
Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB3223.88DDR5-560036-36-36-761.25RG33D516GX2-5600C36B$220.79
Adata XPG Lancer RGB3223.01DDR5-600040-40-40-761.35AX5U6000C4016G-DCLARBK$99.99
Silicon Power Xpower Zenith RGB3201.69DDR5-560040-40-40-761.25SP032GXLWU560FDH$114.96
Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB3166.05DDR5-520038-38-38-841.25CMT32GX5M2B5200C38$349.99
Kingston Fury Beast3149.13DDR5-520040-40-40-801.25KF552C40BBK2-32$118.50
Crucial DDR53133.03DDR5-480040-39-39-771.10CT2K8G48C40U5$39.99
Sabrent Rocket DDR53116.79DDR5-480040-40-40-761.10SB-DR5U-16G$99.99

Best 48GB (2x24GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Corsair Dominator Titanium First Edition3352.75DDR5-720036-46-46-1161.40CMP48GX5M2X7200C36FEW$289.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB3350.82DDR5-720036-46-46-1151.35F5-7200J3646F24GX2-TZ5RK$214.99

Best 64GB (2x32GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Dominator Titanium First Edition5250.04 DDR5-660032-39-39-761.40CMP64GX5M2X6600C32FEW$359.99
Kingston Fury Beast5204.73DDR5-600040-40-40-801.35KF560C40BBK2-64$217.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB5097.12DDR5-640032-39-39-1021.40F5-6400J3239G32GX2-TZ5RW$217.99

Best 96GB (2x48GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Kingston Fury Renegade5320.18DDR5-640032-39-39-801.40KF564C32RSK2-96$379.99
Trident Z5 RGB5239.39DDR5-640032-39-39-102 1.35F5-6400J3239F48GX2-TZ5RW$339.99

Best 192GB (4x48GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Corsair Vengeance5248.66DDR5-520038-38-38-841,25CMK192GX5M4B5200C38$629.99

Best DDR5 RAM For AMD CPUs

Best 32GB (2x16GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Corsair Vengeance RGB2202.32DDR5-600030-36-36-761.40CMH32GX5M2B6000Z30$119.99
TeamGroup T-Force Vulcanα2200.01DDR5-600038-38-38-781.25FLABD532G6000HC38ADC01$86.99
Adata XPG Lancer RGB2194.47DDR5-600040-40-40-761.35AX5U6000C4016G-DCLARBK$99.99
Corsair Vengeance RGB2193.98DDR5-600036-36-36-761.35CMH32GX5M2D6000C36$119.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 Neo RGB2193.08DDR5-600030-38-38-961.35F5-6000J3038F16GX2-TZ5NR$114.99
TeamGroup T-Force Delta RGB2192.77DDR5-600040-40-40-801.35FF3D516G6000HC40ABK$99.99
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB2189.59DDR5-600036-36-36-761.30F5-6000U3636E16GX2-TZ5RS$239.99
G.Skill Ripjaws S52189.09DDR5-600032-38-38-961.35F5-6000J3238F16GX2-RS5K$94.99
TeamGroup T-Force Deltaα2188.41DDR5-600038-38-38-781.25FF7D532G6000HC38ADC01$92.99
Lexar Ares RGB2185.43DDR5-600034-38-38-761.30LD5FU016G-R6000GDGA$99.99
Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB2183.37DDR5-560036-36-36-761.25RG33D516GX2-5600C36B$220.79
V-Color Manta XPrism2181.64DDR5-620036-39-39-761.30TMXPL1662836WW-DW$109.99
GeIL Evo V DDR52181.10DDR5-620034-38-38-801.25GAESG532GB6200C34ADC$169.99
Patriot Viper Venom RGB2178.29DDR5-620040-40-40-761.35PVVR532G620C40K$105.11
Silicon Power Xpower Zenith RGB2177.09DDR5-560040-40-40-761.25SP032GXLWU560FDH$114.96
PNY XLR8 Gaming Mako2170.88DDR5-620042-42-42-881.30MD32GK2D5620042MXR$112.99
Kingston Fury Beast2147.67DDR5-520040-40-40-801.25KF552C40BBK2-32$118.50
Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB2140.85DDR5-520038-38-38-841.25CMT32GX5M2B5200C38$349.99
Sabrent Rocket DDR52128.93DDR5-480040-40-40-761.10SB-DR5U-16G$99.99
Crucial DDR52117.55DDR5-480040-39-39-771.10CT2K8G48C40U5$39.99

Best 48GB (2x24GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB3518.34DDR5-720036-46-46-1151.35F5-7200J3646F24GX2-TZ5RK$214.99

Best 64GB (2x32GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Dominator Titanium First Edition3588.38 DDR5-660032-39-39-761.40CMP64GX5M2X6600C32FEW$359.99

Best 96GB (2x48GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Kingston Fury Renegade3350.38DDR5-640032-39-39-801.40KF564C32RSK2-96$379.99
Trident Z5 RGB3521.91DDR5-640032-39-39-102 1.35F5-6400J3239F48GX2-TZ5RW$339.99

Best 192GB (4x48GB) DDR5 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Corsair Vengeance3496.88DDR5-520038-38-38-841,25CMK192GX5M4B5200C38$629.99

Best DDR4 RAM For Intel CPUs

Best 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Patriot Viper RGB White903.41DDR4-413319-21-21-411.40PVR416G413C9KW$99.99
Patriot Viper 4 Blackout895.19DDR4-440018-26-26-461.45PVB416G440C8K$99.99
Thermaltake ToughRAM RGB884.82DDR4-460019-26-26-451.50R009D408GX2-4600C19A$209.99
TeamGroup T-Force Dark Z FPS880.65DDR4-400016-18-18-381.45TDZFD416G4000HC16CDC01$218.00
Colorful iGame Vulcan877.42DDR4-426618-19-19-391.40IGPC08G4266D4R8N/A
Predator Apollo875.34DDR4-450019-19-19-391.45BL.9BWWR.255$79.99
Klevv Cras XR RGB874.47DDR4-400019-25-25-451.40KD48GU880-40B190Z$107.99
GeIL Orion RGB AMD Edition872.92DDR4-440018-24-24-441.45GAOSR416GB4400C18ADCN/A
Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB872.18DDR4-460019-26-26-451.50R016D408GX2-4600C19A$174.24
Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB871.87DDR4-400019-23-23-421.35R016D408GX2-4000C19A$179.99
TeamGroup T-Force Xtreem ARGB870.37DDR4-360014-15-15-351.45TF10D416G3600HC14CDC01$69.99
Gigabyte Aorus RGB Memory866.27DDR4-360018-19-19-391.35GP-AR36C18S8K2HU416R$115.90
Adata XPG Spectrix D50865.29DDR4-360018-20-20-421.35AX4U360038G18A-DT50$79.99
G.Skill Trident Z Neo864.84DDR4-360014-15-15-351.45F4-3600C14D-16GTZNB$114.99
Adata XPG Spectrix D60G864.19DDR4-360014-15-15-351.45AX4U360038G14C-DT60$139.99
GeIL Orion AMD Edition860.29DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35GAOR416GB3600C18BDC$42.99
Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro SL859.90DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35CMH16GX4M2Z3600C18$61.58
Thermaltake ToughRAM RGB Metallic Gold858.84DDR4-360018-19-19-391.35RG26D408GX2-3600C18A$169.99
HP V8858.78DDR4-360018-20-20-401.358MG07AA#ABC$94.99
Silicon Power Xpower Zenith852.37DDR4-320016-18-18-381.35SP016GXLZU320BDC$32.97
Predator Talos DDR4-3600852.22DDR4-360018-20-20-421.35BL.9BWWR.215N/A
PNY XLR8 Gaming Epic-X RGB848.69DDR4-320016-18-18-381.35MD16GK2D4360018XRGB$41.99
Lexar UDIMM835.21DDR4-266619-19-19-431.20LD4AU008G-R2666U$60.99

Best 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
TeamGroup T-Force Xtreem ARGB White941.21DDR4-400015-15-15-351.50TF13D432G4000HC15ADC01N/A
G.Skill Trident Z Royal934.89DDR4-400017-18-18-381.40F4-4000C17D-32GTRGB$334.99
G.Skill Trident Z Neo926.25DDR4-360016-16-16-361.35F4-3600C16D-32GTZN$149.99
Klevv Bolt XR919.31DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35KD4AGU880-36A180C$56.99
Silicon Power Xpower Zenith RGB915.89DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35SP032GXLZU360BDDN/A
Patriot Viper Steel RGB910.14DDR4-360020-26-26-461.35PVSR432G360C0K$64.99
Patriot Viper Elite II901.35DDR4-400020-26-26-461.40PVE2432G400C0K$89.99
Mushkin Redline Lumina896.11DDR4-400018-22-22-421.35MLA4C400JNNM16GX2$91.99
Crucial Ballistix Max RGB896.06DDR4-400018-22-22-421.35BLM2K16G40C18U4BL$213.61
Mushkin Redline ECC Black885.43DDR4-360016-19-19-391.40MRC4E360GKKP16GX2$236.05
Lexar Hades RGB883.71DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35LD4BU016G-R3600UDLH$119.89
Mushkin Redline ECC White880.86DDR4-320014-18-18-381.40MRD4E320EJJP16GX2$187.07
Mushkin Redline Lumina876.33DDR4-360016-19-19-391.40MLA4C360GKKP16GX2$87.99
GeIL Orion AMD Edition872.18DDR4-426618-24-24-441.45GAOR432GB4266C18ADC$33.99

Best 64GB (2x32GB) DDR4 Memory Kits for Intel CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Patriot Viper Steel913.32DDR4-360018-20-20-401.35PVS464G360C8K$112.99
Crucial Ballistix909.34DDR4-320016-18-18-361.35BL2K32G32C16U4WN/A
TeamGroup T-Create Expert OC10L904.14DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35TTCED464G3600HC18JDC01$107.99
V-Color Skywalker Plus898.17DDR4-400018-22-22-421.40TO432G40D818CSPSXK$169.99
TeamGroup T-Create Classic 10L888.79DDR4-320022-22-22-521.20TTCCD464G3200HC22DC01$103.99

Best DDR4 RAM For AMD CPUs

Best 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Adata XPG Spectrix D60G1183.26DDR4-360014-15-15-351.45AX4U360038G14C-DT60$139.99
G.Skill Trident Z Neo 1178.20DDR4-360014-15-15-351.45F4-3600C14D-16GTZNB$114.99
Adata XPG Spectrix D501174.59DDR4-360018-20-20-421.35AX4U360038G18A-DT50$79.99
TeamGroup T-Force Xtreem ARGB1171.81DDR4-360014-15-15-351.45TF10D416G3600HC14CDC01$69.99
Predator Talos1167.71DDR4-360018-20-20-421.35BL.9BWWR.215N/A
Gigabyte Aorus RGB Memory1167.27DDR4-360018-19-19-391.35GP-AR36C18S8K2HU416R$115.90
TeamGroup T-Force Dark Z FPS1166.85DDR4-400016-18-18-381.45TDZFD416G4000HC16CDC01$218.00
HP V81166.69DDR4-360018-20-20-401.358MG07AA#ABC$94.99
Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB1166.48DDR4-400019-23-23-421.35R016D408GX2-4000C19A$179.99
Thermaltake ToughRAM RGB Metallic Gold1165.23DDR4-360018-19-19-391.35RG26D408GX2-3600C18A$169.99
Predator Apollo1162.85DDR4-450019-19-19-391.45BL.9BWWR.255$79.99
Klevv Cras XR RGB1162.82DDR4-400019-25-25-451.40KD48GU880-40B190Z$107.99
Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro SL1162.05DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35CMH16GX4M2Z3600C18$61.58
Thermaltake ToughRAM RGB1158.73DDR4-460019-26-26-451.50R009D408GX2-4600C19A$209.99
GeIL Orion AMD Edition1157.17DDR4-440018-24-24-441.45GAOSR416GB4400C18ADCN/A
Patriot Viper 4 Blackout1152.52DDR4-440018-26-26-461.45PVB416G440C8K$99.99
Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB1152.38DDR4-460019-26-26-451.50R016D408GX2-4600C19A$174.24
GeIL Orion AMD Edition1159.11DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35GAOR416GB3600C18BDC$42.99
PNY XLR8 Gaming Epic-X RGB1158.10DDR4-320016-18-18-381.35MD16GK2D4360018XRGB$41.99
Silicon Power Xpower Zenith1156.00DDR4-320016-18-18-381.35SP016GXLZU320BDC$32.97
Colorful iGame Vulcan1149.42DDR4-426618-19-19-391.40IGPC08G4266D4R8N/A
Patriot Viper RGB White1147.24DDR4-413319-21-21-411.40PVR416G413C9KW$99.99
Lexar UDIMM1131.81DDR4-266619-19-19-431.20LD4AU008G-R2666U$60.99

Best 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
G.Skill Trident Z Royal1275.40DDR4-400017-18-18-381.40F4-4000C17D-32GTRGB$334.99
G.Skill Trident Z Neo1260.56DDR4-360016-16-16-361.35F4-3600C16D-32GTZN$149.99
Silicon Power Xpower Zenith RGB1254.14DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35SP032GXLZU360BDDN/A
TeamGroup T-Force Xtreem ARGB White1252.98DDR4-400015-15-15-351.50TF13D432G4000HC15ADC01N/A
Klevv Bolt XR1251.61DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35KD4AGU880-36A180C$56.99
Patriot Viper Steel RGB1243.17DDR4-360020-26-26-461.35PVSR432G360C0K$64.99
Patriot Viper Elite II1229.73DDR4-400020-26-26-461.40PVE2432G400C0K$89.99
Crucial Ballistix Max RGB1194.56DDR4-400018-22-22-421.35BLM2K16G40C18U4BL$213.61
Mushkin Redline Lumina1190.71DDR4-360016-19-19-391.40MLA4C360GKKP16GX2$87.99
GeIL Orion AMD Edition1172.49DDR4-426618-24-24-441.45GAOR432GB4266C18ADC$33.99
Mushkin Redline Lumina1170.13DDR4-400018-22-22-421.35MLA4C400JNNM16GX2$91.99
Mushkin Redline ECC White1168.15DDR4-320014-18-18-381.40MRD4E320EJJP16GX2$187.07
Mushkin Redline ECC Black1166.45DDR4-360016-19-19-391.40MRC4E360GKKP16GX2$236.05
Lexar Hades RGB1160.46DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35LD4BU016G-R3600UDLH$119.89

Best 64GB (2x32GB) DDR4 Memory Kits for AMD CPUs

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Memory KitScoreData RateTimingsVoltage (V)Part NumberBuying Link
Patriot Viper Steel1242.67DDR4-360018-20-20-401.35PVS464G360C8K$112.99
TeamGroup T-Create Expert OC10L1239.74DDR4-360018-22-22-421.35TTCED464G3600HC18JDC01$107.99
V-Color Skywalker Plus1237.98DDR4-400018-22-22-421.40TO432G40D818CSPSXK$169.99
Crucial Ballistix1231.07DDR4-320016-18-18-361.35BL2K32G32C16U4WN/A
TeamGroup T-Create Classic 10L1225.82DDR4-320022-22-22-521.20TTCCD464G3200HC22DC01$103.99

CPUs and Supported Memory Frequency

Once upon a time, the memory controller resided on the motherboard. As processors and motherboards evolved, chipmakers eventually moved the memory controller onto the chips. Therefore, Intel and AMD specify the official supported memory frequency on each generation of their processors. Unless you have an excellent sample, drifting far away from the supported frequency will require manual tweaking to get the memory to play nice with your processor. For the best plug-n-play experience, you should pick up a memory kit that doesn't surpass the supported frequency.

There are two essential things to consider if you want to run memory faster than the official specification for your processor. For starters, the quality of your processor's IMC (integrated memory controller) determines if it can handle high-speed memory. Unfortunately, since no two processors are equal, and you can't judge a chip's IMC until you test it, you're at the mercy of the silicon lottery.

Secondly, you need to ensure that the motherboard supports the frequency of the memory kit that you have in mind. Again, a quick trip to your motherboard's user manual or product page should give you the necessary information. Furthermore, the motherboard's memory QVL (Qualified Vendors List) is very helpful as it'll tell you whether a specific memory kit has been tested and validated on the motherboard. But remember that your chip's IMC still plays a more prominent role.

If you're unsure of the memory frequency your processor supports, we've provided the different standards for the last few generations of AMD and Intel processors.

AMD Desktop Processors

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ProcessorLithographyCodename Microarchitecture Frequency
Ryzen 70005nmRaphaelZen 4DDR5-5200
Ryzen 50007nmVermeerZen 3DDR4-3200
Ryzen 30007nmMatisseZen 2DDR4-3200
Ryzen 200012nmPinnacle RidgeZen+DDR4-2933
Ryzen 100014nmSummit RidgeZenDDR4-2666

AMD has officially announced its Ryzen 7000 (Raphael) processors, wielding Zen 4 cores and RDNA 2 integrated graphics. More importantly, Zen 4 embraces DDR5 memory and the speedy PCIe 5.0 standard. Unfortunately, Zen 4 has dropped support for DDR4 memory.

Contrary to Zen 2 and Zen 3 processors, it's not essential to maintain the Infinity Fabric Clock (FCLK), unified memory controller clock (UCLK), and memory clock (MEMCLK) in a 1:1:1 ratio on Zen 4. According to AMD, the optimal configuration is to leave the FCLK on auto and overclock the DDR5 and memory controller in a 1:1 ratio. Therefore, the best settings are Auto:1:1. AMD believes that DDR5-6000 is the sweet spot for Zen 4 based on cost, stability, performance, availability, and ease.

AMD's latest AGESA 1.0.0.7c firmware brought many improvements. It has upped the Ryzen processor's ability to run DDR5-6400 at 1:1, up from the previous DDR5-6000. The updated AGESA code also supports high-frequency DDR5 memory up to DDR5-8000 and potentially beyond. The only downside is that it drops the UCLK and MCLK ratio to 2:1 (UCLK: MCLK / 2), imposing a performance penalty.

Zen 4 natively supports DDR5-5200 in a 1 DPC configuration regardless of whether the memory modules have a single- or dual-ranked design. However, in a 2-DPC structure, the official data rate drops to DDR5-3600.

Along with Zen 4, AMD has introduced EXPO (EXtended Profiles for Overclocking) profiles, equivalent to Intel's XMP 3.0 technology. Like XMP 3.0, AMD EXPO allows one-click overclocking to the predefined data rates.

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DDR5 Frequency (MT/s)DIMMs Populated Per Channel (DPC)Rank (s)
5,2001 DPC1 R
5,2001 DPC2 R
3,6002 DPC1 R
3,6002 DPC2 R

Intel Desktop Processors

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ProcessorLithographyCodename Microarchitecture Frequency
14000-series10nmRaptor Lake RefreshRaptor Cove / GracemontDDR4-3200, DDR5-5600
13000-series10nmRaptor LakeRaptor Cove / GracemontDDR4-3200, DDR5-5600
12000-series10nmAlder LakeGolden Cove / GracemontDDR4-3200, DDR5-4800
11000-series14nm++Rocket LakeCypress CoveDDR4-3200
10000-series14nm++Comet LakeComet LakeDDR4-2933
9000-series14nm++Coffee Lake RefreshCoffee LakeDDR4-2666
8000-series14nm++Coffee LakeCoffee LakeDDR4-2666
7000-series14nm+Kaby LakeKaby LakeDDR4-2400
6000-series14nmSkylakeSkylakeDDR4-2133

Intel's 13th Generation Raptor Lake processors arrive with native support for DDR5-5600 right out of the gate. Over last generation's Alder Lake chips that do DDR4-4800 natively, it's a significant uplift. However, unlike AMD, Intel preserves support for DDR4 memory, more specifically, DDR4-3200 memory kits.

Raptor Lake maintains the gear ratio system, which Intel introduced with Rocket Lake. Gear 1 has the processor's memory controller and memory speed in a 1:1 balance, while Gear 2 runs the memory controller at half speed (0.5:1). Gear 1 officially supports DDR4-3200, while good samples can go higher. Meanwhile, DDR5 will always run in Gear 2.

DDR5 memory support on Raptor Lake depends on the number of populated memory slots. On a dual-slot motherboard, Raptor Lake supports DDR5-5600 regardless of the configuration. However, DDR5-5200 is the maximum data rate when you fill two slots on standard motherboards with four memory slots. Populating the four slots with single-rank or dual-rank memory reduces support to DDR5-4800 and DDR5-4400, respectively.

Memory support on the latest 14th Generation Raptor Lake Refresh chips hasn't changed. However, Intel claims that memory overclocking is vastly improved on the new processors. DDR5 memory kits up to DDR5-8600 will eventually hit the market to accompany Raptor Lake Refresh. Nonetheless, the sweet spot is still between DDR5-6000 and DDR5-6600 from a price-to-performance standpoint.

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DDR5 Frequency (MT/s)Slots Per Channel (SPC)DIMMs Populated Per Channel (DPC)Rank (s)
5,6001 SPC1 DPC2 R
5,6001 SPC1 DPC1 R
5,2002 SPC1 DPC2 R
5,2002 SPC1 DPC1 R
4,8002 SPC2 DPC1 R
4,4002 SPC2 DPC2 R

Test Systems

Our Intel DDR5 testbed comprises the Core i9-13900K (Raptor Lake) and MSI MEG Z690 Unify-X. We use the alternate MSI MEG Z690 Unify to test memory kits with four memory modules. Meanwhile, the AMD DDR5 system has a Ryzen 7 7700X (Raphael) and MSI MPG X670E Carbon WiFi. We use the MSI GeForce RTX 4080 16GB Gaming X Trio for our gaming benchmarks. A Corsair RM1000x Shift power supply supplies our DDR5 test platforms with clean power and easy cable management.

Our previous Intel DDR4 system utilized the Core i9-10900K (Comet Lake) and Asus ROG Maximus XII Apex. The AMD counterpart employed the Ryzen 9 5900X (Vermeer) processor and Asus ROG Crosshair VIII Dark Hero. For several years, the MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming Trio faithfully lent us its graphical prowess. Meanwhile, the Corsair RM650X was chosen to fuel our DDR4 systems.

Regardless of the testbed, Crucial's MX500 SSD has always been our choice for storage. We kept our Windows installation and benchmark software on the 500GB drive while reserving the 2TB drive for the more storage-hungry games. The Streacom BC1 open-air test bench has been remarkable, offering a comfy home for all our hardware.

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Header Cell - Column 0 Intel DDR5 SystemAMD DDR5 SystemIntel DDR4 SystemAMD DDR4 System
ProcessorIntel Core i9-13900KAMD Ryzen 7 7700XIntel Core i9-10900KAMD Ryzen 9 5900X
MotherboardMSI MEG Z690 Unify-X / MSI MEG Z690 UnifyMSI MPG X670E Carbon WiFiAsus ROG Maximus XII ApexAsus ROG Crosshair VIII Dark Hero
Motherboard Firmware7D28vAF / 7D28v1G7D70v1E509013501
Graphics CardMSI GeForce RTX 4080 16GB Gaming X TrioMSI GeForce RTX 4080 16GB Gaming X TrioMSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X TrioMSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio
StorageCrucial MX500 500GB, 2TBCrucial MX500 500GB, 2TBCrucial MX500 500GB, 2TBCrucial MX500 500GB, 2TB
CoolingCorsair iCUE H100i Elite LCDCorsair iCUE H100i Elite LCDCorsair Hydro H115i ProCorsair Hydro H115i Pro
Power SupplyCorsair RM1000x ShiftCorsair RM1000x ShiftCorsair RM650xCorsair RM650x
CaseStreacom BC1Streacom BC1Streacom BC1Streacom BC1

DDR5 IC Overclocking Stats

We've compiled the results from our overclocking endeavors of the various memory kits we've reviewed. It's evident that SK hynix's A-die and M-die ICs have the biggest upside regarding overclocking. We achieved the highest overclocks with A-die ICs. At least for this generation, Samsung and Micron have yet to produce a competitive product that rivals SK hynix. That's the main reason why there's widespread usage of SK hynix ICs in DDR5 memory kits.

Micron's early A-die ICs weren't good overclockers. However, the company's D-die ICs may change that panorama. With the new D-die, it appears Micron is finally catching up to SK hynix's M-die. However, it's too early to say since we've only reviewed one memory kit based on Micron D-die ICs.

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DDR5 ICDDR5-7800DDR5-7600DDR5-7400DDR5-7200DDR5-7000DDR5-6800DDR5-6600DDR5-6400DDR5-6200DDR5-6133DDR5-6000DDR5-5800DDR5-5400
Hynix A-die12112111N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Hynix M-die11N/AN/AN/A626111N/AN/A
Samsung B-dieN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A11N/AN/AN/A1N/A
Micron D-dieN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A1N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Micron A-dieN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A4

RAM Pricing Trends

The latest TrendForce report revealed that DDR5 prices are projected to rise between 3% and 8% in the year's fourth quarter. Meanwhile, DDR4 prices may increase by up to 5%. For instance, two 8GB DDR4 chips cost 10% more in November than in August. TrendForce attributed the price hikes to manufacturers who reportedly prefer to raise prices rather than reduce them. The only good news is that manufacturers have a healthy stock, so a shortage isn't imminent. Some vendors, such as Samsung, have cut production by as much as 30% to move older inventory first.

DDR4 shoppers should be careful, as there are reports of vendors desoldering DDR4 chips from server memory and recycling them into consumer memory kits. The reused chips are flooding the memory market and will influence the spot market pricing.

Whether you're shopping for a memory kit on our list of Best RAM or one that's not, you may find savings by checking out the latest Newegg promo codes, Best Buy promo codes, and Micro Center coupon codes.

MORE: CPU Benchmarks and Hierarchy 2023

MORE: GPU Benchmarks and Hierarchy 2023

Zhiye Liu
RAM Reviewer and News Editor

Zhiye Liu is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.

  • ashelus
    Now, let's do quad-rank instead of dual rank: -UkGu6A-6sQView: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UkGu6A-6sQ
    Reply
  • Olle P
    It's assuring to see that (for AMD) the very best is only 1.9% uplift over the basic 3,200 MHz @ 16-18-18-38. No need to spend more money there.

    ashelus said:
    Now, let's do quad-rank instead of dual rank: ...
    That review has nothing to do with ranks but with number of sticks in dual channel.
    Reply
  • cryoburner
    ashelus said:
    Now, let's do quad-rank instead of dual rank:
    They sort of did. Today's 2x16GB kits are typically going to provide four ranks, while the 2x8GB kits will typically provide two. That's why all of the 2x16GB kits outperformed the 2x8GB kits, with the possible exception of that one DDR4-5100 kit that managed to hold it's own against a few of them in the AMD test system. But at $900, that 5100 kit is kind of nonsensical considering it was still outperformed by some 2x16GB kits of DDR4-3600 at a fraction of the price. Going with 32GB for four ranks (whether 2x16GB or 4x8GB) will tend to benefit performance more than paying a big premium for just 16GB of enthusiast-level RAM, and if one is planning to keep their system around for a number of years, the added capacity will likely provide even more benefit down the line.

    Tom's had an article pointing this out shortly after the Ryzen 3000 series launched...
    https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/amd-ryzen-3000-best-memory-timings,6310-2.html
    Reply
  • Mpablo87
    Well.
    Interesting article!!! Useful information!!!
    Reply
  • escksu
    Yes, this article basically reinforces what we already know, spending money on expensive ram doesnt make any sense, unless you have unlimited budget.

    Yes, someone has also pointed out that 4 ranks of ram is faster than 2. But, the gains are very small as well. You are better off using the budget for more cores or faster gpu.
    Reply
  • escksu
    ashelus said:
    Now, let's do quad-rank instead of dual rank: -UkGu6A-6sQView: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UkGu6A-6sQ

    Yes, we do know 4 sticks is faster. But it cost more too...so its down to your budget. If you spare budget, its fine. If you, then no.
    Reply
  • taz-nz
    escksu said:
    Yes, we do know 4 sticks is faster. But it cost more too...so its down to your budget. If you spare budget, its fine. If you, then no.
    The video compares 4x 8GB single rack against 2x8G single rank, 2x16gb Dual rank dimms have the same improvement as 4x8GB single rank, it's the total number of ranks (4) that matters.

    They missed the best memory kit for 5000 series AMD cpu Gskilll 3800 CL14 32GB (2x1GB) dual rank F4-3800C14D-32GTZN-G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd. (gskill.com)Gives you the fastest stable FCLK and RAM speed at 1:1 with low latency, and timings can be tightened more on a good motherboard.

    Does the new high-end RAM for Ryzen 5000 live up to its promise? - G.SKILL DDR4-3800 CL14 2x 16GB kit put through its paces | Page 3 | igor´sLAB (igorslab.de)
    Reply
  • Flyfisherman
    I read somewhere that 1.2V is generally considered the upper limit of safe SoC voltages, particularly on Ryzen 3000CPUs.
    SOC voltage - system on a chip voltage; responsible for the voltage related to the memory controller.
    Limit: up to 1.2 V.

    DRAM boot voltage - voltage at which memory training takes place at system start-up.
    Limit: up to 1.45–1.50 V.

    VDDP voltage - voltage for the transistor that sets memory contents.
    Limit: up to 1.1 V.

    1.42V will cause degradation of the CPU
    1.38V should be max for 24/7 - 1.35V would be safer

    Why doesn't the article mention this, that higher voltage on high speed ram causes degradation of the CPU?
    All overclocking is risky business when it comes to higher than recommended voltage.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    On my Asus ROG Crosshair VIII Hero with AMD Ryzen 3950X I'm using Corsair VENGEANCE® LPX 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4 DRAM 3200MHz C16@1.2V (tested @1.35V 16-18-18-36) LPX=Low profile 33.5mm height so it fits under my Noctua NH-D15 SE AM4 CPU cooler.
    Part. No. SKU CMK16GX4M2Z3200C16

    Best regards from Sweden
    Reply
  • samopa
    Where is DDR5 section ?
    What is the fastest / best DDR5 Kit ?
    The title suggest that this articles also cover DDR5
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    samopa said:
    What is the fastest / best DDR5 Kit ?
    Probably too early to tell, need more DIMMs and motherboards to actually test with.
    Reply