Best Laptop Memory Upgrades: 8 DDR4 SODIMM Kits Tested & Compared

Dual-Channel SODIMM Laptop Memory Kits - Tests and Benchmarks

The fastest memory in our test, the Ripjaws DDR4-3800 in its 1.35V XMP configuration, barely outpaced its stock-voltage DDR4-2666 sibling in overall performance. Digging deeper, we find that our game testing illustrated the biggest performance variances, and that the Ripjaws DDR4-2666 won that round. The major differentiating factor was in the number of DRAM ICs, illustrated best by G.Skill's DDR4-2666 kit: It uses 16 ICs to fill two ranks of DRAM per SODIMM.

Digging still deeper into the charts, we find that the “Photoshop Heavy” benchmark in our Adobe CC test suite makes the strongest case for using DDR4-3800 in real-world applications. This 3800 G.Skill set, the fastest module kit in our test lot, also has the least latency, because latency is set in cycles (and faster cycles take fewer nanoseconds). The extra bandwidth available from high data rates also helped the fastest modules cruise through Sandra Cryptography, and Sandra Memory Bandwidth shows us the peak available performance that most real-world applications are incapable of extracting.

Don't forget, however, that games are the tests in which fast memory matters most, and that G.Skill's dual-rank DDR4-2666 won that round without the need for XMP. So, to reiterate: The presence of dual-rank trumped other concerns in that test.

Here's a look at the five individual kits we tested...

G.Skill Ripjaws 3800 16GB (2x8GB) (opens in new tab)
G.Skill Ripjaws 3800 16GB (2x8GB)
Image (opens in new tab)
G.Skill Ripjaws 3000 16GB (2x8GB)
HyperX Impact 2666 16GB (2x8GB) (opens in new tab)
HyperX Impact 2666 16GB (2x8GB)
G.Skill Ripjaws 2666 16GB (2x8GB) (opens in new tab)
G.Skill Ripjaws 2666 16GB (2x8GB)
G.Skill Ripjaws 2400 16GB (2x8GB) (opens in new tab)
G.Skill Ripjaws 2400 16GB (2x8GB)

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  • honkuimushi
    I would have liked to see entries from Corsair and Micron but this is a good overview. Would it be too much to ask for a revisit with the Zotac MA551 Raven Ridge based SFFC when it's released? That might provide a better reason for higher clocked memory, and dual rank might actually be a hindrance.
  • phil brinkle
    What DRAM chips do all these memory modules use? I haven't found any information on this in the review.