When gaming, the RAM is one of the most important components to consider, because if you don’t have enough RAM, your computer can lag severely in-game.
This can be stuttering, FPS drops, or random game crashes, and this isn’t ideal especially if you’re playing a competitive game.
For many years, 8GB of RAM has been considered “enough” for gaming, but this has changed as 16GB of RAM is now the sweet spot.
How To Check How Much RAM I Have?
Knowing how much RAM you have is important for assessing how well your computer can game at, there are a few ways to check your RAM capacity.
With Windows users, all you have to do is open Setting -> System -> About, and under device specifications, you should be able to see your RAM capacity.
For Apple Mac users, you can check your RAM by clicking the Apple icon in the upper left corner of the screen, then all you have to do is click the overview tab, this should show the RAM capacity.
Now due to the nature of PCs, if you don’t have enough RAM, you can upgrade the RAM pretty easily by identifying the RAM sticks and buying more of the same, or buying a completely new RAM kit.
How Important Is RAM For Gaming?
RAM is extremely important for gaming as it works as a way to send and receive frequently used and important data quickly.
The data exchange is mainly between the RAM and the CPU, so when you don’t have enough RAM, your CPU can actually be held up.
So if your CPU is waiting for the HDD or the SSD to send it instructions, it’s going to get extremely held up and lag.
The important assets in a game will take hours to load, or it won’t load at all, RAM reduces this bottleneck because it’s significantly faster.
This is why it’s important to have enough RAM capacity because if you don’t the CPU will have no choice but to use swap storage which is basically the permanent storage (HDD/SSD).
So Is 8GB Of RAM Enough For Gaming?
Honestly in today’s world, 8GB of RAM is the bare minimum if you want to do anything gaming related, and you’ll be better off with more RAM.
8GB of RAM used to be considered the sweet spot for gaming, this is because back then, we game’d at 1080P and games weren’t as RAM intensive.
Now if you want to play AAA games at 1440P or 4K, you’re going to want 16GB of RAM for the best experience possible.
With 8GB of RAM, you may have to lower the in-game settings, and close other applications just to get a similar experience to someone with more memory.
So if you want to save yourself some stress, picking up a dual channel 16GB RAM kit will give you everything you need for gaming.
Is More RAM Better For Gaming?
When you increase the RAM, the FPS won’t scale linearly which means it mostly depends on where you upgrade from.
For example, if you have 4GB of RAM, and upgrade to 8GB of RAM, you will likely see a massive performance improvement.
But if you increase from 8GB of RAM to 16GB of RAM, the FPS improvement likely won’t be as significant, so this means you must know exactly when to upgrade your RAM.
It’s not just RAM capacity that has an effect on the FPS, you should also consider the RAM speed as it affects the bandwidth, and more bandwidth generally means more FPS.
Best Games For 8GB Of RAM
The best types of games for 8GB of RAM are non-demanding games such as CSGO, Valorant, GTA 5, League Of Legends, and Minecraft.
Also if you plan on playing non-demanding games, it would be a good idea not to mod them as mods consume a huge amount of RAM.
This is because mod developers don’t have optimization in mind like the actual game developers do, so this means mods can be extremely demanding even for strong computers.
|League Of Legends||2GB|
|Assassin’s Creed Odyssey||8GB|
|Battlefield V||8GB(Min) 12GB(Recommended)|
The table above shows that the non-intensive games will consume between 2-4GB of RAM, with AN 8GB RAM build, you should be able to play these games with relative ease.
But games such as GTA V, Fortnite, and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, you may struggle as a huge portion of the RAM is allocated to the operating system, so you won’t have much to work with when gaming.
And games such as Battlefield V, and PUBG that recommended a minimum of 8GB of RAM will perform exceptionally well which can be shown by the benchmarks down below.
RAM FPS Benchmarks
In the first image, we can tell that 8GB of RAM isn’t enough for triple-a games due to them being much more intensive than ordinary games.
8GB of RAM displays a bottleneck as it’s 24-25 FPS behind the other RAM configurations (16,32,64GB), so you’re leaving a lot of performance on the table.
Also, looking at the 1% lows shows that 8GB of RAM generates a measly 60 frames per second compared to the other RAM configs generating around 93 FPS.
Having bad 1% lows has an impact on the smoothness and playability of the game, and considering the nature of Battlefield 5, you will want the game to be as smooth as possible.
This is why 16GB of RAM is considered the new sweet spot because it practically minimizes most RAM based bottlenecks when gaming.
In Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, 8GB of RAM still fails to keep up with 16, 32, and 64GB configs due to the massive bottleneck imposed.
The average frame rate for 8GB of RAM is 83 which is around 12 FPS lower than 16GB, so you’re missing out quite a bit of frames.
The 1% lows are also pretty bad as they fall behind by 16 frames which will affect the overall smoothness of the gameplay.
Considering the nature of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, you may be able to get used to the gameplay with 8GB of RAM as it’s not a competitive game.
What Type Of Games Are RAM Intensive?
Generally speaking, gaming isn’t a RAM intensive task, and this is evident if you compare it to video editing or CAD which can take up to 64GB of RAM.
So most of the time, you can get away with 8-16GB of RAM when gaming, but there are some exceptions you should watch out for.
Modded Games Consume a huge amount of RAM, this is because modders don’t have the intention of optimizing their mods to work on weak hardware.
This is why you see games such as Minecraft, and GTA V running really bad on weaker hardware when modded.
Simulation Type Games will consume a massive amount of RAM due to the fact they work with complex algorithms and numbers because simulations are based on numerical/mathematical computation.
This is why games such as Microsoft Flight Simulator, and DCS World 2.7 can consume up to 32GB of RAM which is a massive amount of gaming.
Now the chances of you being able to play these types of games with only 8GB of RAM especially in today’s age is extremely low, this is why we recommend at least 16GB of RAM when gaming.
In conclusion, 8GB of RAM really isn’t enough for gaming despite it being the minimum requirement for games, you will lose a lot of performance due to not having enough RAM.
We recommend at least 16GB of RAM if you’re going to be playing triple-A games at 1440P or 4K, this ensures that you don’t leave a lot of performance on the table, and you’re getting your money’s worth.