Finding The Best DDR4 RAM For Gaming
It took us some time to do this and found the best DDR4 RAM sticks that we could continuously increase in value, capacity, frequency and performance while doing so. Our end result presented us with six high-quality RAM sticks, which you are welcome to use to pop into your new PC build or upgrade to an older one. Furthermore, with the imminent release of DDR5 memory around the corner, it is also worth looking at how the current DDR4 matches up against it.
Before continuing, remember that there is no bad choice here. We have already filtered them for you.
Instead, go with RAM that suits your computing needs and falls within your budget. When we move to different products, we’ll help you tackle some of the popular RAM questions, which help you decide which of these DDR4 RAM kits is right for you.
Enough with introduction. Bring out the RAM!
The Best DDR4 RAM For Gaming
Corsair Vengeance LPX
- Capacity4GB – 16GB
- FrequencyDDR4 2400Mhz – 4000Mhz
- CAS Latency16
- Excellent over clocking capability
- Smaller than other RAM
- Powerful RAM
- Can be considered expensive
Corsair designed its Vengeance LPX range with solid performance and overclocking capability, with 2 goals in mind. They achieve this by equipping their LPX RAM with a heat spreader consisting of pure aluminum which provides increasingly more efficient heat dissipation. In addition, either-layer PCB helps manage temperature and allows for excellent overclocking headroom.
The Vengeance range is also extremely versatile, testing it against all X99 motherboards for compatibility, not to mention the low-profile heat spreader that makes their RAM much smaller than the others on the list. It comes in a variety of different speeds and sizes, ranging from 4GB 2400MHz to 16GB of 4000GBHz, which means that you can find a RAM speed that best suits your needs. It also comes in a variety of colors to suit your exact RGB setup.
Touching briefly on RGB, the series of vengeance features an RGB variant within the ranks. As you would expect with RGB, the price doesn’t really reflect the improvements, although if RGB is what you’re not in awe of, Corsair has you covered.
Right now Corsair’s Vengeance LPX is one of the best selling RAM standards in the market and as you can see, they have truly met the needs of everyone.
Corsair Dominator Platinum
- Capacity8GB – 16GB
- FrequencyDDR4 3000MHz – 4266MHz
- CAS Latency16
- Powerful RAM
- Fantastic Overclocking Ability
- Cool Design
- Quite Bulky
Corsair’s Dominator comes with all the same principles as the Platinum DDR4 LPX range, however, the Dominator comes with a B-die and much overclocking capability that is equipped with a heat spreader. Corsair says that they have built the iconic DDR4 RAM thanks to the iconic design, superior craftsmanship, and aluminum manufacturing Dominar yields.
Speeds start at 2400 MHz and climb to an impressive 4000 meters. Worth noting is the RGB version of this RAM whose entry level speed is 3000MHz. If you are in light customization, then be ready to fork for it. About 15% more expensive on average RGB.
Finally, I think we can comfortably say that this RAM is aimed at consumers who are looking for a visual improvement on a real performance boost. If price is not a factor, we would recommend it for an RGB memory solution, however, if you are on a budget and want the high performance standards of Corsair, we recommend Vengeance LPX.
Kingston HyperX Predator Black
- Capacity4GB – 16GB
- FrequencyDDR4 2400MHz – 4133MHz
- Cas Latency18
- Sweet spot between price and performance
- Fantastic Design
- Relatively small in size
- Not the quickest available
The people of Kingston have designed HyperX Predator Memory in black aluminum with a fierce new heat spreader that provides greater heat dissipation and higher overclocking capability. Currently Predator Fury is not as popular as the Black series, but it defeats it in performance results. The most popular of the series is the 3000MHz standard but they are designed in speeds that vary from 2400MHz to 4133Hz.
The design can be classified as aggressive and comes with an RGB equivalent which is simple but effective if it is your thing.
Finally if you are looking at RAM with solid overclocking capability then definitely take a look at Kingston’s Predator range.
Patriot Viper 4 Series
- Capacity4GB – 16GB
- FrequencyDDR4 2400Mhz – 3766MHz
- CAS Latency16
- Great Performance
- Small Profile
- Relatively Inexpensive
- Not as reliable as other brands
The Patriot Viper 4 Series falls under the lower end of the price spectrum in our list of the best RAMs for 2019. However, it takes nothing away from the performance power that the Patriot offers, saying that the Viper 4 is engineered and designed for the Sharp. Gaming and the most demanding computer environment. We all like it. The Viper in the benchmark was slightly slower than the standout brands, but we are willing to assume that the price is significantly cheaper to consider.
The Viper comes in pairs of different colors and has an RGB iteration, be careful as it adds a decent amount to your shopping bill.
Ultimately the Viper leads consumers to get cheaper RAM which is still running at a fairly decent level. Just keep in mind that quality and longevity are built to accommodate the difference in price
What is RAM?
RAM is short for random access memory. It is also “dynamic” memory, versus your HDD / SSD storage, which is considered “static” memory.
RAM is used to hold data in the short-term, by holding active applications and data where it can be quickly accessed, dropped, and changed. In human terms, think of it as your ephemeral memory or what you have in mind right now.
With the increasing RAM demands of operating systems, games and applications, many people are starting to ask more questions about what RAM actually is and what it does for them. We are going to use the rest of the article to destroy any questions that you may have about RAM to allow you to make an educated purchasing decision.
When it comes to gaming, RAM is usually used to hold active levels / maps and helps your CPU / GPU in all calculations that occur in-game. In the sections below, we will get a little more in-depth information on how performance is affected.
What is the best amount of RAM for gaming?
Honestly … it doesn’t really mean much to gaming in particular. It doesn’t matter, however, when you look at what you do while gaming. For serious games, you should know how to choose the best RAM for gaming in 2019.
Here is a helpful breakdown of what you can do in various RAM capacities.
4 GB RAM – You can multitask or you can do games. However, you cannot do both together. Some modern games may require 6GB or more of RAM, which can damage your performance in those titles.
8 GB RAM – You can multitask and play. Doing both at once will not cause you any problems, especially if you are not running anything CPU / GPU-intensive in the background of your game. Most modern titles do not require more than 6GB of RAM, therefore, your RAM spec is higher than or greater than most games.
16 GB RAM – You can multitask and game with more intensity. You could say, for example, run a RAM-intensive game, with a large number of browser tabs in the background. 16GB of RAM is really only recommended for those who use business / productivity applications that require additional RAM, such as running virtual machines or advanced calculations. For the vast majority of users, 16GB of RAM offers no real benefit.
32GB + RAM – Only useful for servers and extreme scenarios. It will not affect your gaming experience at all and is considered a luxury.
Ultimately, there is not the best amount of RAM for gaming.
However, the most practical amount of RAM for gaming is and 8GB of RAM. For the foreseeable future, it will likely remain so, but perhaps one day we will see games and applications that justify buying more RAM.
What is the best RAM speed for gaming?
Now, it’s time to tackle another fun topic: RAM speed in gaming!
Many people invest in the fastest, largest hardware to push the maximum frame. But, is this really the result of better gaming performance or is it just an ego boost number?
First, most DDR4-compatible motherboards and RAM will only be able to reach a maximum of 4200MHz without serious performance issues. In fact, RAM needs BIOS tweaks to run on these high clocks which can be tricky if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Out of the box, your average consumer RAM runs anywhere from 2400MHz to 3200MHz.
Secondly, most games and applications do not see much of a performance boost just by increasing the RAM frequency. Of course, it is better to run the 3000 DDR4 than the 1333 DDR3, but when we hit at a higher speed, we don’t see the same difference in gaming performance.
Now, to be fair, some games may very well benefit from increased RAM speeds. Unfortunately, these benefits are often the best and are usually not worth the extra money.
After all, it is not the best RAM speed for gaming. So, let’s talk about the last question: How much difference does RAM actually make?