Gaming benchmarks 4 Gb vs 8 Gb vs 16 Gb RAM

Discussion in 'Benchmark Mayhem' started by Artas1984, May 2, 2014.

  1. Artas1984

    Artas1984 Active Member

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    This time i've decided not to review another VGA or CPU battle. It's RAM this time.

    I knew that 4 Gb of RAM these days is not enough for some games on X64 Windows, but i was always wondering what is the advantage of 16 Gb vs 8 Gb RAM in gaming?

    To those who are inpatient to look, i tell you this now: 16 Gb RAM is a waste of money. Pleased be advised that the results with 4 Gb RAM were custom to my computer only, and therefore might not occur the same way in your 4 Gb PC due to different memory management.

    Made a video presentation. 18 games benchmarked.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6i5QAER1RI

    Please open in wide screen 720p or 1080p.
     
  2. thatguy91

    thatguy91 Ancient Guru

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    Some more information would be useful, such as the RAM speed and RAM modules used. Many of the games show a decreased performance with 16 GB, this definitely should NOT be the case.

    So, what speed RAM, what module configuration? What RAM brands did you use? For 16 GB, was it 2x8 GB modules or 4x4 GB?

    There is also another consideration not look at in the results. The results are based on frames per second alone, it does not include reload times (where the extra memory used as cache is beneficial) or other issues, especially if loading games off a mechanical drive. It's like saying a SSD is of no use because you may still get 55 FPS, just like without one!
     
  3. chinobino

    chinobino Maha Guru

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    I have watched my memory usage in many games and came to the same conclusion.

    Unless you do photo/video editing or are running a server, you'll likely never use more than half of your 16 GB of RAM.
     
  4. Xenotone

    Xenotone Master Guru

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    Yeah but bigger numbers are better :D
     

  5. pegasus1

    pegasus1 Maha Guru

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    Depends what you like to have going on in the background when you gaming.
     
  6. -Tj-

    -Tj- Ancient Guru

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    I bought 16gigs to last for a long time, also I do other stuff that can use more then 8gb :)
     
  7. pegasus1

    pegasus1 Maha Guru

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    And at the time I bought mine, RAM prices were at rock bottom so probably got 16gb for not much more than 8gb now.
     
  8. Agonist

    Agonist Ancient Guru

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    Exactly! I got my 12gb for $80. Just seemed stupid to get 6gb at the time. Never saw over 5.5GB of ram usage either. I did notice a difference in games though going from 4gb ddr2 800 to 6gb ddr2 800 on my q6600 rig before I built this i7 one.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2014
  9. pegasus1

    pegasus1 Maha Guru

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    My sons rig is based around an i7 950 with 6gb of RAM. His 'limited' RAM is now becoming a factor when gaming as he generally has a fair few progs running in the background.
     
  10. Artas1984

    Artas1984 Active Member

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    So, the same RAM settings were used for all the games every time:

    Patriot Viper XMP 4 Gb 1600 MHz CL9 1,5V modules:

    4 Gb
    2X4 Gb
    4X4 Gb
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2014

  11. haz_mat

    haz_mat Master Guru

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    If you have the habit of closing everything before running a game, then I doubt having 16GB is beneficial to you. But I personally don't like having to re-open everything after I'm done gaming, so there have been plenty of times that I see my system exceeding 8GB of ram usage.

    Also worth noting, even if you don't actively use up your ram then windows caching will - it speeds things up by caching regularly used files and programs in standby memory. So chances are, when you re-launch firefox after gaming on 16GB ff will still be in memory.

    Even now with a relatively light load my system is eating up 4.5 gigs actively with 8 gigs on standby: http://imgur.com/xkUe6cS.jpg
     
  12. thatguy91

    thatguy91 Ancient Guru

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    That's what I was saying. All the free memory is used as cache memory, but is visibly identified as free memory as it is dynamic. I'm not talking superfetch etc here, I'm just referring to standard Windows caching.

    With games like Watch Dogs, it's quite possible that more memory than 8GB could be beneficial with things like reload times and stutter/other issues relating to data loading. This is mostly off mechanical drives, which most people are probably using for games. The argument still applies to SSD's though, saying that SSD's are pointless because your framerate is the same :).

    If you take texture streaming out of the equation, say you use a really slow drive and it takes 30 seconds to reload from a checkpoint, having it fast (say a 1 second turn-around) won't have any effect on frame rate, and yet the game is still all the more enjoyable :).

    In terms of actual system memory though, many games have tweakable options directly relating to memory use, or are quality related that increases memory use, and this is another area unexplored by this comparison.

    In terms of framerate, it's little suprise that 16 GB provides no benefit over 8 GB, especially with 32-bit games.

    I still say go for 16 GB. If you go for 8 GB, you would likely be getting 2x4 GB. This makes it harder to upgrade to 16 GB once you realise the latest games may benefit from a little more than 8 GB :). Of course, you can go 4x4 GB, but that really isn't recommended. The reason for the 16 GB results being lower than the 8 GB results in that benchmark tests is probably due to the timing implications of running 4 RAM modules. It's the only explanation for it showing lower framerates.

    So, if you do go 16 GB, get 2x8 GB not 4x4 GB :) (also, aim for at least DDR3-2133).
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2014
  13. southamptonfc

    southamptonfc Ancient Guru

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    I disable the pagefile in Windows to maximise the potential lifespan of my SSD. If you do this, 8GB is not enough for 64bit gaming, you will run out of RAM.
     
  14. Pill Monster

    Pill Monster Banned

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    This isn't exactly news tbh....

    More ram only helps if the system is paging to disk (for those still using a PF). Or mapping files like BF4 does.....(I guess it's mapped files or Tiled Resources since afaik cached data is not counted against the commit limit).
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2014
  15. Artas1984

    Artas1984 Active Member

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    I have disabled that too, but 8 Gb RAM is more than enough for any game, 4 Gb is not.
     

  16. Agonist

    Agonist Ancient Guru

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    My friend has a i7 920 and 6Gb. And in bf4x64 he is pushing his 6GB. And thats on a new win 8 install and not too much running.
     
  17. chilly willy

    chilly willy Master Guru

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    I've gotten over 8gb used a few times playing bf4 and titanfall with not too much running in the background. just steam, origin, obs, and a windows explorer window open on another monitor and i guess some sidebar gadgets but not too many and they only take up 300mb of ram. oh and i have pagefile disabled and hover around 3-4gb when not doing anything.

    16gb is for sure not needed i got mine way back when ddr3 was dirt cheap so it didn't matter to me when i got an extra 2 sticks but when i build stuff for people or suggest parts i suggest 2x4gb to cut costs if needed and if they are topping out adding another 2x4gb isnt too bad unless you are going with a more premium 2666 or 2800 or something kit.
     

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