Choosing the correct amount of RAM for your PC is a decision that has haunted many gamers with less understanding of the matter. After all, RAM is an integral part of the PC, and no one wants a PC that is slow and choppy to use, right?

When it comes to gaming, the popular consensus among gamers is to go with 16GB RAM. Gamers who are on a strict budget, however, tend to go for 8GB to save cost. Nonetheless, I deem 8GB RAM to be insufficient for today’s gaming, and to find out why, check our take on whether 8GB RAM is enough for gaming. Similarly, some gamers tend to go for more than 16GB. Regardless of the amount of RAM you go for, one thing is for sure it no longer comes cheap as it used to 4-5 years back, so gamers now have to be more calculative with their choice.

Another aspect that people often overlook is that games are becoming increasingly more complex and demanding, hence requiring more RAM. The best example of this is PUBG, a battle royal game with huge maps containing 100 people all fighting it out for the number 1 spot.

With gamers now realizing the need for higher capacity RAM, a debate has stirred up with the topic being 16GB vs 32GB RAM. Many gamers are now questioning the efficacy of having just 16GB RAM, and some gamers think it hinders the multitasking aspect of the PC.

The information coming out of these debates is not always right hence leading many gamers along the incorrect path. The topic needs proper addressing so we have taken it upon ourselves to properly inform you in this regard.

16GB vs 32GB RAM: Which is Right for You?

Deciding between 16GB or 32GB RAM is not as easy as it sounds. When it comes to RAM you do not gain performance benefits with having more RAM. Any Unutilized RAM is essentially a waste while having not enough RAM is catastrophic for the system. Therefore a balance has to be maintained and find the RAM that is more fitting for your persona use.

Why Choose 16GB RAM?

16GB RAM is considered the sweet spot in terms of memory capacity. Going below 16GB is not recommended, as most modern games now are based on complex engines and require more RAM. Not having enough RAM to cope with the demand of the game leads to the system becoming choppy and laggy hence owing to a bad gaming experience.

With having 16GB RAM, you also leave some headroom for other applications to run in the background besides the game. If you are an avid Reddit junky like I am or like to browse through stuff or listen to music in between rounds, then 16GB is perfect for that purpose as well. It allows the flexibility of multitasking without having to compromise on the gaming performance.

16GB RAM, however, is quickly becoming the bare minimum for some upcoming games and, hence, is no longer future-proof. If you want to go with the buy once and forget about it approach, then get higher capacity RAM. This leads up nicely to the 32GB RAM section, so let’s address that without any more delay.

Why Choose 32GB RAM?

It is given that if you are looking into 32GB RAM, then you want to do more than gaming. If not, and you only want to game, then 16GB RAM will be plenty. The only reason we see in this case for upgrading to 32GB RAM is if you want your gaming PC to be future-proof.

Now, let’s be honest here, guys. Gaming is not the only thing we would do with our PCs, right? A PC has so much multi-tasking potential, and then there is the fact that streaming games on platforms like Twitch or YouTube has picked up a rapid pace in the community and is becoming popular with each passing day.

If you want to stream games while playing them, then getting 32GB RAM holds weight. This is because a lot of resources are used for streaming which can quickly nip away the vacant RAM capacity.

If you want your game and your stream to run smoothly, then I recommend getting 32GB RAM. This also grants you a lot of levy in the setting you use for streaming, and you can go with higher settings by knowing that RAM is not the limiting factor in your case.

The other plausible reason for getting 32GB RAM is if you want to run a virtual machine. To do this properly, you need 32GB RAM and 16GB just won’t cut it. Besides that, having higher capacity memory is also beneficial if you are working with large media files or doing content creation.

How much RAM Do I Need for Gaming?

If you are content with the above comparison and have figured out which RAM is better for your purpose, then you can skip this section. Otherwise, for the folks who need more granular information on the amount of RAM required for their PC, then this section is for you.

Deciphering the amount of RAM you need for your gaming computer is not quite straightforward. I would love to put a number and say that this x amount of RAM is needed for gaming, but that would be kind of going in the wrong direction. So, let’s take real-world examples and analyze them one by one to find out the amount of RAM needed for us.

Which Resolution and Refresh Rate do you want to Play At?

This is a huge deciding factor in the amount of RAM needed for your gaming PC. You see high resolution and high refresh rate gaming is increasingly popular. The 1080p 60fps target that used the staple for many gamers is no longer a thing now as the industry is moving towards 1440p resolution.

The high refresh rate monitors bandwagon is riding a new high, and many gamers are switching to a high refresh rate for smoother gaming. If you also want to incorporate high resolution and high refresh rate in your gaming, then get higher RAM capacity as gaming at higher resolution and high refresh rate demands more resources.

Do you Work on Memory Intensive Applications?

If you are a gamer by heart but also have to work on memory-intensive applications for a living, then get high-capacity RAM. This is especially applicable if you work with very large files, such as large media files containing multiple 4K videos that you have to edit. This is just one example, and there are so many other professional tasks that require high RAM capacity, so if you are into professional tasks, then get at least 16GB RAM.

Do you want to Stream Your Games?

Streaming is a very demanding task and hence requires a lot of free memory capacity. When streaming, you also have to factor in that the game you are streaming also requires memory. Therefore, if you are planning on streaming, then get higher RAM capacity than usual.

How Many Apps Do You Want to Run in the Background?

This is a very important factor and the one that most people will base their decision on regarding how much RAM they need for their PC. You see, not all people use their PC in the same way. Some simply use it for gaming, while others do a lot more than gaming.

Given you are the one who uses his PC in a multi-tasking manner and has a lot of apps open in the background, you get high RAM capacity, while if you only have 1 or 2 apps open along with the game, then you do not require a lot of RAM for your use.

What it boils down to is how many applications you have open in the background and the frequency at which you switch between them. This also goes for gaming. If you are someone who uses Discord, Spotify, and other similar applications with your game, then get high RAM capacity accordingly; otherwise, if your only focus is the game, then you can get away with having low-capacity RAM.

Check out some of the other related RAM guides.

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Let’s wrap up everything now, shall we? For starters, there is no right or wrong RAM capacity, and it all boils down to personal use. Through the above-mentioned information, I hope you were able to make a rough estimate of the amount of RAM needed for your use.

The gist of it is that 8GB RAM is not enough in 2021, you can get away with 8GB RAM but then you will be restricted in your PC use. 16GB RAM is the sweet spot, and if you are building a new PC for playing games, then simply get 16GB RAM. 32GB RAM is not for everyone, and for most people, it will be a waste to go with such a high RAM capacity. I will recommend getting 32GB only if you are planning to stream or your use involves working with memory-intensive applications.  

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