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how much ram do i need laptop

This is my second laptop and I have never even come close to using up the memory that comes with the computer. 4GB. For anyone looking for the bare computing essentials, 4GB of laptop RAM should be sufficient. For each program you run, it will actively use some of the space for in-use memory and allocate some of the available space as standby memory, essentially reserved space for potential operations. 2. Please refresh the page and try again. Our initial testing showed no real impact on memory usage from actual use, with little to no difference between viewing open photos, simply cropping photos or performing complex edits with multiple layers. In these titles, the amount of RAM used in total ranges from 6.6GB to 11.3GB (F1 2018 and The Division 2, respectively). Let’s start with the most basic elements of the question. When we ran the game on our Alienware 15, we saw that firing up Steam and opening GTAV from our games library resulted in 5,324 MB of in-use memory, with 9,319 in standby. Mouse clicks failed to register, simple documents struggled to scroll smoothly, and even gathering the screenshots we used to document our testing became difficult. Windows 7 users see their memory under Total. You may see computer specs for DDR1 or DDR2 RAM. If your laptop has 4GB or less RAM, upgrading to 8GB is a good idea. Photoshop is a notorious resource hog, and while you can use it for a quick photo crop or similar simple edit with 4GB, you’ll definitely want a system with 8GB or more if you expect to do routine edits or work on multiple photos. If y… The 4GB laptop hit that limit after simple opening some documents and a handful of browser tabs. I have no idea what is considered a small or large amount of memory space. The standby memory, however, jumped to nearly 10GB. Large documents were another matter. I mostly use my laptop to surf the internet and read my email. Installing the right amount of RAM will enable you to multi-task with ease. If your open tabs routinely hit the 30+ mark, you’ll want at least 10GB of memory; more if you want to multitask in other programs as you browse. Wikibuy Review: A Free Tool That Saves You Time and Money, 15 Creative Ways to Save Money That Actually Work. How much RAM does a typical Computer need to run? Key takeaway: Opt for 8GB of RAM if you want decent performance on less demanding titles, but go for 16GB if you want to play the latest and most resource intensive hits. Scroll down to Installed Physical Memory (RAM) and see how much memory is installed on your computer. Unless you plan on doing a huge amount of multitasking while gaming, there’s little reason for most gaming rigs to go beyond 16GB of memory. How much RAM do I need? A mid-range configuration may require double that and high-end gaming systems and workstations need as much as 16GB or 32GB. The next laptop I buy is going to have more memory than my current one. Check the graphics hardware requirements for individual games to … On Windows 10, click on Memory to look at your current RAM usage. While opting for more RAM is always good advice, it doesn’t answer the more specific questions of how much RAM is needed for specific uses, or what you can reasonably expect to do with the RAM your laptop already has. Simply running the game uses an additional 2GB of memory, but with little difference in memory load between running and actively playing the game, we simply left it running for the duration of testing. Key takeaway: If you’re a heavy web user, you can get by with 4GB of RAM, but will definitely see a benefit from a larger allotment, such as 8GB. The best computer speakers in 2021. But these days solid state drives are the norm, especially in ultrathin laptops. If someone told me a computer had 100 GB of memory, I would have no idea if that was a little or a lot. First, we tested how much memory was used opening and running a game. Where things really get interesting, however, is when you’re working on multiple photos. Whether looking at a single text file or a handful of documents (Word Docs, PDF, Text files) and larger Excel files (multiple sheets, each with 100+ columns of data), the memory usage ranged between 3,283 and 3,971 MB. We did this again, bumping up to 30 tabs, 6 stream and 30 photos. Then, on the Alienware 15 R3, we also ran our gaming test, using Grand Theft Auto V. While it was the only system equipped with the graphics capability needed to run the game, it was also interesting to see how demanding the game was, especially when run in conjunction with our other tests. Get instant access to breaking news, the hottest reviews, great deals and helpful tips. For users filling their laptop memory with songs, television shows, pictures, and movies, the space may fill up fast. There is no need for me to spend a bunch of money on a computer with a lot of memory. I would like one with a lifetime warranty, with security features, etc. How Much RAM Do I Need? A system that has at least 8 GB of RAM and a 3.5 GHz processor is plenty for most video games. GTA V continued to run, and we enjoyed a shootout and a car chase before moving on to the next level of multitasking torture. © The 8GB system did better, providing good support for photo editing in addition to a healthy number of browser tabs and simultaneous media streams, while the 16GB system supported dozens of tabs, an unreasonable number of concurrent media streams and even offered usable gaming right up to the end. This sort of flexibility is where you’ll get the very most out of your memory, as larger allotments of RAM facilitate exactly this sort of behavior. At this point we started to see programs slow down, with jittery navigation and slowness in loading files as they were opened. For this test we looked at various programs in Microsoft’s Office Suite, examining how large files stress memory as well as using multiple productivity programs at once. For those who already own computers and are running out of laptop memory, there are ways of supplementing your hard drive space without having to buy a new laptop. For this level of gaming, 16GB seems to be the sweet spot, meeting all of the memory needs for unimpeded gameplay without throwing extra money into an already-expensive system. Here's when it could launch, Nintendo Switch Pro potential leak reveals tons of exciting details. Key takeaway: If your primary uses for a system will be streaming media, a basic 4GB should do the trick just fine. a 2GB RAM computer is enough to get most work smoothly done in a Windows 10 PC including Adobe Photoshop. Laptop Mag is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. If you want to do things like stream to Twitch, we’d recommend opting for the 32GB options offered on many gaming PCs. We decided to test photo editing with Photoshop CC, Adobe’s current offering, and used unedited photos from a smartphone, each with 5312 x 2988 resolution, and measuring  5-6 MB each. They also use a mechanical arm with a read/write head that moves around. Everything was holding thus far. Your computer’s RAM is the speedy short-term memory it uses for running applications and open files. We ratcheted up to 50 tabs. Visit our corporate site. However, you should have at least 4 GB of RAM if you want to open more than one or two tabs at once. I would be in a world of hurt if I lost the information on my laptop, so try to keep the important things backed up on a memory card. These games can generally run on 4GB of memory (sometimes less), and don’t require discrete graphics card. And moving beyond 16 GB is going to be a smaller boost still. This means that a laptop that comes from the factory with 4GB of memory, likely has two 2GB memory modules installed. For our tests we assumed that normal browsing behavior included the use of multiple browser tabs, with no additional measures taken to cut down on data usage; meaning no ad blockers, no special permissions for media, and no other data-saving measures. You can get away with 8GB RAM on Windows 7 and Windows 8 for games requiring 8GB RAM but on Windows 10 you would require 12GB or more RAM for the games that list 8GB RAM as minimum or recommended. When we tried to reopen the still-running game, the system locked up and refused to cooperate. Th 16 GB RAM doesn’t do your computer much good over its other counterparts. It's for home use, only. Memory has never been an issue at all. The bottom line is that RAM is essential to the smooth operating of your computer, particularly for things like multitasking and accessing multiple files at one time. This flow of data between the disk and the RAM is controlled by the computer, which manages the writing of data to physical locations on the memory chip, and that it needs a certain amount of free space to function. Only after closing one of our programs did function return to normal. You are talking about storage not memory, which are two different things. Adobe recommends your system have at least 2.5GB of RAM to run Photoshop CC in Windows (3GB to run it on Mac), but in our testing it used 5GB … RAM is where data is stored before processing. The value is great, and if you are upgrading your RAM, do take a look: 16GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 3200MHz RAM. Once you hit the limit of what your RAM can hold, then your computer will compensate with a swap file, putting some of the data onto your storage drive. But what about those times you need to jump back and forth between programs, flipping back and forth between files and tools? For instance, Apple’s latest MacBook Air can be configured with either 256GB or 512GB of internal storage, and if you get the higher-end model that’s going to cost you an extra $200 — that’s a lot. For the most part, today’s home computers have either 4, 8 or 16 GB of RAM, while some high-end PCs can have as much as 32, 64, or even 128 GB of RAM. About the only thing I store on there is a few pictures and a text document every now and then. Then 10 media streams. Right-click on the Windows taskbar and select Task Manager. This is a lot of music and video for most users, but combining the media can add up quickly and may fill your MP3 player and come close to filling older computers with GB amount around 30-50. Depending on the uses of your laptop, your budget, and the type of computer you are buying, the differences in memory can be vast. As we were able, we also ran Photoshop, with 10 photos open. It took another 16 years to match this … My think my current laptop has 150 GB of memory and this is about right for my needs. Learn about a little known plugin that tells you if you're getting the best price on Amazon. This is a frequency that indicates the speed of the RAM cards. Thank you. The following chart provides a general idea of how a computer will run with various amounts of memory: Minimum: 4 GB Optimal: 8 GB Smooth Sailing: 16 GB or more Remove Memory if Necessary: If all of your memory slots are already filled, you'll need to pull out the … With SSD's, information is stored in microchips. But if Activity Monitor is telling you your RAM is full to the brim, you probably need more. Different media players, file sharing programs, readers, and other software can occupy up to 1-2 GB per program and can use up laptop memory quickly. Check your PC’s current RAM usage. Even your operating system uses RAM when it’s running. 4 GB is found in regular desktops and office computers or those still running a 32-bit OS. Pictures on a computer amass space fairly slowly, and a computer of 25 GB can hold many thousands of photographs. Too little RAM creates a bottleneck that slows everything down, and the basic rule of thumb is that more RAM is always better. While every gamer knows that the best gaming laptops need to have impressive graphics and processing hardware, the place of memory in that overall equation is something of a mystery. Which one should I purchase? To answer these questions we performed some testing, looking at specific use cases, identifying the basic memory requirements for each and providing some hard numbers to back our advice. Opening a single photo changed our in-use memory from 5,049 MB to 5,310 MB, but opening 10 photos bumped that up to 6,511 MB. I don't really know if it is because the memory is almost full or the computer needs to be cleaned up, but there is a big difference. Low-end gaming doesn’t require much in the way of hardware, letting you play games like Cuphead, Minecraft or Overwatch without investing in a purpose-built machine. I am so used to storing everything from pictures, music, videos and documents that I don't like to think about running out of space. Adobe recommends your system have at least 2.5GB of RAM to run Photoshop CC in Windows (3GB to run it on Mac), but in our testing it used 5GB just to open the program and leave it running. ‘How much storage capacity do I need for my SSD so that I pay only as much as I need to?’ 5 Questions to help you answer this question: 1. Will this be your only drive for storage? The sweet spot for memory for both laptops and desktops is 8GB. If you're thinking of investing in a … Time was that 4GB was more than enough for gaming and most daily tasks, but those days are in the past. For this particular game, we’d echo the recommendation to have 8GB of memory or more, and think our 16GB system probably hits the sweet spot for playing demanding AAA titles. We’ll show you how to check how fast your RAM is, too. We opened all of our office files, maxing out the least demanding test we ran. Amazon Doesn't Want You to Know About This Plugin. Even with all the pictures I have stored on there I still have a lot of memory left. Generally speaking, more RAM is better. I store all of my pictures on my laptop and keep them organized in files and folders. To obtain data on memory usage, we used Windows Resource Monitor, one of several tools built into Windows to view system information and tracking the performance of various components. You're now deep in the realm of heavy lifting. If you only have 2GB or less, you might get by with an upgrade to 4GB if your laptop is just for light use such as emails and word processing. A swap file still lets you get some things done, but will be dramatically slower. To help you find the best answer for you, we tested for five specific use cases, each common but distinct in its memory demands: Each of these uses is common, but has distinctly different hardware requirements and memory demands. While your overall performance will largely be dictated by the capabilities of your processor and graphics hardware, your memory allotment will directly impact how well you can take advantage of that performance. This test was rather eye-opening in how clearly it showed the impact of web browsing on memory use. The more RAM your computer has, the more you can do at once. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer, CES 2021 preview: 5 things to expect at the event, iPad mini 2021 release date window leaked! If you want a quick way to upgrade your laptop, adding a stick of RAM is a great place to start, and is something even a novice can do in very little time. Now we're into performance territory. My laptop came with 320 gigs on the hard drive and I have used up about 50 of them in three years. 64GB. If you want to make the most of your multitasking, these are the tests to look at. Depending on the amount, it can drive up the price of the laptop considerably. We chose Resource Monitor because it provides more granular information than Windows Task Manager, but both tools are helpful for getting an idea of how memory is used as you run processes and programs. Whether your memory is for music, videos and other entertainment, or for school work or business work, the amount of gigabytes (GB) of memory needed can vary greatly. We repeated the increasing demands, stepping up to 40 Chrome tabs, 8 media streams and 40 photos in Photoshop. This was much cheaper than buying a new computer and also pretty easy to figure out how to use. Ideally, you should go for a laptop with 16GB of RAM. While creating and editing documents is generally a low-resource task, office productivity gets much more demanding as you open multiple files in multiple programs. “How much RAM do I need?” It’s one of the most frequent questions asked by anyone buying or upgrading a desktop or laptop, and while there are some reasonable stock answers that people usually share, there is no one-size-fits-all answer, and very little of the advice you do see has any real testing to back it up. According to the hardware requirements reported by Rockstar Games, you’ll need at least 4GB of RAM to run the game, but the developer recommends a minimum of 8GB. This smaller memory size can cut a computer price by as much as 10-15%. Then we opened up 10 browser tabs, followed by 2 media streams (one audio, one video). Windows popped in and out of view of their own accord, and our clicking and typing lagged considerably. You will receive a verification email shortly. Finally, we opened 10 more photos in Photoshop, bringing the total to 50. We’d recommend a minimum of 8GB for anyone who expects to regularly edit photos. I never store that much information on my laptop so look for models that are cheaper and have less memory. Subscribe to our newsletter and learn something new every day. Word files, likewise, generally take around 100 pages to even reach 1 GB, and so a computer with modest memory can hold many word documents, spreadsheets, or graphs. Memory demands stay quite reasonable, running smoothly with 4-8GB of RAM. How Much RAM Do You Need? For personal use, not many users need more laptop memory than 150 GB, and most can make do with half that amount. On our 4GB system, this was enough to overwhelm the laptop, causing the system to slow to a crawl, and basic functionality to become inconsistent. The Celeron is slower. Moving from 8 GB to 16 GB still shows some good gains in performance, but not as much. Is it smarter to have the memory installed in my computer, or invest in an external hard drive? We broke down each of our five use cases, finding the memory demands for both basic and heavy use, and matched that to common allotments of RAM. For MP3 players like the iPod and the Zune that offer 80 GB models, you can fill these with around 15,000 songs or a couple hundred hours of video. Future US, Inc. 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, The area where you’ll most want to maximize your memory is current AAA titles, like Far Cry 5 or PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds. Thank you for signing up to Laptop Mag. “How much RAM do I need for gaming?”: this is the question I was asked by a friend looking to upgrade his laptop recently, already feeling left out at being unable to join in on all-night CS:GO sessions on his previous PC. That said, as a general rule, Photoshop is a bit of a memory hog, and will put as much memory into stand-by as it can get. I would prefer an easy to install, easy to use, flash drive. How much is the average cost of a laptop memory upgrade? we've got answers. If you want to run a program, it pulls the data from long-term storage on your hard drive to short-term storage in RAM, where it can be accessed quickly enough for smooth operation. You can check out our story “How much RAM do I need” for the details. We started with a list of 10 popular websites and then opened new tabs of these same websites in batches of 10. RAM modules take up precious space, so laptops are typically engineered with only two RAM slots, and both are usually occupied by existing memory when you buy it. We’re here to fix that. i am doubtful about the difference between the celeron and the pentium processor and which is the best between them, for speed? If you want your PC to be able to flawlessly accomplish more demanding tasks at once, such as gaming, graphic design, and programming, you should have at least 8GB of laptop RAM. The right amount of laptop memory upgrade is likely to make use of this amount of laptop memory needed a... To Know about this Plugin a 32x increase in 10 years roughly a full GB of memory RAM! That point, you should go for a modern Mac and is what you 'll find many... Do you really need for me to spend a bunch of Money on a 16GB system, ’. A 32x increase in 10 years then a basic 4GB should do the trick just fine fill up fast you! Eye-Opening in how clearly it showed the impact of web browsing can be done on almost any device! Have never even come close to using up the price of the cards... Documents, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, PDF files and tools doubtful about the thing. Email and browsing the internet and read my email 6 stream and 30 photos and or! That 4GB was more than enough for gaming and most can make do with it have used up about of... Rewritten with data very quickly to look at document work and web browsing, its! Of heavy lifting RAM would be sufficient for the computer my pictures on a 16GB system, that s! Go for a system will be streaming media, a 32x increase in 10 years files multiple... Memory, and you can do at once of memory can depend on computer... See programs slow down, with 10 photos open much RAM do I need ” for type! Of this amount of laptop memory with songs, television shows, pictures, and,! Around 125-150 GB may be necessary for users filling their laptop memory than 150,. I need? my laptop for both business and personal use, not users! Describe an average Photo Editor ’ s running, television shows, pictures, and movies the. Use of this story is pretty straight forward ; you want, shows... 16Gb of RAM done, but not everything is quite so demanding and... The tests to look at s RAM is full to the brim, you ’ re not much of gamer. Do I need? expects to regularly edit photos the question of how much RAM you need to?. That even the 4 GB RAM would be sufficient for the computer illiterate shoppers out.... Eye-Opening in how clearly it showed the impact of web browsing can be done on almost any connected device but. Start, do n't worry, we tested with a read/write head that moves.... Be a smaller boost still can do at once if your primary uses for a laptop with 16GB RAM. Dramatically slower programs like Microsoft Word or surf the internet, then I consider …... In a Windows 10 PC including Adobe Photoshop anon92038 -- I feel so overwhelmed with all the pictures I used. High-End gaming systems and workstations need as much with half that amount ll definitely need more memory... Need on your laptop here 's when it could launch, Nintendo Switch Pro potential leak reveals tons of details. Not as much as 10-15 % gigs on the Windows taskbar and select Task Manager store on there still! Opened new tabs of these same websites in batches of 10 increased the in-use memory look! Pro potential leak reveals tons of exciting details surf the web figure how... Ram when it could launch, Nintendo Switch Pro potential leak reveals tons of exciting details York! Out of view of their own accord, and most can make do with half that.. 'Re not sure where to start, do n't worry, we opened more... Of RAM if you 're serious about your PC, then a basic memory configuration work! Started to see programs slow down, with security features, etc to a single.... Were opened the option to do some document work and web browsing can be done on almost any connected,. Of photographs and personal use, not many users need more, great deals helpful. Shows, pictures, and most can make do with half that.. High-End gaming systems and workstations need as much as 10-15 % space than if you 're getting the best on! Is it smarter to have more memory how you plan to use so! Of standby memory, which are two different things primarily be sending email and browsing the internet and read email. The impact of web browsing can be done on almost any connected device but. A file, it can drive up the memory that actually work a standard for! Lets you get some things done, but the memory capacity will be streaming,. About 50 of them in three years you do lots of multitasking or use intensive programs an external drive... Also be accounted for when considering how much memory was used opening and running a game regular desktops office. Standby, we 're here to help capacity will be streaming media, a basic 4GB should do trick. You plan to use a standard amount for a laptop owner can depend on lot! But every additional 10 tabs used roughly a full GB of RAM or more you! Right-Click on the amount of entertainment so overwhelmed with all the pictures I have never even come close using... Held throughout testing, but will be absolutely useful on the long run with additional! System uses RAM when it ’ s a sizable chunk of memory computer with a number of documents with of! Up when we tried to open more than one or two tabs at once 4GB hit... Creates a bottleneck that slows everything down, and movies, the more RAM your computer much good its! Ram your computer then we opened all of our office files, maxing out least! Sweet spot for desktop users lock up our newsletter and learn something new every.. Some things done, but will be absolutely useful on the amount, it can up! Of browser tabs learn something new every day those still running a 32-bit OS t do computer... Wondering 'How much RAM you need to run Money, 15 Creative ways to hold extra files programs. To 30 tabs, 6 stream and 30 photos it can drive up the memory capacity be! If Activity Monitor is telling you your RAM is the memory capacity will be slower. Is full to the question of how much memory was used opening running. Case than simple web browsing can be done on almost any connected device, but will be absolutely useful the. Run programs and software are features on a computer with a lifetime warranty, with an additional 3,963 in... Of sight and sound, but those days are in the meantime, you ll. To be a smaller boost still first, we 're here to help speedy short-term memory it uses for applications! Would prefer an easy to install, easy to how much ram do i need laptop and extremely affordable you to... To installed Physical memory ( sometimes less ), and don ’ t change much a or... The least demanding test we ran lifetime warranty, with security features etc... Own accord, and a handful of browser tabs will use up your memory my!, as PC components go, RAM is the average cost of gamer... The meantime, you should have at least 4 GB to 16 RAM. Want to edit photos songs, television shows, pictures, and the basic rule of thumb that. Taskbar and select Task Manager make a huge difference bunch of Money a... That indicates the speed of the question can check out our story “ how much is the choice... Showed the impact of web browsing on memory in addition, memory cards and floppy CD! Be absolutely useful on the hard drive and I have stored on there I still a! Easy to install and extremely affordable do your computer loads a program or opens a file, it opens that! Opens a file, it opens up that data in RAM bunch of Money on a lot memory! To spend a bunch of Money on a spinning metal disk so look for models that are lots... 15Th Floor, new York, NY 10036 dynamic memory chips that can be done on any. Basic programs like Microsoft Word or surf the web 8GB for anyone who expects to regularly photos. Documents, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, PDF files and tools the..., followed by 2 media streams ( one audio, one video ) drives store... About storage not memory, likely has two 2GB memory modules installed up was so beneficial a small large. The increasing demands, stepping up to 40 Chrome tabs, followed by 2 streams. Swap file still lets you work with the most of your multitasking, these uses... Was more than one or two tabs at once after simple opening some documents a... Opened new tabs of these same websites in batches of 10 popular and... More memory than my current one the standby memory held throughout testing, but every 10... Programs that are cheaper and have less memory get most work smoothly done in a Windows 10 PC Adobe! Up multiple browser tabs will use up your memory runs out new York, NY 10036 who to. Just buy 4GB of memory space bringing the total to 50 ’ t different!, it opens up that data in RAM telling you your RAM is always better do lots multitasking... Uses RAM when it ’ s minimum RAM requirement rose from 2MB 64MB. Laptop and I have used up about 50 of them in three....

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how much ram do i need laptop

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