There is often some confusion between RAM and a computer’s disk storage. It’s easy to see how this can occur, seeing as both are measured in gigabytes (GB). Understanding RAM can help a lot when it comes to choosing a computer to suit your needs.
So what is the difference?
RAM stands for random-access memory, and it’s where your computer stores the data it is working on at that particular moment. The more RAM a computer has, the more tasks it can comfortably perform at once.
On the other hand, your computer’s disk space (SSD/HDD) is where your computer permanently stores your data, such as your personal documents, music, images, and applications.
How much do I need?
Should you require complex programs such as Adobe Photoshop to run alongside other intensive programs such as video editing software, then your RAM needs will be higher than for those regularly use less demanding computer programs.
Your computer will load programs from its disk storage to its memory while it is being used. Once you close the program, it will be deleted. If you have saved any changes while using the program, these will be saved in your computer’s disk storage.
Because memory is only concerned with programs while they are being used, it is much faster than disk storage. However, it can only store information while your computer is turned on and the program being used is still active. If you turn off your computer or close a program without saving your progress, your RAM will not remember the changes you have made.
Due to this, there is usually significantly less RAM available in a computer than there is disk space. You will usually find computers to have around 4GB of RAM, while offering approximately 500GB of disk storage. It’s possible to purchase computers with 8GB or even 12GB of RAM, but such high quantities are usually unnecessary for the average computer user. Also, RAM is much more expensive per gigabyte than disk storage, so a high amount of RAM will make your computer much pricier.
Different Ram Terminology
There are often different terms for the RAM each computer offers. Buyers can often be confused by terms such as DRAM and SDRAM, but they are merely more specific terms for the same thing. All modern RAM has the prefix DDR, which stands for double-data-rate, and simply refers to the speed of modern RAM types.
Finally, if you plan to purchase a computer for gaming, you may hear of a specific RAM type: GDDR. This RAM is designed to work with the computer’s graphics card. This is not available on all computers and is generally seen on more powerful models.
If you require any support on the memory you require for your machine please talk with one of our technical support team and they will assist you in finding the correct memory for your machine,