How to choose the right RAM for your laptop

How to choose the frequency range of RAM

choose, right, laptop

Data transfer rate. this is the number of operations per second performed by the RAM. The higher the RAM frequency, the more productive the device will be. However, you need to understand that RAM works in conjunction with the rest of the computer components. It must have such a frequency that would be correlated with the frequency of the system bus and processor, otherwise you can disrupt the entire operation of the system.

What you need to know when choosing the right RAM frequency:

  • the maximum allowable RAM frequency is indicated on the board;
  • if you install two modules, then the computer will work with the maximum bandwidth of the weaker board;
  • it is better to take memory with a frequency of at least 1600 MHz;
  • boards with a frequency of 2400 MHz and 3600 MHz differ significantly in price, but there is no tangible difference in speed between these two options;
  • for working on a computer, watching videos and for not very “heavy” games, a frequency of 1600 MHz is suitable.

How to choose RAM for a laptop

To find out how many memory slots are on your laptop, it is enough to use any diagnostic program (for example, CPU-Z). After starting the test, you can find out the necessary information about the existing memory: the number of channels (connectors), the type and amount of RAM. Focusing on these parameters, you should choose RAM.

To choose the right option for a laptop, it is worth considering:

  • interface. DDR, DDR2, DDR3, DDR4;
  • form factor. only one type of form factor is suitable for a laptop. SO-DIMM because it is more compact. DIMM is installed in the PC system unit;
  • frequency. indicated in megahertz directly on the RAM, after the interface. For example, in the DDR4-2400 marking, the first part (DDR4) means the type of memory, and the second (2400). frequency;
  • volume. indicated on the case, measured in gigabytes, affects the performance of the laptop;
  • timing. on the case is indicated as CL, denoted by numbers. The lower the timing value, the faster the laptop will run. However, frequency has more of an impact on laptop speed than timing. If you have a choice between a RAM with low timing and high frequency, choose the second one. It is worth remembering that all RAM installed in the computer must have the same timing.

Memory types

To select RAM for the processor, you need to decide on its type:

  • DDR. was invented back in 2001, so today this type of memory can only be found in old computers produced in 2002-2003. This RAM worked at a frequency of 400 MHz, which is incomparable with modern standards;
  • DDR2. this type of memory can still be found, because it was used on all PCs until 2011. This is an improved version of DDR, which is twice as fast and has 240 pins (in the previous version there were only 184);
  • DDR3. was popular until 2014. A significant advantage over previous RAM options is a 40% reduction in power consumption and an increase in transmission speed. By installing this type of memory, it will be possible to achieve a 10% increase in PC performance;
  • DDR4. was released in 2014 and is popular today for its 2400 MHz capability. Since this version of RAM is the most productive, then its cost is corresponding.

The listed memory types are incompatible with each other. If you purchased, for example, DDR2, and your computer has a slot only for DDR3, you simply cannot insert incompatible RAM. This is due to the fact that different types of memory have different shapes.

Modes of operation

There are four modes of operation of RAM:

  • single-channel. can be found in DDR and some DDR2 models. Data recording is carried out sequentially into each module, which reduces the speed of the system;
  • two-channel. the most common mode of operation, for which two or four RAMs are required. For the convenience of their installation, manufacturers of multichannel motherboards paint DIMM sockets with different colors;
  • three-channel. used in more expensive models, three or six strips are connected to one channel;
  • four-channel. the most expensive and productive option, which has eight module slots.

Single-channel mode is not used in modern computers due to its slow speed. Users choose multichannel mode, which improves system gaming performance by up to 10%. It is better to select modules of the same model and from the same manufacturer in order to avoid the occurrence of failures.

How to choose RAM for PC and laptop

RAM is used for temporary storage of files. The user does not take part in its application, the system automatically saves some information, which allows the computer not to lose performance. The contents of the RAM are erased when the system is turned off.

Choosing the right RAM is very important, because the ability to overclock a PC or laptop depends on this choice. The operating system is interconnected with the motherboard and the processor, so preference should be given to such an amount of RAM (random access memory) that would be supported by the rest of the computer components.

Differences between desktop and laptop RAM

RAM for a laptop differs from RAM for a personal computer only in size and installation method, otherwise (frequency, bandwidth, etc.) these two types have no distinctive features. The PC has two to four slots for a memory card (it all depends on the assembly). You can add another RAM to the existing one in a few minutes. To do this, disconnect the computer from the power supply, open the system unit, find the desired slot and insert the bracket.

Saving space is very important for laptops, so the RAM for them is compact in size. The devices have several types of connectors for RAM:

  • one slot. costs in budget versions of laptops. Installing new memory is easy: you have to get the existing bar and replace it with a more productive one;
  • two slots. Ideal option most often found in mid-range and high-end notebooks. In this case, both slots can be occupied, or only one. In the first slot, you can leave the “native” RAM, and in the second, insert a module with a larger capacity;
  • unsoldered RAM. a difficult case in which it is rather risky to change the RAM to a more powerful one on your own. To do this, you will have to unsolder the old module and attach a new one to the free space. If you have an inexpensive computer model, then it is better not to do this, because in such machines, the RAM is often soldered tightly.
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The main manufacturers and developers of RAM are three companies:

  • Samsung. a group of South Korean firms, the first of which was founded in 1938. The choice of RAM of this brand is quite diverse, because you can find both inexpensive copies operating at 800 MHz, and more expensive ones with a frequency of more than 2400 MHz;
  • Hynix. a company in South Korea that specializes in the manufacture of semiconductor RAM. Hynix RAM modules are used in some of its products by Apple. The average term of use of such options ranges from 5-6 years. This time will be quite enough before the model is considered morally obsolete;
  • Micron. American company, was incorporated in 1978. Today, the company’s assortment includes 1-4 GB Serial NAND (budget option), a rugged SLC NAND model with a capacity of up to 512 GB, and high-density chips based on TLC NAND. The latest development of the company was created jointly with Intel, it is called 3D NAND. Its distinctive feature is the highest data processing speed in comparison with other models.

The rest of the companies that sell RAM, enter into contracts with these three concerns about the possibility of using their chips in their production. Some release budget memory (Crucial, Patriot), some. more advanced, with a beautiful design and lighting (HyperX, GeiL).

If you need to pick up RAM with a clock speed of more than 4000 MHz, pay attention to the G.Skill brand. It was founded in 1989 and during its existence has significantly expanded its range. Among the desktop memory, the Sniper, Ripjaws, Trident series stand out. G.Skill Laptop RAM comes in four pieces: Ripjaws DDR4, Ripjaws DDR3, SO-DIMM and SO-DIMM SK.

What volume to choose

The amount of RAM should be chosen based on the tasks facing the computer:

  • 2 GB. a budget option that is suitable for old home PCs and laptops, some offices, schools. With this amount of RAM, it will work comfortably, provided that the computer performs very few tasks at the same time. For example, if you are only going to print or watch a movie. If you need to simultaneously work in Word, watch videos on the Internet and scan the device using an antivirus, the system will freeze;
  • 4 GB. the best option for inexpensive cars. The volume is enough for the PC to easily perform everyday tasks. If you need to purchase a device for study, home use, then it is better to stop at this volume;
  • 8 GB. sufficient volume for modern models when performing everyday tasks. If you are looking for memory for games on a computer produced in 2014-2016, then this amount will be enough, for newer devices you need to increase the memory;
  • 16 GB. suitable for gamers, programmers, designers, retouchers, advanced PC users;
  • 32 and 124 GB. sky-high numbers that are not useful to the average user. Operatives with such a volume are needed by programmers, gamers who play exclusively modern games with high resolution or in 3D.

To accurately calculate how much memory is needed for a PC or laptop, you can use a special table that shows the typical RAM consumption of certain programs. For example, a browser with several open tabs will take about 200-400 megabytes, and a modern game with good graphics. from 1000 to 2000 megabytes.

How to choose RAM to the existing one

It is worth planning to upgrade an existing memory strip based on the following information:

  • the number of RAM slots available in the device;
  • the number of modules installed at the moment;
  • used platform;
  • frequency and timing values ​​in already set bars.

Everything you need can be learned from the content of the marking or a special program that is downloaded to your computer. After that, you will have to make a decision: increase the memory by adding an additional module or by replacing old modules. If you install additional memory, then it is better to choose a model with the same bus and frequency. However, you can purchase another option, but it should be borne in mind that some combinations will not work.

Today, manufacturers offer two ways to solve the problem of increasing existing memory. purchase a kit or buy an OEM one by one. For users who need non-standard RAM operating at high frequencies, it will be more profitable to take a set. This is due to the fact that OEM will not be able to overclock too much.

How to choose the right RAM for your laptop

One of the most important components of a laptop that directly affects the efficiency of its work is the memory module. The random access memory constantly updates the machine code, which changes its size with every action of the processor, sometimes up and down. The size and frequency of RAM are especially important when working with energy-consuming, demanding software. For example, such software includes specialized programs for working with video or images, as well as “heavy” modern games.

If the newly installed “toy” refused to run on the laptop, one of the “fail” options is insufficient RAM. To understand this, you need to find out the value of the “RAM” in the minimum requirements of the game (program) and compare it with the amount of installed RAM.

Manufacturer and type of module

  • Kingston.
  • Kingmax.
  • Transcend.
  • Corsair.
  • Samsung.
  • OCZ.
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As for the type of device, there is nothing to think about. In this case, we are considering laptops. it means that SO-DIMM (short micromodule) is definitely used here, no other is given.

For the correct selection of the creator of the second bar (for expanding the volume), the most proven option would be to buy a microchip from the same manufacturer.

Note again, in order to choose the appropriate type of memory, you need to pay attention to the technical characteristics of the motherboard, which can be found on the official website.

If the main goal is to create a powerful device, but within reasonable limits, then it is worth using the DDR4 or DDR3L type at least. Today, older-type planks are no longer relevant.

RAM parameters

You can understand how much memory is on a laptop using the AIDA64 utility. It is a powerful and feature rich program that has access to the hardware of the laptop. With its help you can:

  • Analysis of the configuration of the “filling”.
  • Testing laptop performance.
  • Find out the characteristics of “hardware”.
  • Monitor the temperature conditions of the laptop.
  • Understand which component is next to which.

In order to find out all the information about the installed operating board using the AIDA64 program, you must follow the detailed instructions:

  • Run the AIDA64 utility.
  • Click on the “Motherboard” section.
  • In the menu that opens, select “Memory”, where we find out the volume.
  • In the “SPD” item you can see the name of the module, type, serial number and other detailed information.

Let’s consider each RAM parameter separately and analyze what it means and how important it is for the device.

Memory speed

The data transfer rate is an important factor, which is affected by the RAM and, in particular, its frequency. The clock frequency must be within the correct ratio with the operating frequency of the motherboard bus. For example, if a module with PM 1800 was purchased, and the “motherboard” supports a maximum of 1600, then such “joint” work would lead to system failures and errors. Therefore, before buying a “RAM” board, we check whether the laptop supports it.

Module type

There are only two types of RAM module:

  • DIMM is a RAM format that is installed on stationary personal computers.
  • SO-DIMM. an improved version of the previous type, installed in laptop computers, ultrabooks, netbooks. Also used to expand RAM.


Professional programmers, system administrators and simple developers choose the amount of memory according to an unwritten rule: “there is never too much memory” or “the more, the better.” And this has its own truth. But again, only if the resource of the motherboard allows, well, the power reserve, since the energy consumption from the power supply depends on the number of installed strips.

Therefore, before choosing a new memory for a laptop, it is better to decide on the purposes of its use. For work and games, it is better to install RAM with a volume of at least 8 GB, and for home needs, 2-4 GB is enough.

Memory size

The amount of RAM is the most important volatile parameter, on which the speed of operation and the overall performance of the laptop depend. Here the de facto rule is “The more, the better and more powerful”.

Manufacturers in modern devices install at least 4 GB and this is quite reasonable. Hence, it follows that all current devices use a 64-bit version of the operating system. This suggests that the laptop can process 64 bits of data at the same time. If a 32-bit version is installed on an operating system with a volume of more than 4 GB, the system simply will not “see” beyond its set limit. And it will remain to work in its own format.

RAM type

At the moment, the most demanded type of memory is DDR modules. They differ in the following technical parameters:

Random access memory, or in a simple way “RAM

In order to know how to choose the right RAM, you need to take into account the type and model of the processor and PC motherboard. The physical RAM module is installed directly on the motherboard, which can only support certain types of RAM. From this it follows that there is a constant relationship between the RAM, the processor and the motherboard, and the mismatch of one of the components to the other disrupts the correct functioning of the entire system. And if everything is clear with the motherboard and the processor. the computer simply does not start with the processor that does not match the motherboard, then the RAM memory will work in most cases, however, in case of compatibility problems, an unpleasant picture will be observed, which manifests itself in the unnaturally slow operation of the computer.

In order to avoid mistakes, you must first visit the official website of the motherboard manufacturer and find out what type of memory is supported. Next, you need to figure out the technical characteristics of RAM, knowing which you can choose the memory that is ideally suited to the system.

The amount of RAM

This is the amount of information that RAM can simultaneously contain. It follows from this that the more it is, the better. However, it is necessary to decide on the type of work performed on the computer, if it is an office computer, then a volume of 2 GB will be enough, but a gaming computer with a powerful processor and video card requires 4 GB of RAM. It should also be remembered that the amount of RAM over 3 GB will be recognized and used only by a 64-bit operating system.

Clock frequency
One of the main parameters of RAM, the speed of data exchange with the processor directly depends on its value, and the higher the frequency, the faster the speed will be. The clock frequency of the RAM should not exceed that of the motherboard, otherwise the system may fail. For example: a DDR3-1600 MHz RAM module inserted into a DDR3-1333 MHz motherboard slot will operate exactly at the motherboard’s clock frequency, and stability is not guaranteed. There is also a concept as the RAM bandwidth, which directly depends on the frequency of the RAM and its ratio with the processor bandwidth affects the overall performance of the entire system. Ideally, the amount of RAM bandwidth should be the same as that of the processor. For example, it looks like this: for a processor with a bandwidth of 10600 Mb / s, it is recommended to install two memory modules with a bandwidth of 5300 Mb / s, which together form the processor bandwidth.

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RAM time delays, which are indicated as sequential numbers, for example 5-5-5, each of which is responsible for its own parameter:

RAM voltage
An indicator that determines the energy consumption for the normal operation of RAM, and, accordingly, the heat release. The standard value for DDR3 is 1.5 V, but overclocking RAM models can have increased consumption and, accordingly, increased heat dissipation, which is why such modules have heatsink plates. The supply voltage can be directly controlled from the BIOS, but this should not be done, since the RAM module can fail if it is not adapted to such manipulations.

RAM manufacturers
When buying a thing, first of all, attention is paid to the manufacturer thereof, and if the brand is of high quality, then the thing in most cases will not deceive expectations. The same goes for RAM. Of the well-established RAM manufacturers, the following can be distinguished:

These manufacturers always provide only a high-quality product, and also indicate the real characteristics of their offspring. You should also be able to read the marking code of the product, which can be used to identify all the characteristics of the memory module. For example, Kingston KHX 2000C9AD3T1K2 / 4GX, from the main parameters you can read the following:

KHX. manufacturer and model
2000. operating frequency
9. CAS cycle time
D3. DD3 module type
4G. 4 Gb memory capacity

In addition to all of the above, you need to know that if more than one RAM module is used, then the RAM must be from the same manufacturer with the same batch and with identical parameters of clock frequency, timings and volume. Only in this case it is possible to achieve well-coordinated operation of RAM modules.

The RAM of a PC and a laptop is the same in terms of technical characteristics and all of the above is suitable for both a computer and a laptop. They have only a different form factor, and if a PC has a DIMM, then a laptop. SO-DIMM. In appearance, they differ in size. SO-DIMM is half the size.

Based on the above information, you can correctly choose the correct RAM module, the main thing is not to rush into the choice and clearly understand the parameters of the processor, motherboard and RAM. Choosing the right RAM, you can significantly increase the performance of your computer for a moderate amount.

Allowable memory size

Before choosing RAM for a laptop, find out what is the maximum amount of memory supported by the motherboard. It is highly recommended not to exceed this value.

Please note that more than 4 GB of RAM will only function correctly on a 64-bit operating system. For a 32-bit system, in this case, you need to make special settings.

If you touch on the topic of the amount of recommended memory, depending on the purpose of the laptop, then 2 GB is enough for office laptops, but for gaming laptops at least 4 GB should be installed.

Memory speed or clock speed

The main condition when determining a suitable clock frequency of RAM is that it should not be higher than the clock frequency of the motherboard. The second condition is that if an additional memory module is installed, it is recommended that all modules have the same clock speed.

RAM manufacturer

When installing an additional RAM module, it is recommended that all modules are of the same company.

Module type

If you are choosing RAM for a laptop, then the module type must be SO-DIMM. Without exception, all laptops have this standard RAM on board.

Memory type

Go to the official website of the manufacturer of your motherboard and read the information about which type of memory is right in your case.

In addition, if the RAM module is already installed, then, focusing on it, choose additional RAM.

How to choose the right RAM for your laptop

If you install an incorrectly selected RAM module in a laptop, the operation of the entire system may be disrupted. In order to choose the right RAM model, it is necessary to take into account the characteristics of not only the motherboard, but also the processor, as well as the already installed RAM module. In this article, we will help you figure out how to choose RAM for a laptop, and also answer the question of how to find out the model of installed RAM.

How to choose RAM for a laptop

It has already been said above that when choosing a RAM module, it is necessary to take into account the characteristics of the motherboard, processor and the already installed RAM module. Therefore, the first step is to determine which motherboard and processor are on your laptop. Here you can read how to determine your motherboard model.


The ideal option is considered when the total bandwidth of all installed RAM modules coincides with the bandwidth of the microprocessor.