How Fast Is Your PC RAM?

If you think about your computer as a desk, then your RAM is the top of it — it’s where all of your essential tools are kept within easy reach. Having more of it means that your PC can work on several different projects at once, without having to thumb through a filing cabinet (your hard drive).

RAM is temporary storage, meaning that anything stored in it gets wiped when you turn off your PC. It’s also lightning-fast at storing and accessing data, making it perfect for the apps, programs, and tasks that your computer is actively working on. For example, it’s how web pages load instantly when you open them in your browser.

Like a CPU, memory has its own clock speed that determines how much data it can handle per second. This is usually expressed in megahertz (MHz) and is what you’ll see advertised when looking for RAM.

There are other factors that go into what makes RAM fast, though. Timings — how long it takes for the memory controller to read and write to the RAM — are one factor that’s important, but there’s also frequency, which is the amount of memory clock cycles it can process per second. High-frequency RAM is typically better for performance, but it’s not a guarantee that it will be faster than lower-frequency RAM.

To make sure you’re getting the fastest RAM possible, look for a package that includes two 8GB sticks of 3600MHz RAM. This speed is fast enough that most gaming PCs won’t be hitting the wall anytime soon, and it’s compatible with most current motherboards. You may also want to consider opting for ECC memory, which has built-in error-correcting code that can automatically detect and correct errors in the data being written. PC memory

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