Question Can RAM speed affect performance in terms of FPS

Psycho381

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Mar 11, 2023
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4 years ago I bought 3 ram sticks when I knew nothing about PCs in general (each 16gb 2133Mhz).
And now I know that I absolutely don't need 48 GB of ram memory, but at the time, I got 3 of them at the price of 2 which seemed like a good deal.
However, I had no clue that 2133Mhz is very low. Will this Ram speed affect my FPS in modern games, and if so, by how much?
 

fralexandr

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If you're running integrated graphics, it matters a lot. Anandtech did a review a while ago, so it only lists older games.

If you're running a dedicated gpu, it can decrease your fps anywhere from approximately 0-20% depending on the game. For the most part CPU and GPU play a much bigger role.
The wepc chart also shows how latency also matters, but to a lesser degree.
 
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Psycho381

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If you're running integrated graphics, it matters a lot.

If you're running a dedicated gpu, it can decrease your fps anywhere from approximately 0-20% depending on the game. For the most part CPU and GPU play a much bigger role.
cpu I7 8700k, gpu 1070ti, next week upgrading to rx 6750xt (aware of the relatively small bottleneck)
 

Insert_Nickname

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However, I had no clue that 2133Mhz is very low. Will this Ram speed affect my FPS in modern games, and if so, by how much?

Have you tried if they can run a bit faster with a mild overclock? You can usually push cheap DIMMs a bit more then they're rated. YMMV of course.

As a general rule: more memory is better then faster memory. More DIMMs = more ranks = more bandwidth. The opposite is true too for latency. What's best depends on if you need pure bandwidth or low latency.
 

SteveGrabowski

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Oct 20, 2014
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Back in 2015 when I upgraded from DDR3-1600 to DDR3-2400 most of the difference I noticed was in minimum framerates in some cpu limited games. For instance, in GTA V and Fallout 4 there was a significant difference, say a 15% to 25% uplift in my minimums when paired with a Xeon E3-1231v3 and a GTX 970 (E3-1231v3 was basically an i7-4790 but marketed as a low end server processor). Witcher 3 had some nice bumps in minimums too. Then again Crysis 3 was a very cpu bound game on that system and I saw no difference whatsoever in performance with DDR3-2400 vs DDR3-1600. Basically it just depends on the game. Some games will run better with faster memory if you're not bottlenecked elsewhere, some won't have a RAM speed bottleneck. With an 8700k and a 6750 XT I think you'd probably see some RAM speed bottleneck at 1080p, at 1440p I would expect you to be gpu limited enough that it probably wouldn't be too big a deal.
 
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cpu I7 8700k, gpu 1070ti, next week upgrading to rx 6750xt (aware of the relatively small bottleneck)

Officially supported RAM is DDR4-2666

So you would be running below spec at 2133. In other words, you won't get to see what your CPU is really capable of.

Just get a decent DDR4-3200 CL14 32GB kit if you can and try to run that at the highest possible speed with the lowest possible timings.

At the very least, go for a 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4-3200 CL16 kit.
 
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Hey, thanks for the reply!
So my cpu supports 2666mhz, what happens if I use 3200mhz?
If your motherboard is able to go all the way up to 3200 MT/s with the latest BIOS, you will get improved performance in current and future games and it will reduce some of the CPU limitation if you primarily game at 1080p.

Even if you are not able to go above 2666 MT/s, you could always tune the RAM kit to get really low timings like CL14 at 2666 MT/s which would still be a huge improvement over 2133.

Your CPU cores need bandwidth so they can be fed with data to crunch. Faster memory means more data for them to work on so your CPU becomes more efficient instead of being idle waiting for data to come from slow speed RAM.
 
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Psycho381

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If your motherboard is able to go all the way up to 3200 MT/s with the latest BIOS, you will get improved performance in current and future games and it will reduce some of the CPU limitation if you primarily game at 1080p.

Your CPU cores need bandwidth so they can be fed with data to crunch. Faster memory means more data for them to work on so your CPU becomes more efficient instead of being idle waiting for data to come from slow speed RAM.

Motherboards are really really my weak spot, here is my motherboard Data sheet if it can tell something, will it work with no issues with this Ram amazon page.
Thank you in advance.

Yeah, makes sense for CPU
 

Psycho381

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Your mobo supports up to 4000 MT/s so DDR4-3200 shouldn't be an issue.

Thanks. I have an additional question.

As far as I know my motherboard supports XMP, but when go in the bios it says XMP not supported, could that be because my current RAM does not support XMP? ( The one I am planning to buy does support XMP )

If that is the case, when I put new RAM, the XMP will be supported?

If that does not resolve the issue, and issue is something else, what would be the difference between using XMP, and me manually setting RAM ( speed, timing, voltage) based on the information on the sticker at the back of ram stick?
 
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XMP usually just works with a supported RAM kit.

Manual tweaking of RAM can yield slightly better results (very good results if the RAM chips are great) but don't do it manually unless you have a ton of patience.
 

Psycho381

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XMP usually just works with a supported RAM kit.

Manual tweaking of RAM can yield slightly better results (very good results if the RAM chips are great) but don't do it manually unless you have a ton of patience.
ton of patience? I thought I just need to set ram speed, timing and voltage and I am good to go :/, do you have any good tutorials/ step by step guide that can help me in case I dont get XMP option when inserting new ram, and I end up doing it manually, really dont wanna brick something

Edit: Nvm, found this
, it should help. however he said that to tweak cpu voltage when setting ram speed above manufacture speed, and timing lower then manufacture. So if I just select my ram speed, timings, voltage as stated on the sticker at the back of the ram do I still need to tweak my cpu voltages? or it only applies if I am doing a significant OC?

sry for way to many questions, but I really dont want to mess smth up.
 
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Insert_Nickname

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XMP usually just works with a supported RAM kit.

Manual tweaking of RAM can yield slightly better results (very good results if the RAM chips are great) but don't do it manually unless you have a ton of patience.

Yup. Unless you want to spend a lot of time tweaking, just stick with XMP. It takes the guesswork out of memory overclocking.
 
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sry for way to many questions, but I really dont want to mess smth up.
I'm the wrong person to answer that. I managed to get my DDR5-5600 EXPO kit running at max DDR5-4600 CL28-30-30-60 WITH manual tuning on my 12700K. Either the kit sucks or I'm really bad at tuning. It did require a lot of patience. One fun thing is, if you don't mind your time flying away, you will enjoy the process. It's a mixture of fear that the PC may not boot and elation when it does boot and your timings work!
 
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