Micro Center Champion Recommendations: RAM

This discussion has a more recent version.

Intro by @JeremyS

So, you’re looking to buy new or upgrade your RAM! While RAM is amongst the easiest upgrades to your PC, there are a few things you should keep in mind:

1.    Never mix and match RAM kits.: Whether building new or adding more RAM to an existing system, you absolutely want to make sure that your RAM is uniform. Make sure any RAM kits you get are the same size (GB) and brand (GSKILL, Crucial, etc), and have the same speeds (MHz) and clock timings (e.g. CL18, CL16). If any of these are different, you run the risk of blue screens, which can corrupt your data, interrupt your workflow/gaming, and cause performance conflicts overall. If you have two different speeds, your motherboard will usually default to the slower speed to maximize stability. If you have two kits of RAM, you’ll want the maximum benefit from them, which is why it's safest to buy the exact same RAM for both kits.

2.    Size: You’ll often hear people say that more RAM equals more speed. While there is some truth to that, as modern computers do have a lot of background processes that make use of RAM, there is an upper limit to the speed increase you’ll see based on how you use your PC. If you use a lot of applications that run heavy tasks, like editing, rendering, and gaming (especially multiple at the same time), more RAM capacity can really speed things up. But if you’re just using your PC for daily use or streaming services like Netflix, going above and beyond won’t have much of an impact. In general, 16GB of RAM should be considered your baseline for a quick, efficient system, with more reserved for high-end gaming and workstations.

3.    Speeds: Although size matters with RAM, allowing more workload cache to be stored, RAM also needs to be able to push and send that cache as fast as possible for better performance. Clock timings, the speed of RAM, is often overlooked but is worth checking before purchasing new RAM. Keep in mind the lower the CL (or Cas Latency) and higher the MHz, the quicker the RAM.

4.    Type/Design: RAM comes in many styles, from simple and unadorned to brightly colored and covered in RGB. Which one is for you is completely personal, but it is worth noting that some of the more “plain” looking RAM, without shielding or other designs, may be ECC RAM. ECC, or Error Correction Code, is often found in high-end and workstation PCs and may not be supported in your motherboard. Make sure you check compatibility before deciding on your RAM!

 With those in mind, you’ll be good to go! But those are also just scratching the surface. For a more in-depth look at RAM, check out our guide over here. Otherwise, here are some of our Champion’s favorite RAM kits:

G.Skill Trident Z Neo 32GB by @w8deywins

 If you're having some difficulties while loading webpages, switching between apps, or laggy streams, you might want to look at upgrading your computer memory. RAM is a typical, yet simple, solution to fixing these common issues. The best thing about upgrading your memory is that you can Do-It-Yourself and it's an affordable solution. Most users will have 16GB of RAM and will find themselves upgrading to 32GB, effectively doubling your memory capacity. This is where most gamers will cap out at. 

My personal gaming rig has 32GB of the 3600Mhz G.SKill’s Trident Z Neo RAM kits and they are killer. The Trident Z Neo RAM kits look sleek and amazing as well, with incredible RGB that synchronizes perfectly with my ASUS motherboard.

And, if you’re a content creator or 3D-modeling/animation artist looking for 64GB+ memory kits, the Trident Z Neo series can be doubled up and even has a 64Gb (2x32GB) option! Depending upon your CPU/MOBO specs, your system can be upgraded to 128GB or even 256GB.

So, whether you’re a gamer looking for performance, a home looking for speed, or a creator looking to maximize their work, the Trident Z Neo from G.Skill is an easy recommendation!




Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB by @tbarggs

If you’re looking for an awesome set of RGB ram to complete your build, look no further than the Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB RAM! The Dominator Platinum will keep your PC looking vibrant with some impressive speed and brilliant RGB (we all know that the main determining factor for if your rig is fast is whether or not it will completely light up a dark room).

Jokes aside, the Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB ram is one of the best-looking sticks of ram on the market, offering a perfect RGB look to complete any build. The Dominator Platinum is DDR4-3200, ensuring that you’re going to get some of the fastest cache speeds on the market. Whether your build is Intel or AMD, Corsair optimized their RAM perfectly for both. And with Dominator Platinum being Quad Channel memory, I would recommend getting 2 kits of these to bring your dream buildup to a solid 64GB of ram!


Corsair Vengence Pro RGB by @ChaosDTV

As we reach the start of a new school year, where everyone is busy getting ready for their next big year, sometimes you’re just looking for something ready and easy to use. I want to focus on the particular RAM great for students and teachers when it comes time to build that sick new PC for the semester. My go-to recommendation is the RAM I use on a day-to-day basis: The Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 16GB. The Corsair Vengeance is some incredible RAM, whether you’re a student trying to get their homework done or a teacher looking to blow off some steam in Apex Legends. I’ve found it especially effective with film editing, making rendering times way faster, dropping from an hour plus to a little under ten minutes. If you're working on homework in your dorm and need reliable RAM, definitely check out the Vengeance. Plus, it’s got a nice bit of RGB to really spruce up any build!


TeamGroup T-FORCE Delta RGB 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR4-3200 by @Lambdaben

TeamGroup’s T-FORCE Delta RGB RAM is designed with both form and functionality in mind. Made with an all-aluminum alloy heat spreader and a 120-degree diffused RGB light strip, the T-FORCE Delta has a uniquely striking look. TeamGroup took it a step further by cutting out an R in the side of the heatsink, which according to TeamGroup, stands for revolution. But it’s not just about the looks - Delta has the latest XMP 2.0 specifications, allowing the ram to run at its full 3200Mhz speeds.

With 32GB of ram, this kit is a perfect start for most content creators and gamers, giving you the ability to multitask with ease. For RGB synchronization, the Delta RGB ram is compatible with ASUS's Aura Sync software right out of the package, helping your build stand out from the crowd.

 More from the Micro Center Community:

Looking for more information about Building a PC? We’ve got PC Build Guides as well as articles on How to Choose Parts for your Custom PC BuildProduct ReviewsPart Comparisons, and even The Ultimate Guide to Buying a Gaming Laptop! And if you can’t find what you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to post a new discussion and the Community will be happy to help!


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