Finding The Best DDR4 RAM For Gaming – 2019 Reviews and Top Picks

the best ddr4 ram for gaming

We took some time to round up and find the best DDR4 RAM sticks we could, steadily escalating in price, capacity, frequency and performance while doing so. Our end result presented us with six high-quality RAM sticks that you’re welcome to pop into your new PC build or use to upgrade an old one.

Before continuing, remember there are no bad choices here. We already filtered those out for you.

Instead, go with the RAM that suits your computing needs and falls within your budget. After we go over the individual products, we’ll tackle some popular RAM-related questions to help you decide which of these DDR4 RAM kits is right for you.

Enough with introductions. Bring out the RAM!

The Best DDR4 RAM For Gaming: Breakdown

ProductDetails
Best Performance RAMCorsair Vengeance LPX

Corsair Vengeance LPX

  • capacity: 4GB - 16GB
  • frequency: DDR4 2400Mhz - 4000Mhz
  • cas latency: 16
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Best RGB RAMCorsair Dominator Platinum

Corsair Dominator Platinum

  • capacity: 8GB - 16GB
  • frequency: DDR4 3000MHz - 4266MHz
  • cas latency: 16
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Best Overclocking RAMKingston HyperX Predator Black

Kingston HyperX Predator Black

  • capacity: 4GB - 16GB
  • frequency: DDR4 2400MHz - 4133MHz
  • cas latency: 18
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Best Budget RAM For GamingPatriot Viper 4 Series

Patriot Viper 4 Series

  • capacity: 4GB - 16GB
  • frequency: DDR4 2400Mhz - 3766MHz
  • cas latency: 16
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Best Cheap RAMBallistix Sport LT

Ballistix Sport LT

  • capacity: 4GB - 16GB
  • frequency: DDR4 2400MHz - 3600MHz
  • cas latency: 16
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#1

Corsair Vengeance LPX

Corsair design their Vengeance LPX range with 2 goals in mind, solid performance and overclocking potential. They achieve this by equipping their LPX RAM with a heat spreader which is comprised of pure aluminium providing faster more efficient heat dissipation. Furthermore, the either-layer PCB helps manage temperatures and allows for excellent overclocking headroom.

The Vengeance range is also extremely versatile, it's been tested against all X99 motherboards for compatibility, not to mention the low profile heat spreader which makes their RAM much smaller than others in the list. It comes in a variety of different speeds and sizes ranging from 4GB of 2400MHz right upto 16GB of 4000MHz meaning you can find a RAM speed that is suitable for your needs. It also comes in a variety of colours to suit your exact RGB setup.

Touching on RGB briefly, the Vengeance series does have a RGB edition within it's ranks. As you would expect with RGB, the price doesn't really reflect the improvements, however if RGB is what you're into fear not, Corsair have you covered.

Right now Corsair's Vengeance LPX is one of the best selling RAM standards on the market and you can see why, they have truly catered for everyone's needs.

#2

Corsair Dominator Platinum

Corsair's Dominator Platinum DDR4 comes with all the same principles as the LPX range, however, the Dominator comes with B-die and much more overclocking potential thanks to the heat spreader they've equipped. Corsair say they have redefined premium DDR4 RAM thanks to the iconic design, superior craftsmanship and aluminum construction the Dominator wields.

Speeds start from 2400MHz and climb to an impressive 4000Mhz. Worth noting is the RGB version of this RAM has an entry level speed of 3000MHz meaning if you're into light customization, be ready to fork out for it with. On Average RGB is around 15% more expensive.

Ultimately, I think we can comfortably say this RAM is catered towards consumers who are looking for visual improvements over actual performance boosts. If price isn't a factor we'd recommend this for an RGB memory solution, however, if you're on a budget and want the high performance standards of Corsair, we recommend the Vengeance LPX.

#3

Kingston HyperX Predator Black

The guys at Kingston have designed the HyperX Predator memory with a fierce new heat spreader in black aluminum which provides greater heat dissipation and higher overclocking potential. Currently the Predator isn't as popular as the Fury black series but it does beat it hands down in performance results. The most popular of the series is the 3000MHz standard but they have been designed in speeds that vary from 2400MHz up to 4133MHz.

The design can be classed as aggressive and does come with an RGB counterpart which is simple but effective if that's your thing.

Ultimately if you're looking for RAM with solid overclocking potential then definitely take a look at the Predator range from Kingston.

#4

Patriot Viper 4 Series

Patriot's Viper 4 Series falls under the lower end of the price spectrum in our list of best RAM for 2019. However, this doesn't take anything away from the performance power they provide with Patriot saying the Viper 4 has been engineered and designed for intense gaming and the most demanding computer environments. All sounds good to us. In benchmarks the Viper was slightly slower than the standout brands but we're willing to let that slide considering the price is vastly cheaper.

The viper comes in a couple of different colours and does have an RGB iteration, be careful though as this adds a decent amount to your shopping bill total.

Ultimately the Viper caters towards consumers looking to get affordable RAM which still operates at a fairly decent level. Just be aware that build quality and longevity have been comprised to accommodate the difference in price

#4

Ballistix Sport LT

And finally we come to the ever popular Ballistix Sport LT RAM, one of my personal favourite thanks to it's great performance and inexpensive price tag. Ballistix stick to a simple blueprint when designing their RAM, performance and speeds over design and aesthetics. Let's be honest it's not a bad rule of thumb to go by.

Again we touch upon overclocking, the Ballistix's sport has excellent overclocking accommodation if you're linked up with XMP compatible system. You can easily push this RAM to 2600MHz with no fuss which ultimately is going to be huge for some consumers. However, if you're not into overclocking, it has a frequency of 2400MHZ which is enough for the mainstream AAA gaming titles.

The Ballistix is the final entry into our best of list and is recommended for budget builds that need a little speed boost at a good price.

What is RAM?

RAM is short for Random Access Memory. It’s also “dynamic” memory, versus your HDD/SSD storage, which is considered “static” memory.

RAM is used to hold data in the short-term, by holding active applications and data where it can be quickly accessed, discarded and changed. In human terms, think of it as your short-term memory or what you have in mind right now.

With the increasing RAM demands of operating systems, games and applications, many people are starting to ask more questions about what exactly RAM is and what it does for them. We’re going to use the rest of the article to demystify any questions you may have about RAM to allow you to make an educated buying decision.

When it comes to gaming, RAM is usually used to hold the active levels/maps and help your CPU/GPU juggle all the calculations that are going on in-game. In the sections below, we’ll dive a bit deeper into how it affects performance.

What is the best amount of RAM for gaming?

Honestly...it doesn’t actually matter that much for gaming in particular. Where it does start to matter, however, is when you look at what else you happen to be doing when you’re gaming. For serious games, you should know how to pick the best RAM for gaming in 2019.

Here’s a helpful breakdown of what you can do at various RAM capacities.

  • 4 GB RAM - You can multitask or you can game. You can’t, however, do both at once. Some modern games may have a 6GB or higher RAM requirement, too, which can hurt your performance in those titles.
  • 8GB RAM - You can multitask and you can game. Doing both at once shouldn’t cause you any problems, especially if you aren’t running anything CPU/GPU-intensive in the background of your game. Most modern titles shouldn’t have RAM requirements higher than 6GB, too, so your RAM spec is greater than or equal to what’s expected from most games.
  • 16GB RAM - You can multitask and game, with much more intensity. You could, say, run a RAM-intensive game while also having a large number of browser tabs in the background, for instance.  16GB of RAM is really only recommended for people who use professional/productivity applications that require the extra RAM, like running Virtual Machines or advanced calculations. For the vast majority of users, 16GB of RAM offers no real benefits.
  • 32GB+ RAM - Literally only useful for servers and extreme scenarios. This will have absolutely no impact on your gaming experience and is considered a luxury.

Ultimately, there is no best amount of RAM for gaming.

There is, however, a most practical amount of RAM for gaming and that is having 8GB of RAM. For the foreseeable future, this will likely remain the case, but perhaps one day we’ll see games and applications that justify buying more RAM.

What is the best RAM speed for gaming?

Now, it’s time to tackle another fun topic: RAM speed in gaming!

Many people invest in the fastest, greatest hardware to push maximum frames. But, does that actually result in better gaming performance or is it just an ego boost number?

First off, most DDR4-compatible motherboards and RAM will only be able to reach a maximum of around 4200MHz without serious performance issues. In fact, getting RAM to run at these high clocks requires BIOS tweaks which can be tricky if you don't know what you're doing. 

Out of the box, your average consumer RAM runs anywhere from 2400MHz to 3200MHz.

Secondly, most games and applications just don’t see much of a performance boost by boosting RAM frequency. Of course, it’s better to run 3000 DDR4 than 1333 DDR3, but as we’ve hit higher speeds we aren’t seeing corresponding differences in gaming performance.

Now, to be fair, some games may very well benefit from RAM speed increases. Unfortunately, these benefits are often marginal at best and usually not worth the extra money.

Ultimately, there is no best RAM speed for gaming. So, let’s talk about the final question: how much of a difference does RAM actually make?

Read more: Finding The Best DDR3 RAM For Gaming

How much of a difference does RAM really make in gaming performance?

Not a whole lot.

Once you meet a game’s RAM requirement, you’re fine. And if you go a bit over it, you have more room for web browsing and the such in the background.

That’s really all there is to it. We’re not going to lie to you and tell you that you need to buy 32 Gigs of DDR4-4000 RAM!

Because that’s blatantly false. RAM capacity matters far more than RAM frequency when it comes to gaming (and general) computer performance, and even RAM capacity starts to see seriously diminishing returns past the 8GB point, at least for now.

The big lesson to take away here?

Just buy what you need and what fits your budget. The recommendations we’ve dropped in this article could all be considered the best DDR4 RAM for gaming.

What’s the best for you, however, depends on your budget and your needs.

What’re you going with?

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