General Question

Poser's avatar

RAM: One Gig or two?

Asked by Poser (7805points) January 15th, 2008

I have an older laptop (almost two years old!) and I’m finally getting around to upgrading the RAM. It came with one 512 stick, and I just ordered a 1 Gig stick. Since it’s DDR, as opposed to the cheaper DDR2, I don’t want to max it out (2 Gigs) unless I’m going to notice a big difference. For web surfing, occasional video editing, audio recording and video skyping, will it be worth the money to go from 1.5 gigs to 2?

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7 Answers

felipelavinz's avatar

What OS are you using? I’m using XP and Ubuntu 7.10 with 1 GB RAM, and both of them work just fine. I could have some more for Ubuntu though, but I think that it shouldn’t be so necessary with Firefox 3 (which consumes far less RAM than Firefox 2).

On the other hand, if you really are into video/audio/image editing, more RAM will always be better, but I really couldn’t say how much better. I would wait to check the current improvement (from 512 MB to 1.5GB, it surely will be noticeable). Only then you might want to re-evaluate buying more RAM (or just get a new laptop)

PupnTaco's avatar

Shouldn’t RAM be installed in matching pairs as a rule? i.e., two 512s or two 1GBs.

segdeha's avatar

Always get as much RAM as you can afford.

sndfreQ's avatar

audio and video editing: performace is based on fast/big everything from CPU speed, bus speed, video card specs, RAM and hard drive type/bus/speed. In the case of video refresh (frame rate) is dependent on all these things but especially hard drive specs-a lot of portable laptop video editors opt for firewire external drives for throughput (frame rate) issues to avoid ‘dropped’ frames (visible hiccuping of the prewiewed video image);

For audio high track counts and virtual synthesizers are dependent on amount of RAM, whereas audio effects processing is dependent mostly on processor speed.

IAC check the recommended system requirements of the a/v app in question to get the best sense of what’s needed.

Spargett's avatar

2GB. You can thank me later.

smart1979's avatar

If you’re serious about audio or video, yes, 2GB definitely. If you’re just doing basic stuff and playing around mostly you should be fine where you are.

I’m pretty serious about audio stuff, I have a small home studio for recording and programming, and 2GB is the minimum I would reccomend.

Perchik's avatar

@pupn, Ram can be installed solo, or in mixmatched pairs. Solo or matched is optimal, mixmatched works but they say it’s not optimal. Not sure exactly what that means, but it does work.

I think its like if you mix a 512 with a 1024 (1gig), although technically you’d have 1536, it may only function like 1200 something.

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