The computer memory/RAM is a crucial part of a computer build, it is a volatile memory device responsible for sending and receiving instructions between the CPU. With PC builds, you will find that the more powerful the PC is, the more RAM they typically have, more RAM means you can run RAM-intensive applications without freezing.
12GB of RAM can be obtained in a few ways, the first way is having a 3x4GB RAM config, or a 1x8GB + 1x4GB config. So, a 12GB PC is pretty unusual, especially with DDR4 RAM modules. This is the reason why you don’t hear about 12GB PCs as much because 16GB and 8GB are much easier to obtain.
Answer: 12GB of RAM is still good enough for most situations whether it’s for gaming, but the problem with 12GB RAM is that you can’t run them at full dual-channel bandwidth. It’ll run in flex channel(Asynchronous dual channel) which is slower than dual channel.
Is 12GB Of RAM Good?
12GB of RAM isn’t terrible, it can serve well for casual gaming which doesn’t require a lot of memory bandwidth, but for more intensive applications, 12GB of RAM will show its issues. It’s better to have identical RAM modules running in full dual-channel than to have uneven or even mismatched RAM modules running together.
Is 12GB Of RAM Good For Laptops? 12GB of RAM is no better or worse on a laptop, but it still loses to better memory configs such as 16GB. You will still run into the issue of your RAM modules not running in full dual-channel which can impose many drawbacks, especially in gaming. When upgrading your laptop’s RAM, it’s best to go for 16GB for the full dual-channel capabilities.
A problem with 12GB of RAM is that it can sometimes involve mixing RAM sticks, this isn’t the best practice as it’s recommended to use identical RAM modules. Mixing RAM capacities, clock speeds, and timings can cause instability issues and even crashes at worst, this is because the system will often try to find an equilibrium between the two RAM modules.
Is 12GB RAM Good For Gaming?
For gaming, the typical gaming build you’d find is a 16GB config, this is the new sweet spot for gaming as most games won’t use 16GB of RAM. Plus you’re able to run your 16GB config in dual channel for maximized performance, so you get more than enough capacity at a pretty large memory bandwidth.
With 12GB of RAM, the capacity is still pretty large, you won’t find many games using around 12GB of RAM, but the problem is the bandwidth.
A 12GB memory config won’t run in full dual channel which can affect the frame rates in games. In some scenarios, you may even notice 8GB outperforming 12GB due to larger memory bandwidth.
But in an actual gaming scenario, you may not experience a huge FPS difference, but mixing RAM modules does seem to impose a slight bottleneck which increases with lower resolutions. With a 1x4GB, 1x8GB config, you’ll find that it’s often outperformed by 2x4GB by around 10FPS in 1080P. If you’re serious about gaming, we don’t recommend mixing RAM.
Is 12GB RAM Good For Video Editing?
The results will only get worse with video editing, this is because it’s really heavy on the RAM, it’s often recommended to have 32GB if you’re a serious video editor. 12GB of RAM comes with too many drawbacks to be effective at video editing. It is said you need a minimum of 16GB of RAM to video edit effectively at 4K.
If you’re looking to video edit a 1080P, you may be able to get away with 12GB(3X4GB) of RAM, but you’re seriously missing out on full dual-channel performance, and 16GB is often recommended for 1080P video editing. 12GB can suffice but it’s crippled compared to a more established setup (16GB).
So no, 12GB of RAM isn’t good for video editing, for the best video editing experience, we actually recommended 32GB, keep in mind that video editing moves a lot of data around. 32GB of RAM is absolutely justified although it can seem like it’s overkill for other applications. Some users will even go as high as 64GB as this can often improve upon 4K video editing.
8GB Vs 12GB Vs 16GB RAM
When buying RAM, you should always aim for a Dual-channel config, the performance gains are definitely worth it whether you’re gaming, video editing, or casual browsing. The performance gains are seen across the board, and it’s pretty easy to implement. For dual-channel operation, your motherboard will usually indicate where you should install your RAM sticks.
8GB of RAM can actually outperform 12GB of RAM if the 8GB modules are running in dual channel. This could range between motherboards and their memory controllers as sometimes mixing different RAM modules can have varying effects. Technically, a 3X4GB setup should outperform the 2X4GB setup, but it’s very suboptimal.
For the best gaming performance, we recommend 16GB in the 2X8GB config, the sweet spot for gaming used to be 8GB, but 16GB has now taken that crown. And 16GB of RAM allows for full dual-channel operation, so you don’t have to worry about leaving a lot of performance on the table. Also, 2X8GB gives you enough room if you’re looking to upgrade to 32GB RAM.
|12GB||1X4 + 1X8GB||No|
The verdict is that it depends on what 12GB RAM config you’re going for, but in general, a 12GB RAM setup isn’t optimal. A 3X4GB 12GB config is the best 12GB config you can go for as you can run your RAM in flex-channel, but it still isn’t full dual-channel.
For the best performance, we recommend going for a full dual-channel RAM config with either 8GB or 16GB of RAM. This means you’re following the best practice when installing RAM as you’re not mixing and creating uneven memory configs.