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Is There A Big Difference Between 3200MHz And 3600MHz For RAM? (Down The Memory Lane)

Is There A Big Difference Between 3200MHz And 3600MHz For RAM? (Down The Memory Lane)

The main memory of your computer, where it stores data, is known as random access memory (RAM). RAM is mandatory for your computer to enable programs and store important information.

Since main memory stores data temporarily, SSDs are also great options for the permanent storage of data. Unlike RAM, there’s no need to install SSDs on the motherboard. 

Still, the performance of your computer is mainly dependent on the size and speed of the RAM. The greater the size and speed of RAM, the more efficiently your gadget will work.

You’re probably aware that not all computers are capable of running games smoothly and doing editing work efficiently. It’s due to the slower speed of RAM. Well, other specs also play a huge role in this regard.

When it comes to the differences between the different speeds of the RAM, you may find it hard to choose between 3200 MHz and 3600 MHz.

There’s no big difference between 3200 MHz and 3600 MHz RAM. It’s evident that 3600 MHz RAM is faster in terms of speed (frequency). Though this number alone doesn’t guarantee the performance you’re looking for. 

Interestingly enough, there are other factors besides speed that you need to consider while buying RAM. 

So, if you’re interested in knowing the ins and outs of memory speed before upgrading your computer, this article may keep you from the inevitable disappointment and losing money. Let’s dive into it!

Speed of RAM

There’s a myth that the greater speed of RAM makes things work better, though the reality is different. 

A RAM’s frequency in MHz is not a true indicator of how fast a processor will work. It’s worth noting that the CAS latency is as essential as the speed of the RAM.

Clock Cycle

A clock cycle measures how long it will take for the memory to be ready for a new set of commands to be sent.

The clock speed can only tell you how much data your RAM can send or receive, but it doesn’t tell you about the delay in the operations to be executed. 

What should be the speed of RAM?
What’s inside a PC case?

Latency

Latency is described as the time command takes to show data on the screen. 

Latency = Total number of clock cycles × Clock cycle time

Your system performs better when it has lower latency. Let’s assume two modules have the same speed rating, but the latencies in both cases differ. You will now have better performance with the module with lower latency. 

A combination of high speed and low latency is often a better investment. 

Difference Between 3200 MT/s RAM and 3600 MT/s RAM

The fact that the main memory is the most essential part of a processor means that memory upgrades are usually the priority for gamers and professional editors. 

3200 MT/s or 3600 MT/s – you may wonder which data rate performs well. 

It seems that 3600 MT/s (1800 MHz) is faster memory than 3200 MT/s (1600 MHz), let me tell you that this is not the case. 

Since latency is as crucial as speed, you must consider this factor when upgrading.

Here’s how much latency both RAM speeds have:

  • 3200 MT/s comes with CL16 
  • 3600 MT/s comes with CL18

By looking at the first combination of speed and latency, it’s evident that there’s a lower speed and a superior latency (lower), while the other combination has a higher speed and higher latency. It’s worth mentioning that the second combination will work just as well as the first one. 

If you’re looking for the highest memory speed at an affordable price, 3200 MT/s would be the best option. 

Here’s the side-by-side comparison of the 3200 MHz kits and the 3600 MHz kits.

3600MHz vs. 3200MHz

Difference Between MHz and Mega Transfers

It is common for people to refer to memory speed in megahertz rather than mega transfers.

A 3600 MT/s DDR4 runs at an 1800 MHz frequency. In contrast to the frequency in MHz, MT/s represents the number of actual transfer operations. 

This value is then multiplied by two since it transfers data twice per clock cycle. Instead of megahertz speed, it is 3600 mega transfers per second. This is why you’ll see RAM frequency running at half of the speed in the bio of the RAM. This means your 3600 kits will process the data at 1800 MHz. 

Hz is the unit of measurement for the number of clock cycles per second.

What Is DDR?

DDR means a double data rate.

RAM of this type is volatile and transfers data twice per clock cycle. As DDR RAM has evolved, DDR2 has evolved into DDR3, DDR4 has evolved into DDR5, and you can expect to see DDR5 going mainstream.

DDR RAM comes with a faster speed than SDR (single data rate). 

Multiple RAMs on the Motherboard

Which Is Better: DDR4 Or DDR5?

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option with no drop in processor performance, DDR4 might be worth considering.

You are probably aware that new generations of RAM tend to skyrocket in price before becoming mainstream. This is exactly the case with DDR5 (the latest generation of RAM).

DDR4 memory is recommended for those seeking fast speed and low latency rates at a low price.

DDR4 Vs. DDR5 – which one works best?
Intel CPU and Motherboard

Among the main problems with upgrading to DDR5 is that it is only compatible with Intel 12th generation and AMD Ryzen 7000-series processors. You’ll also need to install a DDR5 motherboard to use this generation of memory.

On the other hand, DDR4 is compatible with Ryzen, Skylake, and Intel chips. 

If we look at Intel Core laptop processors, only the 12th generation Intel Core i9 supports memory up to DDR5 4800 MT/s, while older Intel generations are compatible with DDR4 memory speed. 

Keep in mind that to upgrade to DDR5 RAM, you should expect to pay twice what you would pay for DDR4 RAM. You’ll also need to upgrade the motherboard to run DDR5 RAM, which is an additional expense.

Best RAM For Gamers

RAM OptionsData Rate (MT/s)Cycle LatencyVoltageMemory Size
Team Xtreem ARGB DDR4-3600MHz RAM3600141.45v2 x 8 GB
Corsair’s Dominator Platinum DDR4-32003200161.2v2 x 16 GB
G.Skill DDR4-4400440017 & 191.50v2 x 16 GB
Samsung DDR5-4800 4800401.1v2 x 16 GB
Best RAM Options for Gamers

Conclusion 

  • If the 3600 kit has 18 latency and the 3200 kit has 16 latency, then 3200 MT/s and 3600 MT/s will perform in the same way.
  • When both RAM speeds have the same latency, the higher RAM speed will surely be a good choice.
  • Both RAM kits come under DDR4. DDR means a double data rate (for every cycle, there will be two transfers in DDR).
  • Although the 3600 MHz RAM is faster in terms of speed (frequency) than 3200 MHz, this doesn’t guarantee the performance you might be looking for. You also have to consider the overall computer specs and other factors.

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