By Tim Miller

Computer memory can be divided into two categories: unified memory and RAM. But what’s the difference? And which one should you use for your computer? Let’s take a closer look.

What is Unified Memory?

Unified Memory is a computer memory type that allows easier access to data by both the CPU and GPU. This type of memory is often used in servers and high-end gaming computers.

The main advantage of Unified Memory is that it can offer better performance than traditional RAM due to its higher bandwidth. However, it is important to note that Unified Memory is not always compatible with all types of motherboards and CPUs.

What is Unified Memory Used For?

Unified Memory is a way of pooling all the data storage of a computer system, both short- and long-term, into one resource. This has several advantages over the traditional approach of having separate RAM and long-term storage modules.

First, it is much simpler and more efficient to have one unified module instead of two separate ones from an engineering standpoint. Second, unified memory is non-volatile, meaning it can hold data even when the power is turned off. This is in contrast to RAM, which requires a constant power supply to retain data.

Unified memory is not only suitable for long-term storage, but it can also function like RAM to provide quick, accessible data storage that operating systems and software programs rely on for peak performance.

Unified memory is a versatile and convenient way of storing data with many advantages over the traditional approach.

What is RAM?

Random Access Memory (RAM) is a type of computer memory that stores data for programs currently running on your computer. It can also store temporary files and user settings.

If your computer needs more space for these items, it will start using your hard drive as extra storage. However, this can make your computer run slower.

What is The Difference Between Unified Memory and RAM?

Now that we have covered the basics of both types of memory let’s take a closer look at their key differences. 


One of the biggest advantages of Unified Memory over RAM is performance. Thanks to its higher bandwidth, unified memory can offer a significant performance boost over traditional RAM, especially when it comes to gaming and other graphics-intensive tasks.

Related: RAM vs CPU: What’s the Difference?


Another advantage of Unified Memory is that it is often more compatible with different CPUs and GPUs than traditional RAM. This means you are less likely to encounter compatibility issues using Unified Memory on your computer. 

RAM & VRAM: 8 Questions Everybo...
RAM & VRAM: 8 Questions Everybody Has(Answered!)


The only drawback to Unified Memory is that it’s usually pricier than regular RAM. However, its speed and compatibility benefits make it worth the investment for many users.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is 32Gb Of Unified Memory Enough?

While 32GB of unified memory might initially seem enough, it’s important to consider future needs. As programs become more demanding, the amount of RAM considered sufficient will increase.

Additionally, the need for local storage will decrease as more data is stored in the cloud. However, the demand for speed and performance will continue to increase.

As a result, 32GB of unified memory is likely to become insufficient shortly. Therefore, investing in a system with more RAM now is advisable to avoid needing an upgrade later.

Is 16Gb Unified Memory Enough For Gaming?

If you’re a gamer, you know that having enough RAM is essential for smooth gameplay. Games are becoming increasingly resource-intensive, and 8GB of RAM is no longer enough to guarantee a lag-free experience.

So, is 16GB of RAM enough? The short answer is yes. 16GB is the recommended amount of RAM for playing most games, and you’ll see a noticeable increase in performance from 8GB. You’ll also be able to run applications in the background without affecting gameplay.

However, if you’re a power user or plan on gaming at 4K resolutions, you may need more than 16GB of RAM. But for most gamers, 16GB will be more than sufficient.

Is 32Gb Ram Overkill For Gaming?

While 32GB of RAM may not be essential for gaming, it can significantly boost performance. Games are becoming increasingly more demanding, and as a result, they are starting to require more and more RAM.

32GB of RAM is a good investment if you want to future-proof your gaming rig. Not only will it help you run the latest games without issue, but it will also ensure that your system can handle future releases. In other words, 32GB of RAM is overkill for gaming… for now.

But as games continue to become more demanding, likely, 32GB will soon become the new standard.

How Much Unified Memory Do I Need For College?

If you’re headed off to college, you may wonder how much RAM your laptop needs. After all, you want to be able to do everything you need, from writing papers to doing CAD design.

The good news is that 8GB of RAM should be more than enough for everything you need to do. Higher-end laptops and gaming PCs now use 16GB, but I recommend 8GB for college students. That’s more than enough.

As technology advances, programs will require more RAM to run smoothly. However, 8GB should be enough memory to last you through four years of schooling.

Is 32GB RAM Future Proof?

32 GB of RAM is sufficient for most applications now and will continue to be so in the near future. The average user won’t need more than 32 GB of RAM for daily tasks such as browsing the web, using social media, streaming music, and videos, or even gaming.

That said, a few power users might need more than 32 GB of RAM for their workflows. These include video editors, 3D animators, and other professionals who require large amounts of memory to run their programs smoothly.

For these users, 32 GB of RAM may not be enough in the future. However, 32 GB of RAM for most users will be plenty for the foreseeable future.


So, which type of memory should you use on your computer? That depends on what you plan on using your computer for. If you are just looking for a basic computer that will be used for browsing the internet, checking email, and doing other light tasks, then traditional RAM should be fine.

However, if you are looking for a powerful gaming PC or workstation, you may consider using Unified Memory instead.

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