DDR4 memory is firmly established as the RAM of choice in both desktop PCs and laptops. But DDR3 and even DDR2 is still available and can be found in older computers. As a technology RAM is always improving and DDR4 speeds vary from 2133MHz to over 4000MHz.
But what is DDR4 memory? If you’re still a little unsure this brief beginner’s guide should help.
What is DDR4 memory?
DDR4 is an abbreviated term for double data rate fourth generation, the latest variation of dynamic random access memory (DRAM).
Since 2015 DDR4 has taken over as the memory of choice in desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones all featuring DDR4 memory. It makes it the best, fastest and most popular category of RAM currently available on the market.
In short, RAM is the component in a computer used for short-term data access, quickly storing and accessing data for active programmes.
Essentially, DDR4 brings two major upgrades over previous variants of RAM. Firstly, power. DDR4 generates around 2133 MT/s (million transfers per second), doubling its output over DDR3 (1066 MT/s) and multiplying its power more than five times over that of DDR2 (400 MT/s).
What does this mean to us and our power-reliant programmes? Well, any device kitted out with DDR4 memory is more capable of handling data-intensive tasks, a problem of increased pertinence as software development progresses. Similarly, application loading times will be greatly reduced and the system housing DDR4 memory will be more responsive.
Significant improvement number two is efficiency. Whilst DDR3 operated on 1.5 volts, a 20% reduction in the power usage leaves DDR4 free to run on just 1.2 volts. Applying these numbers to real world effects, reduced power outage equals a number of things. A longer battery life is the most obvious advantage, particularly in mobile devices such as smartphones and laptops.
On a larger scale, savings can be made by datacentres and businesses who’s PCs and servers require less power to operate. Reduced power outage also equates to less heat generated by internal components. With less cooling required, the reliability of your laptop or mobile device increases.
One final advancement of note in DDR4 is capacity. DDR4 squeezes considerably more performance out of each individual component, with no increase in actual size. Smaller dies on the circuitry allow more gigabits to be crammed onto each component. A higher density circuit in turn allows for increased amount of RAM capacity in PCs, further aiding performance.
Where will I find DDR4?
DDR4 memory is approaching its four year anniversary as a consumer product. It can now be found in pre-built desktop PCs, laptops and mobile devices and is the RAM of course for bespoke PC builders. That is, until DDR5 comes along.
If you fancy some a piece of today’s cutting edge computing tech, head to Ebuyer.com for a great range of components.
Corsair Vengeance DDR4 3000 MHz
• Anodized Aluminium HS
£165.98 save £12.28
Hyperx Fury 4GB
• 2133MHz Low Profile
• Automatic Overclocking
• Heat Spreader
£52.46 save £11
G.Skill Trident 16GB Kit
• 16GB (8GBx2)
* Prices correct at time of posting.