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Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
12-14-2011, 07:54 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-14-2011, 07:57 PM by itfeelssounreal.)
#1
Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
I have had my new build since a while ago thanks to the help of the guys at the questions forum:

Graphics card: PNY GeForce GTX 570, 1.25 GB, GDDR5 SDRAM
Processor: Intel Core i5 2500k, 3.3 GHz
Power supply: CoolerMaster Silent Pro M700 Power supply - 700 Watt
RAM: Kingston HyperX blu DDR3, PC3-12800 (1600MHz) (2x2GB)
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12, 500GB

And so far it's great! I have been able to play games like MW3, Bulletstorm, Battlefield 3 campaign and even Braid! All maxed out at 1080p, with great frame rates. But there are a couple of games that still cause me problems

In Battlefield 3 multiplayer, I can't play on ultra in the biggest maps because this causes some stuttering, not a whole lot but, constant enough to be very bothersome, and on high, even though the stuttering is gone, it still feels sluggish, Crysis runs fine, but it sometimes feels a little sluggish, and in Metro 2033 I have to either lower the graphics to high or lower the resolution to 1366 x 768.

This bothers me because BF3, the Crytech games and Serious Sam 3, which it seems many people are having problems similar to those I have in BF3, are the main reasons I build this computer.

My question is, if getting 4GB of extra RAM would help, because I have read two different arguments in the Battlefield 3 and Serious Sam 3 forums, one being that I need a 1.5GB GPU, which is out of the question right now, or getting more RAM.

Just wanted to ask you what you know on this issue before making a purchase.
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12-14-2011, 11:17 PM,
#2
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
To test which component is bottlenecking, run Task Manager(CTR SHIFT ESC) and a GPU tracking program like MSI Afterburner before playing your game. While running these in the background, play your game until you have a fair amount of stuttering. Exit out of the game and check Task Manager performance tab to see if either the CPU or your RAM was full. If it was neither, then check MSI Afterburner to see if VGA utilization was full. This is a good way to see if you need more RAM. If your RAM was constantly 100% used, then you might need more RAM. Honestly though, I don't think its the RAM. Also, check how many programs are running in the background. RAM can fill up pretty quick with little programs running.
Desktop: CPU: Intel Core i5 2500 3.30GHz RAM: G.Skill 8GB MOBO: ASRock P67 Extreme4 Gen3 Video Card: SLI MSI Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 768 SSD: Corsair Force 3 60GB HDD: Samsung F3 1TB Sound: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Mouse: Storm Sentinal Z3RO-G Keyboard: Das Keyboard Silent/Filco Majestouch 2 Speakers: Behringer MS-16 Headphones: Alessandro MS-1/Shure SRH440 modded Router: D-Link Xtreme DIR-655 Monitor: Dell Ultrasharp U2312HM De-anti-glared Laptop: Lenovo Thinkpad X120e/Thinkpad T430
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12-15-2011, 01:48 AM,
#3
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
To me, your issues sounds like your video card is running out of VRAM.

Besides, most video games don't use more than 2GB of RAM, so I highly doubt that more will help here.

I'd try this: Go in the Nvidia control panel and set AA/AF and the like at lower values. Then try the games again.
Laptop: MSI GS30 Shadow-045 Dimensions: 12.6" x 8.9" x 0.8" 2.65lbs CPU: Intel Core i7-4870HQ Quad-Core + Hyper-Threading OC 2.5-3.9GHz RAM: 16GB DDR3 1600MHz Video Card: Intel Iris Pro 5200 Storage: 2x128GB SDD RAID0 Audio: ASUS Xonar U3 USB Sound Card + Audio-Technica ATH-M50 headphones Screen: 13.3" - 1920 x 1080 IPS + 27" Dell P2715Q IPS 3840 x 2160 Keyboard: Filco Majestouch MX Cherry Blue Mouse: Logitech MX518
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12-15-2011, 06:02 PM,
#4
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
(12-14-2011, 11:17 PM)ichigeki Wrote: To test which component is bottlenecking, run Task Manager(CTR SHIFT ESC)

Wow, I'm going to seem really stupid, but in ten years of using computers I had no idea the task manager gave you that information, I'll check it out, thanks!

(12-15-2011, 01:48 AM)MathieuB Wrote: To me, your issues sounds like your video card is running out of VRAM.

I'd try this: Go in the Nvidia control panel and set AA/AF and the like at lower values. Then try the games again.

Yeah, that’s what I'm afraid of.

I tried lowering the values in the Nvida control panel in my old computer and of course, my performance was improved, but the games looked horrible, I have had enough of that, so I'm not touching it, I prefer lowering the settings in game or lowering the resolution, most of the values are set to "controlled by application" by default anyway.
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12-15-2011, 09:06 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-15-2011, 09:11 PM by Andrew J.)
#5
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
What resolution are you playing at? By the way, to play Battlefield 3 on Ultra at 1920x1080 I believe you are supposed to have dual 6950s or better.

Here's a pretty decent Battlefield 3 Benchmark with a single 6950, although it only goes up to 1680x1050: http://benchmark3d.com/battlefield-3-benchmark
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12-16-2011, 12:10 AM,
#6
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
(12-15-2011, 09:06 PM)Andrew J Wrote: What resolution are you playing at? By the way, to play Battlefield 3 on Ultra at 1920x1080 I believe you are supposed to have dual 6950s or better.

Here's a pretty decent Battlefield 3 Benchmark with a single 6950, although it only goes up to 1680x1050: http://benchmark3d.com/battlefield-3-benchmark

I have played every game so far at 1080p except Metro.

Metro I can understand, but what I find disappointing about BF3 is that most of the time is running between 40 and 50 FPS, even in the biggest maps, according to fraps, and yet, the game feels kind of sluggish, like crysis, but still playable, is the stuttering that makes me lower the graphics settings, normally I would lower the resolution but in BF3 the HUD covers pretty much all of the screen if I do so.
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12-21-2011, 12:38 AM,
#7
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
Ram is so cheap now-a-day that it doesn't make sense to not buy them. I got myself 8GB ddr3 1600 for $27 the other day.
Laptop: MacBook Pro 13"
Case: Drawer turned to case CPU: Intel Core i3 2100 CPU Cooler: Stock brah GPU: EVGA GTX 460 HDD: Corsair Nova 32GB Motherboard: GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3 Z68 RAM: Ripjaw 8GB 1600 Optical Drive: Don't need PSU: 620W Antec Neo ECO. Operating System: OS X Lion/ Windows 7x64
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12-21-2011, 03:00 AM, (This post was last modified: 12-21-2011, 03:19 AM by itfeelssounreal.)
#8
RE: Should I get more than 4GB of RAM?
I finally got to check what was bottlenecking and as you guys expected, it seems to be the VRAM, MSI Afterburner does show that while playing Battlefield 3 multiplayer, my GPU is using above 1200 MB of VRAM quite often, I can't be sure but I guess that when it hits 1250 MB it's when the games stutters.

Every other game I tried with Afterburner shows that my GPU VRAM usage never goes above 1200 MB, except Battlefield 3 campaign, but it rarely happened.

The RAM usage according to task manager is above 3.50 GB in BF3 multiplayer, it sometimes hits 3.75 GB, and it doesn't seem to use more than 3 GB in any other game.

As for GPU usage, it's pretty much 90% to 100% all the time, in every game I tried.

CPU usage also seemed to hit 100% often in every game i tried.

The one that I couldn’t understand was Crysis, according to afterburner, the VRAM usage never goes above 800 MB, and yet, even though it plays fine most of the time, the game slows down when there is a lot of action, so I'm guessing that VRAM doesn't have anything to do with my performance in that game, aside from that, it didn't feel sluggish anymore, maybe because this time I followed ichigeki advice and closed every other program before playing.

I still will see if I buy 2 GB of extra RAM just to see if my performance does improve, but at least if it doesn't help. now I'll know why.

Thanks for your help!
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