RAM or SSD: Which Should You Upgrade First?

What’s the difference between RAM and an SSD? They’re both important components of your laptop, but which should you upgrade first? RAM or SSD. Which one will give you the best performance boost for your money? 

Here are some things to consider when deciding what to get.

Browsers like
• Google
• Chrome
• Firefox
• Opera
• Microsoft Edge

3D Rendering Software
• 3ds Max Design
• Autodesk
• SOLIDWORKS

Photo Editing Programmes
• Adobe Lightroom.
• Adobe Photoshop.
• DxO PhotoLab 4.
• ON1 Photo RAW.
• Corel PaintShop Pro
• ACDSee Photo Studio Ultimate

Databases
• Excel
• Access
• Mysql

RAM Installation

RAM or SSD: Which Should You Upgrade First?

What uses RAM?

RAM is used to store information that needs to be used quickly. This means that opening many programs, running various processes, or accessing multiple files simultaneously is likely to use a lot of RAM. Particularly complex programs like games or design software will use most RAM.

If any of these symptoms sound familiar to you, you may need to add computer memory:

  • Everyday tasks are plagued by poor or sub-par performance
  • Programs frequently stop responding
  • Typing constantly involves waiting for your computer to catch up
  • Clicking or selecting an icon has a delayed response
  • Multitasking with more than one app or program is nearly impossible
  • Working on spreadsheets slows your system to a crawl
  • You get system notifications about low memory
  • System updates stall productivity because your computer is so slow
  • You have display problems, like pulling up a page that either partially loads, doesn’t load at all, or shows a blank space where data should be
  • You try to open apps or documents and the system stops responding

The Benefits of Solid State Drives

With solid state drive technology, you won’t need your hard drive anymore. Designed to replace traditional hard drives, there are benefits of solid state drives (SSDs). Solid state drives use flash memory to deliver superior performance and durability. Because there are lots of small, moving parts inside your hard drive — magnetic heads, spindles, and spinning platters — it’s easy for things to go wrong and you could lose your important data.

Advantages of SSD over HDD

For a long time, the standard HDD (hard disk drive) has been the primary storage device for laptops. The main selling points are the large storage capacity and low cost.
The SSD (solid-state drive) is another storage solution that has taken the place of hard disk drives. SSD technology is superior, as you’ll see in the following comparisons. However, due to their high cost per unit of memory, SSDs may not be appropriate in all situations. For the majority of computer users, we recommend using an SSD as the primary drive for your operating system and the programs you use the most. Then, for storing documents, pictures, and music, we recommend purchasing a large HDD (either internal or external).

SSD drives

Reliability

SSD – The SSD has no moving parts. The SSD uses flash memory to store data, which provides better performance and reliability over an HDD.

HDD – The HDD has moving parts and magnetic platters, meaning the more use they get, the faster they wear down and fail.

Capacity

SSD – Although there are large SSDs, anything over 3 TB is usually outside of most people’s price range.

HDD – Several terabyte hard disk drives are available for very reasonable prices.

SSD vs NVMe

Power

SSD – The SSD uses less power than a standard HDD, which means a lower energy bill over time, and for laptops, an increase in battery life.

HDD – With all of the parts required to spin the platters, the HDD uses more power than an SSD.

Noise

SSD – With no moving parts, SSD generates no noise.

HDD – With the spinning platters and moving read/write heads, an HDD can sometimes be one of the loudest components in your computer.

RAM or SSD: Which Should You Upgrade First?

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HDD vs SSD

Access time

SSD – An SSD has access speeds of 35 to 100 microseconds, which is nearly 100 times faster. This faster access speed means programs can run more quickly, which is very significant, especially for programs that access large amounts of data often, like your operating system.

HDD – A typical HDD takes about 5,000 to 10,000 microseconds to access data.

Price

SSD – The price of a solid-state drive is higher per MB (megabyte) than an HDD. Desktop computers with an SSD may also have one or more HDDs for cheaper, secondary storage.

HDD – HDD is considerably cheaper than SSD, especially for drives over 1 TB (terabyte).

Windows startup times

RAM or SSD: Which Should You Upgrade First?

Physical size

SSD – An SSD is available in 2.5″, 1.8″, and 1.0″, increasing the available space available in all types of computers.

HDD – HDDs are usually 3.5″ and 2.5″ in size for desktops and laptops, respectively, with no options for anything smaller.

Heat

SSD – Because there are no moving parts and the nature of flash memory, the SSD generates less heat, helping to increase its lifespan and reliability.

HDD – With moving parts comes added heat that can slowly damage electronics over time, so the higher the heat, the greater the potential for wear and damage.

Magnetism

SSD – An SSD is not affected by magnetism.

HDD – Because a hard drive relies on magnetism to write information to the platter, information could be erased from an HDD using strong magnets.

RAM or SSD

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