Can you get away with 4GB ram just for web browsing and netflix?

Discussion in 'Hardware Components and Aftermarket Upgrades' started by NYCtech, Apr 1, 2018.

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  1. NYCtech

    NYCtech Notebook Consultant

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    Ive found a really nice Thinkpad yoga s1, 1080p 400 nits touchscreen.

    But its a 4GB ram model, I find it so frustrating that people even buy these models.

    Now Win 10 sits at about 2GB used. You open a browser and you get to 3GB, but even at 10 tabs you are hitting 4GB. So it would be limiting but usable. I do very rarely edit some photos in Light Room, not mass batch files just the one off that I would like to print.

    What happens in Windows 10 when you hit the Ram limit? Does it compress anything or some magic trick to help out? Is it the end of the world?
     
  2. Arrrrbol

    Arrrrbol Notebook Deity

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    It should just do what all Windows versions do and use Virtual Memory from the hard drive/SSD.
     
  3. KING19

    KING19 Notebook Deity

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    Usually 8GB of RAM is the minimum right now. 4gbs wont get you far because web browsers like Firefox, chrome, IE uses a lot of RAM.

    You could buy a 4GB ram stick to upgrade to 8GB since RAM is pretty cheap and you should be good
     
  4. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    4GB of memory ought to be fine for the usage you described.

    How much more are the models with 8GB of RAM?

    Charles
     
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  5. Raidriar

    Raidriar ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)

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    I have a thinkpad from 2008 with a core 2 duo and 4gb of ddr2 ram in windows 7 with antivirus and it is perfectly fine for Netflix and web browsing.
     
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  6. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Guest

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    You just need to optimize windows 10, that's all.
     
  7. Starlight5

    Starlight5 W I N T E R B O R N

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    @NYCtech you can get away with 4GB RAM if you also have a fast SSD for paging, but the experience will still be subpar to a machine with more RAM.
     
  8. Tinderbox (UK)

    Tinderbox (UK) BAKED BEAN KING

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  9. tilleroftheearth

    tilleroftheearth Wisdom listens quietly...

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    For light email + (light) web browsing I've found 16GB+ of RAM to be my minimum for a very long time now... (almost a decade)...

    Sure, Windows 10 will (barely) 'run' on 1GB of RAM (I've tried it) but how much work/performance/productivity a given platform offers is given in the equation:

    CPU+RAM=Work Done

    Especially since the time of Windows Vista (which not only allowed, but was also capable of handling more RAM efficiently) having the 'recommended' or minimum amount of RAM has been a waste of time/efficiency and productivity in any and all workflows in any platform that can take more RAM than 2GB/4GB/8GB that is spouted as the 'min'/'best' from self-serving manufacturing marketing machines since the beginning of time..

    Windows will use RAM dynamically and what productivity you see with 4GB installed won't predict what you'll achieve with 8GB or 16GB or more installed.

    Does your system have an SSD or a HDD installed? Even with an SSD; 16GB+ RAM allows Win10 to flex it's memory optimizations so that normal background tasks don't interfere (performance wise) with what the user needs from the system at any given time.

    Specifically to LR; the more RAM the better (for a given CPU/Platform). Like giving a big block V8 NOS at sea level vs. it starving for oxygen at 5,000+ ft altitude drag races...

    As an example; I'm typing this on a third gen platform (i7 3612QM) with a 1TB SSD (OP'd by 33%) and 16GB of RAM with a single tab open in Edge and there is 8GB of RAM free. Only.

    Could you achieve your workflows with the configuration you have now? Yeah (at a cost: your time...).

    Would putting in 8GB of RAM or greater be worth it considering that you'll experience a vastly improved system for minimal $$ and effort? Of course; that is a no-brainer for me.


    Btw, I would not recommend messing with mem programs as suggested above: Windows 10 knows the best optimizations for itself - and has for a very long time. Unless you're setting up a platform for a very specific and single use case (and you're not; it is a general purpose system); using such programs gives less actual performance over time.

    Note that a 'light' workload for most people today is a few tabs open (possibly in multiple browsers), their email client, a PDF reader/editor and word/excel/LR or other 'main' program that they do the actual work in. This smashes the 4GB barrier in 4 clicks and 8GB's is similarly brought to it's knees in mere seconds when actual work is produced (or needed to be produced).

    Any system I have (yeah; I have many) that I actually use personally on a daily basis has the RAM maxed out (whether that be 16GB, 32GB or more...) because RAM (plus the CPU, of course) is what allows a platform to reach it's max potential when productivity is the goal. And not only just productivity in a specific/certain workload; but in all aspects of using a computer from simply browsing the O/S to maxing out all the cores and threads in a race to a deadline.

    Good luck.

     
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  10. Support.2@XOTIC PC

    Support.2@XOTIC PC Company Representative

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    Can it do it? Yes.

    Can it do it well enough not to be frustrating? Doubtful.
     
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