Types of RAM

There is no doubt that the RAM (Random Access Memory) is one of the most important components of a computer, since that all the process that runs on the PC depends of this circuit board.  The RAM memory is the responsible for maintaining stored the data and instructions that the processor and software needs to fulfill their orders.

The term “Random access” was conceived to describe how the process of writing and reading of data is performed in these memories. Basically by this way, to write or read data do not need to wait to access a specific position in a specific order, which offers the important advantage to performing the fastest mode.

Types of RAM

Everything about RAMs is really exciting, and that is why we invite you continue reading this article, where you will find a wealth of information about this topic.

Currently, the RAM modules have incorporated a lot of technology that allows them to provide greater speed in the process, with superior stability compared to the old modules that were used several years ago.

Unlike the old RAM, which operated asynchronously with the bus clock, and only achieved a speed of 66 Mhz, today RAMs are built with the right technology that allows them to use a synchronization signal, in order to increase the speed of their functions read and write, reached speeds up to 2666 MHz. in DDR3 memories.

Types of RAM

Today, among the RAM memories that can be found in the current market, there are several types that differ in their physical form and speed capabilities that manage to develop.

Which type of memory is adequate to install on your PC? It will depend on the type of motherboard that has the computer because full compatibility of the elements is necessary to make them work properly. If the motherboard does not support memory type, these not even enter into the slots.

Usually, the memories that are currently used in desktop computers are generally DIMMs, allowing synchronized random access bus clock to improve performance in the speed of the processes.

Furthermore, RAM can be of DDR, DDR2, DDR3 or RDRAM, which are differentiated by the speed they can reach, and performance under various conditions.

DDR SDRAM memory

It was one of the memory modules most used previously, without a doubt, which is characterized by being synchronized and operate by sending data in duplicate on each clock cycle.

Comparison Chart speed in the different versions of DDR
PC1600 or DDR 200 200 MHz.
PC2100 or DDR 266 266,6 MHz.
PC2700 or DDR 333 333,3 MHz.
PC3200 or DDR 400 400 MHz.
PC4500 or DDR 500 500 MHz.


This allows to the memory module to get the double of processing speed than bus system itself, offering adequate performance.

Types of RAM

Notably that DIMM DDR SDRAM memories have 184 contacts connection to the motherboard.


DDR2 type memories are actually a breakthrough in the technology of DDR memory, thanks to a series of structural changes have increased the performance of the component.

It is a DIMM that has 240 contacts, characterized by a speed doubled frequency compared with the DDR type, thereby enabling the realization of four transfers per clock cycle, unlike DDR that only allow up to two transfers.

Comparison Chart speed in the different versions of DDR2
PC2-4200 or DDR2-533 533,3 MHz.
PC2-5300 or DDR2-667 666,6 MHz.
PC2-6400 or DDR2-800 800 MHz.
PC2-8600 or DDR2-1066 1066,6 MHz.
PC2-9000 or DDR2-1200 1200 MHz.


Widely used in all types of implementations, DDR2 memory were replaced in the market by its successor: the DDR3.

Types of RAM

This new technology is characterized by offering significant improvements in behavior and performance of the equipment RAM.


In such a system it has been incorporated which allows them to offer considerable performance with low voltage level, thus offering the possibility to drastically reduce energy consumption.

Comparison Chart speed in the different versions of DDR3
PC3-6400 or DDR3-800 800 MHz.
PC3-8500 or DDR3-1066 1066,6 MHz.
PC3-10600 or DDR3-1333 1333,3 MHz.
PC3-12800 or DDR3-1600 1600 MHz.
PC3-14900 or DDR3-1866 1866,6 MHz.
PC3-17000 or DDR3-2133 2133,3 MHz.
PC3-19200 or DDR3-2400 2400 MHz.
PC3-21300 or DDR3-2666 2666,6 MHz.


While DDR3 DIMM modules are 240-pin type, like DDR2, the fact is that both are incompatible, so the most modern and sophisticated motherboard incorporate special sockets for DDR3 memory.

Types of RAM

Finally, there is another type of memory that is characterized as one of the most expensive models due to the fantastic performance they provide.

Rambus DRAM memories

Also known as RDRAM, this type of memory operate under a proprietary protocol developed by the company Rambus. Because of its high costs, the market for ordinary users do not usually use this type of memory, which has gained increased popularity the modules of the DDR type.

Currently the RDRAM memories are usually used in large servers and is built to the famous PlayStation 3 game console.

It is a module of RIMM type, which has 184 contacts, and works completely differently to the conventional DDR, as it works raising the frequencies of the chips, to thereby avoid bottlenecks that can reduce data transfer rate, thus achieving a higher performance range.

Types of RAM

It is worth mentioning that when we acquired a RAM, it has a series of numbers that tells us the characteristics possessed by the module, which is important to know what that information means.

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Types of computer memories

As we all know, the RAM memory is one of the fundamental components for proper operation of our PC, since its existence allows the computer to be started, and thus the processing of the necessary instructions for all software operating system and user applications can be executed normally.

However, what few people know is that a computer works with four different memories, used to perform various functions. These are the RAM, ROM, SRAM or cache memory and virtual memory or swap. Precisely this topic will discussed in this article.

Types of computer memories

Among them, the most important is called RAM (Random Access Memory) since our computer could not function without it. In this RAM, different types of data are stored, from the temporal processes of file modifications, to the instructions that allow the execution of applications that we have installed in our PC.

Therefore, it is constantly used by the microprocessor, which accesses it to search or temporarily store information concerning the processes performed on the computer.

Within RAMs different types of technologies exist that mainly differ in their access speed and physical form. Among them are the DRAM, SDRAM, RDRAM, among others.

The so called DRAM (Random Access Memory Dynamic), have been used in computers since the early years of the decade of the 80’s, and even today is still used. This memories are one of the cheapest, although his biggest disadvantage is related to the processing speed, as it is one of the slowest, which has led manufacturers to modify their technology to offer a better product.

Types of computer memories

As for the type of SDRAM technology, derived from the first, he began to be marketed in the late 90’s, and thanks to this type of memory, it was possible that the processes were significantly more efficient, because it can operate at the same speed as the motherboard to which it is incorporated.

Meanwhile, the RDRAM technology is one of the most expensive because of its complexity of manufacture, and they were only used on powerful computers. Currently, this type of memory is no longer manufactured.

Another difference between the various RAM is the type of module that question, which may be SIMM (Single In-line Memory Module) DIMM (Double Memory Module) and RIMM (Rambus in-line Memory Module), depending the pin count and the physical size of the module.

Types of computer memories

In addition to RAM, computers work with memory called ROM, Read Only Memory, which as its name suggests is a read-only memory, as most of these memories cannot be modified because they do not allow his writing.

The ROM is built into the motherboard and is used by the PC to start the BIOS, which is basically a program that has the instructions to guide the computer during startup operations.

Among its functions, the BIOS begins with a process called POST (Power On Self Test) during which inspect the whole system to verify that all components are working properly to begin the start.

Types of computer memories

To do this, the BIOS queries a register, in which all information about the hardware you have installed on your computer is stored, to check that everything is in order. This register is called CMOS Setup.

While we mentioned that in many cases the ROM cannot be changed, now many motherboards incorporate new models that allow for writing ROM, so that the user can make changes to the BIOS in order to improve their performance.

The fundamental difference between RAM and ROM lies in speed, since the ROM, being a sequential memory, need to go through all these records to find the information you seek, while the RAM works randomly, meaning you can access the information you want directly.

This factor makes the speed of RAM is significantly higher. Also, this capability is greater than that of the ROM, and unlike the latter, the RAM is not integrated into the motherboard, allowing the user to expand the amount of RAM your PC.

Another type of memory used by computers is called SRAM, known as cache memory. Both the processor and the hard drive and the motherboard have their own cache, which basically protects different directions that are used by the RAM to perform different functions such as running programs installed in the PC.

Types of computer memories

The task performed by the cache memory is to store to disk locations occupied by programs that have been implemented thus can access data more quickly and directly.

There are three different types of cache:

  • The L1 cache located inside the processor and operates at the same speed as the latter, and in which instructions and data are stored.
  • The L2 cache are usually of two types: internal and external. The first is within the motherboard, while the second is located in the processor but externally, making it slower than L1 cache.
  • The L3 cache are incorporated into only some of the more advanced microprocessors, resulting in increased processing speed.

On some computers, especially those that have Microsoft Windows or Linux as operating system, also we find the so-called virtual memory or swap.

This type of memory, which works similar to the cache memory, is created by Windows or Linux to be used exclusively by the operating system. In the case of Linux is called swap memory, and is usually located on a different partition on the disk, while Microsoft system is a file within the same operating system.

In many cases the virtual memory usually produces certain problems that cause the PC to crash, because this type of memory has been created by the system in the hard drive and sometimes can exceed the capacity of process.

Types of computer memories

If run software using virtual memory, only obtain bad results, since our PC becomes more sluggish as processing speed subtracts the hard drive.

The best way to avoid this problem is to expand the amount of RAM memory of our PC, so that the system does not require the creation of additional virtual memory and thus slow down during our work processes.

With regard to this point, now there are three types of RAM, DDR, DDR2 and DDR3, these latter two still widely used, while the first and is not used by any computer manufacturer.