How Much RAM Is Needed For Streaming Games & Videos

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Usually, when it comes to streaming games or videos, a streamer invests more money in their CPU and GPU and doesn’t focus much on the RAM. It is mainly due to the common misunderstanding that it entirely depends on the CPU or GPU as to how well different software is able to run at the same time.

This happens especially for beginner streamers who think that a minimum RAM would be enough to fulfill their streaming requirements. However, the reality is that it is RAM that plays an important role when streaming games and videos. This is because your device will be consuming a great amount of resources, especially from your device’s memory, while running and streaming your games and videos. 

What is it that decides the amount of RAM required for streaming games and videos?

The thing that mainly decides the required amount of RAM is the video or game you are streaming, along with the software encoders you choose to use.

8GB of RAM is considered enough if you are only playing videos or games. However, if you opt for streaming, then you will need added RAM since the software encoder will also be consuming the resources of your device’s memory. Also, these encoders may require extra applications while streaming. 

For example, while using Facebook Live, it will require three applications as well as your browser in order to stream. On the other hand, browsers like Chrome, which are very memory-consuming, make your device lose a lot of memory by comprising your video even if you are not streaming with secondary software.

Different Amounts of RAM for Streaming

If you are confused as to which RAM setup will be enough for streaming your games and video, here’s the different main types of RAM setups you can decide to pick from:  

4GB RAM: A 4GB RAM setup is NOT recommended for streaming. Even though a 4GB RAM has a minimum memory requirement for certain videos or games, it will cause a lot of difficulty for your device while streaming. It will not only give streaming of inferior quality, but the hardware will face a lot of strain. It is only when you are streaming a game or video with minimum requirements that you can continue streaming with 4GB RAM.


8GB RAM: With the drastic increase in graphics and the potential of games and videos, the minimum RAM requirement in today’s world is at least 8GB RAM. Even though it won’t give the best streaming quality, it is enough for streaming games and videos with less memory requirements. To make it run smoothly, you must match the quality of your game or video with the capability of your device setup. However, if you want to play games that are quite intensive with AAA or Triple-A title expectations, you must upgrade your RAM.


12GB RAM: A 12GB RAM is better than an 8GB RAM when it comes to well-optimized games running from medium to high AAA or Triple-A titles at higher settings. A 12GB setup also streams well at 1080p, depending on the game code. However, even though your device will be able to run a 12GB setup, it might face some issues related to compatibility. Also, there is a high chance that platforms with dual channels won’t be able to work. Due to this, you need to go for other options.


16GB RAM: A 16GB RAM is a definite recommendation when it comes to gaming setups and streaming. It is enough to give the most AAA or Triple-A titles even with extreme 1080p versions. You could even perform high-quality streaming at 4K resolution if your setup is paired with a powerful CPU and a powerful GPU.


32GB RAM: A self-satisfactory and long-lasting setup for streaming is the 32GB RAM setup. Even though it is a bit more priced than the 16GB setup, it is more than enough for most games and video streaming purposes. Once you get a 32GB setup, you simply don’t require any future RAM upgrades. Since there are a lot of video games that require support for modding, i.e., modifications for altering the game base, 32GB RAM has become the ideal option since it provides extra functions and features needed for a better experience.


How much RAM is needed to stream in 4K?

If you possess the correct combination of hardware for streaming in 4K, a gaming setup of 12-16 GB of RAM is best recommended. If you require a smooth gameplay experience or want to clear the memory of your device a bit, you can reduce your settings in order to fix the frame rate issue.

Does the RAM Frequency affect the streaming quality in any way?

The quality of your steam is largely dependent on your RAM frequency. The RAM speed is expressed in megahertz (MHz). For example, if the Memory-Mode shows as DDR4 3200 MHz, then it means the frequency of the RAM is 3200.

Like CPUs, the operations performed by Memory-Mods every second are measured by frequency. For example, if a 2133 memory performs the operation, it suggests that its performance can be 2.133 cycles every second. Thus, the higher the frequency, the higher the streaming efficiency. This capability is mainly beneficial for intensive CPU games since the system will require memory at a high frequency. Thus, if you could invest more money in a high memory frequency, you will experience the best performance from your computer.

Is an 8GB DDR3 RAM setup sufficient for gaming?

For most in-demand games, an 8GB RAM set is very much sufficient. Just like other RAMs, the 8GB RAM has three main memory types: DDR, DD2, and DD3. An extra DD4 might be seen in the latest PCs.

Among them, the 8GB DD3 has high speed and is efficient enough to give the user a good gaming experience. The best DDR3 RAM of 8GB, which will give a great gaming experience, includes Corsair Vengeance Pro, King Hyper X Fury, and G. Skill Ares.

Which memory type is better for streaming games: DDR3 or DDR4?

DDR3 RAM already possesses a maximum frequency of 2133 RAM, which is more than enough for streaming games. However, if you want a higher frequency for streaming games, then DDR4 will be a better option to go for.

How much RAM is required to stream videos on Netflix?

Sites like Netflix don’t require much memory for video streaming. A PC with 4GB RAM could easily stream 720p and 1080p videos without any problems, provided that you have an internet connection with enough speed.

How much RAM is required to stream videos on YouTube?

If you are planning to stream on YouTube, a minimum 8GB RAM setup will be required with respect to what game you choose to stream. If you wish only to watch somebody else’s Livestream, a 4GB RAM setup will be enough for streaming videos at 720p and 1080p.

Is having a good laptop important for streaming?

A laptop with a weak processor will certainly face problems while handling high-resolution videos and will make streaming from a platform or browser difficult. Due to this, having a powerful laptop with a fast processor along with loads of RAM is very much required for a good video streaming experience. 

Some of the best laptops for streaming videos include Gigabyte AERO 15 OLED, Lenovo Yoga C740-15.6 “FHD Touch, Apple MacBook Air with Apple M1 Chip, XIDU 12.5” Tour Pro Touchscreen Laptop, and Acer Aspire 5 15.6 “FHD 1080p Laptop.

Final Words

Thank you for reading this article! We hope that this article helped to clear up every doubt you have regarding the RAMs! Keeping in mind all the above discussions, it leaves up to you to decide what is best for you. Happy Streaming!