Best DDR5 RAM for gaming and workflows in 2023
All the best DDR5 RAM kits available right now
DDR5 is finally here. That’s right, after what feels like decades, DDR5 is finally ready to hit shelves for desktop PCs. The new memory is set to offer over double the performance of its predecessor, all while utilizing less voltage.
That being said, and like all maybe generational changes, DDR5 memory will be much more expensive than DDR4. However, with higher capacities, greater speeds, and generally better performance, your money isn’t going to waste.
In this article, we’ll be looking at all the best DDR5 memory modules to determine which are best. We’ll be looking at speeds, build, aesthetics, and overall performance to determine which are the best of the bunch.
How we test
We were lucky enough to receive a bunch of RAM modules before their official launch, enabling us to test, benchmark, and overclock the modules before anyone else. With this insider access, we were able to compare many DDR5 RAM kits against each other, giving us a better idea of the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Like always, we run a number of different tests when it comes to benchmarking, including workloads, gaming, everyday usage, and bespoke benchmarks from tailored software. We did all of this for each of the RAM kits we received, testing them against DDR4 and other DDR5 modules as we went.
DDR5 RAM: Things To Consider
Like any new generation hardware release, DDR5 comes with a whole host of prior considerations. This allows you to determine whether or not DDR5 is right for your needs while giving you a better understanding of what DDR5 does and doesn’t bring to the table.
In this section, we’ll be taking a more in-depth look at DDR5 RAM, explaining why you should consider it for your next build.
Why choose DDR5 RAM?
So, why should I choose DDR5 RAM for my next build? It’s a good question really, especially when you consider the price tag attached to many of the new modules coming to market.
However, there are many pros to the latest generation of DDR5 memory, most surrounding raw performance. DDR5 is set to eclipse DDR4 in terms of performance by almost double – and that’s just the entry-level offerings. DDR5 will offer higher frequencies, better build quality, more advanced ICs, and greater cooling all while running at lower, more efficient voltages.
Can my old motherboard support DDR5?
Unfortunately no, if you want to purchase new DDR5 memory then you’ll have to purchase a new motherboard as well. To make things worse, you’ll also have to purchase a new CPU too – as the only motherboards available at present are Z690s. AMD will be releasing a new range of motherboards that may be backward compatible with 3rd gen CPUs, but that is yet to be confirmed.
At the time of writing this, the only way to get DDR5 in your build is to upgrade to a next-gen Z690 board.
Does capacity matter with DDR5
Well, that all depends on what you’re doing. If you’re the sort of person that plays older games, chances are you probably won’t need anything over 16GB. However, if you perform heavy multi-tasking workflows or data mining, you probably want to boost that capacity to the max. These are the sort of tasks that benefit hugely from having more RAM, so more is always better in this scenario.
Here’s a helpful breakdown of what you can do at various DDR5 RAM capacities:
4GB RAM – Everyday tasks and light gaming
6GB RAM – A rear amount that is seldom seen anymore. However, 6GB falls under the same roof as 4GB – light gaming and everyday tasks
8GB RAM – Today’s entry-level, 8GB. One stick of 8GB memory will happily perform many lower-intensive games and run so low-level multi-tasking scenarios
16GB RAM – The people’s favorite. This is the sweet spot as far as price-to-performance goes. Gaming and some multi-tasking are available at this level.
32GB RAM – At 32GB, you start to fall into the enthusiast sector. With 32GB, you’ll be able to power through most games, perform multi-tasking workflows, and all other demanding tasks too.
64GB+ RAM – At this capacity, you’re looking at servers and extreme workstation scenarios.
Best DDR5 RAM
Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB 32GB 5200MHz DDR5
- Excellent aesthetic design
- Great overclocking potential
- Quick frequency
- High price point
Corsair has been designing high-performance memory modules for as long as I can remember. With that in mind, it was no surprise to see another one of their kits hit the top of our best DDR5 RAM page. This kit displays all the features and benefits you could want from a DDR5 memory module, including decent timings, good overclocking capabilities, fast frequencies, and an easy-to-use XMP profile too.
While Corsair’s flagship DDR5 kit is on the expensive side, it isn’t overly pricey when compared to other DDR5 memory modules. In fact, it actually shows OK value for money when compared to some of the other various options available.
The next-gen DDR5 kit from Corsair comes with similar styling to their DDR4 variant, showcasing the same black heat spreader and RGB top. Like always, the RGB can be customized via Corsair’s proprietary iCUE software.
Corsair has installed an onboard voltage regulation system within the iCUE software suite, meaning you can fine-tune your overclocking without having to enter the BIOS. Custom XMP 3.0 profiles built into the RAM allow you to quickly set the factory to overclock settings, giving you an instant boost in performance right out of the box.
G.Skill Trident Z RGB 32GB 6600MHz DDR5
- Decent timings
- Good overclocking potential
- Very fast frequency
- High price point
G.Skill recently announced this 6600MHz variant to the Trident Z RGB ranks, offering up flagship speeds as far as frequency and timings were concerned. If you’re looking for the best of the best when it comes to performance, G.Skill look set to take the number one spot.
As far as design goes, the G.Skill Trident Z RGB is an incredibly attractive kit – sporting a two-tone (silver/black) design that is finished with a splash of bright RGB on the top. Alongside great aesthetics, the heat spreader also provides excellent cooling to this memory – essential when it comes to getting the most out of the overclocking headspace.
Speaking of performance, it’s hard to knock the G.Skill Trident Z RGB, it really does tick all the right boxes. It’s the only memory kit in this guide that showcases DDR5 6600MHz speeds while still retaining decent CL36-36-36-76 timings. This is mainly thanks to the Samsung DDR5 ICs that are found at the heart of these great memory modules.
Corsair Vengeance 32GB (2X16GB) 5200MHz DDR5
- Good overclocking potential
- Decent value for money
- XMP 3.0 for easy overclocking
- Timings not as tight as competitors
Our value pick goes to another great Corsair DDR5 module, the Vengeance series. Vengeance has been a fan-favorite for the DDR4 platform for years now, providing great performance at an excellent price tag. The same looks set for the DDR5 platform, with the Vengeance series sporting many of the same performance-enhancing features as the Dominator series.
Aesthetically, the Vengeance series kits are much more basic than the flagship offering. We see no RGB, a simple heat spreader, and a low-profile shell. However, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing – it still looks superb when compared to other variants in today’s market.
Moving onto performance, you really can’t knock the DDR5 Vengeance series all that much. Timings sing to the tune of C38-38-38-84 alongside a 5200MHz frequency. Furthermore, the Vengeance series doesn’t require the same 1.25 volts as the Dominator – running on 1.1V very efficiently.
Corsair has also equipped the Vengeance with the same XMP 3.0 profile for easy overclocking as the Platinum range, enabling you to quickly boost performance right out of the box.
GeIL Polaris RGB 32GB (2X16GB) 4800MHz DDR5
- Good value for money
- 1.1 voltage
- Lifetime warranty
- Slower timings
Our budget pick comes in the shape of Geil’s Polaris RGB 32GB DDR5 memory kit, another great DDR5 memory offering that seems to tick all the right boxes.
Aesthetically, you’ll either love it or hate it. Geil doesn’t offer the sleek design of the Dominator Platinum series, they offer an RGB light show that is more Blackpool than Las Vegas – if you know what I mean. That said, many don’t prioritize aesthetics, and if you don’t, this RAM kit could be exactly what you’re looking for.
Performance-wise, the Geil performs fairly well. It comes equipped with a 4800MHz clock frequency and OK timing right out the box (C40-40-40-77). While these aren’t the best, they are far from the worst either. Better yet, the Geil Polaris series only requires 1.1 volts to run efficiently – less than the premium offerings in this guide. Furthermore, with local voltage regulation based on PMIC (Power Management IC), this RAM provides current monitoring, threshold protection, and intelligent voltage and power management for fine-tuning your overclocking.
So, there you have it, our comprehensive breakdown of the best DDR5 RAM kits in 2023. We hope this article has helped you decide whether or not DDR5 is right for you, highlighting what we believe are the best of the available options in today’s market.
Best DDR5 RAM FAQs
Which DDR5 RAM is best?
The Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB 32GB 5200MHz DDR5 is the RAM kit to go for when looking for the best option. With a great frequency clock, it enables great performance out of the system otherwise. It also offers a lot of capacity for the ever-rising use of it by systems overall.
What’s the fastest DDR5 RAM?
The fastest DDR5 currently available is the G.Skill Trident Z5. Able to reach up to 8000 MHz, it is the fastest at the moments, with plenty faster speeds expected later on.
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