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Beginners Guide: How much memory is enough in Windows Vista?

Beginners Guide: How much memory is enough in Windows Vista? - PCSTATS
Abstract: Do you need as much memory when you're running office applications as you do when you're gaming? How much memory do you need in Vista to game comfortably, and spreadsheet smoothly? The answers are next!
Filed under: Memory Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Microsoft.com Aug 28 2009   Colin Sun  
Home > Reviews > Memory > Microsoft.com Vista

Memory Size Benchmarks: Office Productivity, PCMark05, Doom 3, FEAR

Office Productivity Source: Zdnet

Business Winstone 2004 runs real applications through a series of scripted activities and uses the time a PC takes to complete these activities to produce its performance scores.

Content Creation Winstone 2004 is a system-level, application-based benchmark that measures a PC's overall performance when running top, Windows-based, 32-bit, content creation applications in Windows XP.

PCSTATS Benchmark ReportOffice Productivity
Business Winstone 2004: Points Ranking
512MB System Memory 24.3
1GB System Memory 29.4
2GB System Memory 29.6
4GB System Memory 29.5
Content Creation 2004: Points Ranking
512MB System Memory 35.2
1GB System Memory 40.6
2GB System Memory 40.8
4GB System Memory 40.7

Winstone's Office Productivity benchmark illustrates why all SOHO and office PCs running Vista should have at least 1GB of RAM. The difference between 512MB and 1GB of total system memory is pretty visible. Performance between systems with 1GB, 2GB and 4GB of memory are all approximately the same.

Futuremark PCMark05 1.1.0 Source: FutureMark

PCMark05 is a premium tool for measuring both normal home use and simple 3D performance of the latest PC hardware. There are 11 system tests - each one is designed to represent a certain type of PC usage. By running these tests, PCMark05 stresses the components in a similar manner as they are stressed in normal home usage.

PCSTATS Benchmark ReportPCMark05:
Overall Points Ranking
512MB System Memory 7012
1GB System Memory 7265
2GB System Memory 7306
4GB System Memory 7312
Memory Points Ranking
512MB System Memory 5232
1GB System Memory 5434
2GB System Memory 5452
4GB System Memory 5433

PCMark05 benefits from a dramatic difference between 512MB and 1GB of system memory. The benchmark results are much closer when the system is installed with 2GB and 4GB of memory.

ID Software Doom 3 1.3 Source: id Software

Doom 3 takes advantage of the latest videocard technology and pushes the processing power of the CPU to its absolute limit. At its highest setting, Ultra quality, texture sizes pass the 500MB mark which means even tomorrow's videocards will have a hard time running everything. The frame rates in the game itself are locked at 60 fps so anything above that point is wasted. Each test is run three times with the third run being recorded.

PCSTATS Benchmark ReportID Software Doom 3
LQ 640x480 FPS Ranking
512MB System Memory 143.2
1GB System Memory 168.3
2GB System Memory 178.5
4GB System Memory 178.6

Gamers should definitely take note of the Doom 3 framerates here... Notice the difference between 512MB and 1GB of system memory? There seems to be a bit of a performance difference between 1GB and 2GB but it's not as pronounced as the difference between 512MB and 1GB.

Sierra FEAR 1.08

Source: Sierra

FEAR is Sierra's latest first person shooter which relies heavily on DirectX 9 features. With its "Soft Shadows" feature enabled, even the fastest videocards run at a crawl, FEAR is definitely the new benchmark for future FPS games to follow.

PCSTATS Benchmark ReportSierra FEAR 1.08
Minimum 640x480 FPS Ranking
512MB System Memory 417
1GB System Memory 462
2GB System Memory 497
4GB System Memory 502

Again we see a rather large performance difference between the system with 512MB of memory and everything else. There is also a slightly performance boost when moving towards 2GB of memory, again something that gamers will want to take note of. Going from 2GB to 4GB doesn't do much.

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Contents of Article: Microsoft.com Vista
 Pg 1.  Beginners Guide: How much memory is enough in Windows Vista?
 Pg 2.  Benchmarking Vista Memory Sizes
 Pg 3.  — Memory Size Benchmarks: Office Productivity, PCMark05, Doom 3, FEAR
 Pg 4.  Magic Number is 2GB, or 1GB if you're Skint

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