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How Much VRAM do I Need?

The most important component of a gaming computer is the graphics card. The GPU and the VRAM are the two components that make the graphics card powerful. You can compare it with CPU and RAM for a motherboard. Both CPU and RAM have to be top-notch to get the ultimate performance from your computer. Similarly, no matter how powerful the GPU is, if you do not have enough VRAM, the performance of your gaming computer will not be up to the mark.

The question concerns how much VRAM you need to get the ultimate performance from your gaming computer. Buying more VRAM is not always a solution. There is no standard answer to the question because several factors determine how much VRAM your gaming computer needs to smooth your gaming experience. We will discuss everything you need to know about VRAM and state how much VRAM you need to purchase for your gaming computer.

What is VRAM?

How Much RAM do I Need

VRAM stands for Video Random Access Memory. VRAM is a special type of memory used by GPUs to store graphics data. GPU uses VRAM for faster operational speed than RAM. Since VRAM is integrated into the graphics card, the access speed is also faster for the GPU than RAM.

VRAM stores all the graphical data from videos, games, images, animations, etc. VRAM is dual-ported, which means the GPU can perform read and write operations for faster operation.

What is VRAM Used For?

VRAM is used for storing graphical data on your computer. It is a better alternative to RAM for the GPU. VRAM not only stores data but also offers faster access to the data for the GPU.

VRAM is critical for graphical frame buffering, where the GPU stores rendered images. VRAM stores the rendered images in proper order so that the images can be displayed in proper order when required.

Since modern games are highly demanding in rendering graphical data, GPU stores texture maps for faster image rendering. Besides frame buffering, image rendering, and texture map storage, VRAM is used for any graphics-related tasks performed by the GPU.

What Are The Factors That Impact VRAM?

The three main factors determining how much VRAM your computer needs are listed below.

Gaming: Gaming needs VRAM to operate smoothly. Shortage of VRAM leads to stuttering, lagging, screen image distortion, and tearing. The resolution of the game you are playing will determine the VRAM capacity you need on your computer. Besides, the VRAM demand can be high if the game settings are set high.

Graphical Application: If you are into graphics designing and video editing, VRAM is crucial for the graphical application you use for your purpose. Different photo and video editors have different requirements, and accordingly, you need to have VRAM so that they perform smoothly without crashing.

Monitor Resolution: It is obvious that the higher the monitor’s resolution, the higher the VRAM capacity you need to serve the graphical needs perfectly. Your monitor will be compatible with higher resolution of videos and games; hence, it will require more VRAM to process every frame.

How Much VRAM Do I Really Need?

You have to consider both the game you are playing as well as the monitor resolution to determine the VRAM capacity you need.

Regarding monitor resolution, here is the list of the suitable VRAM capacity you need.

Monitor Resolution VRAM Required
720P 2GB-4GB
1080P 4GB-6GB
1440P 4GB-8GB
4K 8GB-12GB

In terms of gaming resolution, here is the list of suit VRAM capacity you need.

Gaming Resolution VRAM Required
720P 2GB
1080P 2GB-6GB
1440P 4GB-8GB
4K 10GB-16GB

VRAM capacity in terms of gaming does not only depend on the game resolution but also on the game settings. For example, if AA is turned on in the game settings, the VRAM required goes up by 1GB more than usual. Therefore, you must factor in the game settings and always purchase the higher range of VRAM capacity for any given game resolution.

Since modern games are highly VRAM-dependent, GPUs are coming out, such as AMD RC 7900XT, that support up to 20GB VRAM.  If you use your computer for graphics designing and video editing, the VRAM capacity should be between 6GB to 10GB, depending on the application.

How Much RAM do I Need FAQs

1. What consumes high VRAM when idle?

Ans: When you use an older monitor with a relatively new graphics card and a higher refresh rate, the VRAM consumption will be higher. This is because the GPU has to keep up with the output on the monitor by using more VRAM than usual.

2. What happens when you do not have enough VRAM?

Ans: When enough VRAM is unavailable, the GPU must go to RAM for the required storage space. Since RAM is slower than VRAM, you will experience stuttering and lagging in gaming and watching videos. If you are into video editing and graphics designing and enough VRAM is not available, the application can slow down and crash.

3. Does ray tracing use a lot of VRAM?

Ans: Ray tracing in real-time applications like video games can be particularly demanding on VRAM. Games that utilize ray tracing features, such as realistic reflections, global illumination, or shadowing, may require GPUs with higher VRAM capacities to ensure smooth performance and to accommodate the additional data storage and processing needs of ray tracing.

4. How much VRAM is needed for 4K video editing?

Ans: The minimum VRAM requirement for 4K video editing is 8GB. We recommend you opt for the latest GPU, such as RTC 3090 with 12GB VRAM, for the best result. If you want a futuristic GPU, you can use RTC 4090 with 24GB VRAM for 4K video editing and even 3D modeling.


The answer to how much VRAM suits your computer lies in the action you will perform on your computer. Depending on the gaming resolution and settings, you must choose the VRAM. You can combine the monitor resolution in the pack to be safer. But it is always better to opt for the latest GPU when you are into professional gaming and video editing.

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