DDR3 vs DDR4: Must Know Differences

What is DDR3 vs DDR4 RAM?

DDR3 is a kind of 3rd generation SDRAM that is usually used for system memory. This sort of RAM is able of relocating data at a faster rate from one place to another. DDR3 RAM stands for Double Data Rate Memory.

ddr3 vs ddr4

DDR4 RAM is the most modern RAM type. It is widely used in the next generation of computers. DDR4 can give maximum productivity and speed thanks to its lower voltage and more great transfer rates. DDR4 SDRAM signifies Double Data Rate Fourth Generation RAM.

Why Upgrade from DDR3 to DDR4 Random Access Memory?

Why upgrade from DDR3 to DDR4?

There are two explanations for this random access memory query. To begin with, games aren’t the only thing that will consume your RAM at any one time. Your operating system, background operations, and open apps all consume RAM on their own. A computer with 8GB of RAM won’t necessarily handle a game that specifies 8GB as a minimum requirement.

Furthermore, the binary rule isn’t always applicable in a game like Fallout 4. It is infamous for having unusual performance issues. The speed of your RAM makes a significant difference in frame rate during gameplay. It s is most likely because Fallout 4 is a CPU-intensive game. The RAM’s purpose is to transmit information to the CPU.

DDR3 and DDR4 Ram: Performance Comparison

Differences between DDR3 and DDR4 are summarized below.

Performance Comparison

Physical Changes:

The 240-pin package used in DDR3 RAM has been replaced in DDR4 RAM. DDR4 now comes in a 288-pin box. It goes on to explain that there will be a noticeable increase in bandwidth capacity. Each module is the same length. The pin-to-pin distance of DDR4 RAM has been reduced to 0.85mm instead of 1.00mm in DDR3.

The modules are 31.25mm taller than DDR3 modules, which are 30.35mm tall. It was done to make the routing process go more smoothly. In addition, the PCB has been thickened. It has increased the DDR3 size from 1.0mm to 1.2mm. It allows for the expansion of extra signal layers.


A single voltage source is applied throughout the entire module in DDR3 RAMs. A new design has been used in DDR4. DDR4 RAMs work by boosting the lower voltage with voltage reference ICs placed in front of each memory chip.

It ensures that a steady voltage is supplied to each of them separately, rather than to the entire module at once. The IC is solely responsible for all voltage dips. It increases the reliability of DDR4 RAM modules.

Memory Capacity: 

The maximum capacity of DDR3 RAM for a single module is 8GB, while DIMMs have a maximum capacity of 16GB (Dual Inline Memory Modules). Mainframes and workstation systems both use them. DDR4, on the other hand, has no upper limit on the size of its memory. It enables the system to hold large volumes of data in memory.

Clock Speed: 

The clocked rates of DDR3 and DDR4 RAMs are one of the most significant changes between them. The frequency speed of DDR3 RAMs ranges from 800 to 2133 MHz. Only at 2133Mhz is there a maximum restriction.

DDR4 RAM continues where DDR3 ended. The minimum clock speed is set at 2133Mhz, with no upper limit. This increase in clock speeds also increases overall bandwidth.

Refresh Algorithm:

SDRAM devices, such as DDR3 RAM, refresh their content using Auto-refresh and self-refresh. When the system is idle, SR is used to save power. When it is busy, AR is employed. DDR4 provides a low-power auto self-refresh. It does the typical thing of refreshing memory contents while also using an adaptive algorithm. It is based on temperature to prevent signal drift.


The DDR3 standard has been in use for about a decade. DDR4 modules have only been available for a few years. DDR4 is a newer and more advanced technology. It’s a prior conclusion that it will be more expensive than DDR3 modules. For only $59.29, you can purchase an 8GB DDR3 kit. The DDR4 will set you back $91.49 in comparison.


Difference between ddr3 and ddr4 in terms of latency. An increase in latency accompanies increased clock speed and bandwidth. The delay of the DDR3 is 55 nanoseconds. The DDR4 has a latency of 63 nanoseconds, on the other hand.

Faster data transfer speed:

The latest DDR4 modules from ATP for embedded and industrial applications offer data transmission speeds of up to 3200 MT/s. DDR4-3200, ATP’s most recent industrial DDR4 offering, transports data 70% quicker than DDR3-1866. For a significant jump in theoretical peak performance, this is one of the fastest DDR3 variants available.

I/O bus clock Rate933 MHz1600 MHz
Data rate1866 MT/s3200 MT/s
Peak transfer rate14928 MB/s25600 MB/s

How will I know whether my system is DDR4 compatible? 

whether my system is DDR4 compatible

When making a purchase, compatibility is an important consideration. None of the RAMs are compatible with each other. It has also been the case with DDR3 and DDR4. DDR4 RAM cannot be installed in a DDR3 port, and vice versa. 

Thankfully, motherboard makers make it clear what RAM their systems accept. Thus it removes any potential for misunderstanding. In general, a motherboard manufactured between 2007 and 2014 is likely to support DDR3 RAM. Motherboards manufactured after 2014 are more likely to support DDR4 RAM.

Is it possible to use a DDR4 DIMM in a DDR3 slot?

difference between DDR3 vs DDR3 slot

Every DDR generation is distinct from the previous ones. A DDR4 DIMM will not fit in a DDR3 DIMM slot. DDR4 is not backward compatible with DDR3. Not only is each DDR generation’s key notch different. 

DDR4 pin size and arrangement are also different from DDR3. Some pins on the DDR4 module are longer near the center, giving it a slightly curved “V” form. Check the documentation on your motherboard to make sure it has the correct DDR4 slot.


It is always a great choice to be with newer technology. New upgrades bring new features and better, efficient technology. If you are preparing to build a new PC, I suggest going with DDR4 rather than DDR3. You can also wait for new technology to come, as DDR4 has been on the market since 2014.


Can DDR4 RAM fit in DDR3?

Backward compatibility between DDR4 RAM and DDR3 motherboards is not possible. The notch has been relocated to prevent the wrong type of memory from being accidentally inserted. Each module now has 288 pins instead of 240.

Is 8GB of DDR4 better than 16GB of DDR3?

Not only for games but also for your PC’s overall performance. The amount of RAM used does not always matter, but the speed of the computer does. In most circumstances, 8GB DDR4 is preferable to 16GB DDR3. In 2021, DDR3 memory will be obsolete.

Can I have three sticks of RAM?

To answer your question, yes, three sticks of memory can be used. They will not provide the same level of performance as matched pairs in dual channels. Never mix sets and always configure in dual channel mode for stability and performance.

Is 1600mhz RAM good?

For the majority of games, 1600MHz RAM is sufficient. You won’t have any problems. The rest of your build will be able to keep up with the pace. It won’t make up for any shortcomings elsewhere. When compared to faster alternatives, this is a concern. Those parts, not the RAM, will be your limit.

Is DDR4 RAM better than DDR3 for gaming?

In a nutshell, the difference between DDR3 and DDR4 is that DDR4 is more energy efficient and faster to transport data. Because the energy savings from switching from DDR3 to DDR4 for 16GB of RAM are so small, those transfer rates are all you should be concerned about when gaming.

Meet the Author

Abdul Rahim has been working in Information Technology for over two decades. Learn how Abdul got his start as a Tech Blogger , and why he decided to start this Software blog. If you want to send Abdul a quick message, then visit his contact page here.