With graphics cards, smartphones and many other devices that we are used to seeing RAM memory configurations defined and that they can’t be changed, but that’s something in the PC ecosystem that seems almost absurd, more than anything because we are used to having to choose which RAM to use when we assemble a PC. However, would it be possible to see teams with Integrated RAM on the motherboard or even on the processor?
To be fair with reality, there are already “PCs” that have built-in RAM, and you just have to go to the new generation consoles (PS5 and Xbox Series X / S) to see it, because after all they have custom hardware and an optimized x86 architecture, of course with directly integrated memory. Likewise, there are also computers with the RAM “soldered to the board” which do not allow modifying it, although this is a little different from its integration as such. Either way, what about the desktop PCs we’re so used to?
Pros and cons of built-in RAM in a desktop computer
To see if it is possible to use built-in RAM in a desktop PC, it is inevitable to weigh the pros and cons of doing so, so we will carefully analyze the possibilities that exist to determine the feasibility.
Benefits of integrating RAM on the motherboard
- The first of the advantages would be a more direct connection, without intermediaries (memory sockets) with the processor, and as you will suppose a direct communication implies a superior performance. Plus, just like they did on PS5 and Xbox Series X / S, the chips can be placed an equal distance from the processor to equalize latencies.
- The second big advantage would be the price. It is true that a first integration of the RAM on the card would make the price of this component more expensive, but in return one would avoid having to buy it separately. In addition, in the medium and long term, this would mean savings in manufacturing costs and therefore its price would necessarily have to be reduced.
- Another advantage would be that s ince we eliminate the need to install a component on the board, we eliminate a possible point of failure due to improper handling. As we will see shortly, this is also a disadvantage, although for other reasons.
And what disadvantages would it have?
- The first and main disadvantage of doing this would be that when we buy a system we will be forever limited in terms of the amount and speed of RAM. One of the benefits of buying a PC by parts is that you choose each component based on your needs and budget, and specifically RAM is one of the components that we often let ‘grow. later”. In other words, the one to buy a PC with 8 GB of RAM would end for later, when you save, add that much to double.
- The second disadvantage is related to the price, because if, as we have already said in the medium and long term, it would mean a saving in manufacturing costs, it would also force many companies that are dedicated to it to put an end to these segments of their business, having to focus on others and potentially having to raise prices to survive.
- The third drawback is linked to the assembly. As we have said before, it can be an advantage that there is one less component that can break when handling it, but it would also mean that a fault in the RAM chips would force us to change the board. mother in its entirety, being a very expensive component and more so if there is built-in RAM.
Like everything in life, integrating RAM memory directly onto the card has its good and bad sides; Now, if at this stage they have not done it in the PC ecosystem but in other ecosystems such as consoles and smartphones for example, it is because they have already valued and determined that it better to leave it as it is. In fact, we have an example of manufacturers integrating on-board memory at Apple, and you are no doubt aware of the complaints there are about this.
Either way, we ask you: if integrating RAM into the card provides more performance and makes it cheaper, would this be an option you would choose even knowing its drawbacks?