These days especially for the laptops, the salespersons will tell you “This model has 16GB of Intel Optane Memory. You can upgrade it to 32GB.” Intel Optane memory module is the worst form of pushing a thing before which there is a lot of hardware needs to get upgraded. A computer’s performance becomes better with more amount of faster RAM (right now that is 16GB to 32GB), a faster SSD and a good processor.
What is Intel Optane Memory Module?
It is a technology named 3D XPoint, which is like SSD but writes and read speed is super fast. Modern operating systems can use it for caching. Intel Optane memory accelerates the computing tasks by creating a bridge between the DRAM and the hard drive.
So, Intel Optane Memory module is like a new type of hard disk which helps to cache. It is good to have but it is less important than the specifications of RAM, processor, SSD etc.
According to the manufacturer, the memory has a lower memory latency than the NAND flash memory (which is also non-volatile and widely used) and can be overwritten more frequently. While memory cells in NAND flash store the memory content through different electrical voltage levels in field-effect transistors, 3D XPoint is based on the change in electrical resistance. The memory chips have a spatial grid structure, at whose intersection the actual information stores sit. They do not require field-effect transistors such as the flash cells, which makes a higher integration density possible.
Optane memory is a long-term, smart memory technology which remembers the most frequently accessed files, programs, and application even after your computer is powered off (unlike DRAM, which forgets on a restart). This technology is designed to complement DRAM. 16GB and 32GB modules are not large enough bigger to realize any difference. Windows 10 can use a big part of the 16GB module for commonly accessed data. Optane Memory is a form of Intel’s Optane storage technology. In real-life tests, many of us have seen that a 32GB module with a mechanical often gets confused.
When to Think About a Bigger Intel Optane Memory Module?
After reaching the limit of RAM and upgrading the hard disk to a faster SSD. Each processor and motherboard has a maximum limit of RAM i.e. some models of i7 processors support up to 64GB of RAM. Most of the laptops with i7 processors support up to 32GB of RAM. The limit of RAM is official. In real life, many of us have added RAM more than the official limit – it worked. Your next need is upgrading the hard disk to a fastest and bigger hard drive. After upgrading these components and add enough cooling system, you can think to add 32GB of Intel Optane Memory Module. The use cases of Intel Optane were for enterprise usage. Somehow the manufacturers started to push “8GB of RAM plus the 16GB of Optane Memory” which is often misleading to the mainstream consumers. A mechanical hard drive with Optane Memory is a reasonable compromise but not with just 16GB space.