The Ryzen 5 3600 is the processor that gamers have been waiting for, offering up a vast array of different features to help enhance your gaming experience, whilst offering great value compared to its Intel counterpart.
With a base clock of 3.6 GHz and a boost of 4.2 GHz is certainly very desirable, it is the actual architecture behind the design that makes this new processor highly sought after by gamers to build with.
Thanks to the new X570 chipsets, memory clock speeds can reach highs never before seen, allowing for incredibly fast memory speeds and making the choice of your RAM more important than ever.
For those getting a brand new Ryzen 5 3600, what kind of RAM should you pick up? What RAM sticks work best with this new beast of a processor?
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The Ryzen 5 3600 RAM Sweet Spot
When considering what RAM to get for your Ryzen processor, you need to consider the sweet spot. The sweet spot is the perfect balance of latency and RAM timings from an individual type of RAM that works best with the processor you are dealing with.
This means that it is never going to be the perfect option, as you need to find a good balance between long term performance, price, and maximum speed.
For the Ryzen 3000 series, AMD themselves recommend a few different options. For those looking for the ideal performance sweet spot, they recommend DDR4-3733 CL17.
To explain this for those without an encyclopedia of computing terms handy, DDR4 refers to the fourth generation of DDR memory, and 3733 refers to the maximum chip transfer rate. Essentially, it can operate at a maximum of 3733 MHz.
Finally, CL17 refers to the number of cycles that the RAM waits before retrieving information. This means that the lower this number is, the better.
If you want to remain price conscious, however, then AMD recommends a sweet spot of DDR4-3600 CL16, so that’s 3600 MHz with CL16. This offers a great compromise between total memory speed and CL, while still remaining price-conscious and allowing you not to blow your entire budget on RAM.
You also have a whole host of different choices when it comes to picking up RAM, including both aesthetic choices and how far you want to overclock it. Our full guide on the best RAM timings for Ryzen Zen 2 can be found here.
To RGB Or Not To RGB
It might seem like a really small thing, but the decision of whether or not to buy your RAM with RGB divides gamers everywhere.
While it sounds like it would be technically vital, it is nothing more than an aesthetic choice. It allows your RAM to glow different colors, based on either what you are playing or what you are doing on your computer at the time.
While some people really enjoy it, especially if they have a glass case or a view screen on the side to allow them to watch it, it is not for everyone.
Frankly, it drives the price up, which can be a real hindrance for those looking for good value with their RAM.
So, only fork out the extra cash for RGB is you can actually enjoy it. Otherwise, you are just wasting power and money for nothing more than a pretty effect.
Best Memory Timings For RAM For Ryzen 5 3600
Memory timings are where RAM starts to get really complicated, so much so that it feels lamost impossible to properly understand what it actually means.
However, the list of numbers on the back of every single stick of RAM ever made is actually incredibly easy to decipher once you understand it.
Memory timings are simply a way of summing up both the latency and overall speed of a stick of RAM. However, you are not always locked into one specific Memory Timing; you can actually create your own.
Using a DRAM calculator allows you incredibly easily alter your RAM configuration for your AMD Ryzen PC. All you need to do is to work from the timings given to you by the RAM manufacturers. By inputting the characteristics of whatever RAM you choose, you can calculate a Safe, a Fast or an Extreme Memory Timing calculation.
This allows you to over clock your RAM to your heart’s content. However, if you aren’t familiar with balancing RAM over clocking, then you should probably stick to the Safe calculations.
So, what are the ideal RAM recommendations for Ryzen 5 3600?
Best RAM for Ryzen 5 3600 – Our Recommendations
Performance Sweet Spot – Patriot Viper Steel DDR4 16GB 3733 MHz
For those that don’t mind spending a lot of money on their RAM, the performance sweet spot of 3733 MHz CL17 is the best option.
For the best option with this spec, you should look at the Patriot Viper Steel. This RAM has the massive benefit of being game ready right of the box, requiring no overclocking to hit that sweet spot of 3733 MHz.
With a super sleek design and a built in XMP 2.0 support for those that desperately want to over clock their RAM regardless, this is a powerful piece of kit that, while expensive, is definitely worth it for those that care about their RAM performance.
Performance / Price Balance Sweet Spot w/o RGB – Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 GB DDR4 3200 MHz C16
The tricky thing about recommending RAM sticks for specific sweet spots is that it is usually easier to get RAM that has a lower clock speed with the right latency rate and then over clock it.
For a great RAM option in the price and performance sweet spot category, you should look no further than the Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 (CMK16GX4M2B3200C16). While only boasting 3200 MHz speed, it can be easily increased to the desired 3600 using a DRAM calculator.
Thanks to its high-quality aluminum heat spreader, this RAM series boasts better and faster heat dissipation than other competitors, making it durable and able to stand up well to intensive gaming. Plus, no RGB means the price is nicely lowered to a more manageable amount.
Performance / Price Balance Sweet Spot with RGB – G.SKILL 16 GB DDR4 3600 MHz RGB
For those more aesthetically-minded gamers, you might prefer a RAM stick that looks sleek and shiny in your case thanks to its RGB colors.
For those that care about presentation, G.Skill’s F4-3600C16D-16GTZR 16 GB memory is certainly a great option. While it certainly costs a lot more than the Corsair option, it already boasts the 3600 MHz speed, meaning that you don’t need to do any overclocking.
This is perhaps the best option for those that want to remain somewhat price-conscious, but also want it ready and able to be used right out of the box, without any careful overclocking or maths before they can get to gaming with the Ryzen 5 3600.