Video editing can put a lot of strain on a computer due to the large files that come with the territory. RAM is the memory in your computer used for short term storage. The more RAM you have the faster your computer can process information leading to faster performance.
How much RAM is needed for video editing? Each non-linear editing software (NLE) will have its own specs but in general 32GB of RAM is sufficient for video editing. If you are editing higher resolution files such as 8K having more than 32GB can be beneficial but is not required.
Here are some basic guidelines for how much RAM you should have:
- 8GB RAM: This should only be for projects smaller than 1080p and if you are fine with closing down background programs.
- 16GB RAM: Will work for projects that are 1080p-4k 8bit. This will allow minor usage of background projects as well.
- 32GB RAM: This can carry a heavy load for video editing while still using background projects.
- 64GB RAM: This amount of RAM can handle 8K footage in 10bit or more. You can also have other programs like After Effects running simultaneously.
Having enough RAM will result in smoother playback and also allow you to use other programs in the background. One of the easiest ways to know if you have enough RAM is by checking your system RAM and comparing it to the specs of your NLE. Another cue that you may not have enough RAM is laggy playback of your video content.
Luckily, upgrading your RAM isn’t difficult if you need more, but having enough from the beginning is always your best bet.