DDR4 or DDR5: How to choose for your 12th gen Alder Lake PC


The new generation of Alder Lake Intel processors came about with a new design, something that has never been seen before. Users are enthusiastic because it offers new perspectives for them. The 12th gen Alder Lake micro-architecture performance means something when compared to the predecessor, but the latest design, never been seen before, brings what Intel calls the Big-Bigger approach.

This new approach offers a new way of designing smartphone SoCs with larger, more powerful cores combined with smaller, more efficient cores. The need for this is to get optimal performance out of a microprocessor.

What is Intel Alder Lake?

This is Intel’s codename for the 12th generation of the organization’s core processors. In simple terms, it is known as a microprocessor or CPU. Alder Lake comes with 8 or 6 Performance cores, along with 8 or 4 Efficiency Cores.

It is based on a hybrid architecture utilizing Golden Cove’s high performance. Alder Lake PCs support DDR5 RAM with a clock speed of about 4,800MHz. It is believed that this platform also works for DDR4, but the speed is lower in this case, up to 3,200MHz. However, even if both RAM could work in Alder Lake PC, Motherboards will come with either DDR5 or DDR4.


The question is, which one will you choose?


DDR RAM is short for Double Data Rate Random-Access Memory. It is clear that both of these memory standards (DDR5 and DDR4) have the same 288 pin count, but they have different features, which means that we can’t see them as the same. The 600-series chipset-based motherboards coming with the Alder Lake-S will arrive in two flavors. Of course, vendors will present both of these memory standards, but it depends on the buyer to identify which will be good for him or her. However, some boards arrive with both DDR5 and DDR4 platforms.

Remember, of these two memory standards, DDR5 is the latest, fastest, and more efficient when some people look at it. But could it always be the best for your Alder Lake PC? Maybe not.

About DDR5 – Advantages and Disadvantages

Speed and additional bandwidth: DDR5 has one huge advantage over DDR4 – speed. Everyone likes it when their device works with great speed. In fact, that is the definition for optimal performance if you ask some people. Another advantage over its predecessor is that DDR5 has additional memory bandwidth, and when you combine this with greater speed, many people will be willing to pay more for the DDR5.

Companies or individuals will find it beneficial for heavy workloads that are bandwidth-sensitive, such as gaming, file compression, photo editing, video encoding, and others. Accomplishing these tasks means a lot to the RAM speed of a computer. Using DDR5 can also mean a cheaper option for you than making use of DDR4 because a high-speed DDR4-4400 is almost twice the amount of a DDR5-4800 option.

Ddr5 Alder Lake
Ddr5 Alder Lake

Better upgrade option: Also, buying a DDR5 now may mean that you stand a chance to enjoy future upgrades to another faster memory if you like. A firmware update could be needed. Overall, it may be harder to achieve this with DDR4, hence another advantage to the DDR5 kit is as we mentioned above.

RGB lighting: It is charming when you look at the design. But along this line, the RGB lighting catches our fancy as well. Imagine some gaming PCs lose their charm because of a lack of RGB lighting. But with DDR5, a gamer who is disappointed about the lack of RGB lighting has his joy restored because this kit comes with an upgraded serial presence detect (SPD) that now allows for a fine-tuned customization of RGB lighting with the software that is already in-built. In this case, there are 12 ultra-bright RGB LEDs in this kit.


New error checking capacity: The on-die error correction code, otherwise known as ECC, allows for a more reliable platform overall. It used to be something common with enterprise and server-class products, but now, it makes the DDR5 more reliable than the DDR4.

Power management: The power management integrated circuits, otherwise known as PMICs, are now On-DIMM and no longer on the motherboard. This allows for greater control and regulation of power.

Disadvantage: DDR5 is fast, but there are other aspects to it when it comes to optimum performance. Secondly. This kit can only be used for desktop computers. Laptops will not be able to make use of them. Also, it is new and not yet familiar to desktop users.

About DDR4 – Advantages and Disadvantages

This is the kit that’s already in use, and in many cases, it is cheap and readily available to anyone. However, the biggest advantage of this kit is that it is cheap. For it can give, DDR5 will come more expensive because that’s normal for any new and incoming product. Yet, because DDR5 comes with huge features, it may stay more expensive than DDR4 except in exceptional cases such as the one mentioned above.

Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake Release Date
Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake

For some people, the DDR4 really doesn’t present any challenges as they make use of their computer to game, edit photos, render videos, etc., in this case, perfect. But because now, it is old-fashioned, it may become irrelevant to a large extent in the near future. The good thing about this kit is that it offers an easy stopgap upgrade path to Alder Lake.

Next-Gen Features for Intel Alder Lake

Tech experts expect no less than 60 processors from this 12th-gen range, but only six have been released. These arrive as standalone CPUs for desktop computers.

Looking closely at the features, these are the first CPUs to move beyond the 14nm process that Intel has championed since 2015. Rather than make Alder Lake the most powerful chip out there, Intel is concerned about making it a mixture of performance and power efficiency. With this, Intel wants to allow devices to sustain performance over a longer period. This, hopefully, will also benefit battery life.


Would you like to try the new DDR5? It means you need to change your motherboard. However, when you get more memory and more speed, this is what most people want. Alder Lake has only released desktop CPUs, and we wait to see what’s in store for laptops and other devices such as the mobile range as the year goes to an end.