Random Access Memory (RAM) is a form of memory that is used by computers in order to store information. Similar to the short-term or working memory of a person, RAM is the kind of memory which computers rely on only while they are connected to power. Once the device is disconnected, all of the information stored in a computer’s RAM is cleared away. Within RAM, there are two commonly used types called static and dynamic. Both are able to temporarily store memory, however the way in which they retain data bits differs in several major ways, all of which will be discussed in this blog.
As stated before, Random Access Memory (RAM) functions much like the computer’s “short-term memory,” being able to store information only while the device is connected to power. For example, if you have ever played a game like minesweeper or solitaire on your computer and lost all your progress because your dog ran by and snagged the power cable, you can understand the frustration of losing the computer’s random access memory at the wrong time. Whereas some bits of information are stored in the computer for the long haul, others are only there as long as they are needed to avoid taking up unnecessary space in the device’s storage.
Dynamic RAM is a major type of RAM which is in constant action, meaning that the storage cells need to be refreshed every few milliseconds to compensate for the capacitor's gradual energy discharge. As a very short-term version of memory, dynamic RAM is focused on storing information moment by moment and is constantly being erased and replaced. As a result, DRAM can store greater densities of information at a lower cost. Using a chip that holds millions of memory cells that are each made up of a transistor and a capacitor, DRAM can read and re-write large swaths of information per refresh, making it useful in forming the larger system RAM space for most computers.
Conversely, static RAM is able to retain data bits in its memory without needing to be refreshed. Unlike DRAM, SRAM has a much more limited storage capacity because the computer accesses the information only as required. Rather than using capacitors to store information for short periods of time, SRAM stores data at the flip-flop level so that the memory cannot be deleted and refreshed while the program is running. As a result, SRAM consumes more power, is more expensive, and requires more space. However, SRAM is comparatively faster because only the chip that is written on is read, which means that it can easily access the data without needing to read every bit. For this reason, static RAM is generally used to create a computer CPU’s speed-sensitive cache.
With each of these differences in mind, static RAM is generally better for high-speed, high performance operations, while dynamic RAM is useful for containing larger amounts of information at a time, such as in a computer’s main memory. If you are in need of parts for the memory systems in your electronic device, there is no better source than ASAP Memory. As a leading distributor of memory parts and accessories, we encourage you to browse our expansive inventory of available parts on our website. Upon finding an item that sparks your interest, you may submit a RFQ form at any time to receive a custom competitive quote for your comparisons in just 15 minutes or less. Get in contact with our team of experts today to see all that ASAP Memory can do to simplify the parts procurement process!
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