Is RAM or SSD More Important for Photo Editing? [Guide]

We always overemphasize RAM because we believe that the more RAM the PC has, the faster the computer will be. In the past, maybe any technical person would laugh at that. This is because RAM is used exclusively to store temporary data, which later goes to the processor for processing. And then, the processed data comes back to RAM, which can later be shown or output on the screen, in audio form, or printed form. Other than that, there is no work of RAM; it does not process data.

But today’s modern programs and software, especially photo editing programs like Lightroom and Photoshop, have become so heavy that more and more RAM is needed to have fast processing.

Similarly, fast storage is required for fast processing. Now at least you should forget HDD because it is a thing of the past now; you should at least install an SSD for fast data loading (copy, cut, and paste).

If you don’t give importance to both RAM and SSD, I will tell you some important points below that will automatically force you to install both of this hardware equipment on your PC for photo editing.

Let’s look at both one by one: Is RAM or SSD More Important for Photo Editing?

Is RAM More Important for Photo Editing?

As I said earlier, we know RAM does not process data. So, is RAM important or not? Yes, of course, for today’s programs, we need more RAM. An example of this is that the programs that used to be of 10 MB are now of 100 MB. This means that they need more space in the RAM now that they can function properly, or your computer will be hanged.

Today, the softwares used for photo editing required a lot of RAM. You may have to install 16-32 GB RAM if you are a professional. Now the question arises how do you know that now I have to upgrade the RAM.

The following are some points you should know by looking at whether you should upgrade RAM or not.

If your computer is running properly, but if you click on a file (Inside software or a file in the external storage) and the system gets slow, you should upgrade the RAM. However, the problem doesn’t need to be related to RAM in this situation. So first, check if your operating system is working properly or not.

Sometimes RAM is enough for all photo editing and system tasks, but we don’t get the PC tuned (hardware tuning, cleaning) in time which causes the system to slow down. So before you spend too much money, at least get the system tuned and then decide whether you should upgrade the RAM for photo editing or not.

Is SSD More Important for Photo Editing?

SSD is even more important for photo editing because you know that the data is on external storage, and it has to be picked up and placed in the RAM. Because HDD is much slower than SSD, it can’t do this job as quickly as SSD. I can tell you from personal experience that an SSD is five times faster than a hard drive.

If you do photo editing on SSD first and then on HDD, you will not enjoy it at all. On the contrary, you will get irritated. If you have never used an SSD for photo editing, you may find it weird (that you will be irritated), but you will agree with me if you use it once.


If you are a professional photo editor, you must install an SSD. Even for general use, you should prefer an SSD. There is no limit as far as RAM is concerned, but if you are a professional, you should install at least 16-32 GB of RAM for photo editing. 8 GB is a must for even general use. 

One thing to keep in mind is that both RAM and SSD are very important, but if the processor is not good, then they will not be as useful as they should be.

And finally, I want to say that in SSD, HDD, and RAM, there are different categories; you should know which category is the fastest.

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