Raspberry Pi 4 RAM benefits?

  • I've seen here that the Raspberry Pi 4 is consistently recommended as the best choice for hardware that's consistently supported.

    Given that it's very hard to get one from authorized resellers these days, I was wondering what benefits there are (if any) in getting an 8gb or 4gb version over the 2gb version.

  • Bigger memory capacity is always a better thing. They wouldn’t produce the bigger memory options otherwise. Open a few applications simultaneously and you’ll get the picture.

    There’s plenty of posts on the web that will explain this concept in greater detail. Don’t settle for a board with smaller memory capacity because that’s all they have. Most manufacturers are getting production back up to capacity so

    wait a while longer to get what you’re looking for.

  • I typically use the 2GB model with LE 11, no issues. Typically Kodi is only sitting around 600MB of memory usage. I know this comes up from time to time, and some folks recommend 4GB as well.

    I would say it's almost about what you can get, and I know that Sparkfun does sell bare boards and they do come up for backorder periodically (you have to keep checking, might take a month or two for them to be available for backorder). I ordered 2 boards on backorder about 5 months ago and received them recently.

    I swear I also read over on the Pi Forums that the 2GB model is the one that has the higher sales volume, so they manufacture more of them -- but I could be remembering that wrong as well. They don't really publish their sales numbers, but I recall one of the engineers mentioned something along those lines. It somewhat makes sense considering the devices are popular in industrial, maker-space, education, etc and most of those embedded uses likely require far less than 2GB.

    If you intend to run a desktop (i.e. Raspberry Pi OS) as a dual boot or mixed used device or what to guard against the future, then I would say 4GB is worth the extra $10. Software bloat does happen, but I am personally hedging on that will be many many years down the road (based on my current use case) and I would have moved on by then.

    Anyways, the choice is yours. I can't really speak to any tangible benefits for 4GB/8GB for LE. I have an 8GB, but it runs Raspberry Pi OS as a desktop.

  • Stay away from the 1GB model, that's not enough for LE/kodi and IMO 8GB is overkill for LE.

    So that leaves the 2 and 4GB models.

    I usually chose the 4GB models (but that was before the chip and availability crisis and price difference between 2 and 4GB was small) but LE will run just fine with 2GB so pick whatever you can get.

    so long,


  • This is a prime time for manufacturers/resellers to shift their slow moving stock. Demand currently way outstrips supply so the lower spec equipment will always be available as a last resort. If it’s purely for LE by all means 2gb or 4gb but we all know that Ubuntu Desktop and Wayland will benefit from bigger memory capacity.

  • Sorry for not being more clear in my original question, but I was asking specifically for a RPI4 that would *only* be for running LE.

    Nevertheless, it appears I got my question answered. I'll buy whatever I manage to find since apparently a 2gb one will be sufficient for running LE without any issues. Thanks!

  • I have a RPI4 with 4GB and it seems to be an overkill. If I had to get another RPI4 for running LE, it would be a 2GB.

  • RPi4 1GB = For an LE only setup with 1080p but not 4K media. RPi4 2GB = For 1080p/4K in an LE only configuration. RPi4 4GB/8GB = For people that want to run additional services, i.e. Docker containers in the background, or perhaps want to swap SD cards and boot a full Linux desktop OS that benefits from more RAM on the board.

  • I'd really stay away from 1GB.

    Kodi has rather long standing and yet unresolved issues with image handling (eg with pictures but also movie etc artwork) and is consuming too much (graphics) memory - which often leads to out-of-memory crashes.

    We regularly see these issues on RPi2/3, which have 1GB.

    so long,


  • Kodi has rather long standing and yet unresolved issues with image handling (eg with pictures but also movie etc artwork) and is consuming too much (graphics) memory - which often leads to out-of-memory crashes.

    Is that what the individual 4kb mmap'd /dev/dri/renderD128 pages are all about in pmap? I noticed that with LE 10, and wondered what was going on there.

    00000000f2e6a000 4 0 0 0 rw-s /dev/dri/renderD128

    00000000f2e6b000 4 0 0 0 rw-s /dev/dri/renderD128

    00000000f2e6c000 4 0 0 0 rw-s /dev/dri/renderD128

  • i been running RPi4B 2GB fine since last year.

    only issues for me is the random bugs in LE that break skins on Rpi but not on generic.

    its been broken since October and devs who make skin dont use pie so not sure whats wrong but I raised bug for it on github no response yet.

    swapped back to my NUC until I know its been fixed.