Thinkcat
Posts: 28
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:50 pm
Location: Finland

How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:44 am

Hello

Planning to buy my first Pi 4. The 2 GB version is immediately available. The 4 GB version requires a 2 to 3 week wait.

What do people generally think? How many have bought the 2 GB version but would really have wanted the 4 GB version?

And how many have bought the 4 GB version but clearly see that 2 GB would have been enough?

I know, from my experience with Pi 3, that 1 GB is not enough for GUI applications, but goes nice as a small headless server.

Does 4 GB make sense as a media center vs. 2 GB?

trejan
Posts: 878
Joined: Tue Jul 02, 2019 2:28 pm

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:08 am

Thinkcat wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:44 am
The 4 GB version requires a 2 to 3 week wait.
If you want it a bit faster then Pimoroni has stock of the 4GB version. Shipping to Finland costs £5 and will take 3-7 working days.
Thinkcat wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:44 am
Does 4 GB make sense as a media center vs. 2 GB?
2GB will be plenty for a media center. LibreELEC ran fine on older RPi boards with only 1GB anyway.

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Imperf3kt
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Location: Australia

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:18 am

I bought a 2GB version as it was what I asked for several years ago when the Pi3b only had 1GB :P

My use case is very GPU heavy, so I need to dedicate it a fair chunk of RAM which I couldn't do on the previous model Pis without starving the system of its needs.

Although I have not yet used my Pi4b for the same tasks, I've been having trouble using that full 2GB of RAM, so for me it's plenty.
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W. H. Heydt
Posts: 11085
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2012 7:36 pm
Location: Vallejo, CA (US)

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:26 am

Thinkcat wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:44 am
Hello

Planning to buy my first Pi 4. The 2 GB version is immediately available. The 4 GB version requires a 2 to 3 week wait.

What do people generally think? How many have bought the 2 GB version but would really have wanted the 4 GB version?

And how many have bought the 4 GB version but clearly see that 2 GB would have been enough?

I know, from my experience with Pi 3, that 1 GB is not enough for GUI applications, but goes nice as a small headless server.

Does 4 GB make sense as a media center vs. 2 GB?
First, I do things with the GUI desktop on 1GB Pis all the time, so I think your assertion that that isn't enough is--at best--marginally correct.

I checked out the Pi4B4 that I have to verify that everything worked. I have 2 Pi4B2 boards that have been checked out and will be put to use over labor day weekend. One will be looping a set of short videos. The other will be either web access to a convention site (if WiFi is available where I'll be set up), or it will be a looping slide show. I haven't done anything with my Pi4B1 yet.

My take is that I agree with results from the RPF/RPT. For general desktop use, the Pi4B2 is just fine. You don't need a Pi4B4 unless you're going to be doing pretty heavy development work.

In your shoes, I'd go ahead and get the Pi4B2. If it proves inadequate to your task, redeploy it to some other use and get a Pi4B4. By the time you've determined that, Pi4B4 board supply may have caught up with demand.

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Gavinmc42
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Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:04 am

Get what is in stock.
I got the 4B1 first and had over a month of fun with it using it as a replacement desktop.
Got the 4B2 last week and now Gentoo64 is out I will get another month of new fun before the 4B4 arrives.

They are all fun.
My serious work like compiling very big stuff need the 4GB version, but I did quite a lot on the 1GB version.
I'm dancing on Rainbows.
Raspberries are not Apples or Oranges

goodburner
Posts: 59
Joined: Sun Jun 16, 2019 3:20 am

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 5:30 am

I have a 4GB board and I've never seen it consume more than about 1.5 GB even with many Chromium tabs open. I think that will change if we get a stable 64 bit kernel, hopefully.

takyon
Posts: 44
Joined: Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:05 am

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:30 am

goodburner wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 5:30 am
I have a 4GB board and I've never seen it consume more than about 1.5 GB even with many Chromium tabs open. I think that will change if we get a stable 64 bit kernel, hopefully.
I'm at 2.6 GB with about 60 tabs open and no other applications. Some of the tabs aren't actually loaded from when I closed and reopened the browser. I have gotten as high as 3.5 GB. This is not an efficient use of the tabs, but it's one way to do it.

For LibreELEC, 2 GB is probably sufficient. 1 GB is also sufficient, but 2 GB can take care of some edge cases like 4K video, addon bloat, or whatever.

alphanumeric
Posts: 2164
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:17 pm
Location: Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 8:22 am

I wanted a 4 gig so I did a "notify me" at Pimoroni. A bit of a risk and a bit of a wait but I snagged one a few days latter. Took a week and a bit to get it in my hands though. I cheaped out on the shipping and as a result it went snail mail.

lingon
Posts: 122
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 7:31 am

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 11:09 am

Thinkcat wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:44 am
Hello

Planning to buy my first Pi 4. The 2 GB version is immediately available. The 4 GB version requires a 2 to 3 week wait.

What do people generally think? How many have bought the 2 GB version but would really have wanted the 4 GB version?

And how many have bought the 4 GB version but clearly see that 2 GB would have been enough?

I know, from my experience with Pi 3, that 1 GB is not enough for GUI applications, but goes nice as a small headless server.

Does 4 GB make sense as a media center vs. 2 GB?
If you can afford the extra cost, then the 4 GB Raspberry Pi 4 is actually available in stock in Finland with a delivery time of 1-4 days:
https://www.data-systems.fi/tuote/raspb ... icro-hdmi/

k-pi
Posts: 930
Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:46 pm
Location: Upper Hale, Surrey, UK.

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 11:13 am

It makes sense to get the one with the most ram that you can afford, the same as with any other computer. 8-)

I bought a 4GB - web browsers have a tendency to need more ram over time, so I should be safe for a few years now. ;)

SueGeo
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:03 am

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 12:52 pm

k-pi wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 11:13 am
It makes sense to get the one with the most ram that you can afford, the same as with any other computer. 8-)

I bought a 4GB - web browsers have a tendency to need more ram over time, so I should be safe for a few years now. ;)
Since my first 286 in the 80s, what's worked for me, is to get what I need or what's available at the time. By the time needs change, there will be better/faster/cheaper available.

W. H. Heydt
Posts: 11085
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2012 7:36 pm
Location: Vallejo, CA (US)

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:23 pm

SueGeo wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 12:52 pm
k-pi wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 11:13 am
It makes sense to get the one with the most ram that you can afford, the same as with any other computer. 8-)

I bought a 4GB - web browsers have a tendency to need more ram over time, so I should be safe for a few years now. ;)
Since my first 286 in the 80s, what's worked for me, is to get what I need or what's available at the time. By the time needs change, there will be better/faster/cheaper available.
I was going to say something like that... By the time normal desktop usage needs more than 2GB, one will probably be able to replace it with a Pi5 or Pi6.

ejolson
Posts: 3820
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:47 am

Re: How's it been going with 2 GB vs. 4 GB?

Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:03 pm

W. H. Heydt wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:23 pm
SueGeo wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 12:52 pm
k-pi wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 11:13 am
It makes sense to get the one with the most ram that you can afford, the same as with any other computer. 8-)

I bought a 4GB - web browsers have a tendency to need more ram over time, so I should be safe for a few years now. ;)
Since my first 286 in the 80s, what's worked for me, is to get what I need or what's available at the time. By the time needs change, there will be better/faster/cheaper available.
I was going to say something like that... By the time normal desktop usage needs more than 2GB, one will probably be able to replace it with a Pi5 or Pi6.
There are some who have observed the normal desktop RAM footprint of RISC OS on the Raspberry Pi fits easily within 512MB.

Raspian, on the other hand, is based on different software that is developed for 64-bit Intel-compatible machines with 8GB RAM and more. As a result, the memory footprint of Raspbian is much larger and likely to grow further. Running a current Linux desktop in 1GB has recently been a problem because of the web browser. As time goes on, more things like systemd and dbus will be added which use additional memory in order to run things faster and in parallel. Since very few developers of various softwares and regression suites classify increased memory use as a serious problem, the corollary to Parkinson's law still holds: The desktop will expand to fill all available memory.

In the same way there is a structural tendency of bureaucracies to make work for themselves, so too the frameworks and build systems of modern languages have a tendency to encourage code bloat.

I bought the 2GB model. While 4GB would have made deduplication of BTRFS volumes more practical, it is otherwise working fine.

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