How important is RAM in gaming?

I'm thinking of buying some RAM, but I'm not sure it's worth it. This is what I have in mind:

My current RAM is 3 gb total: 2xgb@667MHz 1x1gb@800MHz

Now, my question is: will I see a performance boost in high-end-DX10 games?

btw: I have a phenom 2 x3 720BE@3ghz  on a m3n-78pro mobo and I do OC, so I also need stability and OC-ability, xfx 9600gt

In my country that RAM kit is around 55-60 bucks...

Well your GPU will directly affect your FPS, but the ram will get you faster loading times (really good for online games)

However, 3gb seems to be good for the games that are out now. I have 4gb and things load up almost instantly, I'm usually one of the first few people to get in game when the server changes maps, and single player games have very short level loading times.

So faster loading times... thats good, but what about OCability?

Ive never OC'd ram before, maybe somone else can help you on that.

I doubt you would want to OC that ram much... I typically only try to oc the high end gaming ram... but ram doesn't equal massive speed increases like many think... getting better ram might give you 1-2 extra fps... spend that same money on a new GPU and you will get an extra 50fps...

here is my order of importance:

sound card

Hey thanks guys! So I should save up some more money and get a better gpu like a GTX 250 or GTX 260 right?

Yea, upgrade to a newer GPU and it will make a much bigger difference in the way your games run. Upgrading 3gb ram right now doesnt seem necessary, that's still a pretty good amount to have.

Getting a gtx260 core 216 card would be a good way to get some higher end performance. That'll run you about $200, little more, little less, depending what brand you get and where you shop. But that card will last you for awhile.

The gtx 260 core216 would be great, but unfourtunately it's out uf my budget... I think I'll get the gtx 260 after I sell my 9600gt for around 80 bucks. What power requirements does a gtx260 have? Because I dont think my noname 450watt psu will power it.. =\

I think you need a 550W psu minimum for a GTX 260. The amount of memory is dependent on the operating system your running. You need a 64 bit OS to utilize more than 3.6Gb of RAM.Â

I stepped up to DDR3 with the Phenom 2 720, and can honestly say I have seen a very slight difference between DDR2 1066 and DDR3 1333 @ 1400.Â

I think you might be able to run an ATI 4830 on your psu though and those are only ~ $80.

Speed of ram, doesn't really affect gaming if not at all. Its the capicity, if you don't have enough ram to support whatever it is your running then it will lag. I'm sure you experinced this on a old computer with like too much apps open. Also for your build, 3Gigs is ok, 4GB is better espically if your running vista and want to play a ram eating game like crysis.

OK I'm not getting ram anymore, I'm looking for gpu's... To be more accurate, the new HD4770. It has some pretty impressive specs: 40nm manufacturing process, which means lower power consumption (this gpu consumes 80 WATTS!!), lower temperatures, higher OC, DDR5 memory at 3200MHz. The downside is small memory bus: 128-bit and the fact that MY FAVORITE ONLINE IT SHOP DOESNT HAVE IT ON STOCK!!
Oh and btw, IT'S DIRT CHEAP! 120 bucks

Now the alternative would be the GTS 250: 55nm core, ddr3 memory at 2240 MHz, wider bus: 256 which means greater bandwith, same core clock: 750MHz. The only thing is that the hd4770 has 40 nm process and the gts250 has 55nm process, but given the better overall specs and better drivers from nvidia I think the gts 250 is more powerful
This one is a little more expensive: 150 bucks for the PALIT model and 166 for the EVGA one...

I think I should get the GTS 250... tell me what you guys think

Go for a 4850. It's a little better than a 4770 and this one is only $100 + free shipping! I'd get it, but I already have a 9800GTX+. You're not currently in Romania are you?

Unfortunately I am in Romania... and a 4850 with a nice dual-slot cooler from Sapphire is 160$ :( It sucks. Does Newegg ship internationally too? I'll gladly buy it from them if they do...

My personal experience about RAM upgrading is that i got up to 10 more fps in crysis warhead (i upgraded from 667mhz Mushkin 2gb kit to a G.E.I.L. 4gb kit with 800mhz -> clocked down to 780 mhz for better timings and because of my cpu overclock).
Also FarCry 2 was faster in loading because with the 2 gigs i only had like 15 fps in the first half hour of playing and now the game has immediately about 30 fps!

Note: Crysis WH took 750 mb of my old 2gigs and now it is able to take like 1,5gig from my 4 gigs so in my opinion its much better to have much RAM in new games.

well i have 4Gb of Corsair Dominator 1066Mhz DDR2 RAM and it works realy great you might want to try that, and if you dont want to spend alot on a GPU look at some of the ATI cards but also the 9800gtx