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View Full Version : Can you upgrade RAM in the new MBA yourself?




Harmush
Nov 29, 2010, 06:29 PM
I am thinking about buying the new 11" MBA. But 4GB ram from apple is expensive compared to say Crucial.
I will upgrade myself, as I have done with my MBP if this is an option? Is the ram on the new MBA actually set into the logic board or can you swap RAM as you please with it?



snorkelman
Nov 29, 2010, 06:33 PM
sorry, soldered directly onto the board, throw away any ideas of upgrading it yourself

Harmush
Nov 29, 2010, 06:42 PM
Might just make do with 2GB then or bite the bullet and upgrade to 4GB only extra 70 with educational discount.

Anonymous Freak
Nov 29, 2010, 06:45 PM
The cost is still noticeably higher than what a 2 GB SO-DIMM should cost. Unless you have a known need for it, the Air has enough other compromises that 2 GB of RAM isn't likely to be your limiting factor for most things.

Obviously, if you DO have use-cases that require lots of RAM, go for it, though!

Apple OC
Nov 29, 2010, 07:05 PM
I recommend going with 4GB on the new Air (I think it is only @ $100)

It will make your new machine a little more future proof, and add a bit more resale value down the road. :cool:

millerb7
Nov 29, 2010, 07:08 PM
You can do it yourself, just have to have soldering-how-to sense about you ;)

I do not... just saying.

Anyways, @ $100 for 4GB ram instead of 2GB... DO IT!

You will love yourself come next year or the year after when you upgrade your SSD to something other than the crap apple sticks in there... you'll want that ram then.

wpotere
Nov 29, 2010, 07:17 PM
You can do it yourself, just have to have soldering-how-to sense about you ;)



I so do not recommend this. I can't even tell you the number of circuit cards I melted learning how to do a proper solder. Not easy to do by any means.... Pony up the cash. ;)

TEG
Nov 29, 2010, 07:22 PM
Just like when you buy other Apple Products, and you are told to get the fastest processor possible, with the MBA it is also get as much memory as possible since you can't upgrade it, there aren't even holes in the Logic Board for more chips.

TEG

gwsat
Nov 29, 2010, 09:30 PM
I so do not recommend this. I can't even tell you the number of circuit cards I melted learning how to do a proper solder. Not easy to do by any means.... Pony up the cash. ;)
+1. Soldering a component on a circuit board is far from a trivial exercise. Further, an extra 2GB of RAM for the MBA goes for only $100, which is a bargain in Apple World.

powerbook911
Nov 30, 2010, 12:30 PM
I just ordered the 1199 model because Amazon had it for 1098 delivered to my door, grand total. Plus I get 3 percent back (about $33) with my Amazon Visa.


Doing a build to order on Apple.com even with education discount, came to something like $300+ more.

The RAM might be worth $100, but is it worth $300???

I can return the Amazon one and do a BTO if I have to, but might the $300+ just be better used towards getting the next Air when it comes out?


Will 2GB really suffer? I currently don't use a Mac with anything other than 4GB except my Mac Mini which has 2 GB but is only used for video as its hooked to TV, it's fine, but of course it also has a better processor.

halledise
Nov 30, 2010, 01:01 PM
maxed out memory is the go.

interestingly, an Air with 4gb shows up in system profiler as 2x 2gb sticks thus leading me to think there are actually 2 slots on the logic board not just one.

sotiredofsoup
Nov 30, 2010, 01:29 PM
The cost is still noticeably higher than what a 2 GB SO-DIMM should cost.


That's because it's 1 x 4GB stick of ram when you upgrade it. Not that that justifies the cost, but 4GB sticks are obviously more expensive than 2GB.

powerbook911
Nov 30, 2010, 07:10 PM
So 2 GB -> 4GB of ram on this tiny computer is worth $400 you guys think?

Anonymous Freak
Nov 30, 2010, 07:47 PM
So 2 GB -> 4GB of ram on this tiny computer is worth $400 you guys think?

Not even close. If the only difference is RAM, that is *VERY* much a no-brainer against.

powerbook911
Dec 1, 2010, 12:07 AM
Not even close. If the only difference is RAM, that is *VERY* much a no-brainer against.

Cool. I'll keep my $370 then. Again, I think the $370 is better saved, and combined with the sell of this Air, pay for the next Air when it comes out. I know it's not a $370 difference for everyone, but in my case, calculating everything, this is the difference.

I just wanted to double check though. :) ha. Thanks for your backing of my decision.

Again, the display is so small and whatnot, I just don't see that I"ll ever do anything too ram hungry. I suspect this is why Apple doesn't have any standard 4GB models too, they know the 2GB is fine for this machine.

At least I'll hope it works out for me. :) Fingers crossed.

alust2013
Dec 1, 2010, 12:21 AM
Cool. I'll keep my $370 then. Again, I think the $370 is better saved, and combined with the sell of this Air, pay for the next Air when it comes out. I know it's not a $370 difference for everyone, but in my case, calculating everything, this is the difference.

I just wanted to double check though. :) ha. Thanks for your backing of my decision.

Again, the display is so small and whatnot, I just don't see that I"ll ever do anything too ram hungry. I suspect this is why Apple doesn't have any standard 4GB models too, they know the 2GB is fine for this machine.

At least I'll hope it works out for me. :) Fingers crossed.

Whoa, wait a minute, the upgrade of RAM from 2GB to 4GB is only $100, not $400.

powerbook911
Dec 1, 2010, 11:14 AM
Whoa, wait a minute, the upgrade of RAM from 2GB to 4GB is only $100, not $400.

If you're buying from Apple yes.

If you got elsewhere on black friday and factor in your total "to your door," price. I saved $370 by getting the 2GB model elsewhere instead of the 4GB model from Apple. I can't argue with that I don't think.

vix2000
Dec 1, 2010, 11:32 AM
Might just make do with 2GB then or bite the bullet and upgrade to 4GB only extra 70 with educational discount.

Hi I just paid 139 for extra 2gb ram with uni discount?????

dmelgar
Dec 1, 2010, 08:21 PM
If you're buying from Apple yes.

If you got elsewhere on black friday and factor in your total "to your door," price. I saved $370 by getting the 2GB model elsewhere instead of the 4GB model from Apple. I can't argue with that I don't think.

I don't follow. How did you save $370 by buying a lesser model somewhere else? No one discounts the air $270.

Harmush
Dec 1, 2010, 11:09 PM
Hi I just paid 139 for extra 2gb ram with uni discount?????

Coming up as 70 for me on the site. Maybe it's different depending on the university. I doubt that highly though but it does ask so maybe.

Thiol
Dec 2, 2010, 02:19 AM
maxed out memory is the go.

interestingly, an Air with 4gb shows up in system profiler as 2x 2gb sticks thus leading me to think there are actually 2 slots on the logic board not just one.

Just noticed that too. Weird. Has anyone torn down an Air with upgraded RAM?

vix2000
Dec 2, 2010, 01:32 PM
Coming up as 70 for me on the site. Maybe it's different depending on the university. I doubt that highly though but it does ask so maybe.

You're right, just checked and it should be 69.33!!! Will have to check at the store as they really hadn't a clue. Thanks for alerting me to this, btw.

Harmush
Dec 2, 2010, 07:30 PM
You're right, just checked and it should be 69.33!!! Will have to check at the store as they really hadn't a clue. Thanks for alerting me to this, btw.

No problem man. I'm seriously considering buying a MBA with my next loan installment. Are you getting a maintenance loan too? 911 every 4 months. Pay for it in years to come. I'll take that thank you.

vix2000
Dec 2, 2010, 09:37 PM
I bought it for my daughter who gets various grants/loans and as she says she will be in debt for years!!!

chillywilly
Dec 4, 2010, 11:31 AM
In my "should I or shouldn't I" configuration of the 11" MBA, I always add the 4Gb of RAM. Worth the extra $100, IMO.

powerbook911
Dec 5, 2010, 12:17 AM
Apple must figure 2GB is good for many users of the Air.

They have been good about bringing most machines up to 4GB.

It is a bit of a shame such a great machine doesn't have 4GB standard, so that those who can't BTO, to get a good deal or sale or whatnot, aren't stuck with 2GB.

loslosbaby
Dec 5, 2010, 03:16 AM
Not only is it "soldered" but the parts are fine-pitched...I've seen two women that could hand-solder fine-pitch stuff, and they were 5-ft tall Cambodian women (nicest gals you'd ever meet) and had 20 years experience...

...so, you'd need a "manipulator" and those are expensive! Google it!

The MBA is an appliance, "no user-servicable parts inside" like the old TV's used to say!

G.

ufkdo
Dec 5, 2010, 07:00 AM
As far as I know, neither yourself nor service/engineers can do this. You should throw away the motherboard, etc.

Anonymous Freak
Dec 13, 2010, 06:58 PM
Not only is it "soldered" but the parts are fine-pitched...I've seen two women that could hand-solder fine-pitch stuff, and they were 5-ft tall Cambodian women (nicest gals you'd ever meet) and had 20 years experience...

...so, you'd need a "manipulator" and those are expensive! Google it!

The MBA is an appliance, "no user-servicable parts inside" like the old TV's used to say!

G.

When I worked at Intel, we had a few women (why is it always women?) who did that. They were a fairly standard U.S. tech industry mix of national background. They weren't even necessarily "small" women, either. Whenever we had a pre-production board that needed tweaking (desoldering and replacing the BIOS chip, for example,) upstairs to the rework shop it went!