2 x 512 or 1gb

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by macsrockmysocks, Mar 28, 2006.

  1. macsrockmysocks macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2006
    I did not see any other threads concerning this so why not:
    My friend is thinking about getting a iMac, but he doesn't know if he should get the 2 512 sticks of RAM or the 1 GB RAM(I helped switch this person from windows:) )
  2. eva01 macrumors 601


    Feb 22, 2005
    Gah! Plymouth
    1GB one sitck is always better than 2 of 512.

    In this case
  3. Applespider macrumors G4


    Jan 20, 2004
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    Can I vote for keeping the standard 512KB in there and buying a 1GB stick? Probably not much dearer (given Apple's usual RAM prices) and he'll get more performance.
  4. Aramis macrumors member


    Feb 25, 2006
    East Coast
    I originally went with the 1 GB stick on my MBP. It allows for future upgrades without having an extra stick to get rid of (since theres only 2 slots). I have also read reports that performance tests were shown to be slightly faster with 1 stick instead of 2 (i.e. 1 GB stick instead of 2x512).

    Hope this helps.
  5. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

    Aug 1, 2004
    The City of Culture, Englandshire
    I'll go along with the 1GB stick too. Am I right in thinking that the iMac only has one spare RAM slot? If that is the case, having the single stick would leave your friend with the chance to expand his memory further in the future, without having to dump a stick first.
  6. tag macrumors 6502a


    Apr 29, 2005
    PA, US
    After reading this I went looking at Apple's website for intel iMacs and they list 2x512 and 1x1GB for the same price, now why in the world would anyone ever purchase the 2x512 at that price?

    Attached Files:

  7. Artful Dodger macrumors 68020

    Artful Dodger

    May 28, 2004
    In a false sense of reality...My Mind!
    Well, it is easy to install the ram yourself so he could get the 1GB stick and add it to the 512 giving the 1.5GB total.
  8. grapes911 Moderator emeritus


    Jul 28, 2003
    Citizens Bank Park
    I assume the new iMacs support Dual channel. You'll get a slight speed improvement with matched pairs. I would rather have the 1GB stick now and save the extra slot for another gig stick down the line.
  9. macsrockmysocks thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2006
  10. Caitlyn macrumors 6502a

    Jun 30, 2005
    Have you decided what you're going to do? The 1x1GB stick is better because you won't have an extra 512 MB to get rid of if you ever upgrade again. Also, if they are the same price, why not, right? :)
  11. nutmac macrumors 68030

    Mar 30, 2004
    No. Since MBP has dual-channel memory architecture, 2 matching sticks (2x512MB) will yield faster performance overall. Not too significantly mind you (perhaps 5% at the most since FSB is 667MHz), but it's definitely not slower. That said, you will likely want more than 1GB eventually, so going for 1x1GB or 512MB (factory) + 1GB (add-on) would be wiser (or even better, 2x2GB).
  12. janey macrumors 603


    Dec 20, 2002
    sunny los angeles
    apple also rips you off when it comes to RAM prices...
    i got the same ram for my mac mini for about $200 shipped (2x1gb sticks) - considering how that's basically $200 for those 2 gigs of ram plus the 2x256mb that came with the mini that i can use to make keychains.... :D :p :eek: :eek:

    newegg has ram for the iMac for like $60-100, pick the brand you want (mushkin's pretty good, and it's about $97 for a 1gb stick)
  13. gauchogolfer macrumors 603


    Jan 28, 2005
    American Riviera
    Similar question here, might be stupid

    So I've currently got 2x512 MB RAM in my Rev D Powerbook, and I'm thinking about upgrading since I notice I'm pushing the redline in Activity Monitor on a consistent basis. I've looked for 1GB RAM at newegg, and found crucial RAM for about $120 (this was discussed in an earlier thread of mine).

    My question is, how much of an improvement am I likely to see; i.e. will the unmatched 512MB+1GB cause me any problems? I'm pretty sure that the benefit will outweigh any drawbacks, but before spending the money I thought I'd check with the experts here. Thanks for the advice.

  14. gnasher729 macrumors G5


    Nov 25, 2005
    Mixed RAM chips will just work fine without problems, as long as you actually buy RAM that is compatible with your computer. You should be fine with Crucial, as long as you buy the memory for _your_ computer and not the one for a similar computer that is $10 cheaper.

    There is a loss of speed with unmatched memory. However, someone posted actual measurements here on MacRumors a while ago, and the difference was less than one percent. 512 + 1Gig will most definitely make your Mac run faster than 512 + 512. 1Gig + 1Gig would be even faster, but obviously more expensive, so 512 + 1Gig will give you a good improvement for your money. And of course you lose nothing by trying out 512+1Gig first.
  15. SamJ macrumors member

    Mar 10, 2006
    def go for the 1gb stick from apple. if ur willing to spend slightly more buy the base model ram 512mb and get a stick elsewhere.
  16. gauchogolfer macrumors 603


    Jan 28, 2005
    American Riviera
    Thanks gnasher729,

    I've got a stick of 512 Crucial already, so I'll likely go ahead and get another from them in the 1GB variety to replace the 512 that shipped with my Powerbook.

  17. miniConvert macrumors 68040


    Mar 4, 2006
    Kent, UK - the 'Garden of England'.
    It depends whether they will ever want to add extra RAM. I'd imagine that 1GB is going to be fine for a long time. If they're unlikely to want to upgrade then go for the two 512MB sticks so they're matched and faster. The speed difference may be small but if they're not going to add extra RAM later they might as well take advantage of it!
  18. gauchogolfer macrumors 603


    Jan 28, 2005
    American Riviera
    I went ahead, took the plunge, and ordered 1GB from OWC. Should make it to California next week...here's to snappier computing! Now I just have to find someone to take the spare 512MB one off of my hands....
  19. ipacmm macrumors 65816


    Jun 17, 2003
    Cincinnati, OH

    The extra 1GB stick will really help you Mac, I would try to post the 512 stick in the marketplace or I would try ebay to sell it.

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