3rd party notebook ram

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by DJIceT, Oct 4, 2005.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    #1
    Which are friendly/compatible:

    Crucial (Samsung, Micron)

    Kingston?
    KingMax?

    OCZ? (for pc mods mostly i think?)
     
  2. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #2
    Hmmm.
    You can't make a generality of brandnames. The key is to get the right module for your specific model Mac. How do you know it's right? It's right if the seller tests and guarantees compatibility with your Mac -- regardless of brand. There is not much difference at all in quality and reliability between Grade A RAM modules, and absolutely no difference in speed of performance in your Powerbook.

    Kingston and Crucial make good RAM, just 99 % of it is not for Macs. It is risky to pick up generic RAM, even if it is Crucial or Kingston, from discount sellers who don't guarantee compatibility. You can pretty much be assured that sellers like NewBestTigerEggFryCompBuyOutpost.com are not selling Mac-tested and guaranteed RAM.

    The issue, besides whether the chip organization and speed are to specification, is whether the Serial Presence Detect settings are programmed correctly. If not set correctly, the memory may not work, may be flakey, or may work until your next OS or formware update. Different Macs have different tolerance for incorrect settings; the Powerbook G4 15" 1.0 and 1.25, and 17" 1.0 and 1.33 are the most notorious for rejecting marginal RAM.

    Thanks
    Trevor
    CanadaRam.com
     
  3. macrumors regular

    native00

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Location:
    San Diego
    #3
    Yes, it really depends on what your model prefers. i was sold some Kingston RAM for my 15" PB and the machine just wasn't having it...I took it back and it much preferred some generic stuff. Seems weird to me, but hey...whatever works is what I need.
     
  4. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    #4
    Same idea the other posters declared. I had Powerbook who loved generic ram more than it liked Kingston or other major brands. I thought this was quite weird because the ram was within specifications. Usually, if I was buying ram I would go with Crucial if I had the extra money because they are the best in my opinion. I have seen Crucial simply work from the Powermac G3 to my new iMac G5. But, I do not buy it often because it is usually the higher price of the ram brands.
     
  5. macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #5
    CanadaRAM is right. I just spent a month buying and sending back Crucial RAM that didn't work in my PB. Go here:

    http://www.datamem.com/default.asp

    It will work and save you a TON of hassle.
     
  6. macrumors 6502

    Epicurus

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2005
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #6

    I tried upgrading my 15" PowerBook (1.25 GHz, FW800) with 2GB of KingMax twice (I returned the first pair and tried again). No luck on either. The system would boot with one stick in along with the old 512MB stock stick, but not with both from KingMax. Even with just one stick, the system was buggy and crashed with the slightest provocation. It was an ugly side of my Mac that I don't ever want to have to deal with again.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    #7
    so i guess it's not just a matter of the computer taking it or not, and if it takes it, it might not work well, or have problems sometimes?

    so it's really a trial and error thing?
     
  8. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #8
    Not if you buy from a reseller who tests and guarantees compatibility with your Mac. Really, that's the safest way to go.

    Trying to pick your own is a crapshoot because the information you need to know (including the SPD settings) is not part of the specifications.

    Thanks
    Trevor
    CanadaRAM.com
     
  9. macrumors 68000

    mklos

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2002
    Location:
    My house!
    #9
    I bought a 1GB SODIMM Kingston DDR RAM for my 17" PowerBook G4 and it worked like a charm!

    I usually buy my RAM from

    www.crucial.com

    www.4allmemory.com

    www.memorytogo.com

    I just compare these 3 resellers and pick the cheapest. I've never had a problem with any of the 3 above. The RAM has always worked the first time and continues working. All 3 companies have a lifetime warranty on the RAM.
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    mpopkin

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, NC
    #10
    crucial by far, i have bought crucial for the last 3 macs i own and for some pc's as well, not only are they relatively cheap compared to apple's ram, but they are great quality. In terms of quality, Crucial is top notch, apple uses both crucial and samsung memory in the g5 and powerbook/ibooks and dell does as well, that should be enough evidence that it is good quality.
    I recommend Crucial completely

     
  11. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #11
    No, Appple never has and never will use Crucial brand memory. Apple buys memory on contract from Samsung, IBM, Hynix, and Micron (Crucial's parent company). Micron makes a minority of the RAM used in G5's and Powerbooks. Apple has been pretty consistently putting Samsung in the Powerbooks, (haven't seen a stock Micron unit in a PB since the iBook G3) but that may change without notice of course.

    Not all Crucial RAM is Micron either, Crucial buys from both Samsung and Infineon as well as their parent.

    Crucial is good RAM (it is if you get the right model for your machine) but I'm saying that Crucial enjoys the popular myth that Apple uses their RAM exclusively or partially.

    For my money, if you are in the USA a module from Data Memory System s is a better value than Crucial.
     
  12. macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2005
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #12
    im thinking upgrading my ram too. factory is 512, do you think its okay to run 1 1gb and 1 512MB? or you think i should change both to 1gb?
    another question. i found a couple of ram on ebay, OptiVAL, Samsung, Macramdirect.com, and a few no namers... which of theses are the trustworthy ones?
     
  13. macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2005
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #13
  14. macrumors 68000

    Veritas&Equitas

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2005
    Location:
    Twin Cities, MN
    #14
    I've never had any problem with the Crucial memory I've bought for my PB's from newegg.com. If you aren't a numbnut and understand what you're buying, you can't go wrong with their price and service. So far, buying memory from them for my friends' and my own PB's has saved me over $100 in the past couple of years.
     
  15. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #15
    Problem: There is no way for you to understand what you are buying because compatibility depends on specifications that you never see (SPD values and internal row and column organization) and that you cannot determine on your own (other than trial and error).

    Given that NewEgg does not guarantee compatibilty, does not sell the part numbers that Crucial guarantees compatibility on, and that sending back RAM for refund will cost you shipping charges and possibly 15% restocking charges, then I think that "can't go wrong" may be more hopeful than accurate.

    If your generic RAM from NewEgg has worked, you've been lucky, or you have a tolerant machine.
     
  16. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #16
    Adding 1 Gb to a 512 is just fine
    Stay away from the noname and ebay sellers, go with a reputable seller.
    While the RAM from this eBay seller is advertised to be the proper Samsung model, I really have an aversion to
    1) Ebay sellers (of products with lifetime warranties) and
    2) Companies that make over-the-top and unsupportable claims about their products and
    3) companies that have UGLY UGLY graphic design of their ads.

    Why take a chance, when there are reputable sellers that have been recommended many times here, who test and guarantee Mac compatibility, offer a lifetime warranty, and no-cost return if it doesn't work?

    Among the sellers most often recommended here are Crucial themselves, OWC (MacSales), 18004Memory (Coast to Coast) and my favorite US seller Data Memory Systems
     
  17. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #17
    I just bought Transcend (Samsung) 1 GB PC2700 RAM last night for my PowerBook G4 17-inch. It should be here around Wednesday. I went with this brand since it is the same that came with my system originally. I've had problems with Centon memory, so I suggest staying away from them. CompUSA gave me it to me when upgrading to 1 GB of RAM and had kernal panicks. Removed it a while ago and has been fine since then... I hope all goes well with the new RAM I just ordered.
     
  18. macrumors 68000

    Veritas&Equitas

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2005
    Location:
    Twin Cities, MN
    #18
    Personally, I think your statements are off. "You've been lucky, or you have a tolerant machine." Or 7 tolerant machines (Powerbooks) in a row. Truthfully, I don't really care about the exact compatibility of the RAM; if it works, it WORKS. I read numerous customer reviews of the memory on newegg, and all of them say certain memory works with their Rev. whatever PB, and there wasn't ONE, not ONE, that says the memory didn't work in their PB.
    I don't know if you always suggest Data Memory Systems because you work for them or affiliated with them, but it always seems when people have RAM questions you try to shy them away from the cheaper stuff that works just as well from newegg towards more expensive RAM somewhere else. Maybe I've just been lucky with 7 Powerbooks in a row, but the memory I've bought from newegg has worked just fine in each and every one of them. If I can save that kind of money based on a 100% track record over the past 2 years, call me stupid, or "lucky," but I'll go that route every single time thank you. Why spend at least $25-50 more for stuff that works the exact same?
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    calyxman

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2005
    #19
    I found a 512 stick from DataMem for my iBook 600 Mhz.

    Only problem is, it doesn't say what the CAS latency is. The iBook developers manual for my model iBook states that it's CAS 2. Isn't it true the lower the number the better?

    Newegg also carries the modules I need, only cheaper. But they have two types, a CAS 3 and CAS 2. The CAS 2 module is roughly $85.

    Any ideas?
     
  20. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #20
    I repeat: you have been lucky or you have had 7 machines in a row that were tolerant enough to take the CT12864X335 chip. This chip is what Crucial sells for about 60% of DDR Powerbooks and iBooks.
    But 15" 1.0 and 1.25 GHz Powerbooks and 17" 1.0 and 1.33 GHz Powerbooks in my experience will fail with this module (whereas the 1.5 MHz and 1.67 MHz DDR machines generally will have no troubles). My experience by the way extends over 17 years and somewhere over 20,000 modules.

    I agree with you, if the Crucial RAM works, it works. Just that you don't know 100% ahead of time if it will or not, so it's up to you to do the testing. If you are comfortable with doing your own work on your Mac, that's not too much of a hardship. If you are new to upgrading Macs though (as are most of the people who are asking on this forum) then the prospect of having to test and send back may be too high of a risk to save $10 - 20 per module. For those people, a guaranteed module is the better choice.

    It's a bigger problem with the non-Crucial brands that NewEgg and other discounters sell such as Kingmax and Patriot etc. - these often vary in their composition week to week, so the compatibility is more variable.

    The worst case scenario is that marginally compatible RAM works initially, and then an OS upgrade (such as the Tiger upgrade from 10.2/10.3) tightens the tolerances and the RAM starts throwing errors or is rejected.


    My criteria for recommending Mac RAM to a MR member are
    1) The vendor is reputable (NewEgg is, many eBay sellers would not be considered to be)
    2) The vendor tests their RAM (NewEgg does not)
    3) The vendor guarantees compatibility (NewEgg does not)
    4) The RAM has a lifetime warranty (Most NewEgg RAM does, other than thier off-brand specials)
    5) The vendor offers a no-cost return if it doesn't work (NewEgg has a 15% restocking fee on non-defective refunds)

    I recommend Data Memory Systems because I have dealt with them for over 5 years, they meet all of the criteria, they are honest, and they know and use Macs.
     
  21. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #21
    The iBook will run both CL2 and CL3 modules at the same speed, so it doesn't make any effective difference. More important is whether the module has 16 chips on it (high density 8-chip modules won't work) and the SPD values have been written correctly.
     
  22. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #22
    Is Corsair Value Select okay for Powerbooks?

    I've read conflicting reports regarding the Kingston generic stuff, but the reports I've read about Corsair seem okay...
     
  23. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #23
    Same answer: Corsair doesn't guarantee their generic ValueSelect compatible with Macs, so it's a cr@pshoot. They have their SystemSelect RAM for Mac compatibility.

    Their ValueSelect RAM IMO is strictly a low-cost product -- the PCBoards on their DDR-2 stuff is much thinner than the rest of the industry is using.
     
  24. macrumors 603

    OutThere

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #24
    While it seems that CanadaRAM really knows his stuff...I'll add my little anecdote that I've bought generic brandless new memory from eBay for every Mac I've owned and had no problem with any of it...and I got it for much less than major companies were selling it for. If you want peace of mind I've always found Crucial's website and RAM-selector system to work very well, and you can't beat their warranty. I think you're paying for peace of mind...I paid less....so maybe all my computers will melt down one day...:p :rolleyes:
     
  25. macrumors 6502a

    calyxman

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2005
    #25
    So how can I tell from the specs page at datamem that the module contains 16 chips?

    Here's an image of the AllComponents Module from newegg. So is this one a 16 chip module?

    [​IMG]
     

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