iMac (late 2009) 16GB RAM upgrade question

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Travisimo, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2009
    #1
    I have a late 2009 iMac with 2.66ghz i5 Quadcore. I currently have 8GB of Ram in the computer (ordered it that way). I want to upgrade to 16GB of Ram, so I'm looking for suggestions on the best deal on RAM for this upgrade.

    I believe my iMac has 4 slots that can hold 4GB each, so I need 4x4GB chips, right? I did a search for "late 2009 imac ram upgrade" and found many results, but I didn't know if I'm overpaying or not. Crucial seems to have upgrades up to 8GB but not 16GB for this model on their website. OWC had the 16GB upgrade but it was over $120:

    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memory/iMac/DDR3_21.5_27

    On Amazon, I found a 8GB upgrade kit (2X4GB) for $38.99 from Corsair. Couldn't I just buy two of those kits and use all 4 chips to achieve 16GB of Ram, or does it not work that way? Here is the Amazon link:

    http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Chann...15&sr=8-7&keywords=imac+late+2009+16gb+memory

    Thanks for any suggestions,
    Travis
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2009
    #2
    Type in the last 3 or 4 characters of your Mac's serial # at http://everymac.com/ultimate-mac-lookup/

    It will give you the exact model your Mac is, how many memory banks it has and what's the max memory size and speed your Mac can accept.
     
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #3
    yes that will work, but you can actually upgrade your 2009 iMac to DDR3 1333. I have an iMac 2009 with an i7 and that is what i have done. As for performance i dont really know but it seems daft not to upgrade when the price is minimal

    and for the record, i have komputerbay ram, it has been in for nearly the 3 years i have owned this computer and its never broke a sweat or caused any issues at all. just somthing else to look at instead of paying silly money on an upgrade. hope this helps!

    http://www.amazon.com/Komputerbay-M...1389&sr=1-1&keywords=komputerbay+8gb+1333+mac
     
  4. macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #4
    Crucial would've listed the 2x4GB memory kit as an option for the system. If your system has 4 ram slots, then you would buy 2 of those kits.

    Also does your system have 4x2GB or 2x4GB? Depending on what you ordered, you may only need to add a 2x4GB kit.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2009
    #5
    You've linked to the single stick of 8GB Ram, but I think my iMac can only take up to 4GB per slot. And I have 4 slots, so I'd have to go with 4 sticks of 4GB.

    ----------

    I will have to open it up and look. I know from the specs that it has 4 slots, but I'm not sure how it comes from the factory when I ordered it. That would great if it currently has 2 sticks of 4GB. Would I have to match the other 2 sticks to exactly what I have (brand, speed, etc) or is there some flexibility?

    Guess it's time to open it up and see! :)
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #6
    apologies, here is the correct 2x4gb one your after (the one i have installed atm) http://www.amazon.com/Komputerbay-1...5409&sr=1-5&keywords=komputerbay+8gb+1333+mac
     
  7. macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #7
    Or from the Apple menu, select "About This Mac" and then click on "More Info..." and then select memory.

    Brand doesn't matter. Speed does, however most iMacs only have one memory speed they function at, so that won't be an issue.

    I'm running one memory kit Apple and one Crucial in mine.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2009
    #8
    Ah ha, thanks for that! I didn't know System Report would show the memory configuration as well as the amount. Unfortunately, it appears that there are 4 - 2GB sticks of RAM, so I'll need to replace all four of them to upgrade to 16GB. Oh well, at least RAM is relatively cheap these days!

    Thanks everyone!
     
  9. macrumors 68040

    Giuly

    #9
    You could also replace only two of the modules, which would give you a total of 12GB, but running at the speed of the slowest module(s).
    As far as RAM goes, you can go wrong with the Apple-certified 2x4GB 1333MHz kit from Corsair.
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #10
    Why do you need to change all 4 with another 4? Just curious as I might be missing somthing
     
  11. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2009
    #11
    Well as the other poster said, I could leave 2 in there and just replace 2 of them, but that would only give me 12GB of Ram. If I want to have 16GB of Ram, I would need to replace all 4 sticks because there's currently four 2GB sticks of RAM (8GB total) in my machine.

    And according to Apple's specs, my machine can only take 4GB sticks, so it's not like I could just buy two 8GB sticks either. The only way to get 16GB of RAM on my machine is to use four 4GB sticks (4x4GB).

    Thanks everyone for the suggestions and comments!
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #12
    ahh i understand, i thought these could take 8gb modules :)
     
  13. TSX
    macrumors 68030

    TSX

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #13
    So can the late 2009 iMac can take 1333mhz RAM? Im looking to upgrade to 16GB on my iMac11,1. Who has the best prices on RAM right now?
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #14
    If its intel i based yes, c2d no

    Computerbay on amazon still best
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2010
    #15
    Just letting you guys know, our late model 2009 27" iMacs are capable of running 32GB of RAM. I'm running 32GB atm.

    That should give you more options. It may be easier just to purchase 2 x 8GB modules, and keep the existing 2 x 2GB sticks in there, which will bring your machine up to 20GB of RAM.
     
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #16
    thats good to know, but will you actually need 32gb of ram? ive never come close to running 8 let alone 16 or 32.

    Think about how much you really need before going and buying your RAM. also if your buying 1333, you cant use your original RAM at the same time
     
  17. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2010
    #17
    Yeah, I have 4 virtual machines on the iMac. 2 x Windows 7, 1 x Windows 8 and a Windows XP virtual machine.

    Generally I run 1 or 2, but it's nice to have all 4 running if needed, and in the past I have required all four running.
     
  18. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #18
    then i can completely see why u need so much RAM! wow! haha
     
  19. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2012
    #19
    I went from 4gb to 8 and now to 16 in my late 09 27". The thing flys, sped up everything.
    Had the HD replaced by Apple and it is like new. Jus wish the thing wasn't so damn hot.
     
  20. TSX
    macrumors 68030

    TSX

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #20
    What kinda difference is there in speed between the 1066 and the 1333mhz?
     

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  21. macrumors 65816

    marzer

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #21
    1333mhz memory runs 25% faster.
     
  22. TSX
    macrumors 68030

    TSX

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #22
  23. macrumors 6502a

    Arkious

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    Newcastle, UK
    #23
    No but this one will

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B009GYW1B2/ref=pd_aw_sim_pc_2?pi=SS115
     

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