RAM Setting for MacBook Pro 17"

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by hidea, Jun 11, 2006.

  1. hidea macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
    #1
    Hey there,

    I am thinking of replacing my current set into something that is identical.

    Currently, I'm running whatever RAM that came with the Macbook Pro, and I added one more stick (1GB) of KINGMAX RAM. Both are running at the same clock speed.

    Now, I've been offered a cheaper RAM Price by OCZ.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820227099

    I'm wondering if I buy the OCZ ones and sell the two I currently have, I will get a better performace? Since.. I'll be running two identical RAMs and such.
     
  2. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #2
    There is a speed improvement (hard to quantify, I have heard 6 - 8 % ) when using Dual Channel memory (2 matching RAM modules). The effect of having more RAM however is probably more important.

    It is unknown whether 1 OCZ is going to match with your one Kingmax.

    Between brands of compatible, 667 MHz modules, there will be NO difference in performance at all, the Mac will run all brands of compatible modules at the exact same speed.

    The generic OCZ modules are not guaranteed to be compatible. Make sure you can send them back if they don't work, and make sure you won't be hit with a restocking charge.

    Or buy from a seller who knows Macs and guarantees compatibility - MR readers recommend Crucial, OWC and Data Memory Systems most often.
     
  3. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2001
    Location:
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #3
    Wait, if I understand your situation correctly, you ALREADY have two 1GB sticks in your MBP--the stock one, and one you added yourself. You're wondering if selling those, and replacing them with two 1GB sticks that are both from the same manufacturer would speed it up. Is this correct?

    If so, NO. Absolutely not. Zero difference.

    You hear talk about "perfectly matched" pairs of RAM, but I'm very suspicious that's total marketing hooey. It is possible for unmatched RAM to cause problems, but it would be a (rare) yes-or-no situation, and shouldn't affect performance.

    So far as I know the 3-5% speed boost from using two sticks of the same size with a Core Duo is identical regardless of whether the two sticks are from the same manufactuer or not. I haven't seen anything that indicates otherwise, to be sure, and I can't imagine why Apple would set the default RAM configuration on the MBPs as one 1GB stick instead of only allowing 2 512MB sticks like on the MB.
     
  4. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #4
    Not exactly.

    To make a Dual Channel pair, the RAM must match for size, speed and composition.

    Size (1 Gb) and speed (667 MHz) are easy. Composition however refers to the number of chips on the module, how those chips are organized internally into banks, rows and columns, and whether the SPD programming is the same on both modules. You don't have access to the composition information, so it is impossible to tell without trying whether two different brands of RAM will match. Its possible, just not probable.
     
  5. hidea thread starter macrumors regular

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    May 10, 2006
  6. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2001
    Location:
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #6
    Ok, I stand mostly corrected. Although I would still check whether the sticks you've got are acting as dual-channel or not before spending the money to replace them, otherwise you're spending money for nothing.

    Sadly, I don't know of a way to do this in OSX, but if you have XP on a BootCamp partition, that should report whether it's running Dual-channel or not.
     
  7. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #7
    You still haven't told us what exactly you have in the machine. Is it 256 Mb stock + 1 Gb? 512 Mb + 1 Gb? 1 Gb + 1 Gb?
     
  8. vv-tim macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 24, 2006
    #8
    The Intel chipset the MacBook Pro uses allows for asymetric dual channel ram. I'm not sure if it's been verified or not that the MBP benefits from matched pairs or not.


    As for the original poster... If you're running a stock 512MB stick... I'd pick up a pair of OCZ 1GB sticks. OCZ memory is great (amazing reviews -- especially for the price, and some overclockers swear by it). I'm running a pair of OCZ 533mhz 1GB sticks right now and they're lovely.
     
  9. hidea thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
    #9
    Oh, CURRENTLY, I have 1GB + 1GB (stock + KINGMAX).
     
  10. vv-tim macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 24, 2006
    #10
    I'd stick with what you have now. I highly doubt you'll see much performance increase with matched pairs.
     
  11. hidea thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
    #11
    well, I bought the RAMs.

    I can return it anytime I want I suppose.

    Well, I'm not sure whta to do. I don't feel like opening the OCZ Rams, as they're sealed in a box.

    Another thing is that.. I'm not sure if my current set up is actually compatible (or the OCZ for that matter, but a friend of mine who has the MacBook said it works like a charm for him).

    I've had a Kernel Panic since I had the current installation I have (to reiterate, it's 1x stock, 1x Kingmax, both are 1GB stick). But I am not sure the cause of the KP. Might not even be the RAMs.

    Anyhow, suggestions anybody?
     
  12. hidea thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
    #12
    Hmm.. would someone be able to help me the source of my kernel panic if I post the panic.log?
     

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