So, 4GB vs 3GB vs 2GB in the CD MacBooks, [not even possible]...?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Mitthrawnuruodo, Feb 27, 2008.

  1. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Long post, specific question near the end?

    I recently decided to keep my (soon) 2 year old 2.0GHz CD MacBook for (at least) another year, sticking to my long lasting 3 year upgrade cycle (which puts my next purchase sometime in 2009).

    The first thing I did was throw out my (nearly full) custom 200GB@4200 disk for a new WD 320GB@5400, and the difference is extreme... seriously... it's like I actually got a new machine.

    But now I've started getting used to that, I've started looking at the next potential upgrade: RAM. The first thing I did, back when I first got the machine was to rip out the 2 x 256MB it came with and install 2 x 1GB TwinMOS RAM.

    Since then RAM prices has plummeted, and I can get a 2GB Mac certified Corsair chip for NOK 399,- or, even cheaper, a 2GB TwinMOS chip for 349,- (they also have suitable non-certificated Corsair at 375,-, a Crucial chip at 415,- and a Kingston one at 419,-).

    So, the question is: Do I get 1 or 2 of those...?

    I've read the guides and understand that more RAM is always better, so 3GB should be better than my current paired 2GB, but also that my MacBook can only access 3.3GB of the 4 if I get 2 sticks. But here's what I don't know: Will I get the speed benefit from having a matched pair with the 2 x 2GB configuration, even if the machine cannot utilise all of that...?

    Any techheads out there that can help me? Has anybody tried the different configurations?
  2. macrumors regular

    You will get the speed benefit of dual channel with 2x2GB of RAM, even if the operating system doesn't have access to it. The computer will use all 4GB, it's just that the EFI and the video card and such use about 700megs, ie, about 3.3GB is available for the operating system and programs.
  3. PMR
    macrumors 6502


    Matched pairs will help even if your mac can´t address more than 3.xx GB of ram.

    Edit: I noticed your MB is a CD and not a C2D, and I really don't know if that chipset takes advantage of dual channel configuration
  4. macrumors 65816


    The Core Duo MacBook unfortunately handles a maximum of 2GB. :(
  5. PMR
    macrumors 6502


    That's what Apple says/said, but it's not true.
  6. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Apple are traditionally not overly technical in the material they give out to the customer, but the User manual strongly suggests that it supports it:
    (my emphasise)

    I'm also a bit concerned about the second part of that quote, but I guess that only applied at the time and that the 2GB sticks are useable... right...?

    Anybody actually tried? (As you can see above I know what Apple says, or rather said at the time, but that's not always valid for ever... ;))
  7. macrumors 65816


    And this is based upon facts found where?
  8. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Hmm.... I didn't like this:

    So, my old CD really doesn't support more than all...? :(
  9. macrumors member

    Here is a link to some test that were done by OWC. Granted, they may be a little biased.

    If you read the article it says that the "paired ram" is only for macs that have the GMA950 integrated video chipset in common which I believe is the older macbooks and the 17" IMACs
  10. macrumors 65816


    Dats right. But, look at the bright side, you don't need to buy any more RAM. Save that money and a bit more towards your next Mac.
  11. macrumors 604


    Could you get 2GB chips when the CD came out? I know Apple will only certify a computer to the max ram that is available when it is released, even if the computer can technically handle more ram.. I think.
  12. PMR
    macrumors 6502


    Sorry, my mistake:eek:

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