Surprised I Didn't Notice This Before...iMac Memory

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by RedSponge, Jan 17, 2006.

  1. RedSponge macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Bournemouth
    #1
    So while once again adding up and comparing the specs for my impending iMac (i swear i'm not the only one who does this...please?) i noticed the Memory upgrades.

    I deffinately intend to have the 1GB upgrade, but do I go for the 2x512MB cards, or the one 1GB? They are both the same price (£70.01, why on earth 1p?).

    What is the reason behind having these options anyways? And what, if any, are the differences? Apart from, you know, two of them, and stuff, yeah...

    Oh, and as soon as I find this out, consider an iMac sold.

    Much appreciated, again,
    Graeme
     
  2. mpw Guest

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2004
    #2
    They must've got a deal on the 1GB RAM.

    I can't see why 2x 512MB would be an advantage and a single 1GB stick will let you upgrade later with less hassle.
     
  3. jennysbelly macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2005
    #3
    I just bought an iMac intel as well, however I took the stock memory and plan to buy from a 3rd party. The difference is that if you get the 1GB stick you can easily add another stick if you so choose. If you get the two 512MB sticks you would have to remove one to upgrade. So I guess it depends on whether you plan to max out at 1GB.
     
  4. neocell macrumors 65816

    neocell

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Location:
    Great White North
    #4
    I think it has something to due with it being dual channel memory and benefits of having paired DIMMs (working faster or more efficiently vs only 1). So, if I understand this correctly, 2 x 512 will work better than 1 X 1024, but then if you want to upgrade you loose out on both your 512 DIMMs, so in theory you should know exactly how much ram you're going to want/need and get that upfront in two equally sized (paired) DIMMs. If I'm wrong, someone please correct me
     
  5. JasonElise1983 macrumors 6502a

    JasonElise1983

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    Location:
    Between a rock and a midget
    #5
    i'm also pretty sure running two identical 512mb sticks would give you fast performance than one single chip. Maybe with DDR2 that isn't the case, but when then were running PC3200 they ran at Dual channel. I really don't know about DDr2 though
     
  6. RedSponge thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Bournemouth
    #6
    Well, I intend to keep this puppy for a number of years (3-5), and to keep my options open RAM wise, it would probably be better to get the one 1GB, there doesn't appear to be any benefit (or sense) for 1GB RAM to take up twice as much space as it needs.

    1GB it is then, allows me to upgrade easier.
     
  7. neocell macrumors 65816

    neocell

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Location:
    Great White North
    #7
    What would make the most sense is to just max out the RAM now, then you're sure to get matching pairs, rather than trying to track down a matching DIMM a year later. It's not really that much more right now anyways
     
  8. davidwsica macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2005
    #8
    Where to buy

    I just got my Intel iMac yesterday and it's thirsty for more RAM. I thinking to max out at 2GB. Does anyone know what 3rd party has this in-stock at a reasonable price?

    Thanks,
    David
     
  9. AvaCam macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    #9
  10. MRU macrumors demi-god

    MRU

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
    #10
    Interest to know the Cas Latency... Crucial list their modules as CL=5 which is quite poor. Decent fast memory usually has a CL=2

    What is apple using I wonder? If it's faster memory CL=2 -3, you'd almost be better off getting your mem from apple as mixing memory with different latencys will either make the faster chip slower, or lead to possible compatability headaches in the future...
     
  11. geekologist macrumors member

    geekologist

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2006
    Location:
    Texas
    #11
    It depends. Tests in the past have said that having two 512MBs is a tad faster than one 1GB. Although, if you plan to upgrade memory more in the future, then you want the one stick. That way you will have slots free to upgrade.
     
  12. davidwsica macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2005
    #12
    Here you go, this is what is on the stick:

    512MB 2Rx16 PC2-5300S-555-12
    HYMP564564BP6-Y5 AB 0551

    hynix
    Korea 01

    Doesn't mean much to me, maybe it does to you?

    David
     
  13. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    #13
    It is DDR2. You won't find any with CL=2
     
  14. RedSponge thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Bournemouth
    #14
    Screw it then, if im going to make this baby last me, I might as well bite the bullet and get 2x 1GB RAM now, than pay possibly more 3rd party which might make it run at less than optimum due to different characteristics.

    I mean, it's only a whole month's wages. :rolleyes:
     
  15. RedSponge thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Bournemouth
    #15
    Just thought I'd bring this old dog back, rather than clog the place up with another topic along these lines...

    So, i'm still quite undecided as to what is best for me memory-wise. I've been looking on the Crucial memory site (does anybody know anywhere cheaper, in the UK?) and I can get 2x 1GB RAM for about £202.

    These are the options folks:

    1. Get the iMAC with standard (512mb) memory then upgrade to the 2x 1GB above.

    2. Get 2x 512GB and leave it alone for a bit, till I find I need some more, then upgrade to 2X 1GB (which would mean I would in the long run be spending more money on memory, just not straight away).

    3. Go all out and get 2X 1GB straight from Apple when i total up and order online.

    Choices...they make and break us all.

    ______
    graeme
     
  16. T-Stex macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #16
    Why not just order 1x1GB RAM from Apple in your iMac, and order another 1GB from Crucial or Data Memory Systems? I don't see this being a problem, and I think others have done the same thing, but correct me if I'm wrong. I'm not sure what the latency is on the stock Apple memory.
     
  17. ~Shard~ macrumors P6

    ~Shard~

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    1123.6536.5321
    #17
    If the RAM works better paired, then just order one 1 GB stick with your Mac and buy another 1 GB stick from a 3rd party - then you'll be set for a long time! :cool:
     
  18. RedSponge thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Bournemouth
    #18
    Is anyone aware of any drop/gain in performance when combining one Apple chip with one 3rd party chip?

    With 3rd party, i'm only making a saving of £6.

    I do intend to be set for a loooong time, this much is true.

    EDIT: Pardon me, with a 3rd party, I get a saving of £36, which sounds a little more appealing!

    But the question remains: Any noticeable drop/gain in performance by combining chips from Apple and 3rd party
     
  19. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    #19
    Hell no, save your money!
     
  20. T-Stex macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #20
    Agreed

    Yeah, I'd just order from Crucial or DMS, or any other place that fully guarantees their products to work.
     
  21. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #21
    OK Hold Your Horses.

    A variety of posts with mis-information.

    1) DDR-2 667 MHz RAM is all CAS Latency 5. This is normal. There may be some premium memory out that gets down to CL4 but it will be $$
    DDR-2 533 MHz is CL4
    DDR-2 400 MHz is CL4 or sometimes 3
    Don't make value comparisons against DDR PC3200 CL3 or CL2.5 - these are different animals

    2) There is no indication at all that the intel Macs use Dual Channel access, therefore there would be NO advantage to using matched pairs (2 x 512) of memory over a single 1 Gb. None. If a 1 Gb RAM module is compatible, there would no drop in performance. Conversely, any gain in performance would be 100% attributable to the higher RAM total. Edit: Apple has stated that the intel Core Duo machines implement true Dual-Channel access -- therefore there is a benefit to installing matched pairs of RAM. However I still believe that 1.5 unmatched is better than 1.0 matched, so if you can't afford to go for a pair of 1 Gb modules, install one now.

    3) Get your intel Mac with 512 Mb RAM and immediately add a 1 Gb SODIMM from a reputable third-party vendor. 1.5 Gb seems to be the sweet spot for RAM in the iMac Core Duo. 1 Gb may not be enough. Remember if you take the 1 x 1 Gb option from Apple you get the single 1 Gb module (you lose the starting 512 Mb module). For the same money, you can ADD a 1 Gb module third-party, and get 1.5 Gb total.

    Thanks
    Trevor
    CanadaRAM.com
     
  22. Peace macrumors P6

    Peace

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2005
    Location:
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    #22
    Apple doesn't make memory..

    I'd personally go with the 1gig stick upgrade tho because in a few months iMacs will support 4 gigs using 2gig sticks..
     
  23. BakedBeans macrumors 68040

    BakedBeans

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    Location:
    What's Your Favorite Posish
    #23
    i presume it will support 1x2gb chip and 1x1gb totaling 3gbs?

    i see no reason why not - just thinking out loud really.
     
  24. nutmac macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2004
    #24
    Although dual channel memory access translating to tangible performance gain is debatable, the new iMac does indeed support it. According to Apple:

     
  25. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    #25
    Yup, you see a bit better gain in AMD systems usually.
     

Share This Page