4 gigs of ram on a Macbook overkill?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by desistyle, Jan 16, 2008.

  1. desistyle macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2007
    Is it really necessary to upgrade my macbook to 4 gigs of RAM? I have 1 gig in my macbook right now and I can't decide whether to upgrade to 2 gigs or 4.

    Will I see a lot of benefit if I upgraded to 4, or will 2 be sufficient? When I'm multitasking in iTunes, Safari, dashboard, etc..my free ram is only around 20 megs.

    Also, will applications launch faster with more RAM? Or is this limitation due to the speed of the Hard drive?

  2. negatv1 macrumors 6502

    Aug 12, 2005
    For the price of 4gb these days ~$100 last time I checked (OWC has great ram, great prices), it's hardly worth it NOT to upgrade to 4gb.
  3. vanmacguy macrumors 6502a

    Aug 13, 2007
    Not where you live.
    Like someone else once said on here. You never hear someone saying "damn, I bought too much ram!".

    Go for it.

  4. T-Mac macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2007
    I made the decision last week to upgrade to 4GBs. I probably don't need the full amount, but for less than $100, I'll never have to think about RAM in my MB again. I'm maxed out!
  5. firstapple macrumors 6502a


    Sep 25, 2007
    It depends on how old the macbook is. The older ones max out at 3GB, and the SR ones max out at 4GB. I just ordered myself 4GBs of Kingston from Newegg for 100, can't beat that... But I also have a new SR blackbook, so mine can handle it.
  6. turtlebud macrumors 6502a

    Jul 17, 2002
    i agree as well - go with the 4gb. RAM becomes really important if you decide to run parallels or vmware. i have 2gigs of RAM in my macbook pro (that's the max for this model) and if I'm running 3 or 4 other apps + vmware, it slows to a crawl. i only wish I could put 3 or 4 gigs of RAM in this machine.
  7. PghSteelers macrumors newbie

    Jan 16, 2008
    Ram, etc.

    Initially the MacBook didn't support the full 4 GBs, correct? I guess that has been resolved by Leopard or another update?

    I have seen an Omni Tech. vendor referenced here before, any tips on upgrading, or other suggestions on ram?

    I prefer to upgrade the ram and my hard drive at the same time. Is there a site that offers both a combo and/or related tools/guide, etc (Torx-6)?

  8. AirmanPika macrumors 6502


    Jun 19, 2007
    Vandenberg AFB, CA
    Yea I wonder if the old 3GB limit apple stated was based on hardware or software. 32bit OSX and Windows couldn't address more than this so it would have created more headaches if they had listed the hardware capability and then customers start calling wondering why they are missing a gig of ram. Now that OSX is 64 bit they don't have to worry about this and apple could care less what windows users do.
  9. desistyle thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2007
    Only the latest revision of the MacBook supports 4 GB's. They use the santa rosa chipset...
  10. nigrunze macrumors regular

    Jul 28, 2007
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    I'm quite sure that the 2GB and 3GB limit is a hardware issue. The May 2006 MacBooks support up to 2GB of RAM, the November 2006 and May 2007 MacBooks can support up to 3GB(Although Apple recommends 2GB because of the use of dual channel and the MacBooks use the GMA so the performance increase wouldn't have been enough more for the price using 3GB), and the November 2007 MacBooks support up to 4 GB of RAM.

    The reason that Windows doesn't support more than 3 GB(It's a rough area. Depends on the computer and the maximum can span from 2GB to 4GB.) is because it's a 32-bit OS. Windows XP x64 and Windows Vista x64 can support more than 4GB of RAM.
  11. bmcgrath macrumors 65816


    Oct 5, 2006
    London, United Kingdom
    Whack in as much ram as ya can afford.

    The more the merrier ;)
  12. dvd macrumors regular


    Oct 12, 2007
    I pretty much immediately upgraded my BlackBook from 1GB to 2GB and the performance increase is substantial. Due to running VMware Fusion, I upgraded to 4GB (effectively 3.3 in my pre-SR model) late last year. For day-to-day operations, the 2->4GB jump was pretty insignificant. But it sure is nice to have that headroom for the Virtual Machines!

    So I'd say if you are running Fusion, Parallels, or anything else that is very memory intensive, drop the few extra bucks and go with 4GB. But for most users, 2GB is the "sweet spot."

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