(another) RAM question

Benjamin Black

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 28, 2006
57
0
Dalls, TX
I'm not fully understanding the "matched pairs" terminology. Does that just mean two or more same brand, same model memory sticks? Or are the memory modules actually paired to work with each other.

In other words, can will two individually packaged 1GB RAM sticks work as well as two that are listed as being "matched" and sold together?

My advance apologies if this is a retarded question.
 

matticus008

macrumors 68040
Jan 16, 2005
3,336
0
Bay Area, CA
Generally, but not necessarily. Matched RAM is the same manufacturer, the same model, and the same lot number/production run. Sometimes minor revisions to module design occur over time that will result in a mismatch. If you buy two individual modules of the same brand and model number at the same time, they are very likely to work together as "matched" RAM, but not guaranteed to do so.
 

CanadaRAM

macrumors G5
Matched pairs means the modules need to be the same size, the same speed, the number of chips must be the same, and the modules must be of the same "composition" - Apple doesn't specify what thay means, but it is safe to assume that the logical organization of the rows and columns of memory within the chips must be the same, and the SPD settings must be the same.

So it is possible that two different brands could match, if they meet all of the above. Equally, two modules of the same brand purchased months apart may have different compositions. Problem is, you have no way of determining composition.

So the safe thing to do if you want matched pairs is to buy two at once of the same module from the same supplier. Even then, it is useful to specify that you want a matched pair, incase they sloppily include ram from different batches.
 

dmw007

macrumors G4
May 26, 2005
10,635
0
Working for MI-6
Pretty sure that it does not really matter if the RAM is from the same manufacturer or not- as long as it is the same speed and amount, it should be able to run in dual channel mode.
 

daneoni

macrumors G4
Mar 24, 2006
10,807
79
They have to be the exact same type of sticks/modules but they don't necessarily have to come from the same manufacturer....they often just do.
 

Benjamin Black

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 28, 2006
57
0
Dalls, TX
Thank you for the input.

I am leaning towards purchasing my RAM upgrade via OWC (macsales dot com) in order to avoid any "matched pairs" mishaps. I would hate to waste time/money on return shipment if for some reason the cheaper, separately sold modules at newegg didn't match exactly.

Also...

If you are one of the many people debating RAM or hard drive replacement, I've just discovered that OWC offers a rebate for the original RAM and/or HD from your (new) Mac. It's not a lot of money, but it is nice to get something in return. I would have just left my spare parts lying around. You can view their rebate info here:

http://eshop.macsales.com/money-back-rebate/macbook-memory-harddrive-hd
 

dmw007

macrumors G4
May 26, 2005
10,635
0
Working for MI-6
CanadaRAM said:
Nope, speed and amount aren't enough - they have to match for composition as well.

Darn, I had a feeling that I would be proven wrong. :eek:


Thanks for showing me the error of my ways CanadaRAM! :D