Any downside to running non-ECC ram

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by beto2k7, Mar 16, 2011.

  1. beto2k7 macrumors 6502

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    #1
    I currently work as part time video/photographer with some software development and website design. Taking this in account is there any downside in running non-ECC in my Pro?
     
  2. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #2
    You'd be fine with non-ECC for the usage you've listed from a general standpoint. :)

    What kind of RAM are you currently running, and where did it come from (UDIMM's or RDIMM's, and is it OEM or 3rd party)?

    I ask, as there's a strong chance you won't be able to mix it (IIRC, some have had success mixing non-ECC with Unbuffered ECC, but in the case of early 4GB DDR3 UDIMM sticks from OWC, it won't, nor would it mix with Registered ECC).
     
  3. beto2k7 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Thanks for your input nano. And now knowing this tomorrow is shopping day woohoo hehe. :)
     
  4. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #4
    I edited it a bit for clarification, and it posted after you did. So you might want to take a look. ;)
     
  5. beto2k7 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Right now I'm running on loaned 24 GB of Apple branded ram which I'll have to return in a couple days because the owner is coming back from a trip and so I would have to go back to my stock 6 GB (which i dont think I would be able to do hehehe) So I checked prices with a local retailer and made a good offer on 6x4GB 1066 Mhz CL7 non-ECC ram which I'm gonna be using to replace the stock 6x1GB ECC so no mixing there.
     
  6. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    Not giving it back would just be cruel. And maybe even get yourself shot. :eek: :p

    That will work then. :D
     
  7. beto2k7 thread starter macrumors 6502

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  8. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #8
    :cool: NP. :)
     
  9. hwojtek macrumors 65816

    hwojtek

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    Hmmm, does it mean I can use some kind of a regular DIMMs instead of the FB-DIMMs I have now in my 1.1 Mac Pro? Or is it 2009+ thing?
     
  10. seek3r macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Nope, you need FB-DIMMs in that machine, anyone with a '06, '07, or '08 is stuck with FB ram :(
     
  11. Avenger macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    When is it not okay to use non-ECC memory? I have 3GB in my 2009 Mac Pro which I use for Aperture, Photoshop and Plex. Is it okay to use non-ECC memory in it? What does it actually do? I was thinking of going to 12 GB.
     
  12. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #12
    You'd be fine running non-ECC memory for your listed software usage. :)

    Take a look at the Error detection and correction page on wiki to see what it does and when/why it's needed (think mission critical use that cannot withstand any errors, such as recursive algorithms, which would can be found in scientific/engineering modeling/simulation software for example).
     
  13. shelant macrumors member

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    #13
    Would it be ok to use non-ecc memory for the Handbrake usage?
    Also, 1333MHz non-ecc in 2009 Mac Pro? Eventually, I would like to change firmware to 5.1 and swap the processors to 6-cores, so would 1333 non-ecc ram work with my current one (2.26 8 core)?

    Thanks
     
  14. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

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    #14
    Of course. Handbrake (and video encoding in general) doesn't really benefit from ECC RAM.

    I could be wrong, but I think the majority of the reason why Mac Pros continue to use ECC RAM is that Apple goes by Intel specifications on reference designs and Xeon workstation/server boards have historically specified ECC memory modules. Someone else can probably elaborate on that.

    Just keep in mind that you can't mix ECC and non-ECC modules. If you decide to to go non-ECC, you'll have to pull the ECC ones out.
     
  15. shelant macrumors member

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    #15
    Thank you so much for your quick response!!! Yes, I was planning on removing my stock ram and trade it in at OWC. But, how about the second part of my question, would 1333Mhz non-ecc ram be ok to use in 2009 Mac Pro?
     
  16. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #16
    Yes.

    It can step down if need be (2009 firmware doesn't support 1333MHz, but will if you flash it and have a CPU that supports 1333MHz memory).
     
  17. shelant macrumors member

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    #17
    Thank you, nano, your help is always appreciated!
     
  18. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    #18
    This thread implies that using non-ECC ram without a temperature sensor will cause the MP to spin up the fans.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1004548

    I have not found verification one way or the other.

    Back when I researched this, what I was able to determine was that nearly all if not all ECC ram includes the temperature sensor. Some non-ECC ram also have the temperature sensor, although this tended to be expensive stuff aimed at overclockers for hard core gaming rigs.

    On a positive note, ECC RAM is supposedly 3% slower, so if you use non-ECC ram you're system might run ever so slightly faster, but probably not noticeably so.
     
  19. gslrider macrumors 6502

    gslrider

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    #19
    I just found this thread, after posting a question about ECC vs non-ECC. So currently I have all ECC ram in my system, with 2 slots left which I'd like to fill up. Locally, it's hard to come across the same ram I currently have. I'd have to order online, which if I don't need to do, prefer not to. The local computer stores I go to do have non-ECC of the same specs for my Mac Pro 8-core (2008). http://canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=24_311_313_621&item_id=031239 and http://canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=24_311_313_621&item_id=012841

    Apart from the original 2x1GB ram that came with the system when I bought it, I purchased 4x1GB Kingston 240-pin PC2-6400 (800Mhz) DDR2 ECC fully buffered DIMMs. System has been running fine for the last couple of years. Would it be safe to throw in non-ECC ram in the mix. I'm a graphic designer, and use all the Adobe software, but starting to get into 3D design, hence why I'd like to up my ram.

    Thanks.
     
  20. Umbongo macrumors 601

    Umbongo

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    #20
  21. gslrider macrumors 6502

    gslrider

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