Apple says my RAM max is 8GB and Crucial says 16GB?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by GhostMac24, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. GhostMac24 macrumors 6502

    GhostMac24

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    #1
    Just looked into upgrading the RAM on my wife's laptop. It currently has 4gb of RAM and runs woefully slow. Figured I'd max out the RAM to see if that helps out some. It's a MBP 2.3 i5 13" (early 2011).

    I have put in my serial number on the Apple support site and it states that it has a max upgrade of 8gb. I went to the Crucial website and they say 16gb.

    Any clarification and help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
     

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  2. Stetrain macrumors 68040

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    #2
    Do you know for sure that it's running out of RAM? You should be able to tell how much memory is really being used by looking at the activity monitor.

    For general sluggishness an SSD upgrade might be of benefit as well.

    I'm pretty sure that Apple lists the maximum RAM as 8GB on the 2011 models even though they can really take 16GB.
     
  3. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    Is that a Nehalem CPU or Sandy Bridge (1st or 2nd gen i5)? I'm pretty sure the Nehalem CPUs and 5-series chipsets only officially support 8GB.
     
  4. GhostMac24 thread starter macrumors 6502

    GhostMac24

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    #4
    THanks for the input.

    I figured that would be the first place to start. Not sure how much RAM comes into play on the startup of the computer but it takes forever to fire up. There are no startup items and only about 1/2 the hard drive is being used.

    Can the laptop have the HDD replaced with a SSD? Maybe that would be the answer instead of RAM?

    ----------

    How would I figure that out?
     
  5. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #5
    The memory controller is in the CPU, not the chipset on the i5/i7 machines.
     
  6. ZZ Bottom macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Apple always lists the maximum based on the highest configuration they sell. In most cases the amount Apple lists is less than the chipset actually recognizes/uses.

    If you want accurate information, I recommend downloading "Mac Tracker". It's a free app and a great resource.
     
  7. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

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    #8
    Crucial have tested the machines with the kits they sell. Apply officially support 8GB, however 16GB will work and is supported by the memory controller in the CPU.

    It's not unknown for Apple to be conservative, then support greater amounts of memory with an EFI update at a later date, for example the 2009 Mac mini.
     
  8. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    What's your graphics chipset?

    If it has Intel HD Graphics 3000 (as shown in About My Mac) it's a Sandy Bridge.
     
  9. GhostMac24 thread starter macrumors 6502

    GhostMac24

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    #10
    Intel HD Graphics 3000

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    So, I guess this begs the question. Would RAM help with firing up the computer? Or is that a SSD upgrade?
     
  10. Stetrain macrumors 68040

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    #11
    An SSD would give you the biggest improvement in boot times.
     
  11. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

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    #12
    Slow startup is usually a disk drive issue. Lots of code to load into memory. I have 8gb and it still takes about 2 minutes to boot and login. The only time I get close to using 8gb is running parallels with windows. I will upgrade to an SSD next month.
     
  12. GhostMac24 thread starter macrumors 6502

    GhostMac24

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    #13
    I'm thinking it's SSD upgrade time. As a comparison, my MBA (just bought it last year) has only a 1.8 i5 and boots from completely powered down in less than 15 seconds. My wife's MBP takes several minutes. For about $200, I can do a 256 SSD.
     
  13. robvas macrumors 68020

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  14. GhostMac24 thread starter macrumors 6502

    GhostMac24

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    #15
    I was thinking the same thing. 8gb of RAM and a SSD should have this sucker screaming.
     
  15. Stetrain macrumors 68040

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    #16
    Yep, that sounds like a good plan. 8GB should be plenty unless she's simultaneously editing large video projects and running multiple virtual machines.
     
  16. GhostMac24 thread starter macrumors 6502

    GhostMac24

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  17. Ih8reno macrumors 65816

    Ih8reno

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    #18
    I've got the early 2011 MacBook Pro 13inch. Installed 16gb and it's recognized and works fine.
     
  18. Applefanboy8153 macrumors regular

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    #19
    8GB Ram should be more than sufficient unless your wife is a graphic art designer or something like that, also an SSD would improve your computer's performance by upto 3 times and a RAM to supplement that would only mean more power!
     
  19. buysp macrumors 6502

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    #20
    As other posters have stated, i would put 8GB RAM and SSD and you should be flying!
     
  20. johnnnw macrumors 65816

    johnnnw

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