ATTN: For those upgrading PM RAM...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by vtprinz, Feb 1, 2005.

  1. vtprinz macrumors 6502

    Nov 30, 2004
    Don't know if this has been posted before, but I found this on the apple discussion board. HUGE list of people reporting what memory chips have or have not worked in the PowerMac G5. Seems to be that if the chip isn't specifically made to work with the G5, it won't work at all. I was going to be buying from NewEgg ( as it's $30-$40 cheaper than Crucial, but doesn't say anywhere that it will work with Macs. I think I'm just going to bite the bullet and stick with crucial to save me the hassle of returning incompatible RAM. The only RAM I found on NewEgg that specifically says it's for a Mac G5 costs $227 for 1GB (2x512), it's about $160 for the same at Crucial.

    Here's the link:
  2. cmvsm macrumors 6502a


    Nov 12, 2004
    Yep...if you go for the cheap stuff....then you deserve what you get. After all, there are billions of posts on this topic, so one should already know better.
  3. vtprinz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 30, 2004
    I wouldn't say that. I think Apple is incredibly vague when it comes to what hardware will work in their system. Not to mention most memory chips are practically silent as to what systems they'll work in. So I don't think one is expected to "already know better." There are a huge amount of people (judging by looking around many forums, especially apple's) that have gotten burned by this, and I think Apple should be more explicit about upgrade options. (I've also read that external DVD burners aren't fully supported yet, and you have to get 3rd party software to use them)

    Honestly, if you know the memory in the PM is 184 pin PC3200 DDR400 CA3, wouldn't you expect any memory chip with the same configuration to work?

    Not to mention, I posted that newegg link about a week ago on this forum and was told by a couple people that it looks good. And I've been obsessing over this forum for near a month and haven't seen any specific mention that the RAM must explicitly say that it's made for a mac. Everyone just recommends crucial or OWC and says "make sure it's a lifetime warranty"

    EDIT: just realized I posted the apple discussion page link twice instead of the newegg link:
  4. CanadaRAM macrumors G5


    Oct 11, 2004
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    Well, no. You're assuming that PC3200 (which is DDR400) 184 pin CL3 is a full and complete description of how the RAM is built. It's not (and in fact the CAS Latency is one measurement that has little or nothing to do with compatibility)

    It's kinda like saying "As long as the wheel is 14", it'll fit my car" without asking about the bolt pattern. For example, you can get PC3200 DDR400 184 pin CL3 DIMM that works in a PowerMac G5 and not in an iMac G5.

    There is a myriad of details of how the RAM is organized electronically which influence whether it will be compatible or not. Some of these options are set by the construction of the module, and some are programmable by the manufacturer on a flash memory onboard the module.

    The only way to be assured that a particular model of RAM will work is if the seller has tested the RAM in the target Mac. Good sellers will. Other sellers won't. If the seller doesn't test and guarantee compatibility, you are left to be the guinea pig - and if it doesen't work, you'll be out the shipping charges, time, and possibly a restocking charge to return it.

  5. chelseasian macrumors regular


    Oct 20, 2004
    New York, NY (Chelsea)
    Check out They have a list of Ram indicating those that will work with a G5 according to the manufacturers. Also you can compare prices.

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