Can't upgrade RAM on my iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by photogpab, Apr 5, 2011.

  1. photogpab, Apr 5, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2011

    photogpab macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #1
    Hey all... I've been checking macrumors obsessively every day in anticipation of the soon to be released refreshed iMacs, saving all my money, counting down the days... so OF COURSE my car broke down today and I had to use the money I had saved for the repairs. Isn't that always the way these things go? So now I can't afford a new iMac and am stuck with my 5 year old iMac, which is slowly becoming more and more difficult to use on a daily basis. Mostly Photoshop and video editing (HD video).

    I always assumed a RAM upgrade would help my iMac run faster. Right now it tends to lag and slow down when switching between programs or when I have too many programs open at once. This is especially frustrating when I'm running Photoshop. It can slow everything down. Sometimes so much so that its difficult to use the computer at all.

    In any case, I went to crucial and ran one of those computer scans that would tell me what kind of RAM to upgrade to, I figured I would invest a few hundred bucks and update the iMac I have now till I can afford a new one later this year. But Crucial tells me I cant upgrade my RAM! Ive reached maximum memory.

    Really? I only have 2GB of RAM on this thing. thats all its capable of?

    I have the old white iMac which I bought in 2006.

    I took screen shots for you all. any help is much appreciated:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. simsaladimbamba, Apr 5, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2011

    simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    You don't have a G5 iMac (available from Apple between 2004 and 2005), you have an Intel Core 2 Duo iMac (available from Apple since 2006), as seen below.
    [​IMG]
    How to attach an image to your MR post.

    Officially that iMac supports up to 3GB RAM, but others could get 4GB working:
    http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/imac/stats/imac-core-2-duo-2.16-20-inch-specs.html (see RAM section)

    Crucial also says that you have an Intel Core 2 Duo 2.16GHz iMac and it also says, that you can reach the maximum of 3GB via using one 1GB and one 2GB stick:

    [​IMG]
     
  3. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #3
    You have an intel core 2 duo which can 4gb max of which 3.3 will be usable.
     
  4. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #4
    i see. i misread crucial. its saying i can go up to 3GBs of RAM.

    would that really help anything tho? 1 more GB of RAM doesn't seem like much help.

    is there anything else I can do to help performance of this old iMac?
     
  5. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #5
    Get a faster HDD and replace your old HDD with that. I did that yesterday and already see an improvement in my 2007 iMac.
    www.ifixit.com has some guides on how to do this.
     
  6. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #6
    If you are hitting a RAM limit any additional RAM will make a difference. Not much else you can do. How full is your hard drive? You should have about 20% free space as a minimum.
     
  7. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #7
    stupid question, but how would I check that? im not very computer savvy when it comes to the technical aspects of how they run, etc
     
  8. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #8
    In your applications/utilities folder is an app called activity monitor. Open that up and look at the memory tab. There you can see the pageins and pageouts. If the ratio is greater than 10:1, you could do with more ram.
     
  9. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
  10. kfury77 macrumors regular

    kfury77

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2007
    Location:
    Osaka, Japan
    #10
    I would recommend buying a 2GB RAM stick, you can take out one of the 1GB RAM sticks you have in there and sell it. Also, when you do finally decide to sell that iMac when you buy a new one your old iMac with 3GB RAM will be worth more - so worthwhile doing all round. I don't think 2GB of RAM is enough for Snow Leopard - would recommend you boosting it to whatever you can. (I'm going to get 12GB of RAM for my next iMac)
     
  11. BobbyCat macrumors regular

    BobbyCat

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    Beyond
    #11
    There's a handy little thing that I've been using for years and still works great: it's called Memory Monitor. Just a little graph that you can put in a corner, so you can better manage your apps.

    You can find it there for free:
    * http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/21449/memory-monitor
     
  12. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #12
    anyone have any good suggestions as to where i can sell my iMac thats not the typical ebay, craigslist route. i tried gazelle but they only offered me $325.

    does that seem like a fair price for my iMac?

    whats a good asking price? Its in great condition with no marks, scratches, defects, etc... works just like the first day i bought it. just running slower now that i've installed so many programs on it over the years.
     
  13. mscriv macrumors 601

    mscriv

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  14. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #15
    20" 2.16GHz Intel Core 2 Duo 2GB RAM 250GB Hard Drive
     
  15. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #16
    I dont think extra memory would help one bit.

    see my page in/outs:[​IMG]
     
  16. dgbowers macrumors member

    dgbowers

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2011
    Location:
    Alabama
    #17
    The hardware can physically take 4GB of RAM, but it'll only use 3.3 for OS usage, even so, the extra 700MB will still be used for Graphics or something else on the system, so it's worth it to go ahead and upgrade.
     
  17. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #18
    badger - hate to seem ignorant, but i really dont even understand what im reading or seeing when i see your pageins / outs vs mine.

    i dont understand how to read them / what they mean.
     
  18. BobbyCat macrumors regular

    BobbyCat

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    Beyond
    #19
    That's why you can use Memory Monitor: you get a little graph that you can place in a corner of your screen, and see in real time how much memory your apps are using. When the deep blue space is completely covered, it means you should quit some apps or restart the Mac (repairing permissions also helps to clean your memory here and then)

    Here's an example.
    Under the graph, it's just a window from Activity Monitor, that shows how busy the processor(s) are at all times.
     

    Attached Files:

  19. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #20
    You have no page outs which means you are using less memory than you have. Badger is almost 1:1 in and out which means he using so much memory that he needs to swap a page of memory out to disk every time he loads one into memory. These figures are best observed after a typical days use and are reset at every boot.
     
  20. Laika37 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    #21
    I would check activity monitor again after you use your photoshop or edit video. Just because you weren't using all your memory earlier doesn't mean it wouldn't help during applications like that.
     
  21. Dorneyed macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2011
    #22
    Memory upgrades

    Hi,
    I've found this thread really interesting, so I would really like to thank everyone for their commitment to help 'novices' like myself to understand the complexities of this type of problem.
    Having read the description of the activity monitor, especially the memory Page ins / Page outs, I have noticed that I have
    Page Ins 9.81GB and Page Outs 42.4MB (yes MB)!!

    I have a Intel Core 2 Duo, 2.4 GHz, with 4GB memory.

    The performance is 'not good' and I'm looking for ideas on potential upgrades, or is it just time for an upgrade?

    Any ideas would be most appreciated
     
  22. Vylen macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2010
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #23
    Page in's are when program memory is loaded from disk to RAM.
    Page out's are reverse - storing RAM to disk (to swap).

    You don't need to worry about page in's. Page out's are important - this is when the OS needs RAM to do something and there's not enough free RAM to do it, so it temporarily stores some data in RAM to disk. This whole process is slow.

    So, if you have 0 page outs, there's no need for more RAM.

    If you have less than 100MB's of page outs you still don't need RAM.

    If you have several gigs worth of page outs... you should probably get more RAM :p
     
  23. photogpab thread starter macrumors 6502

    photogpab

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #24
    thank you! finally makes sense. haha. thank you for explaining it in a way us regular folks without much tech knowledge understand.
     

Share This Page