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Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Glenn Wolsey, Jan 30, 2006.
What is it? When I get my Quad, should I get 2Gb or normal RAM, or EEC RAM?
I think it might be a better quality and possibly a lower latency than standard stuff.
If you mean ECC (Error correcting code) RAM, then make sure your system can handle it. Most Apples won't run on ECC RAM (or are, at least, insanely particular), and it does run slightly slower than non-ECC, though that might not be the case in a newer G5. My understanding is that ECC is for server machines mostly. It can NOT be mixed with non-ECC RAM, so all your RAM will have to be ECC (I think Apple offers ECC RAM on the newer machines).
Here's a little piece on RAM that I find helpful:
EDITED TO ADD: Oh, you're asking if you should get it stock from Apple in your new machine. I'd check their support site for performance differences, but they're probably negligable. The bigger question is whether or not you need it, which is an important question, considering the added price. I'd say that, if your machine is not going to be used as a server, you probably don't.
If you have to ask then you don't need it.
Agreed. Assuming you're just using it for home stuff, you won't notice a difference.
You really don't need it and if you do order your Quad with ECC ram, from now on you will need to put ECC ram into the system...For normal activities and use you won’t notice that much of a difference and I would put the money toward something else.
I would also check out some other threads on this topic:
But a more direct answer to the OP is that ECC ram is only needed for
A) Hi-Load Servers
B) Computers used in high level scientific/3-D modeling/mathmatics environments (ie workstations)
If the system detects an odd number of bits error in a memory word in an application it will crash it, not produce wrong results.
If the bit error happens in the system itself, the machine will crash.
If it's an even number of bits, the error won't be detected.
1-bit errors in a memory word will be corrected
And seeing as I've never had any of the above happen in any of my five macs (after 6+ years of use on some of them), I'd say you don't need it.
Higher density memory and bigger total die area increase the probability of errors.
Here is a good explanation of this stuff.
Note that if the memory is not interleaved, there's a higher probability of multibit erros with ECC RAM cannot correct.
Oops, Macs use non-parity memory, so a crash with odd number of errors in a word is not guaranteed. Bad results can also happen here.
So as a writer using Word and Pages, and a photographer using Aperture, do I need it?
ECC RAM is always more expensive and tends to be a little slower than standard RAM. The benefit of ECC RAM is that if processing any single bit errors it will correct them, which can potentially prevent an application from crashing. I'm going to have to trust that ECC RAM actually does its job, but the truth is you would probably never notice if it was doing a job or not, and larger errors will not be correctable via the ECC. You do not need ECC RAM, but you may want it if the cost isn't a big deal to you.
Well for the 2GB stick its only $50 NZ more. Is that worth it?
Well, it is theoretically possible that the application or the machine crashes before saving, or that when saving a file, a buffer is written incorrectly resulting in an unreadable file. The probabilities are quite small, though.
With ECC the probability is much less, but still not zero.
In my case, I would get it because I'm not a gamer and I like workstations, not PCs. Anyway I think the speed advantage of NON-ECC is marginal.
There's very little difference in price at places like Crucial. I would buy the minimum of NON-ECC from Apple, sell it and replace.
You have to put the memory in pairs in the Power Mac G5.