Has anyone attempted two 16GB RAM Modules in a 2012 15" non-Retina?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by monkeybagel, Nov 17, 2016.

  1. monkeybagel macrumors 65816

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    I am going to soon be upgrading my 2012 MacBook Pro 9,1, which is a CTO model with an Intel Core i7 2.7Ghz processor, 8GB of RAM, and an Apple OEM 512GB SSD. I intend on replacing the SSD with a larger capacity unit now that TRIM is officially supported in OS X in the last few builds. I have also noticed that 16GB 204-pin SODIMMs are available, which would provide me with 32GB of RAM. Has anyone attempted to install this in the Mid-2012 MacBook Pro? I have read several reports that two 8GB modules work fine, providing 16GB total RAM, but would go ahead if 32GB does work, I feel it would be advantageous to proceed with that upgrade as well with a 2TB SSD drive. The machine may not even POST with two 16GB modules, but I have thus far been unable to locate any resource where this has been attempted and reported.

    Respectfully, please don't provide reasons why you feel I would not need or utilize 32GB or RAM. I do have my reasons and could benefit from it if the machine will support it. I use this machine exclusively for business and complex virtualization scenarios, running many server operating systems simultaneously.

    Thank you!
     
  2. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

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  3. leman macrumors 604

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    It won't work AFAIK (unless something has changed in the last half a year). The 16GB SO-DIMMS use some tricks to get that many RAM packages and the CPU used in the 2012 MBP doesn't support it.
     
  4. monkeybagel thread starter macrumors 65816

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    According to ark.intel.com, the processor will support it, but as you said, the logic board and/or chipset may not unless it is accomplished by four DIMMs. Do you happen to be aware of anyone that has taken the chance?
    --- Post Merged, Nov 17, 2016 ---
    I am thinking this may possibly work? http://www.crucial.com/usa/en/ct2kit204864bf160b
     
  5. 0x100 macrumors regular

    0x100

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    #5
    Intel messed up the ivy bridge chipset iirc so it isn't supported with 16gb dims
     
  6. monkeybagel, Nov 17, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2016

    monkeybagel thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #6
    I also located this Q&A on Amazon's site just now regarding the same inquiry:
    Question:
    Would one or two sticks of this 16gb memory work on a Macbook Pro 15" i7 non-retina mid-2012?
    Answer:
    Thank you for your question. No, we do not recommend this memory for your system. The maximum memory your system can be upgraded to is 16GB of RAM with two single 8GB modules. We do not recommend exceeding the maximum RAM.
    By Micron CPG Customer Service MANUFACTURER on December 4, 2015

    This response leads me to believe it probably will not work, but it has the typical disclaimer that "We do not recommend exceeding the maximum RAM" although it seems with all Apple products they specify a lower amount of RAM than the machine will take. I don't completely understand their reasoning behind it, as I have heard that larger models were not available at the time of product release and Apple doesn't update this information over the lifecycle of the product. I have been running 128GB of RAM in a 2012 Mac Pro 2x3.06, which Apple states is officially 64GB. With previous versions of OS X, it would only utilize 96GB, then it was eventually raised to 128GB (or more perhaps as there is no way to test).

    I think the safe bet here will be to use two 8GB for 16GB of usable RAM, as I can feel sure I can manage with 16GB. I have an Early 2013 MacBook Pro Retina that recently had a backlight failure, and it had 16GB and was able to perform most tasks without issue. This machine has the same processor so theoretically will be more capable with the 2TB SSD and an exchangeable battery in the future, although this battery is still doing very well.

    I wouldn't mind taking a chance with the 32GB and reporting back to the community if it works or it doesn't, but I don't know any RAM vendors that have a very good return policy on RAM.
     
  7. leman, Nov 17, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2016

    leman macrumors 604

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    #7
    Well, yeah, thats the trick — while the CPU supports 32GB of RAM, it supports only regular DRAM modules (and you'd need 4 SO-DIMMS of regular DDR3 modules to make 32GB). These 16GB SO-DIMMs use some sort of stacked DRAM modules to overcome the low DDR3 density, and that makes them unsupported by the CPU. I don't have any links on the topic but it was covered fairly extensively some time ago. AFAIK, nobody actually managed to produce a higher-density DDR3 module yet — DDR4 solves that issue.

    P.S. Here is a relevant link — https://hardforum.com/threads/first-16gb-ddr3-udimm-so-dimm-modules.1797721/
     
  8. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

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    #8
    Yeah that chipset doesn't support more than 8gb per slot simple as that, it won't work!!
     
  9. monkeybagel thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Thank you for that link. I think that pretty much sums it up!
     

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