Hi, first thread: How much RAM do I really need?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by High Five Ghost, Aug 30, 2012.

  1. High Five Ghost macrumors member

    High Five Ghost

    Aug 28, 2012
    Youngstown, OH
    I recently purchased a Mac Book PRO Retina 2.3 GHz with 8GB RAM.

    I've been waffling back and forth about the RAM...

    Is 8GB enough or should I return this and get one with 16GB?

    I don't do any heavy computing, just basic stuff. I may dabble in Photoshop in the future or maybe something graphic wise - and I recently started playing WoW which runs fine. It'll probably be the only game I play on this.

    Any tips?

  2. Orlandoech macrumors 68040


    Jun 2, 2011
    Salt Lake City, UT
    8GB is plenty for you needs and what you do. PLENTY.

    However If you plan on keeping the machine for 3-5 years, I would recommend 16GB. Also, if you already regret it, you probably always will, go for 16GB.
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    To determine if you can benefit from more RAM, launch Activity Monitor and click the System Memory tab at the bottom to check your page outs. Page outs are cumulative since your last restart, so the best way to check is to restart your computer and track page outs under your normal workload (the apps, browser pages and documents you normally would have open). If your page outs are significant (say 1GB or more) under normal use, you may benefit from more RAM. If your page outs are zero or very low during normal use, you probably won't see any performance improvement from adding RAM.

    Mac OS X: Reading system memory usage in Activity Monitor
  4. High Five Ghost thread starter macrumors member

    High Five Ghost

    Aug 28, 2012
    Youngstown, OH
    Its at zero. Thanks.

    Would the Apple Store transfer my entire HDD and settings to the new one?

    I do plan on keeping this machine for at least 5 years.

    Really didn't want to wait for one to come in the mail when I was at the Apple Store... instant gratification.

    I'll think it over, but it might be a waste of money that I can spend on Apple Care, unless thats a waste of money :)
  5. Virinprew macrumors 6502

    Apr 24, 2012
    For you, 8 GB is more than enough. But if you use virtual machine, 8 GB is so so.
    Anyway, try this widget iStat Pro. And see how you use RAM for yourself.
  6. heisenberg123 macrumors 603


    Oct 31, 2010
    Hamilton, Ontario
  7. playsontheleft macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2012
    Maybe if you asked them nicely. But I wouldn't bother - it's a really easy process from what I've heard, although I personally have always just used an external HD to move things over and then changed settings myself.
  8. Dark Void macrumors 68030

    Dark Void

    Jun 1, 2011
    4GB is plenty to be honest, 8GB is pretty cheap though so why not?
  9. playsontheleft macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2012
    The rMBP doesn't actually have a 4GB configuration, so that's probably why not. :p
  10. yusukeaoki macrumors 68030


    Mar 22, 2011
    Tokyo, Japan
    What you do can be done by only 8GB.
    However, if you want to be future proof, like using your mac for another 3~5 years, go for 16GB.

    Having more RAM wont hurt you.
  11. phpmaven macrumors 68040


    Jun 12, 2009
    San Clemente, CA USA
    4GB is nowhere near enough RAM. Unless you're planning on just surfing the web and checking email. Get the most you can afford. More RAM is ALWAYS better.
  12. Dark Void macrumors 68030

    Dark Void

    Jun 1, 2011
    ...that could be why.

    Admittedly just read the title and the OP's usage at the bottom of the thread.
  13. polotska macrumors 6502

    Sep 23, 2007
    Tough to say—8GB should be plenty for your current uses, but if you’re really planning on keeping it for 5 years, you might want to go with 16GB since it can’t be upgraded later.
  14. iapplelove macrumors 601


    Nov 22, 2011
    East Coast USA
    op I always have plenty RAM 4gb and my computer needs are even a little more ramped up than yours. I don't do any gaming at all though and right now I'm only using 1gb of ram
  15. Muscle Master macrumors 6502a

    Muscle Master

    Oct 15, 2010
    Darn.. that means I have to buy it from apple..

    Wanted to get one on Amazon.. of course they come in at 8
  16. Ledgem macrumors 65832


    Jan 18, 2008
    Hawaii, USA
    Your Macbook Pro is probably going to last you 4-5 years. By the end of that time, the machine will either start to develop problems, or you'll want (or need) to upgrade.

    The difference between a Retina Macbook Pro with 8 GB of RAM vs. 16 GB of RAM is $200, based off of the Apple Store. That's a lot of money. (And to think I just bought 16 GB of RAM for $86...)

    For the needs you've described now, you're fine with 8 GB. I do heavy work in Aperture in addition to some video editing, and I also virtualize Windows; these are all memory-intensive applications, and I made out fine with 4 GB. Currently running with 6 GB, and it's still fine. The occasional slowdowns are a frustration, and feeling them more frequently because I do these things often is a nuisance... but for someone who may just be starting out in Photoshop and who won't be doing anything overly intensive, 8 GB is more than enough. If you're doing it as a hobby, my guess is that by the time you acquire the skills to start pushing your RAM to the limits, you'll be 4-5 years down the road and looking at a whole computer upgrade anyway. That's when you put the $200 that you're currently saving, to use.

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