How much faster will more memory get me?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by johnbro23, Jun 5, 2004.

  1. johnbro23 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 12, 2004
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I have a new eMac with 256 Mb built in memory. I'm thinking about getting a stick of 512 Mb to bump me up to 768 Mb. How much more speed will I get? I usually have a bunch of programs running at the same time, so I get the "spinning color thing" a lot. I play games too, and some games like Sim City 4 are sometimes really slow.

    Does it matter whether I get my memory from Crucial or Apple? Are they any difference when it comes to performance? Overall quality?
  2. mms macrumors 6502a

    Oct 8, 2003
    Although I haven't used it myself, I've heard Crucial to be a quality and reliable company for RAM. Don't get RAM direct from Apple, though, since it costs much more than if you got it from a third-party company. And yeah, another 512MB should make a great difference.
  3. johnbro23 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Apr 12, 2004
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Does anyone have any suggestions on what brands to get? My local Apple reseller has Memory that they said was $130 for a 512 stick. I think I can get some for cheaper than that. Anyways, how do you get memory striaght from Apple? I searched their website and couldnt find anything.
  4. titaniumducky macrumors 6502a


    Nov 22, 2003
    You well definitely see a big difference! Programs will be able to keep themselves loaded in the RAM when inactive for longer. What does that mean? It means you will see the "spinning color thing" a lot less. Games can store more of their files in RAM without swapping files between the RAM and HD. What does that mean? Smoother, faster gameplay.

    After 768MB (or maybe 512) the average user won't really see too much of a jump. In your case, though, definitely get more RAM. 256 just isn't enough.

    Crucial's RAM is as good quality, if not better, than Apple's RAM. Not to mention it's cheaper and has a lifetime warranty. Get Crucial!
  5. Elan0204 macrumors 65816


    Apr 16, 2002
    Chicago, IL
    I have 512, does anyone think moving to 768 would offer a noticable difference? Anyone have any first hand experience with the move from 512 to 768? This is in a tibook 800 DVI, by the way.
  6. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Apr 28, 2004
    256 is the bare minimum for OS X, and it runs like a dog at that. the boost from 256 to 768 will be huge since you'll no longer be reading/writing to the disk constantly (which will give it a longer life as well).

    512 to 768 will be negligible, you'd be better off hitting a gig, but what do you really need a gig of ram for? 512 is the sweet spot for OS X IMO (for the G4's, the G5 is another story). it gives you plenty of overhead after taking the OS's portion of ram into account, and how many pro apps do you need open at one time? I've never used more than two (Directory and Photoshop or Maya and Photoshop) along with iTunes, Safari, Mail, and Sofa running without issue. The more ram you give OS X, the more it has to work with, but after 512 i don't think you'll notice the speed boost at all, unless you're working with massive files. Massive files go better with a G5.
  7. Mord macrumors G4


    Aug 24, 2003
    well i got a decent boost from 704 to 1.1 gigs o'ram

    i tkae it you have two 256 sticks in right now sell them on ebay and get two 512's if you have one 512 just max it out a 256 would be wasted
  8. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    I was wondering the same thing myself. I have a 12" PB with 512 MB in it, and was thinking about getting a 512MB stick to replace the 256MB stick that's not soldered on. But 768 MB isn't that much more than 512MB, and unless I see a noticeable difference, it's not worth it for $120 (from Crucial). The 1 Gig sticks are just too expensive right now, so I've been sitting in limbo for a month. Should I just get the 512 MB stick?

    Sorry for hijacking the thread...
  9. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Let's see...

    OS X is a memory hog, and needs quite a bit to work with -- if you don't have it OS X will gladly use your HD to provide the space it needs.

    There is a big difference between a HD's 50MB/s and the RAM's 1GB/s (yes RAM is faster than that, but the 166MHz FSB really isn't).

    So depending on how often the VM Manager needs to use the drive will depend on how much faster it'll be.

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