iMac RAM question (I know I know)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Fried Chicken, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. Fried Chicken macrumors 6502

    Fried Chicken

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2011
    #1
    Or at least I thought I knew.

    I plan on buying 16GB of memory for my iMac (arriving Friday :D) so I would have a grand total of 24GB of memory.
    Based on this thread, you would want to replace the apple RAM with the new RAM and put the 8GB of apple RAM in the two remaining slots. This way if you got memory with lower CAS latency than apple's CL11, you wouldn't downclock your RAM to 1333 MHz.

    So now I've narrowed the choice down to three RAM modules.
    First is the one I would trust to be 100% reliably with the iMac:
    Crucial's 16GB dual kit - $85, with a CAS latency of 11 (like apple)

    Then there's the next choice for about the same price:
    G.Skill's 16GB dual kit - $81, CAS latency: 10. Same price, with reports that it'll work in the 2012 iMac but not in other Macs.

    Finally there's the big daddy:
    Kingston's HyperX 16GB dual kit - $130: CAS Latency: 9.
    Some guy has verified that it'll work with the 2012 iMac.

    So now the question is, which one do I get? Does CAS latency play a big difference? Should I worry about mixing apple RAM with lower latency RAM? I plan on upgrading to the full 32GB at some point in the future when it'll be like $30, but for now I think 24GB should suffice (haha my current imac has 2GB maxed!)
     
  2. Hungry&Foolish Suspended

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    #2
    You are over thinking way too much. I had OWC ram. crucial is trouble free too.
     
  3. Aqueous macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    #3
    You aren't going to know the difference my friend... :)

    I've used Crucial for 8+ years on 5 different machines, never had a problem.
     
  4. Giuly macrumors 68040

    Giuly

    #4
    All RAM runs at the latency of the slowest module, so you want to get the Crucial. If you plan to upgrade to 32GB later on, get the Kingston HyperX Plug'n'Play.

    As far as G.Skill goes, I never had a problem with them, but make sure to use the Mac version (starts with FA- instead of F3-).
     
  5. burningrave101 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #5
  6. WilliamG macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle
    #6
    I wouldn't bother with the Kingston. It's wasted in the iMac. Get the Crucial or the Corsair. I have the Corsair, which is CAS 10. I got it because it was cheaper than the Crucial at the time I bought it.

    My advice to you: Get whatever's cheapest. There is absolutely zero tangible difference between the CAS 11 Crucial memory and the CAS 10 Corsair, and take that for someone with the Corsair. Someone put up some benchmarks of both the CAS 11 and CAS 10, and it was so close between them that simple variances between the tests might have accounted for the few points of memory speed the Corsair had over the Crucial. The difference between the Corsair and the CAS 9 Kingston is probably a similar story.

    Save your money and go with whatever's cheapest. FYI I'm running the Corsair Vegeance, 4x 8GB for 32GB total. Works just fine.
     

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