Is 1GB of RAM efficient for general use?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Mr. Eko, Feb 16, 2008.

  1. Mr. Eko macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #1
    I tried to read up on the guides for RAM, but I couldn't really understand it. The title basically says it. If I won't be doing too much at once, nothing special, will 1GB of RAM be good for me? I don't want to waste money, of course. What do you guys think?
     
  2. munckee macrumors 65816

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    Oct 27, 2005
    #2
    What kind of machine? I found 1GB sufficient for web browsing and basic "office" type work. As soon as I started with photo editing, etc. it wasn't enough though.
     
  3. ajx22 macrumors regular

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    Honolulu (Hawai'i Kai), Hawai'i
    #3
    More RAM is always better - as it takes a large amount of stress off the machine (less stress = more stable); and at the present costs = foolish not to upgrade it.

    You can max out a MBP to 4GB RAM for <$100.00 - and that will give you performance beyond your imagination. Seems like a minuscule monetary investment for the amount of performance you would get.

    ~ JMHO ~
     
  4. Spievy macrumors regular

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    Dec 24, 2002
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    Virginia
    #4
    I agree

    However more memory more fun
     
  5. Mr. Eko thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2008
  6. raxafarian macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2007
    #6
    I sold my 2.16 macbook from May 2007 a few weeks ago just so I could get a new 2.2 macbook and stick 4gb into it.

    Right now I'm running Adobe Lightroom, Safari (about 10 tabs open), neooffice, adium, mail, transmit, keychain, and calendar which is pretty much what I normally have open.

    2 gig was hitting the swap all the time. Now I have a buffer when I need to add photoshop to the mix. Look at your activity monitor over a period of time. See if you're hitting the swap too much. (a little is to be expected). If this is a macbook you lose some ram to video too.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

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    Oct 31, 2004
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    That there big London
    #7
    Since you're upgrading your RAM anyway, you may as well max it out at 4GB. It's not that much more expansive.

    If you've not bought the MacBook yet, don't get the RAM upgrade from Apple. Stick with the standard 1GB and upgrade afterwards from a 3rd party. You'll save ££££££££ (or $$$$ or €€€€€ or ¥¥¥¥ depending on where you are). :)

    SL
     
  8. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

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    Ontario Canada
    #8
    1GB is a big No No it's so slow when doing too many things at once get at least 2GB and then your ok.
     
  9. elppa macrumors 68040

    elppa

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2003
    #9
    I'd say the fact Apple (notorious for skimming on RAM) gives all MacBook Air models 2GB tells you everything you need to know.

    Leopard will run on less but it will of course perform better the more you can add.

    My rule of thumb with RAM is buy as much as your machine can take (with the odd exception, I doubt all Mac Pro users need the max 32GB of RAM for example).
     
  10. raxafarian macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2007
    #10
    By the way... Lightroom is using 775mb in the example above, so I'd still be hovering right at 2gb useage just using 'normal' programs.
     
  11. ajx22 macrumors regular

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    #11
    Check out:
    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memory/MacBook/DDR2/


    Less the Rebate once you send in your existing memory:
    http://eshop.macsales.com/money-back-rebate/macbook-memory-harddrive-hd


    :D
     
  12. Mr. Eko thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2008
    #12
    I noticed, 4GB was $850! That is way too much for me, but it's comforting knoeing that 3rd party ram is so much less expensive.

    Thanks ajx for the links
     
  13. heatmiser macrumors 68020

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    Dec 6, 2007
    #13
    Depends on the OS. On Panther, it's plenty. On Tiger, it's fine. On Leopard, it's inadequate. Ditto with Win2k vs. XP vs. Vista.
     
  14. ajx22 macrumors regular

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    #14
    Never get RAM from Apple... lol

    Do a search here; and you'll find a number of good suppliers for 3rd party RAM.

    With what you save on the RAM - you can easily max it out PLUS purchase the Apple Care warranty too...

    This way; you have a great machine; and it's guaranteed to be working for 3 years! Helps with reselling too (if you sell within the 3 years of coverage).

    ~ Aloha ~
     
  15. kvasir macrumors regular

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    Oct 9, 2007
    #15
    I too have wondered this. I have 1 gig in my MBP, but I have noticed how sluggish it gets at times. Would two gigs be better? I often have Mail, Safari, iTunes, Word, NetNewsWire, and sometimes iPhoto or iWeb open.

    The following is just with Safari, Mail, NetNewsWire, Word 2008 open.
     

    Attached Files:

  16. ajx22 macrumors regular

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    #16
    In a word ....

    yes
     
  17. raxafarian macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2007
    #17
    See how your page outs almost equal page ins? That's a good indication that you'd benefit from more ram. I think I saw somewhere you want that to be more like 20:1 than 1:1
     
  18. maccompaq macrumors 65816

    maccompaq

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    Mar 6, 2007
    #18
    Read these comparisons. They are eye opening showing that for your needs, 1 GB should be sufficient. With 2 GB, you can have more apps open. Check the XBench Results, Halo Results and Photoshop CS3 Results.

    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/Memory_Benchmark/Apple_MacBook/
     
  19. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

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    Jan 10, 2005
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    Russia
    #19
    1 GB is plenty for basic stuff. Here's a pic of my MacBook's RAM usage after not being restarted for 4+ days. This is with Safari, Mail, Adium, iTunes open. See that it still has plenty of room for more apps.
     

    Attached Files:

  20. coachingguy macrumors 6502a

    coachingguy

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    The Great White, Albeit Frozen North
    #20
    Cheap ram

    With Ram so cheap at so many venders, I use OWC (macsales.com), how can you afford not to max out?

    I've got 2.5 gigs in my Macbook 2.0ghz Feb '07.

    More Ram!

    Coachingguy
     
  21. macdoobie macrumors member

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    Feb 12, 2008
    #21
    1GB is not enough for 'general use'. If you plan on using the internet, listening to iTunes, writing a paper, maybe on iChat, you will need more than 1GB of RAM to be comfortable and happy.

    RAM is cheap these days. 3 years ago if someone had 4GB of RAM they were l33t rich kids. Not anymore, hell, putting 8gigs of RAM in my mac pro cost me only $190 and I could have gotten it cheaper if I had tried long enough...

    I put 4GB of RAM into my macbook for under $80 from Newegg.com
    so, you are wise to get as much as you can!!
     
  22. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

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    Jan 10, 2005
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    Russia
    #22
    For "general use" you described 1 GB is more than enough (see my pic a couple of posts above)

    And mind you, not everywhere RAM is that cheap. I don't know where the OP lives, but for example here getting 1 GB SODIMM stick costs about 70 $, while 2 GB sticks are over 200$.
     
  23. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

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    Sep 22, 2006
    #23
    Its fine in Tiger but in Leopard things may get a little stutter when doing stuff. 2gbs is perfectly fine, or 1.5 if you want to spend as little as possible.
     
  24. John.B macrumors 601

    John.B

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    Jan 15, 2008
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    Holocene Epoch
    #24
    I took the other approach. Even though a DIY memory swap doesn't void the warranty, I'm guessing the non-Apple memory would be the first thing suspected in the event of a problem. For the $8 OWC would've paid me for the stock SoDIMMs, I figured it was worth it to just hang onto the factory memory -- just in case. Obviously, YMMV.
     
  25. seany916 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2006
    Location:
    Southern California
    #25
    1.5 - 2.0 GB for web browsing, surfing, consumer apps (iPhoto/iMovie)

    If you are moving up to professional programs like Photoshop/Final Cut/Lightroom, then I would suggest having at least 2 GBs. In a notebook, 2GBs will run okay, but more would be "smoother".

    In a desktop, get as much as you can up to the point of diminishing returns.

    If you have the new Mac Pro, get 16GB. Assuming of course that you're running pro apps.

    My old Powermac G5 Dual 1.8 w/ 4.5 GBs can run ANYTHING I throw at it. It just takes much, much longer. Still the most reliable computer I've ever owned. Mostly used for capture and PS work now. I hope my new MP can do the same for me.
     

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