Just added 16gb ram to my new imac....Wow!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Atomic Ed, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. Atomic Ed macrumors regular

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    #1
    I just got a new 27" imac and it came with a measley 4gb ram so I decided to upgrade the ram to 16gb. Ordered the Ram through OWC, what a good outfit they are, anyway it came today and I installed it straight away. I was expecting a noticeable performance increase over the 4gb it came with but Wow! To my surprise it sped up the machine like crazy. I was extremely impressed. I am able to open pretty kuch anything instantly. Itunes was the one that really surprised me as it opens right up as soon as I click on it.

    So anyhow just thout I would share my happy experience on this, in case any of you are considering doing an upgrade to 16gb and trying to determine if its worth it or not. i can tell you it is definately worth it.

    Just keep in mind to buy your ram from a quality source as macs are alot more picky than PCs i this respect. I found OWC or Crucial to be the best for the money but I'm sure there are other good sources as well
     
  2. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

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    #2
    Crucial for me....My iMac 27" has 16GB....I added 8 shortly after purchase...It eats all I throw it's way.
     
  3. alksion macrumors 68000

    alksion

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    #3
    Does Safari feel snappier by any chance? Lol.

    Only time I ever notice any difference from 4GB>16GB is when I have multiple Adobe products opened and that's about it.
     
  4. Atomic Ed thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #4
    I didnt notice anything different with safari as it was fast already. But I know what you mean about expecting to see the differences when running heavy programs like you mentioned. However, what I found was it sped up everything like crazy. I was quite surprised with the results as I really didn't expect that.

    With the original 4 gb ram, when I opened itunes the icon would bounce about 10 times before it opened the program, now it is instant. I tried launching other things too and they are all super fast. Anyway it isn't too often our expectations are surpassed nowadays so I am going to savor the feeling.
     
  5. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

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    #5
    It does give a kick in the backside to multiple video and photo applications. That's why I took mine up. You won't notice anything in particular anywhere else...I have the top end I7 in mine and 2GB AMD GPU, so the only bottleneck is the HDD. I am shortly taking delivery of a Pegasus R4 which I will use via Thunderbolt. If the speeds are accurately benchmarked I can expect 120MBS...Plenty fast for "On the fly" work.

    My next desktop will probably be a Pro...IF they ever get around to the re-fresh!
     
  6. John Adams macrumors regular

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    Fort Worth, TX USA
  7. alksion macrumors 68000

    alksion

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    #7
    That's interesting, it's normally an SSD that would speed up opening applications, but if you it's working better for you, right on!
     
  8. FeaRThiS macrumors 6502

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    Mar 25, 2011
  9. plucky duck macrumors 6502

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    Jan 5, 2012
    #9
    Depends on what applications you use, but I find I was more "wow"ed going from mechanical he to an Ssd than I did going from 4gb to 16gb ram. For multitasking the more memory the better though. Ram prices are cheap enough that's there's no reason anybody should suffer from this bottleneck.
     
  10. djjje macrumors newbie

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    Apr 24, 2012
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    UK
    #10
    I currently have an i5 MBP with 4GB memory. I have been getting the bouncing ball but as expected I am also getting slugged when using apps like FCPX.

    I am waiting for the new iMAC 2012 and I am trying to work out how much memory I should go for when I order it.

    I know the default answer should be "as much as possible" but here's what I am confused about....

    Even with my 4GB on the MBP and when I'm getting the bouncing ball when I look at the activity monitor I still have a portion of free or inactive memory. Is the inactive as readily available to a new app as the free?

    I am trying to understand how more memory would help when apparently I am not maxed out.

    Your wisdom and comments on this topic will be appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  11. plucky duck macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Might the bouncing ball be related th hard drive access activity and not the ram?
     
  12. djjje macrumors newbie

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    UK
    #12
    without wishing to get off topic....

    I am not sure...I spec'd a 7200rpm disk when I first purchased the MBP and generally speaking the bouncing ball is indicating that the "system" can't keep up which could be the CPU, the disk, the memory. If I have more memory will the app (such as FCPX) pull the video data into memory (although rendered video files still require disk access as they are being created).

    A supplementary question regarding memory upgrade...if pretend to purchase a 27" iMac today and upgrade to 16GB of memory Apple UK want £480 !!! If I get the base memory config and buy Crucial memory I can get 4x 4GB modules for £70. I am assuming that going the £70 route isn't going to cause me any grief in the future and changing the memory modules looks to be very simply (on the current chassis).
     
  13. Atomic Ed thread starter macrumors regular

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    #13
    I know what you mean thats what I thought too. I have ssd in my other machines and it made a huge difference under windows, but in all my years I never saw any increase like I did on this imac just from adding ram. Its crazy fast but I'm not complaining. This imac is simply awesome.
     
  14. Johnny Vegas macrumors member

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    Jul 7, 2011
    #14
    If you noticed that much of a speed increase with just normal/casual software usage, I'd be of the opinion that the original RAM was defective. IMHO 4gigs of RAM should be enough to prevent slowdowns with the exception of photo/video editing software or virtualization.

    ~JV
     
  15. RobinHood5 macrumors regular

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    Apr 23, 2012
    #15
    My plan.

    Well, I'm getting just as high end Mac available (Mabey with the exception of SSD) but I'm leaving the original 4gb ram in it. I'm either going to end $100 on 16gb from OWC or $400 for 32gb from the same place. (I don't really need it but it would be,nice for bragging rights!)
     
  16. leerichards1 macrumors regular

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    Mar 9, 2012
    #16
    Is there any advantage to buying 2 * 8GB instead of 4 * 4GB. The latter option seems to be considerably cheaper, and whilst option one would give you 20GB in total (keeping the standard 4GB that comes with the system), I suspect the difference between 16GB and 20GB RAM is negligible. With regard to future upgradability, I think 16GB will suit the majority of us for many years to come.
     
  17. Zendokan macrumors regular

    Zendokan

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    Belgium
    #17
    My iMac came with 2x 2GB and I bought 2x 4GB Kingston's. Those two were cheaper (with life long garantee) than 1x 2GB from Apple.


    The 4GB's are cheaper because they have been in production a lot longer than the 8GB ones, which makes them now fall in the "profit" part of their lifecycle (Invest-Break Even-Profit).
    Also they are easier to produce, since the overall form factor of a RAM plates stays the same compared to 8GB chipsets.

    The advantage of speed:
    4x 4GB is faster in processing than 2x 8GB: The CPU can access 16GB through 4 connectors instead of 2 and the connectors are the bottleneck.
    Now with the newer generations of RAM, the difference isn't that big anymore and the real slowing factor rest between keyboard and chair ;)

    The advantage of price:
    2x 8GB is in reality cheaper than 4x 4GB when you want to upgrade in the long run to 32GB: there are only 4 slots on your iMac and it comes already with 2x 2GB installed (which you have paid at a serious price).

    So adding 4x 4GB means that 2x 2GB has to removed, later if you want to get 4x 8GB, you again have to remove your 4x 4GB RAM. In the long run you have paid for 52GB while running only 32GB.


    So it depends of you, if your goal is to run 32GB in the long run get 2x 8GB and run 20GB until you buy the other 16GB RAM.
    If you KNOW that you will never go above 16GB, get 4x 4GB because that solution is cheaper at the moment.

    Hope that this helps.
     
  18. leerichards1 macrumors regular

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    Mar 9, 2012
    #18
    Yes that's great thanks. I don't do any video/photo editing or anything else particularly taxing really, so I'm confident 16GB will be more than enough for what I actually need for the life of my new (and 1st) iMac. Seeing how low the price is for 4*4GB's I'm gonna jump straight to that.
     
  19. Smartie macrumors regular

    Smartie

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    Stockholm, Sweden
    #19
    Can the iMac run 32gb of RAM, thought the max were 16gb? So it says in the specs at least, but I'm not that techie so I don't know if there is a limit on the Mac or if the limit really is the chipset.
     
  20. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    Poole, England
    #20
    Yes, it does support 32 GB RAM if you buy 4 x 8 GB modules.

    You can always find this sort of information on sites like www.everymac.com

     
  21. Smartie macrumors regular

    Smartie

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    #21
    thanks. Good to know. Did not know of everymac.com
     
  22. plucky duck macrumors 6502

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    #22
    Max is 32GB for 2011 imac. I've hit the 16gb ceiling occasionally editing videos and photos while doing other things.
     
  23. Atomic Ed thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #23
    I considered that as well with the original ram being suspect, but i put it in a hp laptop and it ran fine. Ran memtest too no issues with it at all, so i am sure the ram is good. I did notice it was some type of weird brand name, like alpida or something like that. Must have been lowest bidder at the time apple sourced the ram for these machines, however it does run find on the p with windows 7 premium os. The only other thing I can think of is possibly the OWC ram was vastly better quality in reference to the ram timings and such over the original ram and could explain the diference in speed.

    At any rate, the next time I need ram OWC is where im going. Great service, price and delivery was great.

    I saw the max ram OWC had listed was in fact 32gb even though the factory max is listed as 16gb, however for what I am using the machine for 16gb is already overkill.
     
  24. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #24
    Defective ram will cause kernel panics, not slow speed.

    The speed increase is due to disk caching.

    4gb is nothing these days, going from 4gb to 8gb in my MBP I immediately noticed the difference, even before running Fusion.


    The general rule with RAM is buy as much as you can comfortably afford. It will do more for you than a CPU speed grade bump, and is generally reasonably cheap to a point. Currently, that point is 16gb on portables... 32gb on iMacs.... but 16gb is plenty for the time being. It does get to a point where there are diminishing returns.
     
  25. Zendokan macrumors regular

    Zendokan

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    Feb 17, 2011
    Location:
    Belgium
    #25
    From the "mid-2010" iMacs (i3, i5 and i7) on, they all support 32GB.

    How much you need really depends from your need and size of your wallet (although RAM became cheaper compared to a few years ago).

    iMacs:
    I just added 2x 4GB, combined with the 2x 2GB already in the machine, it's more than enough for my usage of watching a movie, a little bit of iWork and iLife and surfing the web.

    If you are into photography and photoshop I would recommend 16GB (4x 4GB) or 20GB (2x 2GB + 2x 8GB).

    If you are into movie editing and high level compiling, it's 32Gb (4x 8GB) all the way.


    With MBPs, my advice is to replace the standard 4GB (2x 2GB) immidiatly with 16GB (2x 8GB) at home.

    The only shame is that it isn't possible to buy an iMac or MBP without RAM at all (and get an discount on the price of the iMac or MBP), because in 2011 the price of doing an additional upgrade from 4GB to 8GB was more expensive than buying 16GB of RAM.
     

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