Kingston vs. OWC memory

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by macstatic, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. macstatic macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 21, 2005
    #1
    How does Kingston Mac Pro specific memory compare to OWC's?
    I know OWC memory is recommended by "everyone" in the Mac communities but alas I don't live in the US and with shipping, import duties (and the added cost and hassle of returning it in case of issues) I'd rather buy locally which means other brands.

    I have a 4-core 2.8GHz Mac Pro 5.1 (2010) and found a 24GB Mac Pro kit from Kingston (KTA-MP1333DRK3/24G). I had 32GB in mind, but they don't have that so I assume I'd be fine with adding just an 8GB stick (KTA-MP1333/8G). Would this work even though this obviously means I wouldn't get a "matched pair sets" as OWC would supply?

    Note: I'm opting for 1333MHz memory in case I upgrade my 4-core processor to a 6-core.
     
  2. carylee2002 macrumors member

    carylee2002

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    #2
    Personally..I would rather run all four slots and go 16 or 32. That 24 setup is really not that ideal. Besides at 1333..the chips will gear down to 1066 anyways because your slots are made for 1066 and not 1333. Save up to 32 or just go at 16. I use adobe products and since they use the GPU intensive programs using the Mercury Playback Engine..my needs of going above 16 has really been not been an issue with running out of memory.
     
  3. macstatic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    So, if going for 32GB right away, would the Kingston 32GB kit (KTA-MP1333DRK3/24G) which is configured as 3x8GB, plus a stand alone Mac Pro specific 8GB stick (KTA-MP1333/8G) work sufficiently compared to buying a 32GB kit from OWC?

    I know the chips will run at 1066MHz now, but won't they speed up to 1333 if I upgrade the CPU to a 6-core?
     
  4. carylee2002, Jan 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013

    carylee2002 macrumors member

    carylee2002

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    #4
    Dont' know if the memory will go to 1333 after the upgrade. Another is it is best to have your memory in even pairs. If you have odd sticks then the old concept of dual channel memory is compromised. So it would be best to go with 4 sticks at 16 or 32. The price won't be that great of a difference nowdays. As for upgrading your CPU to 6 core..you will have to talk to the person who is doing the upgrading on whats best. I noticed that OWC doesn't even offer that service anymore on 2010 5,1 quad machines. They may think that another Macpro is around the corner and the demand is not warranted anymore. Also I believe all OWC ram is pretested to work together in their kits but as long as you are using quality ram...i found I haven't found that much of difference. Just stay from knockoffs that are not from quality manufacturers and you should be fine. Check to see if Kingston makes 4 stick setups for 32gigs and compare prices.
     
  5. designs216 macrumors 65816

    designs216

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    #5
    Kingston has a good reputation here but I've personally had outstanding customer service with OWC. Take a look at Crucial as well. They have also been solid and cost effective.
     
  6. macstatic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    For some unknown reason they only seem to supply 8GB modules on their own or as part of their 24GB kit. There's no 32GB kit, so I would either have to buy 4x8GB modules separately (definitely not matched and probably more expensive as well) or as I suggested previously; the 24GB kit + a single 8GB module. Here are all their Mac Pro specific memory options. I couldn't find any 32GB Mac Pro kits at Crucial's website either. Would I be making a mistake?

    I would be doing this myself. I've read several threads about it and it should be relatively uncomplicated to do. I seem to recall that using 1333 memory would come into full use after such an upgrade. Funnily, those Mac Pro 8GB module kits of stand-alone 8GB modules from Kingston only come in the 1333 flavor :)
     
  7. cal6n macrumors 68000

    cal6n

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    #7
    If you drop a hex-core in, then your memory will run at 1333 MHz, but only if you're running in triple channel mode, i.e. you have 3 identical DIMMs in slots 1-3.

    If you put a DIMM in slot 4, then they'll all drop back to 1066 MHz.
     

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  8. macstatic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    I see.
    So for best performance I best go with 24GB (8GB x3) @1333MHz then unless I find that I really need 32GB.
     
  9. jessicadg macrumors newbie

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    Jul 30, 2012
    #9
    Kingston

    You cant go wrong with Kingston memory... I bought 24Gb - 3 x 8Gb of KTA-MP1333/8G and and it worked like a charm on my 2.66GHz Quad-Core 2009.
    It will clock down to 1066MHz but if you upgrade the CPU you can get the full speed of 1333MHz.
    Dont go with the DR kit..get the single KTA-MP1333/8G
     
  10. macstatic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    Excuse my ignorance, but why shouldn't I get the 24GB kit?
    It's a little cheaper than buying three separate Kingston 8GB modules, and aren't they the exact same modules, only with the kit they're matched? :confused:
     
  11. jessicadg macrumors newbie

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    Jul 30, 2012
    #11
    The KTA-MP1333DR/8G is Registered ECC module... the KTA-MP1333/8G is Unbuffered ECC module. Its not a huge difference but I would go for Unbuffered module..
     
  12. robvas macrumors 68020

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    #12
    If you can use MORE than 24GB, get the 32GB kit. But if your usage is going to only be in the 16-24GB range, save $40 and get the 24GB kit.

    As far as speed goes between 1066MHz and 1333MHz RAM you're only going to see 0-3% difference depending on the app.

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/2792/13
     
  13. macstatic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    This sure is getting confusing :confused:
    I have no idea what the difference is between registred and unbuffered ECC modules and neither why Kingston has chosen two different standard for their 24GB kit vs. single 8GB modules, but if it makes no difference to the Mac I can still see how it makes a difference if I want to start off with 24GB, then have the possibility to further upgrade to 32GB as Kingston don't seem to sell stand-alone 8GB registered ECC modules (to match the 24GB kit).

    With the single 8GB modules I would at least have the very same modules either way I go (24 or 32GB) even though I'll have to pay around $25 more compared to the 24GB kit and lose out on the pair matching I assume the kit would give. I guess you just can't get it all ;)
     
  14. xcodeSyn macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    The important thing to remember is that you cannot mix registered with unbuffered memory modules. Other than that you could actually choose most ECC DDR3 modules with thermal sensor from Kingston for your Mac Pro since it is just one of the workstations/servers running Intel Xeon processors. Unfortunately most sellers (including Amazon and NewEgg) do not always provide thermal sensor info on their products, so you may need to Google it for the spec. I recently got this 32GB kit used from Amazon for less than $105 for my 2009 MP. The registered modules do run a little hotter than unbuffered ones, otherwise they work fine even though they are not labeled for MP.
     
  15. pancake1 macrumors newbie

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    Jul 8, 2010
    #15
    Since 2009 all the MacPro machines are triple channel which means they perform best when running in multiples three...one DIMM per channel. Forget the old pairing rules of yesteryear. Peak performance in triple channel machines comes when multiples of 3 are installed.
    Will they run with 2 installed?.yes. Will they run with 4?..yes. But with 2 installed you are not fully utilizing the full triple channel data path. With 4 installed you are forced to have 2 DIMM share that third channel causing a slight bandwidth performance drop.
    Three 8GB for 24GB is the hot ticket for best bang for the buck today.

    Mac RAM Direct is first rate supplier that have earned my loyalty. Here's what they have: http://macramdirect.com/macpro.html#mp4y
    They ship globally and fill Customs forms as $10 "Warranty Replacement Parts" to slip through VAT.
    I've had way to many problems with OWC RAM and SSDs and will no longer use them.
    There are 16GB DIMMs out now for your machine as well. They only come as Registered which is totally fine but you don't want to mix with non-registered.

    Best luck!
     
  16. caymandrew macrumors newbie

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    #16
    Huh? I upgraded my pro to a hex core 3.46 Ghz 3690 and added 4x 8 gb Ram for 32 GB and it runs fine at 1333MHz?

    [​IMG]
     
  17. cal6n macrumors 68000

    cal6n

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    #17
    Wow. That's odd. Mine definitely gets down-clocked.
     

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  18. scott.n macrumors 6502

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    Dec 17, 2010
    #18
    Yours reads as an "Early 2009". Maybe the 4,1 firmware doesn't allow 1333 MHz RAM?

    (I didn't even think it was possible to put a hexacore in the 4,1 without updating the firmware.)
     
  19. xcodeSyn macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 25, 2012
    #19
    This is probably because the memory module in the 4th slot only supports 1066MHz clock speed. If the 4th one also came from the same kit, you have a very good reason to exchange it.

    He did the firmware upgrade and that's why he could install a 6-core. As mentioned before, the "Early 2009" display is based on the serial number and has nothing to do with the firmware version. I recently upgraded to 2.93GHz 8-core for my 2009 MP without upgrading to 5,1 firmware, but it still shows 1333MHz memory clock speed because the X5570 supports it.
     
  20. scott.n macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Whoops. I always just assumed the description was linked to the model identifier. Thanks for setting me straight.
     
  21. cal6n macrumors 68000

    cal6n

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    #21
    Ah, but I bought my Mac Pro as a 2.66 quad from a refurbisher with the RAM preinstalled and advertised as being DDR3 1066 MHz. So finding that it works in triple channel at 1333 MHz is a bonus, really.

    Yes, that's right.

    Model Name: Mac Pro
    Model Identifier: MacPro5,1
    Processor Name: 6-Core Intel Xeon
    Processor Speed: 3.33 GHz
    Number of Processors: 1
    Total Number of Cores: 6
    L2 Cache (per Core): 256 KB
    L3 Cache: 12 MB
    Memory: 24 GB
    Processor Interconnect Speed: 6.4 GT/s
    Boot ROM Version: MP51.007F.B03
    SMC Version (system): 1.39f5
     
  22. caymandrew macrumors newbie

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    #22
    Strange indeed. You're sure all 4 sticks are 1333?

    As for the OP - get it locally, the cheaper the better. Don't fall for the marketing gimmicks, ram is ram is ram...
     
  23. GermanyChris macrumors 601

    GermanyChris

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    #23
    you should..
     
  24. cal6n macrumors 68000

    cal6n

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    #24
    Oh, yes. There's 2 pairs of identical Hyperam DIMMs marked as 16 GB kits

    True up to a point, but only for some users.

    First, there's the question of error checking. I know the 2006-2008 Mac Pros absolutely required FB ECC memory, while the 2009-2012 models will happily boot with plain old DDR3. Then there are the temperature sensors, present on Apple's RAM but absent at the budget end of the market. For many users, these are more than simply nice features. They're crucial safeguards for a high-powered workstation.
     

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