Mac mini 2010 (2.4GHz) 4gigs or 8gigs of RAM?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Machi, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. Machi macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    #1
    Hello guys,
    I just bought my first Mac - Mac mini 2010 (2.4GHz) with 2gigs of RAM and I have to say that it really isn't enough for me and I'd like to ask you, skilled professionals what upgrade should I make, to 4 or 8gigs.

    I use Mac mini for normal things - text, email, internet, 1080p movies and sometimes also web delepment (Photoshop + Dreamweaver) and virtual Win7. And those 2gigs are used up really really fast.

    What do you think, are 4gigs for those things fine or should I rather buy 8? Problem is that I read a lot of troubles with 8gigs of RAM on new Mac mini (troubles with boot etc.) and since I'm from Czech republic, I don' t have access to Crucial or any other 100% Mac compatible makers, just ADATa, Corsair, Kingston,...

    Thanks a lot...
     
  2. AbSoluTc macrumors 68040

    AbSoluTc

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    #2

    I had this same question when I bought my Mini a few weeks ago. Should I do 4 or 8 gigs of ram. I went with 4 because 8 was overkill for me and the costs was prohibitive for my needs.

    I did 2x2gig sticks. If you think you MIGHT need 8 later on down the road, get 1x4gig stick and that way later you can just add another 4 gig stick. Up to you.
     
  3. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #3
    Compare the prices of 4GB and 8GB. If you can get 8GB for around the same price (I means $/GB), then I would get 8GB.
     
  4. Machi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    #4
    Thanks for reply, I guess this is a way to go for me (1x 4GB module and second later if needed). I'm just worrying about compatibility, 1333MHz CL7 Kingston probably won't run together with 1333MHz CL9 ADATA and who knows whot modules will be available after a year... And there's also a problem with 8GB from some manufacturers (I read a few threads about it on this forum)... well, I should propably try it first :)

    May I also ask you, how much memory do you have used with average work (browser, mail, adium for example) because I have 60% full just with these three apps.

    Does anyone succesfully tested any 2x 4GB modules from one of these manufacturers please? ADATA, Corsair or Kigston.
    EDIT: I'm reffreing to this for example: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1005604

    Thanks a lot, Jakub
     
  5. norsemen macrumors regular

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    Apr 2, 2007
    #5
  6. Machi thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 12, 2010
    #6
    Hellhammer: Price is more or less the same, compatibility is the thing that bothers me :(

    norsemen: I was looking at them and it looks like an ideal solution for that price, the only thing is that they're not available in Czech republic and it looks a bit risky to order it from US and hope they will work (and they is also VAT in EU, expensive shipping, God bless EU :D).
     
  7. WesCole macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 1, 2010
    Location:
    Texas
    #7
    I plan on upgrading to 8 gigs in the future, but only because I would like to keep my Windows 7 VM satisfied with at least 2.5-3 gigs dedicated to it. I run databases and spreadsheets out of it quite a bit, so it can be very memory-consuming. If you don't use virtual machines, you would probably be just fine with 4 gigs, though. You should spend the extra money you saved and buy a SSD...that will make the swap (or page?) file a lot faster in the event you do get low on memory...
     
  8. X42-Negative macrumors newbie

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    Oct 14, 2010
    #8
    4GB, I never go over 4GB. Unless you do heavy video editing or modeling, there's no need for that much.
     
  9. MikieMcBikie macrumors regular

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    Mar 14, 2009
    Location:
    TN
    #9
    i added one 4 gig chip replacing one of the included 1 gig chips for a total of 5. I haven't used page swap since. the 4 gig chip price was the same as two 2 gig chips. if i decide i need to go to 8 later, i will only have thrown away/resold/stored in a random drawer 2 chips, not 4. food for thought.
     
  10. speedwaygirl macrumors member

    speedwaygirl

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    Apr 30, 2010
    #10
    Did the exact same thing you did for the very same reasons. 5GB is working great!

    Good luck!
     
  11. k3roro macrumors 6502

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    Aug 28, 2010
    #11
    I had similar thoughts.

    What I ended up doing is purchasing 1x 4GB ram for now to use. If I find that I ever need more ram, all I have to do is purchase another 1x 4GB for a total of 8GB.
     
  12. Lefix macrumors newbie

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    Oct 18, 2010
    #12
    i would recommend that too, buying 1x4GB for now so you will have 5GB, and if you want more you can buy another 4GB later on.
     
  13. Rapscallion macrumors regular

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    Sep 28, 2010
    #13
    Thats what I did aswell, added 4gb. I can get 4 more later if I feel its nessessary.
     
  14. batistuta macrumors regular

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    Jan 15, 2008
    #14
    I am currently running 2x2GB, which is enough for mostly everything I do.
    So people are using 5GB - and are having no problems with dual channel RAM and the modules being of different size?
    I guess I could go for 6 GB then, saving a few $ and always having the option of moving to 8 down the road?
     
  15. X42-Negative macrumors newbie

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    Oct 14, 2010
    #15
    For the people with 5GB, you're slowing yourself down. Your memory is running in single channel instead of dual channel if you have two of the same size RAM.
     
  16. AbSoluTc macrumors 68040

    AbSoluTc

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    Sep 21, 2008
    #16
    According to what was posted and what I have read thus far, the Mac Mini does not support Dual Channel. So it doesn't matter. Again, I could have read incorrectly. :confused:
     
  17. QuantumLo0p macrumors 6502a

    QuantumLo0p

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    Apr 28, 2006
    Location:
    U.S.A.
    #17
    I don't think it's a huge difference but Apple states it is better to install ram as similar pairs.

    I opted for 8 and, with multiple users and lots-O-apps, it makes good use of it and I don't regret it at all.
    :)
     
  18. Rapscallion macrumors regular

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    Sep 28, 2010
    #18
    A quote from this page:
    http://www.anandtech.com/show/3843/apple-mac-mini-review-mid-2010/4

    "The Geforce 320m uses a duel channel ddr3 memory controller so you will want to upgrade in pairs"

    I knew this when I decided to pair a 4gb module of ram with one of the two 1gb modules that my mini was supposed to ship with, I had bought the 4gb module with the idea that I would match it later on when I had more cash available. My mini runs great with the 6 GB total (the mini shipped with two 2 GB modules by mistake, no complaints from me of course) and I’m not sure if it’s even worth getting the second 4 GB module now. I wish I could see more bench mark results like this article has, with various amounts of ram and possibly various configurations as well.
     
  19. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #19
    more ram>dual channel benefits.
     
  20. QuantumLo0p macrumors 6502a

    QuantumLo0p

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    #20
    Sooo....more dual channel ram>unmatched ram?
     
  21. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #21
    My point is that having 5 gigs (say 1gig and 4 gig stick) of ram will be faster than 2x2 gigs as dual channel only yields about a 5-10% increase in speed. This boost by having dual channel does not exceed the boost gained by having more ram...

    So yes, more ram in unmatched pairs yields higher results than less ram in dual channel
     
  22. speedwaygirl macrumors member

    speedwaygirl

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    Apr 30, 2010
    #22
    5GB is working just fine for me right now. Then hopefully at Christmas, I'll convert holiday cash to another 4GB to make a matched pair, but I'm not seeing any detriment to having 5 GB......especially when it started out with only 2GB!
     
  23. AbSoluTc macrumors 68040

    AbSoluTc

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    Sep 21, 2008
    #23
    Not really. Most users won't ever use beyond 4 GB of ram. So, 4 Gig of ram matched @ 2x2 would be much better than 5 Gig @ 5x1 @ 1x1. The speed of having identical sticks running the same is better.
     
  24. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #24
    This is wrong. Dual Channel nets at most a 10% increase....this will not eclipse the performance of having more ram in unmatched configurations, especially when that ram is used and thus preventing page outs
     

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