Mac Pro RAM Question

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by jessicadg, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. jessicadg macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2012
    I just bought 2009 Mac Pro 2.66GHz Quad - Core and I am extremely happy with it!
    It comes with 4 GB RAM (4x1GB) 1GB each slot and this is the first thing I want to change.
    After hours of Googling I decided to go with Kingston's System Specific Memory - KTA - MP1333/8G - unbuffered.
    From my research this RAM should work with my Mac and being 1333MHz is something good for eventual CPU upgrade in the future.
    The problem is that where I live each 8G comes with price tag of €90.00!
    I red about the triple channel RAM performance but at the moment I won't be able to get 24G (3x8G)

    So my question is… can I use 2x8G RAM in dual channel mode for some time..lets say 2-3 months, and leave the other 2 slots empty?

    I am using Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, MAMP.. no video rendering or gaming.
    My biggest concern is VM (Fusion).. I would like to run few Linux distros and was wondering if 2 empty slots of RAM will be ok..

    Any advice is greatly appreciated,
  2. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
  3. jessicadg thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2012
    thanks for your help.
    I checked crucial memory.. its little bit cheaper compare to Kingston but from crucial website I couldn't find information if their RAM come with thermal sensors.. I am not really sure if i need ECC RAM but I feel like thermal sensors are important..i am not comp. hardware guru and I don't know much about these things..
    I just want to make sure 2 empty slots won't cause troubles.

    Thanks again for your help
  4. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    Thermal sensors are part of the current DDR3 specification so all new modules should have them. Because it is part of the standard spec they don't tend to list it as a feature.

    As for ECC it certainly has it's uses, but for what you are doing it's probably not worth the added expense. All it is likely to do is prevent a very remote chance of a crash or warn you that your memory is going bad.
  5. stix666 macrumors regular

    Nov 13, 2005
  6. jessicadg thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 30, 2012
    hm.. thought I knew which memory to buy.. but now I am getting confused!
    I just want the best possible performance for my Mac from memory point of view..looks like my hours googling are wasted time.. :(

    So.. do I need ECC modules or I can skip all the fancy terminology and get 24G of RAM for the price of 1x8G KIngston memory.. in other words do I pay more just because its called Kingston

    thanks again
  7. comatory macrumors 6502a


    Apr 10, 2012
    I had the same question last week. All Mac Pro's made since 2009 can support either ECC RAM or standard DDR3 RAM. Both will work, the only thing is that Apple officially supports ECC which is more expensive but it is also more reliable.
    But I think unless you'll be using MP as a Server you're fine with DDR3 memory. I already decided I'll be getting DDR3 memory, even if it went bad it doesn't matter, it's so cheap that I can just buy new module and it'll still end up cheaper than ECC. Just be sure to get the right kind of DDR3. See this thread here:

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