OK, I am sorting out how to do this all in my head and I have quite the headache. I have never owned a mac, and I don't know if I should be spending the kind of money they (Apple) wants me to to get the RAM I need. I would be using the student discount, so that's all well and good. But I would really like to max out the iMac 20" I plan on purchasing with the full 2GB RAM. I have a few options and my worries with each are following them. 1) Buy the 2 GB upgrade from Apple, at a cost of $270 What worries me here is that this is Apple installed RAM, and is probably of the highest quality that they require for their machines, I feel by installing RAM other than Apple-factory-installed RAM I may be doing myself a disservice. 2) Upgrade the 512MB stick Apple supplies to a 1GB ($90) and then install my own 1GB stick (cost roughly $84 at newegg.com) for a total cost of about $174 This option is vastly cheaper, almost by $100 ballpark. My fear in doing this is that there will be some sort of problem with mixing and matching two types of RAM. Does it matter if the two sticks are not the same Make/Model? 3) Take the iMac as is with the 512MB stick and replace it with a bundled 2GB RAM (2 x 1GB sticks) from newegg.com for a price roughly $174 Again, the price vastly preferred to option 1, however I worry about performance of "third-party" RAM again and wonder if I would be missing out on the iMac's true power. So essentially I am asking you, the Mac community, two questions: 1) Is Apple RAM (and yes I am aware it's Samsung-made) really where its at and I should most definately buy it from them? 2) Is there a problem with mixing and matching RAM of different makes and models? (I am aware I should only be purchasing PC5300 RAM and not questioning the mixing of other interfaces or "speeds" of RAM, i'm talking about the maker mostly) If anyone knows anything about RAM, I would love some help. I'm trying to buy my first ever Mac and I need direction.