maximum tested memory for iMac 2.8 (early 2008)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by gmanrique, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. gmanrique macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2003
    Ottawa, Canada
    Just wanted to get clarification since it is difficult to track with all the different threads:

    iMacs 2.8 (early 2008), or now previous generation, support RAM as follows:

    - Apple officially supports a maximum of 4GB on these machines
    - Some users have reported that 6GB work fine
    - Some users have reported that 8GB might or might not work. Still not clear what causes this behavior but it sort of goes from recognizing the whole thing (8 GB) to just one stick (4 GB)

    I am getting one of these iMac 2.8 (refurb from Apple) and want to maximize the memory. If 8 GB work fine, that is what I would like to do, otherwise I am not sure about going 6GB (4GB + 2GB). If I just keep it at 4, I guess it would be better to have 2GB + 2GB rather than just a single 4GB, but it means that in the future, if there is no issue managing the 8GB once Snow Leopard is out, I will need to replace the 2x2GB for 2x4GBs.

    I will use the machine for some VMware, development, iLife, etc. and maybe the odd gaming.

    Would there be a noticeable performance boost with 6GB (4GB+2GB) as opposed to 4GB? Will there be a difference between (2GB+2GB) vs (4GB)?

    Any advice on this would be appreciated.
  2. Detektiv-Pinky macrumors 6502a


    Feb 25, 2006
    Berlin, Germany
    What about going to 5gb (4 + 1)?
    This way you can keep your investment down and still have the option to upgrade later.

    Mind you, those 4gb modules are pricey!
    It is probably why not many people go beyond 4gb. And it is rarely necessary. If do not run several virtualised machines simultaneously or are into processing huge powerpoint files, those 4gb will carry you a loooong way....
  3. desantii macrumors 6502


    Sep 9, 2006
    Aurora, IL
    I have an IMac 2.8 and it works fine with 6gb (2+4), there is no boost, what you get is that the machine does not go to the hard drive as often (hence no slowdown), specially with multiple VMs open

    If you need 6gb, then 6gb is much faster that 4gb, even countering in the loss of speed for not being double channel (~3%)
  4. gmanrique thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2003
    Ottawa, Canada
    Thanks for the answer

    You are right, those 4GB modules are really pricey. I will just get 4 GB for now ($70-$80). I think it is better this way than the potential benefit of 5GB (4+1), and upgrade later to 8GB if required and supported.


  5. gmanrique thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2003
    Ottawa, Canada
    what 4GB module did you use?

    Also, did you try with 8GB (2 x 4GB) or just knew it would not work? Thanks


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