MBP ram upgrade clarification

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by evilsheepy, May 6, 2008.

  1. evilsheepy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    I'm planning on purchasing a new MBP sometime within the next week or so, and I'm a Final Cut editor so I want as much ram as possible, but I'd rather upgrade myself and save the money than buy the 4gb straight away.

    Anyway, a few quick Google searches later, and now I'm seeing stuff about a 3gb limitation if you do it yourself. Is this true? I'll admit I'm somewhat ignorant when it comes to hardware, but I can't see how the MBP would be setup so that Apple can upgrade it to 4gb but the user can only go to 3. I found a guide on Apple's site that explains how to install ram upgrades, so I assume that wouldn't void your warranty, but is there some kind of weird loophole about the size of the upgrade that they won't let you go past 3?

    I'd appreciate it if someone could clarify this for me. As ridiculous as $200 for a 2gb ram upgrade sounds, if the only way I can get 4gb of ram is to get it from Apple, that's probably what I'll do...
     
  2. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    近畿日本
    #2
    I think when you google, you're being shown all the MBP's not the newer SantaRosa based ones. Yes... Older MBP were limited to 3GB RAM max, however this isn't anything to do with user upgrades or manufacturer's upgrade. They we're limited to 3Gb due to the older chipset addressing ability.

    All new MB and MBP support 4GB, though... the SantaRosa chipset is supposed to support a maximum of 8GB RAM. Unfortunately 4GB SO-DIMS sticks are rare and costly, so no-one have managed to test this 8GB theory but your welcome to give it a bash.
     
  3. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #3
    On new Core2Duo MacBooks, MBP and iMacs, you can absolutely go to 4 GB with third party RAM.

    Have a look under the Guides tab at the top of this window.
    Guides: Hardware: Understanding Intel Mac RAM
     
  4. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #4
    No limitations. Just buy the cheapest RAM you find with decent ratings.
     
  5. illest-one macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 7, 2008
    #5
    How can you tell if you own one of the newer MBP?
    I am a MBP Noobie =/
     
  6. donalwho macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #6
    MBP ram upgrade clarification

    OWC53IM2DDR4GBK, $95.99.
    I got the 4GRAM replacement from "Other World Computing"
    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memory/MacBook/Pro/Core2/

    I ordered on a tuesday and it arrived in Switzerland from North America in my thursday post.
    Plugged it in and no issues so far (30 days).

    It's a no brainer
     
  7. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    近畿日本
    #7
    Click on the Apple icon on the menubar and goto "about this mac" then click on the button which says More info... it'll launch the System Profiler application, where you can see details about your system.

    Under the Hardware section, if own of the the newer MacBookPro's that's capable of taking 4GB RAM, then it should say either:

    Model Identifier: MacBookPro3,1
    Model Identifier: MacBookPro4,1


    For MBP RAM you need to buy DDR2 PC2-5300 667Mhz - I'd recommend Crucial, however any brand with a latency of 5-5-5 12 or better should be fine. Avoid the cheaper DDR2 PC2-5300 800Mhz because they're not entirely compatible with the Penryn's.
     
  8. illest-one macrumors newbie

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    May 7, 2008
  9. Draeconis macrumors 6502a

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    May 6, 2008
    #9
    There was a 3Gb limitation on older models because the OS was 32bit, which can only address just over 3Gb of memory. The new releases of OS X are all 64bit, as are the computers, so they support rather a lot more, depending on the chipset. 4Gb is about right for Video/Music/Picture editing, and 8Gb (2 x 4Gb sticks) for a laptop is far too costly to justify.
     
  10. Moseslam macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    #10
    Where can I get info on latency and how do I know if its better?

    Most ram I see are SODIMM CL4 and some CL5 and some don't mention CL at all. Is CL5 the one I should be getting?

    Thanks
     
  11. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #11
    CL4 is generally 4-4-4-12, and CL5 is 5-5-5-15. The lower the number, the faster the speeds. Crucial's RAM is listed as CL5, but CL4 should work (somebody correct me if I'm wrong). From my understanding though, if you use CL4 in your MacBook Pro, it will be used at CL5 speeds anyway, so there is no advantage to getting the faster speeds. CL is also known as CAS, so if you can't find a CLx, it could be disguised as that. Or the latency could just be listed as x-x-x-x. Which RAM were you looking at that didn't have the latency listed?
     
  12. deputy_doofy macrumors 65816

    deputy_doofy

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2002
    #13
    If it's a Core Duo MacBook Pro, you can't have 4gb.
    If it's a "Merom" Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro, you can't have 4gb. These models are 2.16GHz and 2.33GHz.

    If it's Santa Rosa or later (2.2GHz, 2.4GHz or more), then I believe you can have 4gb.
     
  13. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

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    Jun 16, 2007
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    近畿日本
    #14
    Well, you can physically install 4Gb of RAM but the 32bit chipset on those systems (2.16GHz and 2.33GHz). However, it'll will only address and use the first 3Gb (max), even though the system might show 4Gb, you still can't use it.
     
  14. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

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    近畿日本
    #15
  15. raymondu999 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    #16
    Actually, the pre-SR Core2Duo MBPs can only go to 3.25, or 3.3 if you install 4GB of RAM. I know, cos I used to own the 2.33GHz variant. However, a friend of mine, with her 2.4GHz SR, tried to self-upgrade with self-bought RAM sticks to 4GB, and the thing won't start. It'll just stay stuck at the grey startup screen. Then she pushed the power button until auto-shutdown, then tried again, but still wouldn't work. After the 10th or so time, she gave up, and replaced one of the 2GB with the original 1GB, hence, 3GB RAM with the 2.4SR, and it works. Mine, however, is always Apple upgraded (BTO through website, though pricey) and hence I wouldn't really know, but I've never had any problems otherwise.
     
  16. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #17
    Ah, you just answered my question for me. I noticed on Geil's website that they only carry PC2-5300 so I was questioning the RAM previously linked. They have a memory configurator on their site that shows that it is compatible with Apple computers, so it should work (as others have said).

    Another thing I've noticed (and yes I'm being nit-picky), people use the processor and platform names incorrectly... a lot... Merom is the processor. Santa Rosa is the platform. The Santa Rosa platform actually uses both Merom and Penryn processors. But anything pre-Santa Rosa (using Merom or otherwise) would not support the full 4 GB because of the 32-bit architecture.
     
  17. deputy_doofy macrumors 65816

    deputy_doofy

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2002
    #18
    Yes, you are correct, but I honestly don't know the name of the platform before Santa Rosa. Following Intel with its chip and platform names is extraordinarily confusing sometimes.
     

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