Memory upgrade possible?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by synne, Dec 19, 2008.

  1. synne macrumors newbie

    Dec 19, 2008
    Hi this is my first post, I just bought the new Macbook (MB402LL/B) from BestBuy, where I work.

    First, the title is a little misleading. I know the memory is upgradeable...
    But, on the box it says expandable up to 4 GB - which I am leaning is incorrect.

    I work at the Geek Squad and am a Computer Engineer working with Solaris and various different hardware platforms and OS's --- Im hardly a newb and have tried several things to get my new Macbook to accept the total 4GB it advertises. So your help would be appreciated.

    So I purchased two 2GB Kingston certified PC2 5300 apple memory chips (4GB total). I installed both, and immediately got three beep codes.

    My troubleshooting and results:
    1. I reseated the memory (must be dozens of times) with no resolution.
    2. I removed one memory chip, the system booted up fine. Thought I might have a bad memory chip... So I removed the now working chip with the one I previously installed (swapped them) The system booted up fine...
    3. Reinstalled the previously working chip and attempted reseating it again - no joy.
    4. Replaced the memory chips alltogether - no joy.
    5. Interchanged one memory chip between both chip modules/slot... both slots worked with one 2GB chip in each. Doesnt appear to be the mobo..
    6. Reinstalled a single 512MB chip (factory chip) with 2GB chip (total of 2.5GB) - System boots fine.

    How do I get to 4GB? I didn't see any sort of firmware update with the Mac Updates.. has anyone else had this problem?
  2. acfusion29 macrumors 68040


    Nov 8, 2007
    You need to get DDR3 chips.

    Now I see why people don't trust geek squad.
  3. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    Wrong. He got the White MacBook, not the new Aluminum MacBooks.
  4. cogsinister macrumors 6502a

    Aug 24, 2006
    Fredericton NB Canada
    I would swap the ram for some more, it sounds like there may be a problem with that pair......

    If not then maybe the logic board is a bit faulty....
  5. acfusion29 macrumors 68040


    Nov 8, 2007
    Sorry, I read new MacBook and assumed it was the new one? (I don't study model numbers, sorry).
  6. synne thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 19, 2008
    Because jamming a DDR2 chip into a DDR3 slot sometimes works, must be how I got the macbook to post several times, brilliant. Just FYI, the slots are different, I would have figured that out a long time ago. And hopefully my trust in this forum is warranted.

    I saw 4 replies so quickly I thought there might be an answer already, hopefully someone else has seen this before.
  7. bozz2006 macrumors 68030


    Aug 24, 2007
    as mentioned before, i'd try a different pair of RAM sticks. Macs have a tendency to be finicky about RAM. It may be just that simple. So, I'd try that first before I potentially wasted more time trouble-shooting.
  8. paolo- macrumors 6502a

    Aug 24, 2008
    If you work at geek squad, I guess you have access to ram chips? If so, have you tried another set of chips? different manufacturer, different speed...

    Is it dual-channel ram ?
  9. drichards macrumors 6502a


    Nov 30, 2008
    That macbook shouldn't be picky about its ram. Something is wrong somewhere, I'd bet its the new ram. But the spec is right.
  10. jmb667 macrumors regular


    Aug 7, 2008
    Philomath, OR, USA
    Synne, I upgraded my mid-2008 (August) white Macbook to 4GB of RAM about two weeks after I got it and it's been flawless ever since. 2 2GB DDR2 PC2-5300 modules from Crucial went in without a problem and worked immediately. If your Macbook isn't able to verify the modules, they're bad. There's no other option.
  11. synne thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 19, 2008
    Thanks for the advise.

    I have tried other modules. Best Buy doesn't carry a lot of slower only memory.

    I tried some 800Mhz RAM (667, etc compatible) and the only way I could get it to work was by using one 667Mhz chip that came in the system and the 800Mhz. Apparently mac's only look to verify one chip is present that meet its specification requirements then allows the other to work at the compatible speed.

    I will get some more and update in the event anyone else happens across this problem.

    Thanks again all.

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