RAM mongering, 10GB now I want more.

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by mgsarch, Mar 26, 2008.

  1. mgsarch macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2008
    So I ordered my MP with 10GB (2gb from Apple stock and 8gb(2gbx4dimm) from OWC.

    I'm loving my MP but during some intense Photoshop and Illustrator uses I see a slowdown. Obviously, in comparison, it's still fast as all hell but I'm wondering if more RAM is the answer.

    I went with the 2.8GHz to save cash for the RAM + 4xHDs + Eventual Quadro. Now I'm thinking maybe I should have gone 3GHz.

    Not a big deal, and certainly nothing I can't easily live with but while I'm still in my Amazon return period I figure now's the only chance to change my mind.

    Any thoughts?
  2. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    What version of photoshop are you using?
  3. mgsarch thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2008
    CS3 most current update.
  4. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030


    Dec 7, 2002
    Florida, USA
    Is photoshop set to use all your memory?

    How full is your hard drive? Do you have a separate scratch disk?

    When you see these slowdowns, go into the Activity Monitor and see how much of your RAM Photoshop is using and the amount of Free + Inactive memory.
  5. scottydawg macrumors 6502


    Jan 22, 2008
    Sacramento, CA
    Have you already gone to you preferences in Photoshop and set how much memory you want it to use?
    Make sure and read this: http://kb.adobe.com/selfservice/viewContent.do?externalId=kb401089&sliceId=1
    The memory information you are looking for is near the bottom of the page.

    Here is the info for everyone to enjoy:
    Allocating Memory above 2 GB with 64-bit Processors

    When you run Photoshop CS3 on a 64-bit operating system, such as Mac OS X v10.4 and later, Photoshop can access up to 8 GB of RAM. You can see the actual amount of RAM Photoshop can use in the Let Photoshop Use number when you set the Let Photoshop Use slider in the Performance preference to 100%. The RAM above the 100% used by Photoshop, which is from approximately 3 GB to 3.7 GB, can be used directly by Photoshop plug-ins (some plug-ins need large chunks of contiguous RAM), filters, and actions. If you have more than 4 GB (to 8 GB), the RAM above 4 GB is used by the operating system as a cache for the Photoshop scratch disk data. Data that previously was written directly to the hard disk by Photoshop is now cached in this high RAM before being written to the hard disk by the operating system. If you are working with files large enough to take advantage of these extra 2 GB of RAM, the RAM cache can increase performance of Photoshop.

    The default RAM allocation setting in Photoshop CS3 is 70%. These settings should be optimal for most users. To get the ideal RAM allocation setting for your system, change the RAM allocation in 5% increments and watch the performance of Photoshop in the Activity Monitor. You must quit and restart Photoshop after each change to see the change take effect.

    The available RAM shown in the Performance preferences has already deducted an amount that is reserved for the operating system from the total RAM in your computer. You shouldn't set the percentage of RAM to be used by Photoshop to 100% (unless you are using more than 2G of RAM) because other applications which run at the same time as Photoshop (for example, Adobe Bridge CS3) need a share of the available RAM. Some applications use more RAM than you might expect. For example, web browsers can use 20-30 MB of RAM, and music players can use 20-50 MB of RAM. Watch the Activity Monitor to view the RAM allocations on your computer.

    Watch your efficiency indicator while you work in Photoshop to determine the amount of RAM you'll need to keep your images in RAM. The efficiency indicator is available from the pop-up menu on the status bar of your image or from the Palette Options on the Info Palette pop-up menu. When the efficiency indicator goes below 95-100%, you are using the scratch disk. If the efficiency is around 60%, you'll see a large performance increase by changing your RAM allocation or adding RAM.

    Note: If you don't see the pop-up menu on the status bar of the image, widen the image window.
  6. mgsarch thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2008
    I'm stumped ...

    Adobe Photoshop Version: 10.0.1
    Operating System: Mac OS 10.5.2
    System architecture: Intel CPU Family:6, Model:23, Stepping:6 with MMX, SSE Integer, SSE FP, SSE2
    Physical processor count: 8
    Processor speed: 3221 MHz
    Built-in memory: 10240 MB
    Free memory: 1562 MB
    Memory available to Photoshop: 3072 MB
    Memory used by Photoshop: 65 %
    Image cache levels: 2

    I have 2.8GHz processors first of all. Second What is going on with the memory usage??

    I have Finder, Itunes, Bridge, FontExplorer X, Stickies, and Terminal opened? (and Safari... oops)

    What is going on with this 3gb limit and why is photoshop using so much memory when I don't have a single image opened?

    I can't allocate more than 3gb, I don't know why.
  7. scottydawg macrumors 6502


    Jan 22, 2008
    Sacramento, CA
    Why don't you move the memory slider up to 90% or more and see how everything performs?
  8. Infrared macrumors 68000


    Mar 28, 2007
    I seem to recall someone saying having *more* RAM can slow
    PS down if you don't have the correct setup. E.g., see this:


    [Edit: oops, sorry. That's CS2]

    Also, there are two Adobe kb articles linked to here:

  9. Infrared macrumors 68000


    Mar 28, 2007

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