RAM requirements for Aperture

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by kallisti, Mar 2, 2010.

  1. kallisti macrumors 65816

    kallisti

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #1
    I have an early 2008 MacPro with 4 gigs of RAM. Aperture 3 works fine in general, but can be a bit slow at times. Given the cheap prices of RAM, I was considering an upgrade to either 8 gigs or 12 gigs.

    Is a RAM upgrade a silly thought? Will I notice a performance boost in Aperture?

    In the pre-Intel days (or going back to the pre-OSX days), increasing RAM could have significant performance boosts for many applications. Does this rule still hold true? Is this a waste of money or should I expect to see an increase in performance by increasing my RAM past 4 gigs? I am specifically interested in Aperture performance, though faster in other areas would be a plus too :)
     
  2. Mac 13 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    Location:
    Los Angeles,Ca
    #2
    It never hurts to have more Ram but you're right it's cheap & you have the slots for it.

    But I'll invest on a video card since Aperture takes advantage on Video Ram more then any other programs. Now with snow leopard you will see a speed boost. Apple always behind on graphic cards, I know it's ironic since more of the graphic schools or market run on Mac's for a long time.
     
  3. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    Jul 4, 2005
  4. kallisti thread starter macrumors 65816

    kallisti

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #4
    I have an ATI Radeon HD 4870 video card installed. Don't want to touch the issue of Apple's stance on graphic cards....

    Using OS 10.6.2 (Snow Leopard) if it matters for thoughts on my question.
     
  5. kallisti thread starter macrumors 65816

    kallisti

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #5
    Is this a blind mantra or can I expect to see real-world performance boosts? The easy answer is that more is always better, but does this pan out in actual use?

    A RAM upgrade is relatively cheap (compared to a new lens, for example). It's still money however. Can I expect to see a performance boost with a RAM increase? Will it be noticeable?
     
  6. Grimace macrumors 68040

    Grimace

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    with Hamburglar.
    #6
    Aperture and OS X are both titans. I have 16GB of RAM and with just Safari, Mail, and iCal open, I have approximately:
    2860MB used
    13520MB free

    With Aperture open, I can try to piss it off and it gets as high as:
    5100MB used
    11268MB free

    Does Aperture only need 2GB? Doubtful, but when combined with OS X, both of which require more RAM when you push the envelope, having more keeps things running smoothly. I believe that you WILL see a noticeable uptick in performance.
     
  7. kallisti thread starter macrumors 65816

    kallisti

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #7
    Thanks Grimace. Very helpful in making my decision. Relatively small amount of money, but it's all about bang-for-the-buck.

    Other opinions?
     
  8. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #8
    I run 6GB in my 2009 Mac Pro and I can't get Aperture to use more than 2GB even after browsing through a couple of projects with 200+ RAW images in each.
     
  9. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Boon Docks USA
    #9
    Are you in 32 or 64 bit mode?
     
  10. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #10
    64 bit.
     
  11. toxic macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    #11
    Aperture doesn't suck up RAM until you start editing. I've had it use nearly all of my free memory (3+ GB) while editing...I think it got better after 3.0.1, but it still sucks up a huge chunk of it. haven't done anything since that pro-kit update, so I dunno about that.

    one way or another, I'm pretty sure Aperture and OSX are designed to maximize the memory you have, so getting more is worth it.
     
  12. pikoos macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    #12
    Aperture 3.0 uses up to 10GB RAM

    I run a MacPro, with 20 GB Ram. When cataloging images, on Aperture, I often see 4.9 GB RAM and another 4-4.9 of virtual RAM in use. Aperture will often hang at this point, but if you are patient, it frees itself after a while (20-60 sec). It appears it cannot exceed 5 GB RAM even if it is available.
     
  13. bartzilla macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2008
    #13
    It's often a blind mantra (though it can be a fairly good, educated guess if you know the characteristics of the application being discussed as people do here).

    Once you get past a certain 'comfort point' for the operating system and general app use, "More Ram" will only help if the performance problem you're looking at is inadequate RAM (which it may well be here of course), but it won't help if the problem is slow hard disk access when manipulating a lot of files, for example.
     
  14. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #14
    My previous machine had only 2 GB RAM and both, Aperture and Lightroom were slow (I've only test driven Lightroom, I'm not an expert). Now I have 8 GB at my disposal and Aperture flies. There are very, very few instances when I hit a RAM ceiling (which means, I am forced to quit Safari which is a giant memory hog).

    4 GB of RAM is definitely too little for Aperture to run effectively. There is an easy way to measure whether you need more RAM or not: launch Activity Monitor, select the memory tab and have a look at the amount of page-outs. If it's a few megabytes or so, you're fine. If it's gigabytes, your machine is starved for RAM. Do not make the mistake of thinking that you need more RAM if you have very little free RAM: OS X will try to cache as much as it can so as to speed up things like app launches.
     
  15. Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    #15
    I have a 2007 Core 2 Duo Black Mac Book. I have a 7200 320 GB WD Scorpio Black HDD, and 6 GB of Ram from OWC (4+2) arrangement, I see no BeachBalls anymore with the latest update to the OS, it is wicked fast, Aperture runs like a rocket, as does all my software I run in the closed clamshell mode hooked to a Dell Ultra Sharp 27" Monitor on an ergonomic arm:cool:
    I use the Apple Bluetooth keyboard, Apple Magic Mouse, as well as the new Trackpad, which,btw is sweet as hell!
    As long as this BMB lasts, I have no reason to upgrade to anything!:apple::apple::apple::apple:
     

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