The $479.00 1 Gig of Pwerbook ram stick, is it worth it?


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Hey guys~

Here is my situation.

I got the new Alubook 1.5 a little while back and we all know the standard
two sticks of 256 ram that somes with it. < yes incredibly low >

I need to up the ram, obviously.

I also am thinking of getting the educational production suite that is on sale on the Apple web site for $499.00.

Seems like too good a deal to pass up.

Now after reading the machine specs.

Motion actually wants 2 gigs of ram. OUCh to work properly.

I usually get about 1 gig of ram for my Powerbook uses and that always has seemed to be enough for my purposes.

But now its starting to look low! :(
I spoke to Apple and they stated that a one stick of ram as opposed to two 512's, which would have been my upgrade, is superior because ram loads faster and works faster if the first gig of ram is on one stick!

So this means that a 1 gig stick at the cost of $479.00 from Crucial may be my best choice. Now that cost just seems kinda painful!
Adding almost one fifth of the cost of the powerbook.

The question is: Is it worth the cost or wait till the price comes down and invest in the two 512's and crawl on a slow MOTION app.
Or bite the bullet and buy 1 gigstick and 1 512 stick and sell the original 256 sticks on ebay and try to recoup alittle?

thanks for the help all.
Any advise on any of the above subject is appreciated. :rolleyes:


macrumors 6502
Jan 18, 2003
dont listen to that bull. has a 1gb stick for 269 with a lifetime warranty. same damn specs as the "original" samsung. Dont buy their crap that they say to get you to pay more has some great pries as well with the same stats and lifetime warranty


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
thanks all fro the great information.

I think that its a great idea to get something in the middle.
Maybe a samsung that is supposed to be the same as apple uses from
Memory solutions.

I will check out OWC, they do have a good reputation.

I am a little leary about the super cheap ram, I like the lifetime warrenty.
Not that I ever had a powerbook for a lifetime ! LOL
Never had the same power book for more than a year.

Now Apple tells me to get Motion working best, i need to install that piece of 1 gig stick in the first slot.

The question is what is the first slot the lower one or the upper one.

Anyoen else hear about placing the highest ram stick in the first slot for max performance? :D

Owc has sticks that are $359 and $249!

there has got to be a difference tween the two at $100 bucks difference!
Doesnt there?


macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
Location Location Location
All sticks that are stated will work for the 15" Powerbook WILL work for the Powerbook. It means the specs match. If the specs didn't match, they couldn't advertise it as such, because it wouldn't work. So lots of companies can sell you RAM for your 15" PB, since they have RAM that matches the specs.

Crucial is full of crap. Buy from OWC. Get the Samsung RAM if necessary. Its the same as Apple RAM anyway.

Or get Crucial RAM from NewEgg for less money.


macrumors member
Aug 22, 2004
Hi -- I just bought a 1GB stick for my powerbook at mushkin -- they are a good memory vendor -- everything is smooth sailing - the cost was significantly less than what you just quoted.


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
I went to OWC and spoke to a kind fellow there and he told me that there was little if NO difference betweent the Samsung $359 1 gig stick and the cheaper 249 1 gig, and it was lifetime warrenty with advance replacement if needed but he that that he only had one return so far!

So, I thought crap save another hundred dollars and I might get 2 gig sticks.

So I did it,. and hope for the best!

He did mention that apple prices are ridiculous,,,


macrumors regular
Jul 20, 2004
Ames, IA/Eden Prairie, MN
No matter the price, it is worth it to put an extra 1 gig of ram in your PB. I have my 12" Maxed out and it runs like a dream. Always look for the lowest price, but no matter what you pay you won't be disapointed.


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
I got the OWC ram two 1 giger for the grand total of 2 gigs on my powerbook!

Yet, I still get a psychological feeling that I should have gone with the
Samsung version!

I just dont feel that the OWC is as fast as the Samsung.
But i saved over two hundred dollars for the OWC dimms over the Samsung.
Other than my perception of speed the OWC seem to be working fine.

Does anyone know what specs could be different on the OWC that point to speed other than the CL, which is supposed ot be the same on both dimms


macrumors 6502
Sep 30, 2003
Glad you went with OWC.
If you dumped $450 at Crucial, you would've been a sucker -- I mean, give me the extra $300 and I'll put it to good use -- like an iPod.

Also, Motion will not affectively work on a 15" PB, even with the RAM. your graphics card would ideally be upped, and rendering anything at all would be a killer. Dump your PB and get a Dual G5 if you want to play with Motion...

Chip NoVaMac

macrumors G3
Dec 25, 2003
Northern Virginia
I went with the OWC Samsung for my PB 12". Didn't want any regrets, since everyone said it was the Samsung that Apple uses. Though if I could go to two modules, I would have gone for the OWC sticks.

Rod Rod

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2003
Las Vegas, NV
djkny said:
Also, Motion will not affectively work on a 15" PB, even with the RAM. your graphics card would ideally be upped, and rendering anything at all would be a killer. Dump your PB and get a Dual G5 if you want to play with Motion...
Motion will very effectively work on a 15" PowerBook, especially with the RAM. Yes there will be a difference in render times. However, it's easier to fit a PB in a backpack / briefcase / messenger bag than a dual G5.

I run Motion on my 12" 1.33GHz/1.25GB and it works great. You don't even need to render within Motion before exporting. Try it, it works. That's a huge timesaver right there.

I got my 1GB from Coast to Coast Memory / and it works great.


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Motion works well enough on my Powerbook and as Rod Rod says its portable!

I sent the OWC ram back I wasnt happy with it at all, my Powerbook actually slowed down, not a good sign!

Also after calling them they told me that they were having problems with a batch of ram and wasnt certain if mine was part of it.

That was enough to for me to send it back!

Now i am back at the beginning! whew

Now I have heard some people say that a 512 dimm has faster CL
Anyone heard of this, they also claim that a 1 gig dimm or two of them actually slows the system, i dont believe this, but.....

any ideas


macrumors G5
Re The $479.00 1 Gig of Pwerbook ram stick, is it worth it?

The Samsung SODIMM is a lower power consumption design than 3rd party SODIMMs so you get a bit more life out of the battery - you can buy the Samsung part from a variety of sellers, it will be about 25% more expensive than good third-party RAM (and 40% less than Apple but we all know that by now).

PC Generic 3rd party RAM is not always compatible with PowerBooks, especially the first-generation AlBooks. The "PC2700 DDR SODIMM CL2.5" specification is only half of the story, there are a bunch more variables with chip configuration and settings programmed into the module. Remember all of the RAM that stopped working when Firmware Update 1.2 was released? It was all compatible as per the PC133 spec, but had internal settings on the module that did not comply with Apple's stricter interpretation of the standard.

If RAM doesn't have a lifetime warranty and a guarantee of PowerBook compatibility, I'd give it a pass. Unless you value your time at zero, getting bad ram and having to send it back eats up any savings (as well as putting data at risk). If the sales-thing says "PC, Mac, it's all the same" then take your dollars to a seller who knows Mac. is my favorite in the USA, and I like (ahem... us) in Canada.

Re: the question about 1 Gb RAM being slower -- you may be thinking of another thread about iMac G5's where one 1 Gb DIMM running in 64 bit mode is slower than a matched pair of 512 Mb DIMMs running in 128 bit mode (or a matched pair of 1 Gb in 128-bit mode).

Re: spending more for lower CAS latency (CL2.0 or 2.5 vs 3.0) - a Mac G5 owner reports here that lower latency RAM made no speed difference whatsoever.


Rod Rod

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2003
Las Vegas, NV
$240 for guaranteed compatible low-power 1GB modules

CanadaRAM brings up an excellent point. PowerBooks need low-power RAM modules. You're better off buying from a vendor which specifically states their RAM is compatible with PB G4s. Coast to Coast Memory / 18004memory (where I bought mine) does that. I paid about $300, but in exchange I got the assurance that it's a low power SODIMM and compatible wtih PowerBooks. These days I think the prices are a little lower... OK I just checked and it's down to $239.90. You get the lower price after first checking If you go straight to the prices are higher.


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
thanks so much for the help guys.

I have been having a hard time figuring out what and where to buy ram.

What that 239. price for a Samsung dimm?

whats al this about Hyperspeed on the ramseeker site?

I think that Samsung is the way to go since it seems that they follow very closely to the Apple specs!

i just need to find it for a decent price!

I am still abit lost about the speed cl's or whatever tween the 512 and the 1 gig stick.

It was in another ram thread where a poster told me that he thought the CL was faster on a 512 for powerbooks, and that just threw my head into confusion. Is there any instance where two 512 are better or faster than two 1 gig sticks?

I do see a $319. stick of 1 gig there.

There is a 249. but that isnt samsung and its somethign with Hyperspeed, which I know nothing of... :eek:

Rod Rod

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2003
Las Vegas, NV
the way they have PowerBook G4 memory listed is a little bit confusing because they have a bunch of different types mixed up (PC100, 133, 2100, 2700). but yeah other than that, the $239.90 price shows up for "name brand" and $319 for "Samsung."

they sent me a Nanya brand module when I ordered mine. CanadaRAM pointed out in a similar thread that Nanya is one of the RAM brands Apple installs. the RAM Coast to Coast sent me is good enough for Apple and it's good enough for me.

they key here is that the RAM vendor is specifying that these sodimms are for PowerBooks. so you really have no need to waste money on Samsung branded RAM.

HyperSpeed seems to be C2C's house brand. I don't think you have to worry about it too much. In any case, you'll be best off getting at least one, if not two 1GB modules.

whoever told you that 512MB sodimms are faster than 1GB parts had the 512s in stock and didn't have any 1GBs... and they were going to make a fat commission on selling you the 512s. if that's not the case, I bet the source of that erroneous information was a commissioned salesperson. you'd be surprised how much disinformation some (not all) salespeople spread.


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Hey Rod Rod , Mucho thanks out to you!

I have been having real trouble figuring out what ram to get.
and I really appreciate your help and information.

I was really confused when a perosn on this site posted information that he felt was valid. Saying that 512 dimm had a faster CL and also stated that
1 gig dimm actually slowed the system down.

I am going to have to find that post again.

This really bothered me. I really need to fill up on ram for my work and these last week of gathering information and trying to figure out where to buy and what, has been really getting me down!

So, I appreciate you dealing with these issues for me.

So did you get the Nanya ram?
And found it worked well?

The Samsung are supposed to be low power, which is another concern.
Is the Nanya, low power also?

I would love to be able to save a few dollars on ram if the Nanya works.
But I use the powerbook for work and need ram that will fit all the specs perfectly..

Thanks again for the help, Rod Rod.
Nice handle :)


macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2002
I just ordered a gig of kingmax ram from newegg for under $200. The reviews left by purchasers indicated no problems in powerbooks, so i'm expecting it to work fine when my pbook arrives.

I know it sounds stupid to order a pbook at this time, but my 2001 ibook is dying right now, so i need a replacement as soon as possible. And it's been several days without the pbook shipping, so maybe i'll get lucky and and apple's already in the middle of the upgrade.