Upgrading/Installing RAM in Pairs?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Terrador, Mar 17, 2011.

  1. Terrador macrumors regular

    Aug 22, 2008
    I am going to be getting a refurb i3 iMac soon and it comes with 2x2GB. Some sources say you get better performance when you install in pairs when it comes to memory. I was going to get one more 2GB stick and throw it in one of the open slots...am I going to suffer performance loss? Or will I just be running "not as well as I could if I had 4x2GB"?

    Any knowledge is helpful.
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    Installing it in pairs (or triplets if the chipsets supports triple-channeling) will enable dual-channeling which theoretically doubles the memory bandwidth. However, today's RAM is already so fast that most apps cannot take advantage of the higher bandwidth, thus the difference is negligible. RAM bandwidth is not the bottleneck, that is why.

    Either way, your original 2x2GB would still run in dual-channel while the extra 2GB would run in single-channel. Go for it.

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