Why is Apple's RAM so expensive compared to other sellers?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jollygoodamy, Oct 8, 2011.

  1. jollygoodamy macrumors regular

    Jul 8, 2011
    I was searching online for ram for a friend's Mac and Apple's seemed to be so much more expensive for some reason, especially when compared to others I found like Crucial and Corsair where it's like $400 compared to about $52. :( Is there a reason? :confused:
  2. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    Apple is a greedy company and likes to take advantage of its customers, especially people who assume they have to buy from apple for it to work.

    Point is, don't buy from apple.
  3. nuckinfutz macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2002
    Middle Earth
    Why are you here?

    The less vitriolic response would be something akin to

    "Apple adds additional margin into the RAM but 3rd party memory providers will offer a lower price"

    Also understand that any RAM purchased from Apple is warranteed along with the system. Buying RAM from another vendor means if you have to get Genius Bar technical support you may have to remove that RAM.
  4. awer25 macrumors 65816


    Apr 30, 2011
    It's more like $35-40 from Newegg. And yes, Apple is always way more money - they charge more because people don't know any better and pay it.
  5. dusk007, Oct 8, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2011

    dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    Oh come on nuckinfutz.
    alust2013 has got it right even compared to Dell, HP,.. Apple is greedy.
    It is a ripoff plain and simple. Yeah you can add a 30% margin but the amount Apple overcharges is quite a lot more than that and always consider Apple even buys the RAM cheaper than most of those Internet retail shops.
    They buy their 4GB SODIMM DDR3 ram blade for anything around 10-15€ and they ask for two of those instead of the 4 GB default config 170€ VAT already excluded.

    There is also the fun fact that RAM prices at the release of a new product are much more reasonable but then stay the same, while at the same time retail prices plummet to next to nothing. Apple simply takes advantage of all the fools who don't know better. It is not the only company doing that but that doesn't make it morally any more acceptable.
  6. HRodMusic macrumors member


    Aug 28, 2011
    Seattle WA
    people pay more, just to have the apple approved logo.. kinda pointless, but at least you know its guaranteed to work.. i personally got me an 8gb set for 40 dollars on new egg, best deal ever.
  7. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
  8. Alag28 macrumors 6502

    Aug 23, 2006
    i work at apple and this is what they told me.

    "the birth of ram at the factory is like a large cookie dough sheet. the machines then stamp out the modules and you get your dimm modules obv. Apple buys the center part of the cookie dough which has less probability of courrpted/defected ram. the outer portions of the cookie dough is has more chances of coming out defected etc."

    this was kinda intriguing quite honest. also add extra cost because its from apple.
  9. awer25 macrumors 65816


    Apr 30, 2011
    That may be, but all RAM (from reputable companies) is tested to work perfectly, so the point is moot. Newegg is still the way to go.
  10. GermanyChris macrumors 601


    Jul 3, 2011
    Or maybe apple doesn't want to get into the aftermarket computer parts business especially since there are many who are quite good at it (newegg)

    This is the same as a mechanic quoting you twice his normal labor rate, sure he'll do the job but he'd rather not. Apple is charging $400 because it's an SKU they'd rather not keep around but but will for the right price.
  11. dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    There they told you a nice little story there. It is not entirely made up but in definitely a lie for Apple RAM.
    Yes Ram chips are binned but the best ones make it into overclocking RAM. The kind of Corsair XMS and how they are all called. You need the best chips to run high clock speeds at low voltage. But Apple uses standard JEDEC Spec 1.5 V RAM at very boring normal clock rates, for which you need not get the best bins and even if you insist on it won't get you anything, its just a waste of money(at least you should run them at lower V to save power but they don't do that). Apple knows that and they won't overpay for no possible benefit. It would just be a waste of money.
    That guy probably just invented that story made up of some nonsense.
    For reliable RAM all you need is proper testing and obviously chips that can safely run the clock rates at 1.5 V (which really just about any non faulty chip can on the mature process nodes).

    There is no excuse. They charge so much because they can. They don't care much about competition in that field. They price whatever people would pay who have no idea of alternatives. There are enough people who pay that price and they earn a lot more than they would reasonably priced with everybody buying at Apple who goes retail now.
    Yes and there are always those idiots who think Apple RAM is more reliable or less likely to cause troubles. Strict JEDEC specced RAM like Corsair VS works just about in every notebook and very well in any MacBook and even in the unlikely case that it wouldn't work, for the price they charge you could give DDR3L and some more exotic RAM a try.

    It is the same with this MCE optibay. Selling the very same thing coming from probably the same plant in china for 10 times the price just by putting the sticker of an American company on the product.
  12. Steve's Barber macrumors 6502a

    Jul 5, 2011
    Perhaps. But more importantly, Apple has a lot of brand equity (a halo effect). They'd be fools not to take advantage of it.
  13. Freyqq macrumors 601

    Dec 13, 2004
    I bet about 1/10 of the reason is that it costs $ to customize the computer rather than just pump out the standard spec. The other 9/10 of the reason is probably because people don't know any better and/or aren't comfortable putting it in themselves.
  14. vitzr macrumors 68030


    Jul 28, 2011
    Not True.

    I've had experience with the genius bar after installing 3rd party ram into my MacBook Pro, they not only noticed it, but congratulated me for being smart enough to shop and get a good price on top of the line ram. (Crucial).

    It's one of many advantages when dealing with Apple, they have a very stellar record for customer service. Perfect? No, they are still staffed by humans that may be having a bad day and brought it to work with them.

    But overall I've had nothing but excellent friendly and courteous service from Apple for well over a decade in which I owned over twelve new laptops.

    I'd say that a terrific record.

    Next Up: On Topic

    Here's my take on why, when buying a CTO or BTO computer from Apple, the options are generally quite expensive. It's called markup. It's also called customary retail practice, not only from tech companies like Apple, but Car Dealers, and lots of other businesses.

    Don't like their pricing? Easy, buy the model you want, then go to newegg or amazon or some other online source that will sell you want you need for less money. That's called choices and it's the _other option_ you have.

    via my Speedy New 15" Hi-Res Anti-Glare Quad-Core i7 MacBook Pro :)

    (nothing beats maxing out the ram & a superfast SSD)
  15. Prodo123 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2010
    Same reason why the ShamWow! guy was on TV.
    To trick you into buying it.
  16. mark28 macrumors 68000

    Jan 29, 2010
    Apple has got more cash than the Government, why is that you think? :D

    Apple = huge profit margins. But plenty people keeps buying it :p

    If you don't care and just want a machine with more Ram, I suppose it's ok to spend $400 on it if you got so much money that you don't know what to do with it.
  17. thewitt macrumors 68020


    Sep 13, 2011
    Actually this is not the case.

    Apple requires 100% testing and 100% yield. They do not buy the cheapest supply. Most semiconductor companies have varying test strategies and reliability testing is one area where we cut costs.

    If a company will take product that is screened at a faster, cheaper level, it is not guaranteed to be 100% good. We try of course, but any sampling plan will allow defects through.

    Apple demands 100% yield under specific reliability conditions.

    Though I doubt anyone picks die only from the center of the wafer, we will exclude what are called edge die, which have a lower yield and lower reliability than the rest of the wafer. Since its impossible to pick the edge die for other customer orders while picking non edge die for Apple, there is a cost associated with this as well.

    Apple of course marks up the product to make a profit, which is after all why they are in business, but you can also be assured that any chips they sell will work.

  18. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    Apple does not manufacture their own RAM. They really don't want to be in the business of selling RAM. Apple only offers the option of RAM upgrades to make it easier for customers, because if they didn't then customers would be asking for it.

    With any computer, it's always less expensive to purchase RAM elsewhere and install it yourself. Most people don't realize that if you can change a light bulb, you can install RAM.
  19. Vudoo macrumors 6502a


    Sep 30, 2008
    Dallas Metroplex
    Do you realize that the highest markup on items are usually the little things? Think about the cost of a USB cable or something and the price you are paying is several times the cost on what the store purchases it for. The profit margins on the more expensive items are a lot slimmer.
  20. marc11 macrumors 68000

    Mar 30, 2011
    NY USA
    There are a variety of incremental costs to Apple that goes into the BTO options, like ram. The factory line is set up to build the standard platofrm, the BTO items have to be set up as exceptional cases, this means, either a human instead of a machine needs to install teh BTO option, a secondary line has to be set up for BTO options, or some other method of the non standard has to be put in place. In addition, additional checks on BTO has to be performed to ensure it was done correctly. Add to that the need to carry (and the associated risks) BTO options, like ram, adds to supply, inventory, storage and risk costs. Then add in the need to warranty the BTO and the percentage of repair and return costs and then finally add profit with an up charge to the customer for the ease of having the BTO done and delivered to you by Apple.

    While a large portion of the cost IS profit and you ARE paying for the cost of having your computer built for you to your specs, there are indeed a lot of small costs that go into the BTO of machines. It isn't all profit.
  21. chiefroastbeef macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2008
    Dallas, Texas/ Hong Kong
    Says a forum member with the name nuckinfutz, from the location middle earth...
  22. awer25 macrumors 65816


    Apr 30, 2011

    Further, if Apple requires all modules to be tested and to work, wouldn't companies like G.Skill and Crucial as well? I mean, RAM is pretty much all they do.
  23. Abazigal macrumors G3


    Jul 18, 2011
    Simple case of buyer beware. I wouldn't buy from the apple store either, as my local apple store offers free upgrade to 8gb ram, discount on applecare and office plus some other freebies. Plus, I am sure if I search hard enough, I can find stores willing to do the installation for a small fee. :D
  24. JabbaII macrumors regular

    Nov 22, 2007
    With the uni-body MBPs you will need the special shaped screw to install the ram modules yourself.

    I have one "Genius" telling me that if anything breaks and they see you have "non-standard" ram, they may decide not to honor your Applecare. I.e. they don't want to spend time troubleshooting something that may be caused by the non-standard ram installed.
  25. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    Did that "Genius" tell you what non-standard RAM is?

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