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  1. #1


    Member Since
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    Macbook Pro 2.4Ghz core 2 duo, 200GB HD,Nvidia 256 DDR3 graphics, 6GB RAM
    *Need Opinions!!* 4GB of DDR3 or 6GB of DDR2?
    Hello all, well i finally took the plunge and made the purchase for 6GB of DDR2 from OWC for my macbook pro. I was then talking to a friend who mentioned that they have some DDR3 chips for them now. The guy on OWC didn't mention that to me so i wasn't aware till i looked myself. So my question is basically what will actually be a faster performance upgrade for me. More of the less density RAM or less of the more capable ram?

    The 4 gig DDR3 options is actually significantly cheaper(maybe thats why it wasn't mentioned to me lol) so im wondering if that will essentially be the same as the extra 2gigs of the DDR2 since each stick has more "computing" power for lack of a better term.

    EDIT* Just thought of something, since my model is capable of handling 6gb is that only for the DDR2 model ram or could it handle 6gb of DDR3 as well? If so should i just go with the DDR3 since it appears to be a cheaper way to go?

    Thanks for any input!!

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
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    Please read the following Wikipedia article which describes both. Take note of what they say about compatibility. LINK

  3. #3


    Member Since
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    Macbook Pro 2.4Ghz core 2 duo, 200GB HD,Nvidia 256 DDR3 graphics, 6GB RAM
    Im aware of how its faster, and i already know its compatible with my computer as i read this on OWC's site. My question was what option of RAM quantity would make the better performance for me. more of the DDR2 or less but DDR3

  4. #4

    chscag's Avatar
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    I honestly don't think it matters. At least you won't ever notice the difference.... So go with what ever is less expensive. 6GB is going to mean 1 x 4 GB module + 1 x 2 GB module. OWC will let you return the DDR2 modules and send you the DDR3 instead. They're real good about that.

    Let us know if you notice a boost in speed.

  5. #5


    Member Since
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    Macbook Pro 2.4Ghz core 2 duo, 200GB HD,Nvidia 256 DDR3 graphics, 6GB RAM
    I havnt actually received the 6gb yet so I can't comment on the difference yet. I just ordered it today then like with everything I noticed the DDR3 after I made the purchase already haha. Do you think I should wait till it arrives do some benchmark tests then get the DDR3?

  6. #6

    chscag's Avatar
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    That's what I would do. Run the DDR2 modules for awhile and if they give you the speed boost you're looking for, keep them. As I said before, I don't believe the DDR3 memory is going to be any faster. Remember, your system bus speed is still the same with either modules in place.

  7. #7


    Member Since
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    Your absolutely right about the bus speed, i suppose its essentially all about which set makes the bottleneck work better haha. Which in this case as you also stated wouldn't really be a noteworthy difference if i went with either choice. I do find my system running more often and not these days with about 10mb of free ram left. I can barely see the green piece of the pie on the activity monitor and the page outs are more then 10% of page in so in either case im sure it will be more then enough to fix my problem lol. You do have me curious now though in terms of what actually would be the better choice, i may just have to conduct this little experiment!

    I also had one more question, do you think i should adjust VM file size? its currently at 129GB. I have never messed with this setting but it just sounds like its a bit high to me. Any idea if making that a bit smaller would improve anything. I know that on my PC's they definitely not that big.

  8. #8

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    ??? I'm sorry, but I don't get it. The slot on DDR2 and DDR3 modules are in a different location on the stick and are not interchangeable on the same motherboard.

    If your MBP is the 2010 model, you need DDR3. DDR2 will not fit.

    Don't think that's the model you have since they all shipped with 4GB of RAM. DDR3 will not fit into your '08 model MBP. You need DDR2.

    Even if the DDR3 would fit into your motherboard, you would not have access to the added benefits of the bandwidth of DDR3 because your motherboard couldn't handle it. And if they did, you could likely fry DDR3 as the voltage supplied by your board for DDR2 is 20% higher than that required by DDR3.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
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  9. #9

    McBie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
    ??? I'm sorry, but I don't get it. The slot on DDR2 and DDR3 modules are in a different location on the stick and are not interchangeable on the same motherboard.

    If your MBP is the 2010 model, you need DDR3. DDR2 will not fit.

    Don't think that's the model you have since they all shipped with 4GB of RAM. DDR3 will not fit into your '08 model MBP. You need DDR2.

    Even if the DDR3 would fit into your motherboard, you would not have access to the added benefits of the bandwidth of DDR3 because your motherboard couldn't handle it. And if they did, you could likely fry DDR3 as the voltage supplied by your board for DDR2 is 20% higher than that required by DDR3.

    Exactly my thoughts as well when I first saw this .... there is no need for a poll as the choice is driven by your hardware .... ie. there isn't really a choice .

    Cheers ... McBie
    A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history - with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.
    The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.

  10. #10

    chscag's Avatar
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    I pointed that out to him in the WiKi article I linked to. Actually, both DDR2 and DDR3 modules are 240 Pin, however, the notch is different on the DDR3 modules. Also, the frequency range on the DDR2 is different than that of the DDR3.

    I'm really not sure what he's trying to do - I'm assuming he has several machines.

  11. #11

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chscag View Post
    I pointed that out to him in the WiKi article I linked to. Actually, both DDR2 and DDR3 modules are 240 Pin, however, the notch is different on the DDR3 modules. Also, the frequency range on the DDR2 is different than that of the DDR3.

    I'm really not sure what he's trying to do - I'm assuming he has several machines.
    Knew you did. Wasn't so sure about the op because I was still scratching my head. Just wanted to clarify in case another newbie comes along and finds this thread.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  12. #12


    Member Since
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    Macbook Pro 2.4Ghz core 2 duo, 200GB HD,Nvidia 256 DDR3 graphics, 6GB RAM
    Well it seems there was a miss communication with the rep on the phone that i was talking to. Im not sure how he didn't understand my question but i called them back again last night to double check and eventually got the the point the last couple posters were making. The reason i had this question was because i didn't quite understand how this was possible but if it was i wanted to see if anyone else had experience with this. Sorry to confuse everyone( including myself!) but my machine is only able to accept the ddr2 so there really wasn't much of a choice.

  13. #13

    chscag's Avatar
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    OK. Thanks for posting back and clearing that up. I thought I had answered you correctly the first time by leading you to the WiKi article. But when you replied back and mentioned OWC, I thought you had two machines.

    Anyway, glad you got it sorted out before you actually sent those DDR2 modules back and exchanged them for DDR3. You would have had a heck of a time "squeezing them in".

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