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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2011
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    MacBook overheat after RAM upgrade
    Hi all. Today I upgraded the stock 2GB of RAM in my unibody 2009 MacBook to 8GB of Corsair RAM. (yes, I know only 4GB is officially supported by Apple, but the OS reports 7.75 in use). The RAM had excellent reviews on Amazon from many people saying that it worked excellent in MacBooks and MacBook Pro's, so the RAM should be compatible. Everything works excellent, and the performance is definitely faster, however, my Macbook is now reaching temperatures of 145-160 degrees Fahrenheit almost idle, and in conditions my old setup had the temp of around 106-115. I now have to keep my fan running at about 4000 RPMs just to maintain a CPU temp of 150. Also, my battery life is being killed; I am down about 10% just writing this message.

    My question is this: is it more likely that my RAM is faulty (which users have reported in rare cases on Amazon), or that Apple does not support this amount of RAM because of these problems.
    Or, have I done something wrong on installation?

    Thanks

    Also, should I continue to use my MacBook during this period? My Mac reaches temps of around 200 easily when converting videos so I shouldn't think that the heat would kill it.
    Dominick

  2. #2

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dominick View Post
    Hi all. Today I upgraded the stock 2GB of RAM in my unibody 2009 MacBook to 8GB of Corsair RAM. (yes, I know only 4GB is officially supported by Apple, but the OS reports 7.75 in use). The RAM had excellent reviews on Amazon from many people saying that it worked excellent in MacBooks and MacBook Pro's, so the RAM should be compatible. Everything works excellent, and the performance is definitely faster, however, my Macbook is now reaching temperatures of 145-160 degrees Fahrenheit almost idle, and in conditions my old setup had the temp of around 106-115. I now have to keep my fan running at about 4000 RPMs just to maintain a CPU temp of 150. Also, my battery life is being killed; I am down about 10% just writing this message.

    My question is this: is it more likely that my RAM is faulty (which users have reported in rare cases on Amazon), or that Apple does not support this amount of RAM because of these problems.
    Or, have I done something wrong on installation?

    Thanks

    Also, should I continue to use my MacBook during this period? My Mac reaches temps of around 200 easily when converting videos so I shouldn't think that the heat would kill it.
    According to EveryMac.com:

    *Apple officially supports a maximum of 4 GB of RAM. Originally, this model was only unofficially capable of stably supporting 6 GB of RAM, but as confirmed by site sponsor OWC, it is capable of supporting 8 GB of RAM if updated to Boot ROM Version MB51.007D.B03 and running MacOS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard."
    So first off… did you update the Boot ROM and are you running Snow Leopard?
    Secondly… which EXACT modules of RAM did you get? Post a link please.
    Thirdly… have you tried putting the old RAM back in to see if the problems abate? If not, do so to be sure this isn't simply a coincidence and something else has gone wrong.

  3. #3

    PatM's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 27, 2011
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    Specs:
    Late 2013 MBP 15" I7 2.3 Ghz 16 GB Ram 500 GB SSD Retina
    I don't think the ram has anything to do with it. Open activity monitor and see what is running amok. You should be able to track down what program is causing the high cpu usage.

    I'm new to Macs myself but based on things I have read on this forum about these types of things it makes sense to me to try that first and see if you can see something.

    If you can identify the program you can then troubleshoot from there.

    I hope this helps a bit.

    Regards,

    Pat
    15 " 2013 MBP OS X Ver. 10.9.1 16 GB Memory, 500 GB SSD, Retina, 2.3 Ghz I7, 30GB IPhone 5, 2012 Mini Cooper JCW Coupe, 2014 Toyota Corolla, 2007 Trailblazer, 2 RC Planes, 1 fantastic wife who puts up with my toys. Still Married After 30 Years.

  4. #4


    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2011
    Posts
    9
    @PatM, you are correct; after posting on another forum and troubleshooting with users, I thought to check activity monitor and look at CPU. Spotlight was indexing my entire computer, which was taking around 40% of my CPU at times. Currently my CPU is idle, however, and it is still around 145.

    @lifeisabeach, 1. I have tried replacing and it works as before.
    2. I just realized I bought 1333 MHz... (SON of a...)
    3. Does anyone know if this is a big deal? several people gave positive reviews on Amazon and as far as I know, most macs use the 1066 MHz
    4. Amazon.com: Corsair 8 GB DDR3 Laptop Memory Kit CMSO8GX3M2A1333C9: Electronics
    Dominick

  5. #5

    chscag's Avatar
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    Specs:
    27" iMac i5, 3.2 GHz, iPad 3, iPhone 5c, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, El Capitan
    If you bought DDR3 1333 modules and they fit, then you have the late 2009 model MacBook. However, the specs for your machine say that it uses DDR3 1066 modules. The faster modules may or may not work correctly. Some users that have used faster modules in their machines have reported problems.

    I would return the modules to Amazon and have them send you the correct ones for your machine. According to Mactracker your machine can take up to 8 GB of memory although Apple recommends 4 GB.

  6. #6


    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2011
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    I think I shall return them; it may cost $10 or so, but I'd rather have the right one, especially if it solves this heating problem.

    And, as I said above, I'm aware that Apple says 4 is the max, however, I know many who use 8 with no problems.

    Thanks for all the help-will update if the new modules give the same problem.
    Dominick

  7. #7

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    The RAM almost certainly is the problem. In the PC world, there are some motherboards that can accept 1066 and 1333 RAM modules, and with the 1333 modules, the CPU essentially overclocks to match the RAM speed. I haven't tinkered with a motherboard in a Mac, and Apple certainly doesn't support overclocking themselves, but that would explain everything you are experiencing. Apparently you can tune the RAM to slow down, but it's risky and not simple. Here's a discussion I found about this exact same thing you have going on:
    MacBook6,1 + 8GB Corsair ram = hot - MacRumors Forums

    Quite frankly I would just return the modules and get the correct ones.

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Jul 08, 2011
    Posts
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    This definitely explains it. I guess I didnt search well enough-sorry for the repost.

    I assumed something like over clocking was happening, but I had also read that Mac tones down that automatically.

    I will definitely be returning the chips. Thanks for everybody's help.
    Dominick

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Dec 15, 2014
    Posts
    3
    Hi !

    I got a mid-2009 macbook pro :
    2,53 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    2x2go Go 1067 MHz DDR3 (1067 weird right ? but it's actually written 1066 on the RAM)
    NVIDIA GeForce 9400M 256 Mo
    OS X 10.9.4 (13E28)


    SO
    I bought 2x4go DDR3 so-dimm PC3-5800 1066, Transcend.

    When i put the new RAM in my laptop, it overheat immediately, rising to 100°c. I must load SMC control software to put the fan at the maximum.

    I put back the "old" RAM 2x2go in place, and everything is fine like it was. So it's definitely because of the New ram.

    I tried to swap each of them to see if the problem was just one, but it's both.

    I read a lot before doing it, to buy exactly the right RAM, so i dont get why the temperature is rising like that.

    Any ideas folks?
    thx !

  10. #10

    chscag's Avatar
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    Jan 23, 2008
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    Specs:
    27" iMac i5, 3.2 GHz, iPad 3, iPhone 5c, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, El Capitan
    According to Mactracker, your machine takes:

    Maximum Memory 8.0 GB
    Memory Slots 2 - 204-pin PC3-8500 (1066 MHz) DDR3 SO-DIMM


    Are you sure you used DDR3 so-dimm PC3-5800 1066 modules? Or is this a typo and should be PC3-8500?

    In any event, using incorrect memory modules can cause problems leading to false temperature sensor readings which would drive the CPU fan to spin at full speed. The use of wrong modules can actually cause damage to the logic board which then might have to be replaced.

  11. #11


    Member Since
    Dec 15, 2014
    Posts
    3
    Sorry I did a typo,

    so yes i bought PC3-8500, two of them
    This one :
    Transcend So-Dimm DDR3-1066 CL7 4Go, Mémoire vive : Acheter au meilleur prix
    _
    (PC3-5800 doesnt exist anyway..)

    so yea everything should be fine, but it's not, i dont get it

  12. #12

    chscag's Avatar
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    Specs:
    27" iMac i5, 3.2 GHz, iPad 3, iPhone 5c, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, El Capitan
    If you have the correct memory modules and they're causing the machine to overheat (or rather, the fan to spin up to high speeds) then I would return the memory to where you bought it from. There's a good chance the memory is either incompatible or defective. Instead, buy another brand of the same type.

  13. #13


    Member Since
    Dec 15, 2014
    Posts
    3
    Allright after digging I find out that Transcend is not good for mac, at least for old 2009 mac like mine.

    The Brand Crucial is certified compatible mac, i'm gonna try this, hopping this is not bull****.

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