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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

2gig to 4gig ram upgrade


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JoshJ

 
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Hey guys,

I have a late 2008 macbook pro (the 1st unibody design released) with 2gig of ram.
I am upgrading from osx 10.5 to 10.6 & then 10.8 to use new Reason 7 software which requires it & is quite cpu intensive.

Have been recommended to upgrade to 4gb of ram (& more if its worth the increased performance?!)

Do I have to buy a 4gig chip or is there another slot two 2gig chips?

Also, is it ok to buy cheep ram online or can there be issues with it?!!

many thanks,
Josh
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cwa107

 
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Assuming you're still on 10.5 or 10.6, just go into the Apple menu and go to 'About this Mac'. From there, I believe you'd choose "More Info" to get a complete breakdown of your hardware. If you choose the Memory category from the left side, it should show you how much is in each bank.

You don't have to do this, but best performance comes from using perfectly matched pairs.

Recommended sources for memory are Crucial.com and Macsales.com .

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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While you are looking at the detailed report CWA mentioned jot down the model identifier number. That can be very helpful in identifying the maximum memory your rig can take. Some of the '08 models max out at 6GB and others at 8GB.

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Or, if you go to Crucial.com they have a link that says "system scanner". It downloads a dng file that you will run and it will tell you which memory you'll need and will take you directly to the page where they sell it. It will suggest the best matched pair as well. I bought 4 gigs of RAM for my wife's 2009 unibody MBP just last week and installed it a couple of days ago, got the RAM from Crucial 2 days after ordering.

Doug
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoshJ View Post

Also, is it ok to buy cheep ram online or can there be issues with it?!!
Forgot to address this part.... I wouldn't recommend buying cheap, no-name memory. If your memory has problems, it can manifest itself in all kinds of bizarre ways that can be difficult to troubleshoot. Lots of websites claim to offer "lifetime" warranties, but few of them will actually make good on them (or be around long enough to do so). For those reasons, I'd recommend spending the extra $10 or so it will cost to get a decent brand, from a reputable vendor.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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JoshJ

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
Assuming you're still on 10.5 or 10.6, just go into the Apple menu and go to 'About this Mac'. From there, I believe you'd choose "More Info" to get a complete breakdown of your hardware. If you choose the Memory category from the left side, it should show you how much is in each bank.

You don't have to do this, but best performance comes from using perfectly matched pairs.

Recommended sources for memory are Crucial.com and Macsales.com .
Thanks a lot..

Memory info says I 1GB of DDR3, Speed: 1067MHz installed in each slot.
Should I get rid of both of these and install 2 x 2GB's of DDR3?
Or, can do I buy 1x4BG ?
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JoshJ

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slydude View Post
While you are looking at the detailed report CWA mentioned jot down the model identifier number. That can be very helpful in identifying the maximum memory your rig can take. Some of the '08 models max out at 6GB and others at 8GB.
Hi Slydude,

Think the identifier number is: MacBookPro5,1

I have 1GB of DDR in each slot. Whats the best setup to install.. 2x2GB DDR or can one purchase a single 4GB chip? Does this config make any difference on performance?


Heres the rest of the info:

Model Name: MacBook Pro
Model Identifier: MacBookPro5,1
Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
Processor Speed: 2.4 GHz
Number Of Processors: 1
Total Number Of Cores: 2
L2 Cache: 3 MB
Memory: 2 GB
Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz
Boot ROM Version: MBP51.007E.B06
SMC Version (system): 1.33f8
Hardware UUID: 22D942B2-7972-5DDD-8936-5219FB0F9EF6
Sudden Motion Sensor:
State: Enabled
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JoshJ

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug b View Post
Or, if you go to Crucial.com they have a link that says "system scanner". It downloads a dng file that you will run and it will tell you which memory you'll need and will take you directly to the page where they sell it. It will suggest the best matched pair as well. I bought 4 gigs of RAM for my wife's 2009 unibody MBP just last week and installed it a couple of days ago, got the RAM from Crucial 2 days after ordering.

Doug
Thanks Doug.. will check it
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoshJ View Post
Hi Slydude,

Think the identifier number is: MacBookPro5,1

I have 1GB of DDR in each slot. Whats the best setup to install.. 2x2GB DDR or can one purchase a single 4GB chip? Does this config make any difference on performance?


Heres the rest of the info:

Model Name: MacBook Pro
Model Identifier: MacBookPro5,1
Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
Processor Speed: 2.4 GHz
Number Of Processors: 1
Total Number Of Cores: 2
L2 Cache: 3 MB
Memory: 2 GB
Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz
Boot ROM Version: MBP51.007E.B06
SMC Version (system): 1.33f8
Hardware UUID: 22D942B2-7972-5DDD-8936-5219FB0F9EF6
Sudden Motion Sensor:
State: Enabled
You'll want to do a matched pair so that the machine can operate in dual channel mode. If you do a single 4GB module (not even sure if that's supported by your chipset), you won't be running in dual channel. I would highly recommend geting a matched pair of 2GB modules and either dispose of the two 1GB modules or try to sell them on eBay.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
QUOTE Thanks
JoshJ

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
Assuming you're still on 10.5 or 10.6, just go into the Apple menu and go to 'About this Mac'. From there, I believe you'd choose "More Info" to get a complete breakdown of your hardware. If you choose the Memory category from the left side, it should show you how much is in each bank.

You don't have to do this, but best performance comes from using perfectly matched pairs.

Recommended sources for memory are Crucial.com and Macsales.com .
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slydude View Post
While you are looking at the detailed report CWA mentioned jot down the model identifier number. That can be very helpful in identifying the maximum memory your rig can take. Some of the '08 models max out at 6GB and others at 8GB.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug b View Post
Or, if you go to Crucial.com they have a link that says "system scanner". It downloads a dng file that you will run and it will tell you which memory you'll need and will take you directly to the page where they sell it. It will suggest the best matched pair as well. I bought 4 gigs of RAM for my wife's 2009 unibody MBP just last week and installed it a couple of days ago, got the RAM from Crucial 2 days after ordering.

Doug



PS guys my options are looking like a 4gig or 8gig (2x4gb) upgrade. How do I determine whether I need 8GB and what effect it will have on 10.8 vs. just installing 4GB?
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoshJ View Post
PS guys my options are looking like a 4gig or 8gig (2x4gb) upgrade. How do I determine whether I need 8GB and what effect it will have on 10.8 vs. just installing 4GB?
Here's the deal with your computer:

"*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 MBP51.007E.B05 and running MacOS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" or higher."

Long story short. If you're running OS 10.6 or higher (which it sounds like you plan on doing)...and the "boot ROM" is updated to what is mentioned above...then your MacBook Pro is capable of using 8gig of ram.

Ram upgrades:

- 4gig (2 x 2gig) $35.99
- 6gig (2gig + 4gig) $51.99
- 8gig (2 x 4gig) $69.99

Ram Upgrade from OWC

If cost isn't an issue...then just max things out and get the 8gig upgrade...and don't sweat the details!

- Nick

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cwa107

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
Here's the deal with your computer:

"*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 MBP51.007E.B05 and running MacOS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" or higher."

Long story short. If you're running OS 10.6 or higher (which it sounds like you plan on doing)...and the "boot ROM" is updated to what is mentioned above...then your MacBook Pro is capable of using 8gig of ram.

Ram upgrades:

- 4gig (2 x 2gig) $35.99
- 6gig (2gig + 4gig) $51.99
- 8gig (2 x 4gig) $69.99

Ram Upgrade from OWC

If cost isn't an issue...then just max things out and get the 8gig upgrade...and don't sweat the details!

- Nick
Good advice. Just keep in mind that more memory doesn't always mean more speed, but it does mean that your computer can operate more efficiently under heavy load. For 10.8, I recommend 4GB. If you're going to run any "heavy hitter" apps or games, then you'll want to go with 8GB. I would skip the 6GB option as it means you won't run in dual-channel and thus won't be able to make optimal use of your hardware.

So, it comes down to this - 2x2GB modules, or 2x4GB modules. In either case, I'd highly recommend going with OWC. You could also go with Crucial, though if I'm not mistaken, they don't officially recommend 8GB and so you could run into support issues if it doesn't work out.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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JoshJ

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
Here's the deal with your computer:

"*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 MBP51.007E.B05 and running MacOS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" or higher."

Long story short. If you're running OS 10.6 or higher (which it sounds like you plan on doing)...and the "boot ROM" is updated to what is mentioned above...then your MacBook Pro is capable of using 8gig of ram.

Ram upgrades:

- 4gig (2 x 2gig) $35.99
- 6gig (2gig + 4gig) $51.99
- 8gig (2 x 4gig) $69.99

Ram Upgrade from OWC

If cost isn't an issue...then just max things out and get the 8gig upgrade...and don't sweat the details!

- Nick
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
Good advice. Just keep in mind that more memory doesn't always mean more speed, but it does mean that your computer can operate more efficiently under heavy load. For 10.8, I recommend 4GB. If you're going to run any "heavy hitter" apps or games, then you'll want to go with 8GB. I would skip the 6GB option as it means you won't run in dual-channel and thus won't be able to make optimal use of your hardware.

So, it comes down to this - 2x2GB modules, or 2x4GB modules. In either case, I'd highly recommend going with OWC. You could also go with Crucial, though if I'm not mistaken, they don't officially recommend 8GB and so you could run into support issues if it doesn't work out.


Thanks a lot guys.. what is the "boot rom vertion" update you mentioned - what does that entail?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoshJ View Post
Thanks a lot guys.. what is the "boot rom vertion" update you mentioned - what does that entail?
I believe that to be part of the EFI firmware of your machine. Assuming you've kept up to date with 'Software Update', you should already have it.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoshJ View Post
Thanks a lot guys.. what is the "boot rom vertion" update you mentioned - what does that entail?
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
I believe that to be part of the EFI firmware of your machine. Assuming you've kept up to date with 'Software Update', you should already have it.
I'm not 100% sure...but I do not believe Boot ROM updates are part of regular updates via Software Update. I'm guessing because of the seriousness/harder to reverse nature of ROM updates.

Usually ROM updates are a seperate download and install. Whether I'm right or wrong...the ROM update for this model MacBook Pro should be listed in this link:

EFI and SMC firmware updates for Intel-based Macs

@JoshJ: It would be a good idea to first check what ROM version you currently have on your MacBook Pro. To do this:

- Apple Menu
- About this Mac
- More Info

On this page there is a list of things in the left column. You want the very top item "Hardware" highlighted. Then look at the info on the right of the window...and listed there should be the current "Boot ROM Version" your computer is running. Compare this to the Boot ROM verision for your MacBook Pro listed in the link above.

If your computer is already updated to the latest Boot ROM version...then you're good to go. If your computer is not running the most current Boot ROM version...then you need to decide if you want to install it or not.

HTH,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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