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Adding RAM to mac pro


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Adding RAM to mac pro
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tiddles
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Join Date: Mar 2010
 
2010-03-26, 13:09

I have been considering buying a mac pro with the 8GB ram option (4x2GB) and then buying 4X4GB and adding it on so I have 24GB. Is this wise? Is there a reason they only offer it on the apple store as 6, 8, 12, 16 or 32GB?

If I don't do it this way, I will probably just go for the 16GB direct from the apple store.

And if I get the separate RAM, is it a case of shutting down, stick the RAM in and boot up...done!!! ??? Or is there more to it?
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Yontsey
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Cleveland-ish, OH
 
2010-03-26, 13:16

Either way, you should definitely not get your RAM from Apple and get it yourself and install it. You'll save boat loads of money.
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PB PM
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
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2010-03-26, 13:23

Yeah you'll save some money. I found I would save about $44 dollars by upgrading the base model Mac Pro from 3GB to 8GB myself. Personally, I think I'd rather have it all covered by Applecare than deal with third party RAM suppliers if something goes wrong though.
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tiddles
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Join Date: Mar 2010
 
2010-03-26, 13:26

What about the tech side? Is it a sensible configuration? Is it simple to install?
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2010-03-26, 14:15

That seems like the best way to go if the 16 GB option isn't enough. Apple's base 6x1GB configuration is kind of crappy since it eats up all but two of your RAM slots and leaves you with a bunch of useless RAM sticks if you upgrade. The 4x2 GB option doesn't cost that much and leaves you with four open slots for your own memory. And the 32 GB option is obviously way too expensive if you just buy it from Apple.

As for installation, it's super easy. Should only take you a couple minutes to open the case, install the new RAM, and close it up.
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tiddles
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Join Date: Mar 2010
 
2010-03-26, 14:17

Thanks. So is it ok to install these 2 different configurations of ram so long as the pairs are matched? I am terrified that I cripple the performance by choosing the wrong combination.
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2010-03-26, 14:48

Yes, it's fine. Here are the full instructions for upgrading the RAM in the 8-core model:

http://manuals.info.apple.com/en_US/...y_DIMM_DIY.pdf

As it says, it actually has slightly better memory bandwidth if you go with 6 modules instead of 8, but you'd probably rather have the extra RAM instead.
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tiddles
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Join Date: Mar 2010
 
2010-03-26, 14:57

Thanks. It says that the slots should be balanced across the 6 channels. Does this mean I can't use a mix of 2gb and 4gb dimms?
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2010-03-26, 15:02

Quote:
Originally Posted by tiddles View Post
Thanks. It says that the slots should be balanced across the 6 channels. Does this mean I can't use a mix of 2gb and 4gb dimms?
No, you can use a mix. The Mac Pro has six memory channels. For the absolute fastest performance, you'd want to have 3 matched DIMMs in slots 1, 2, and 3, and 3 matched DIMMs in slots 5, 6, and 7.

However, if you want 8 DIMMs instead of 6, you can do that as well. Slots 3 and 4 will share a channel and slots 7 and 8 will too. This will only slightly reduce performance, but the added performance of having those extra GBs of RAM will most likely offset that.
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tiddles
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
 
2010-03-27, 04:46

Ok. So should I be putting the 4GB dimms in 3,4,7 & 8 and the 2GB dimms in 1,2,5 & 6?

Excuse my ignorance, but back in my "update your pc" days ,it was a case of stick anything anywhere as long as the numbers are bigger.
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