View Full Version : Upgrading MacBook Pro RAM

12th April 2014, 12:01 AM
I am currently looking at upgrading the RAM in my Early 2011 13 Inch MacBook Pro. According to Apple Support Site (MacBook Pro: How to remove or install memory (http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1270?viewlocale=en_US#link1)) the maximum memory for my model of MacBook is 8GB PC3-10600 DDR3 1333 MHz RAM. Now I have read in multiple places, that it is can handle 16GB. I would prefer to have as much memory as possible so I would opt for 16 if that is an option. Additionally I have noticed that while looking for the best deal for RAM sticks, that 1600MHz is cheaper than 1333MHz. I mentioned this in passing to a more techie than I friend and he is confident that 1600MHz sticks would step down to 1333MHz in my machine and I should not experience any ill effects from having 1600MHz sticks installed. Can anybody provide some advice regarding RAM compatibility

12th April 2014, 12:57 AM
I recommend Crucial (Micron). Tier 1 memory manufacturer, guaranteed compatibility, lifetime warranty, fast shipping.

16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 (http://www.crucial.com/store/mpartspecs.aspx?mtbpoid=B9CFD3B3A5CA7304) - $159

16GB (2 X 8GB) DDR3-1333 (http://www.crucial.com/store/partspecs.aspx?IMODULE=CT2K8G3S1339M) - $159

Stick with tier 1 manufactures such as Micron (Crucial), Samsung, Hynix, etc.

Also - if you're not already using an SSD, I would be looking at that first.

12th April 2014, 09:19 AM
I believe you can get away with installing 1600MHz RAM instead of 1333MHz but understand that this factor alone will make absolutely no difference to the speed of your computer.

In some cases, you can also find that doing this may introduce some stability issues. As a general rule, you're better off sticking with what's "approved" for your laptop. If you want to go beyond that, you do so at your own risk and you MIGHT have problems (equally, you might not, you won't know for sure until you do it and see what happens).

Extra RAM gives you head room. By itself, it won't really speed up your computer unless what you're doing with your computer uses up plenty of RAM. If everything you do on your computer normally has you using around 5GB of memory then going to 8GB is all you need and going to 16GB won't actually give you any extra speed boost. On the other hand, if you regularly get up to around, say, 12GB of RAM use then having more than 8GB will help.

Keep in mind, though, that OS X manages memory in such a way that it'll often appear that you're using most of your memory but some of that memory use is cached and can be freed up quickly for other demands if needed. It's part of how OS X works to improve performance (i.e. keeping recently used stuff cached).

So, for example, the iMac I'm using now has 32GB of memory. I'm currently using 30.22GB of it. But if I drill down a bit I'm using 8.47GB of that for apps that are running and about 15GB for caching stuff recently used. What that means is that about half of my "used" RAM is in caching stuff I've done recently rather than in stuff I'm doing right now. If what's running at the moment was all I did, I may not notice much performance difference between 16GB and 32GB in my iMac.


15th April 2014, 06:44 AM
Dave's right, if you don't use it extra RAM won't help you out too much in the real world. That said, it's pretty cheap so it's hard not to just max it :P

Personally I still have a soft spot for RAM City:
RAM Memory Upgrades for Apple MacBook Pro (MacBookPro8,1) Early 2011 13-inch i5/i7 (http://www.ramcity.com.au/upgrade/apple/macbook-pro/macbookpro8-1-early-2011-13-inch-i5-i7/2046?f7=16GB&rf=cpf9f7)

That said, RAM is RAM is RAM. Any shop selling you the appropriate specced sticks should work just fine and the vast vast (VAST) majority of options will work just fine for their useful life. You have to be unlucky to get a bodgy set that's DOA or unstable and in those cases buying local makes things that much easier.

MSY also have some "Apple Memory": Patriot 16G Kit (8Gx2) DDR3 1333 PSA316G1333SK - $180