View Full Version : Looking for memory upgrade for my MacBook Pro
I recently bought the latest 13" MacBook Pro. I went for the lowest end model since I was planning to upgrade RAM and HDD by myself. The HDD didn't present any problems, but I found prices for Mac compatible RAM simply ridiculous. For 8GB (2x4GB) of DDR3 PC3-8500 (1066MHz) 204-pin SODIMM RAM I was quoted Rp. 3,000,000 at Ratu Plaza, while back in Canada I can get the same kit for less than Rp. 1,000,000.
Anybody has any suggestions on where I can get this type of RAM for reasonable price? I'm planning to go to Singapore soon, would be prices lower there?
I believe Apple uses Samsung, Hynix and Micron memory in production. I did some more research online and identified the following models that are marketed by their respective manufacturers as Mac memory and is suitable for my MacBook Pro.
Mushkin Enhanced 976644A
Corsair also used to manufacture RAM for Macs, but I can't seem to find anything about it on their web site any longer.
I also saw a lot of V-Gen memory here in Jakarta, but am a little hesitant to use it. Anyone used it for their Mac?
Hmm, kinda hard to find in computer retail store in here...
I'll update soon as i find an info for you...
OK, so I went to Singapore and after a bit of asking around found myself 8 Gigs of RAM at Funan DigitaLife Mall (http://www.funan.com.sg/). The RAM in question is made by relatively new company on the Asian RAM market - Kreton (http://www.kreton.com/), but they seem to be making good products and successfully undercutting the price of more established, better known brands in SG like Strontium and Kingston. They use Micron chips (one of the brands used by Apple, my original RAM is Micron as well), and their RAM seems to be fully compatible with Apple products. After a bit of haggling I paid $79 SGD per stick or $158 SGD in total, that's roughly Rp. 1,120,000, almost 3 times cheaper than what I was quoted at Ratu Plaza. If I wasn't in the rush to board my plane back, I could've also claimed another $8 SGD back in tax :).
If you decide to go the same route, don't even bother to look anywhere else in Singapore, don't waste your time. Locals know very well where to find computer parts Singapore, it's Sim Lim Square or Funan. If someone is trying to do so anywhere else, it is patently obvious to the shop owner that that person is a tourist, ergo the price will double and even triple. I was silly enough to first ask around the Orchard Rd, near my hotel, and was quoted prices that were higher than what Apple would charge to do an upgrade at the factory. Sim Lim (http://www.simlimsquare.com.sg/) is supposedly slightly cheaper than Funan, but I was warned by few different locals that it is easy to get scammed there and best not to test your luck unless you actually live in Singapore and can return to the store in case of any problems.
At Funan, don't bother with lower levels or the Challenger (Lv. 6), just like Bhinneka's, their prices are quite inflated. Head straight to Level 3 and 4 and start making rounds through tiny shops. At first they might ask pretty high, just look surprised and politely tell them that you can get a better price by ordering and maling RAM from US (http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memory/Apple_MacBook_MacBook_Pro/Upgrade/DDR3) to Singapore (that's actually true and they might think you're local). If they don't budge just keep moving along. While doing so start picking up on terminology they use and use it back, this will speed up the inquiry and once again they might think you're local and know the going price. Check as many stores as possible until you start hearing prices that actually sound reasonable. Very soon you will get their "very best price".
I brought my laptop with me to the store and made sure that the owner will replace the RAM for free if one of the modules doesn't work on the spot. Sellers there were quite willing to do so. The shop owner quickly opened my Mac (you need a Philips #0 screwdriver, #00 will work too), replaced the RAM and "About This Mac" was showing 8GB. To make sure that the RAM was indeed fully compatible, I ran full Memtest OS X (http://www.memtestosx.org/) five times overnight. You need to boot into single user mode by holding 'command+s' during boot and then issue command:
/path/to/memtest all 5 -L
Alternatively, instead of paying $1.39 for memtest, one could use the OS X installation DVD that came with your Mac and run the Apple supplied hardware diagnostics tool (hold 'd' key during boot). I opted out for memtest, since default diagnostics tool is notorious for missing memory problems that actually cause kernel panic. My RAM passed all tests and I haven't experienced any problems with it in the last 11 days, I'm happy :D!
Thanks Sergei. I use extensively a MacBook Pro for work AND at home. I may have to use your expertise in the future if I run into trouble (rarely) with my Mac.
Got friend of mine using OWC for 8GB kit.
OWC PC3-10600 DDR3 1333MHz SO-DIMM 204 Pin CL9 SO-DIMM Memory Upgrade Module
He paid for : 1.600.000.
Did you ask your friend where in Jakarta he got it?
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