Apple MacBook Pro: RAM upgrade (HowTo)
Once I have received some inquiries regarding the upgrade of the Macbook Pro memory, I have compiled all the information and recommendations to upgrade the Macbook Pro now in this article.
Frequently asked questions
Which MacBook Pro models can be upgraded?
|MacBook Pro Retina (2012 / 2013)||15 Zoll
|MacBook Pro (Mid 2012)||15 Zoll
|MacBook Pro (Early + Late 2011)||17 Zoll
SPECIAL CASE – Apple Macbook Pro Retina
The recommendation to upgrade the memory does NOT apply to the MacBook Pro Retina! Because the memory of the MacBook Pro Retina is soldered and can NOT be changed or extended!
Can the Macbook Pro (2011 / 2012) really be upgraded to 16GB ram?
Yes! Although apple official states that the internal memory of the MacBook Pro (2011 / 2012) can only be upgraded to 8GB ram, nevertheless 16GB (2x 8GB moduls) can be installed. The full memory will be recognized and accepted without any problems.
Remains the apple guarantee?
The memory of the MacBook Pro can be upgraded by yourself, without impact on the apple product guarantee or AppleCare Protection Plan. The apple guarantee remains valid.
Which manufacturer produces the original memory modules?
Apple relies primarily on memory moduls of leading manufacturers such as Hynix, Elpida and Samsung. Fundamentally, memory moduls of every manufacturer can be used. However it is very important, that all technical values (timing, latency, etc.) comply with the original memory moduls. Otherwise it can result in compatibility problems.
Suitable memory moduls for the MacBook Pro
[Last updates: October 8, 2013]
Especially with no-name memory modules I’ve made some very negative experiences. Therefore, the following selection contains only high quality memory modules that I could test more than once personally in my professional life and can recommend in good conscience.
The specifications of the following recommended memory modules are exactly the same with the original memory modules. This ensures a smooth upgrade and stable operation.
Macbook Pro 2012 (13″/15″)
Upgrade to 8GB RAM:
- 2x Kingston 4GB DDR3 SO-DIMM PC3-12800 1600Mhz (2x 40$ = about 80$)
- Crucial 8GB Kit (2x 4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800 CL11 SO-DIMM (about 75$)
Upgrade to 16GB RAM:
- 2x Kingston KVR16S11/8 ValueRAM 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 CL11 (2x 80$ = about 160$)
- Crucial 16GB Kit (2x 8GB) DDR3 1600 MHz CL11 (about 140$)
Macbook Pro 2011 (13″/15″/17″)
- Corsair 8GB DDR3 SO-DIMM PC3-10600 1333Mhz Kit (2x 4GB) (about 70$)
- Crucial 8GB Kit (2 x 4GB) 204 pin DDR3-1333 SO-DIMM CL9 (about 80$)
- 2x Kingston 4GB 204 pin DDR3-10600 SO-DIMM CL9 (2x 45$ = about 90$)
- Adata CL9 PC3-10600 8GB Kit (2x 4GB) (about 70$)
Upgrade to 16GB RAM:
- Corsair Apple Certified 16GB (2x 8GB) DDR3 1333MHz (about 150$)
- Crucial 16GB Kit (2x 8GB) 1333MHz (about 140$)
To open the Macbook Pro on the bottom, a PH00 screwdriver is needed. However, I bought fo myself the 12-in-1 screwdriver Set from Syba. So I always have at hand all the screwdriver needed around Apple devices.
The replacement of the memory module is very easy. You only have to unscrew the casing bottom of the MacBook Pro and the memory can be easily replaced.
For easy installation, Apple has also published an illustrated guide on its website that explains how to install the new memory: MacBook Pro: How to remove or install memory
The following Youtube video also explains the individual work steps in detail: