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I'm looking to upgrade the ram in a 2012 Macbook Pro 13-inch mid 2012 (most update to date model at time of writing). The two specs I've seen are max 8GB, and the other max spec I've seen is 16GB.

The two places I've seen the ram spec written are

The obvious thing might be to go with the Apple spec, but I wandered why there are differences. Is the Apple just a guideline, and you 'can' run 16GB? Any ideas what's correct?

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possible duplicate of Max amount of RAM for Macbook? – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 7 '13 at 15:56
@techie007 although that is from Jan 11... It seems mostly relevent, but it doesn't cover the '12 - current line. – AthomSfere Aug 7 '13 at 16:06
@AthomSfere There's nothing year-specific in the question I linked. If the OP would like updated/newer answers, they should perhaps place a Bounty on the existing question. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 7 '13 at 16:21
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Apple is probably showing a fact that they guarantee the system to work at 8. Crucial is a very reputable company and their data for max support is what they have found to work and support the 16 gb max. Many MBP users are enjoying the 16gb upgrade with no issues.

I have found crucial to be accurate in their findings and they support, warrantee their products well.

If you need 16gb, I would go with Crucial recommendation.

As stated

4 GB of RAM is installed as two 2 GB modules, no slots free, Max Ram 16 GB*.

*Apple officially supports a maximum of 8 GB of RAM, but third-parties have determined that this model actually is capable of using up to 16 GB of RAM with two 8 GB memory modules.

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Apple uses Intel chipsets, and it is the chipset that determines the max memory. Apple is also very specific in what it will sell and allow for its products.

Crucial has likely done their homework, and they guarantee their recommendations will work.

I would go with Crucial's as the maximum, although Apple might not officially support (See honor warranty agreement) with 16GB installed.

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Apple is always conservative on how much ram is supported.


It tells you everything you want to know about any apple product ever released;
including the maximum officially supported ram and the maximum actual supported ram.

According to MackTracker, that model supports 16GB of ram.

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any idea why they are conservative about the supported ram - surely a faster machine reflects better on them.. – sam Aug 10 '13 at 0:27
I know in at least one case, Apple created documentation when 4gb sticks were the largest you could buy. It turned out that as soon as 8gb sticks came out, they worked just fine. Also, I've seen some PC motherboards that can take more ram, but they run at a slower speed. Perhaps – spuder Aug 10 '13 at 0:31

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