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Old July 23rd, 2004, 11:52 AM   #1
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Dual 2.0 G5 RAM

I currently have only 1 gig of ram. i was thinking of spending some money on a few more gigs. has anyone got any testimonials on vastly improved performance, or a lack thereof, in fcp4 or after effects or just in general? Im just ona tight budget but i DO place heavy value on less rendering and processing time. Any info or advice appreciated.
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Old July 23rd, 2004, 01:37 PM   #2
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I can't speak for the G5 but in my personal book, you can NEVER have too much ram.

Even if FCP isn't using it all there are always background things you might have going or OS stuff that will use it and not take away from FCP.

Plus when doing RAM playback in assorted applications it's great to have lots.
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Old July 23rd, 2004, 02:40 PM   #3
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I would upgrade my ram when I upgrade to Tiger OS. The new OS will be able to utilize larger amounts of ram. This Apple article tells a little.
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Old July 23rd, 2004, 04:23 PM   #4
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There was a tread a few months ago that had a link to an article on rendering speeds on various macs. You can do a search.
Basicly it said that the ram didn't have anything to do with rendering speed. It's real function is in real time playback. I just have a 1Ghz emac, added some more ram & noticed a big difference. It's much smoother handling multiple tasks (going back & forth from live type to FCP) or having complex sequences run smoother.

I'll be getting a G5 soon & I'll have at least 2G ram.
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Old July 24th, 2004, 06:36 PM   #5
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I too have a Dual 2.5 G5 on order- where can we get more ram aside from Apple (expensive)- any other 3rd party vendors selling compatible ram for the dual machines?
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Old July 24th, 2004, 09:46 PM   #6
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<<<-- Originally posted by Steve Nunez : I too have a Dual 2.5 G5 on order- where can we get more ram aside from Apple (expensive)- any other 3rd party vendors selling compatible ram for the dual machines? -->>>

I have this kind on my pc and my G5.


They have memory that is specific to your application.
Just use the pull down menu's to get to your model.
Remember, you need to install memory in pairs on the G5's.
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Old July 24th, 2004, 09:52 PM   #7
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More RAM will make FCP run smoother. This is comparing 256MB on a DP500 G4 OS X/FCP3.0.4 to the same setup with 512MB RAM (very noticeable difference on complex projects). With 756MB I think FCP runs smoother (not sure). I would probably go with 1GB.

An overkill of RAM does not help performance. OS X also a minor issue at 1.5 and another at 2GB.

2- As far as rendering goes, I don't think RAM will make any difference.
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Old July 25th, 2004, 02:30 PM   #8
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I just got my dual 2.0 a few days ago with the standard 512K in it. I plan to add more in the weeks to come.

However, I've been very pleased with the performance thus far on just the half gig.

It's tough having to install the sticks in pairs because since you've got to buy 2 at a time then you're either stuck with shelling a lot out at once or buying small sticks. I'd rather have the larger sticks (at least 512K each) so I'm forced to wait until the funds are available.
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Old July 25th, 2004, 09:53 PM   #9
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I've heard the sweet spot for the G5's is about 4 gigs of RAM. Especially if you're doing FCP stuff with it. I plan to get a dual 2.5 G5 with 1 gig of RAM and upgrade to 4 gigs of Crucial RAM shortly after that. Then I will remove the originally HDD for a Raptor 10,000 rpm SATA disk which will improve performance of the boot disk and applications. Then I'll look at adding an additional 4 HDDs which I'll stripe for performance and keep all the video on that striped disk.

Read this for more info:

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Old July 26th, 2004, 12:12 AM   #10
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Ok the article (4GB of RAM is the sweet spot) seems well-intentioned but the authors lack understanding of computers. Some of their logic is wrong too:

I donít want to turn this into a commercial for Crucial, so Iíll just say that when we were done with all the research we went with Crucial because they take a lot of extra time and effort to produce only top-tier RAM and stand behind every module they sell. Besides, Apple is one of their larger customers and if Apple decided Micron was the company for them, we knew we were buying the best.
I have to give them one thing though: They may be right for the wrong reasons. As I don't have 4GB vs 2GB of RAM to play with I can't verify or debunk their results.

I would still doubt their conclusions however. Their results show 4GB being significantly faster than 2GB of RAM on another system. This is likely due to configuration differences in both systems. One of them crashed on one of the tests while the other did not. That is a good sign the systems are different in some way.

RAM: When it works, all RAM is practically the same. Some low latency RAM offers an improvement in performance, but does nothing for video editing (tested this on an intel 865 chipset PC with Vegas Video- no measurable difference when lowering/increasing memory latency). At best lower memory latency will boost things a few percent (depends *highly* on the task at hand).

Configuration of RAM is something you should pay more attention to. Ideal configurations are pairs of the same model RAM- 2, 4, 6, or 8. On the Intel side (865/875 chipset for Pentium systems), memory bandwidth is increased by having 4 DIMMs instead of 2. Memory bandwidth is also affected by the model of RAM in question and whether the RAM is double banked or single banked. Overall memory bandwidth will only make one of two percent difference in rendering speed, which is nothing.

2- barefeats.com would be the place to check for speed-related stuff. For FCP, the main bottleneck is the CPU.

RAID IMO is not worth it. For video editing, it offers no speed improvement while cutting. It will actually slow your system down if you are using software RAID, as software RAID sucks CPU cycles.
As far as rendering go, you will only see improvements in speed when you are doing simple renders that are like file copies. These kinds of renders will be real-time anyways, although in special cases you may actually have to do a file copy. Having seperate hard drives would offer improved performance in that case, although that would require manual intervention. In cases such as copying from firewire drive to an internal for print to tape, or exporting a movie for DVD encoding, having seperate hard drives would be faster. In the end, hard drive speed does not make a big difference unless editing uncompressed or HD or other such formats that take a lot of space.

Practically, I would go for higher capacity instead. You can fit 1TB of hard drives inside a G5. The extra space would come in handy for temporary archival and as a safety net in case you want to take on a big project. Not having enough hard drive space is a showstopper.

I would save your money for the G6. Computers double in speed every two years or so (historically).
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