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Released June 2012, Model A1278. Intel processor with Turbo Boost, Up to 512 MB DDR5 Video RAM

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RAM frequency what is the fastest MHz the system will support

I have MacBook Pro with Intel i7 2.9 GHz and 8 GB DDR3 1600 MHz RAM

I would like to change the RAM, I don't know if my system will work with 2133 MHz or 1866 MHz ram. The max Apple has listed is 16 GB or can I install 32 GB?

Ho MacBook Pro con Intel i7 2.9 GHz e 8 GB DDR3 1600 MHz RAM

Vorrei cambiare la RAM, non so se il mio sistema funzionerà con ram 2133 MHz o 1866 MHz. Il massimo di Apple ha elencato è di 16 GB o posso installare 32 GB?

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If your machine is the non-Retina

Apple MacBook Pro "Core i7" 2.9 13" Mid-2012 Specs

Identifiers: Mid-2012 13" - MD102LL/A - MacBookPro9,2 - A1278 - 2554*

Standard RAM: 8 GB Maximum RAM: 16 GB*

Details: 8 GB of RAM is installed as two 4 GB modules, no slots free.

*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.

*

RAM Type: PC3-12800 DDR3L Min. RAM Speed: 1600 MHz

http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/ma...

If your machine is a Retina:

Apple MacBook Pro "Core i7" 2.9 13" Retina 2012 Specs

Identifiers: Retina Late 2012 - BTO/CTO - MacBookPro10,2 - A1425 - 2557

If so, there are no RAM slots and the machine is not upgradable.

http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/ma...

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I don't think that 2133 with work, but 1866 will most likely work without any major issues. That being said, I think that it is best for you to stick with the 1600MHz ram, as using a different RAM speed can cause intermittent issues. In addition, using a faster RAM will not result in any performance improvements, as it's speed will be lowered to the speed of your laptops FSB, which is set at 1600MHz.

The maximum ram limit is 16GB, and either way, that is the most that you will be able to install as there aren't any RAM sticks that are larger the 8GB in the format that your laptop takes.

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If you browse the Mid-2012 Geekbench 4 results, you'll find that all of the highest scores have 2133MHz RAM inside of them. While this may likely just be coincidence that power users put in the best possible regardless of benefit, it does guarantee compatibility. Again, it stands that these systems can only address 1600MHz, and any faster will be slowed down (unless I am missing something). Might be a good experiment.

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Hey thanks for the reply! So yeah I've seen lots of people asking if they can use faster RAM or sometimes if you can blend 1333 MHz and 1600 MHz but what about downgrading altogether to just 1333 MHz?

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The older systems use PC-10600 and your newer system uses PC3-12800 while both are DDR3 RAM they have different keys preventing re-use.

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You should still be able to use 1333MHz, I don’t think you can do any slower though.

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Hey do you know if using a slower RAM speed is possible on a mid 2012 MBP? I recently upgraded my early 2011 to 16GB at 1333MHz and want to salvage it in a new machine that has USB 3.0 hence mid 2012. What do you think?

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@teebs well that's one I've never been asked. Frankly I don't think much of the idea, you are asking for trouble.

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I can’t speak for compatibility, but I can say that 1333Mhz RAM tends to sell for more than 1600MHz RAM. I can’t think of any reason why this would be except that 1600 is like super common. That being said, you could probably sell your RAM and pick up 16GB used on eBay for about $80 and possibly make some money if not break even.

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thanks! good thinking Jacob

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I put in some 1866mhz ram thinking it was 1600mhz because some ram suppliers can’t even write this simple detail on their chips they have to resort to using codes because they are sneaky deceiving and conceited. I did a extended 1 hour ram test on it and absolutely no problems but not sure its any faster.

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