Super Simple and Dirt Cheap – Upgrade Your MacBook Pro RAM Today

If you’re in the Class of 2015 at Macaulay Honors College or you purchased a MacBook Pro in the early part of 2011, then this blog post is for you! If not, then you’re either a PC user (don’t worry, PC content will be along directly) or you have a different model MacBook Pro (or none at all). Regardless of which category you fall into, please read on for cool computer tech awesomeness.

I’m half student filmmaker and half professional videographer. I’m always working on video content for friends at college or putting some short film together for one of my professors. And when I’m not doing that, I’m shooting and editing promotional business videos. Either way, I’m using my MacBook Pro and PC desktop a lot.

The PC desktop is another story–that was a custom build and works flawlessly through any video editing task. I took real care into custom-tailoring each piece of the computer to make it run Avid Media Composer ultra fast. Thankfully, I succeeded on that end.

As for the MacBook Pro, my non-linear editor of choice there is Final Cut Pro. When I first got the laptop, it ran lighting fast. As time went on and I installed new programs, everything slowed down. Eventually, I found it impossible to run anything alongside Final Cut, let alone Final Cut itself.

About This Mac, pre-RAM upgrade.

About This Mac, pre-RAM upgrade.


In order to combat the issue, I’ve upgraded my MacBook Pro’s RAM from its original stock 4GB of DDR3 1333MHz RAM to 8GB of the same type and speed. Doing so has doubled my performance speeds and allows me to use Final Cut to its fullest potential again, without any ‘spinning beach balls of death.’

About This Mac, post-RAM upgrade.

About This Mac, post-RAM upgrade.


The process of upgrading your MacBook Pro’s RAM is actually extremely easy. That being said, I still wouldn’t recommend it if you haven’t worked on the inside of computers before. I hold two technician certifications, so I was well prepared for what I saw, but if you go in there blind, it might be a little tricky. Either way, it’s not a daunting task. I was going to put together a step-by-step walkthrough, but I honestly think the video below is the best out there.


As for what kind of RAM you choose, that’s up to you. Technically speaking, the Early 2011 MacBook Pro has an 8GB RAM imit, or so Apple says. Many people have installed 16GB of RAM in the Early 2011 models and haven’t had any problems, but others said the high amount of RAM caused their laptop to overheat (this all has to do with how much a computer’s processor can handle). All of this being said, I think you’d find that 8GB of RAM is more than enough for any task, whether it be video editing or more Facebook surfing. The RAM I purchased can be found via this link.

About Daniel

Daniel is a graduate of CUNY Macaulay Honors College at Brooklyn College, summa cum laude with a B.A. in Film Production and TV/Radio. He can be reached via his website, The Utopia of Daniel was his college blog and he has since transitioned to posting on other sites.