DIY How to Upgrade your iMac's RAM!

August 14, 2018

DIY How to Upgrade your iMac's RAM!



One of the weakest points of a 2 K computer is the size of RAM and us, photographers, know this so well since the system starts struggling right after few months! Even if you like me try to store all your files on external drivers. This said there is a pretty easy and cheap way to upgrade your 5K iMac's RAM in under a minute! Trust me you will take longer reading this than doing the actual job :)

*This tutorial is for the 5K iMac (5K Retina Late 2017) only and you should always check whether your model can be upgraded the same way before trying any of these.

Step 1:
Check your iMac info   / About this Mac / Memory


Step 2: Purchase more RAM for your iMac (I have used Crucial 3 times already). They would allow to choose your RAM upgrade compatible with your model. Delivery is pretty fast and I had no problems with this supplier or products so far. They have recommendations for maximum RAM for your device and also advise on how to do your upgrade.


Step 3: Power down your iMac and unplug all the cables including the power cable.

Step 4: If you want to place your iMac face down you should do it on a flat surface and place a soft towel to avoid scratching.

Step 5: Press the button underneath the power plug area to eject the RAM slot cover and remove it. I wish I knew this when I was upgrading my first iMac!!! Instead I spent 30 mins if not longer trying to open this cover with a help of needles, scissors, knives and all!!! LOL


Step 6: Use the levers to unlock the slots (push them outward to the sides and then towards you).


Step 7:
Remove one model gently paying attention in its position and look. Insert a new one in the same position.

*If all 4 slots are taken, you will need to remove one and replace with a new DIMM. By default there should be 2 slots with x 4 GB in each, the total of 8 GB. The maximum memory recommended for iMac Retina 5K, 27", 2017 model is 64 GB (4x16 GB DIMMs). I have used 2 x 4GB from my previous iMac, upgraded once to 8GB DIMM and am now replacing 4GB with 16 GB.

Step 8: Use the levers on the side to lock the slots.

Step 9: Put the RAM slot cover back.

Step 10: Place your iMac back on your desk.

Step 11: Connect all the cables, including the power cable and power up your iMac as normally.

Step 12: Once booted go to  / About this Mac / Memory, and confirm that all RAM is there. And... you are done! :) Couldn't be easier!

Long story short: turn it off, unplug, open the cover, release, push the DIMM in, close, power on!

*Please consult the IT experts and/or Apple before doing any of this!
**Please also note that some of the resources advise to couple your memory by having 2 x the same DIMMs to get the best performance. 

TAGS: My iMac is slow, Upgrade your Mac, iMac for photographers, 5K Retina 27" RAM upgrade, iMac RAM, Photoshop Editing, Photoshop Actions & Tutorials, Photography Tips & Tricks

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.