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I have both a 9,1 and a 9,2 Mid-2012 13" MacBook Pros which have both failed. Having finally gotten both computers back from my daughter, the only thing that I can find wrong with either one is that it appears that one of the two memory slots has failed in each computer. (Mr Google has led me to places that have the story that Apple put a little too much torque on the screws holding the ports to the motherboard. And also the news that the only way to fix this is to replace the motherboard.

I bought a refurbished 9,1 last summer which came with a single 8GB SODIMM in one slot rather than the advertised 2x2GB. I sent it back when I realized that it had a failed RAM slot. So apparently this is not an uncommon failure.)

These machines were long-ago upgraded to 16gb by replacing the original memory with a kit of 2 8GB SODIMMs, and so taking one out leaves me at 8GB, which is a sad place to be. When I go to Amazon and look at the product for 2gb, 4gb & 8gb Crucial chips, there is also an option for a single 16gb chip or a 2x16GB 32GB kit that's on the same form factor.

So now I'm wondering if I can get one of those 16GB chips for each computer, put it in the working slot, and have 16GB. According to this Macrumors thread, the answer is "no"

The important point is that while Ivy Bridge does support 32 GB, it only supports 8 GB per module. You'd need four slots for 32 GB to work, and the MacBook Pro (like every other laptop pretty much) only has two.

But I can't figure out if this is really true -- this post here gives me some hope although it shows a screen shot of Crucial saying "no".

Does anyone know anyone who has tried this and know one way or another?

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  • Welcome to Ask Different. I'm not seeing how your question is different than the one you referenced here. You appear to be asking the same question because you don't like, or believe, the answers already given. Unless you can edit your question to indicate why it's different, then I'll have to vote this as a duplicate.
    – fsb
    Mar 12 '18 at 20:57
  • Yes, it is pretty much the same question as is asked in the other thread, which ended with everyone else wondering the same thing. The only thing that makes my question different is that the others are trying to use both slots to get 32gb (which does not seem possible) while I'm trying to get 16gb out of my one working slot. Depending upon the exact reasons why 2x16gb doesn't work, 1x16gb might work, right?
    – cathyf
    Mar 12 '18 at 21:19
  • You can get your memory slot repaired, if that's the case. Rossman Group in NYC is excellent at this.
    – Allan
    Mar 13 '18 at 1:14
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    I contacted Rossman Group and they said that a bad memory slot is not repairable and their advice was to live with one slot. They also commented that having memory slots go bad is really common on the 2012 MBPs.
    – cathyf
    Mar 13 '18 at 22:04
  • @cathyf, There are several hacks for getting both RAM slots to work in this iFixit thread: Issues with bottom RAM-slot MBP 2012 Jun 26 '19 at 6:15
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From Intel's website: 7th Gen (U/Y) and 8th Gen (U Quad-Core) Intel® Processor Families Datasheet for the i7 mobile processor.

Unlike the desktop counterpart that has support for 8 channels it (mobile chip) only has 2 channels with a maximum of 2 DIMMs per channel

Further in the datasheet, Intel specifically notes the maximumm amount of memory that can be addressed:

enter image description here

16GB is your max.

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  • Thanks so much -- that was the definitive answer I was looking for.
    – cathyf
    Mar 13 '18 at 22:06
  • so was this a yes or a no? how did you go @cathyf? Apr 16 '20 at 7:03
  • Answer is "no". (I really wish that they would put 4 memory slots in a laptop. It doesn't take up that much space, and would give you a lot more flexibility...)
    – cathyf
    Apr 17 '20 at 21:05
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I realised that this is not a direct answer to your question but since you're looking to get back the 16GB RAM. Getting the "bad" slot to work may be your answer.

Some of those methods are discussed in iFixit thread recommended by Miles Wolbe.

There is also a youtube video https://youtu.be/1Zf_ADyjS9k
that removed the logic board to insert the plastic card.

There are also other roundabout ways to insert the card without removing the logic board one of which was what I did.

  1. Loosen or take off the 4 screws that hold the RAM slots
  2. Insert a cut unused plastic card (can be the same shape as the RAM but slightly smaller or just big enough to insert underneath the bottom RAM slot)

I just got my bad bottom RAM slot to work but there is one open issue left which is how the card will affect the RAM temperature. Nonetheless, it could be a positive sign given that the above youtube video was posted almost 1 year ago with no complaint of RAM failure.

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