Jump to content
erichelgeson

What do I need to know about RAM for my SE/30?

Recommended Posts

Hi all!

 

Just finished my first recap of an SE/30 - was quite the job, but it works! This is my first SE/30 so trying to learn what's possible for my machine.

 

Now I need to find some ram. I only have 1mb in it currently, so no system 7. My goal would be to have System 7.5.5 on it - I do have a network card so I'd like to go online/transfer files/etc.

 

OWC has new 16mb modules - And 64mb seems overkill.

- 64mb(16x4) $48 - $0.75/mb

 

Ebay/etc have a lot of 4mb though they'd cost about 2x more per mb as OWC. I don't see any 8mb 30pin simms for sale.

- 16mb(4x4MB) $25 - $1.56/mb (2x OWC price per MB) - so if i got 8x4(32mb) would cost more than the 64mb option :)

 

I would like to have 16-32mb, but 64 seems overkill.

 

My questions are:

  • I need to install in sets of 4 - correct?
  • If I'm over 16 mb can the se/30 boot up still? or does MODE32 need to be installed first?
  • Am I missing something or should I just buy the 64mb from OWC (though I hear booting RAM checks can take a while)
  • Would it be a good idea to get a BMOW ROM-inator? (or only if I go with 64mb?)
Edited by erichelgeson
s/pairs/sets

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All I can tell you for sure about that is that Mode 32 is not needed for the machine to work with more ram, only to use that ram.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have two SE/30 and recently equipped both of them with 64 MB from this source: https://www.amazon.com/-/de/gp/product/B00FAYV3NO

I found the price reasonable and with more than 32 MB you can add a nice ram disk, so I can recommend the 64 MB.

 

Boot time has increased by a few seconds but not dramatically. As I found out in another thread here the large ram increases boot time _before_ the happy mac. The Mac still boots up with 4x16 MB on bank A but it can only make use of more than 8 MB with mode32 installed. When it comes to large amounts of ram the Rom Initiator would only be needed for the latest APPLE UNIX A/UX 3.1.1, which needs a 32 bit clean rom. Otherwise it is not necessary.

Edited by Bendix
typo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/3/2020 at 8:58 AM, Bendix said:

The Mac still boots up with 4x16 MB on bank A but it can only make use of more than 8 MB with mode32 installed.

In this thread they’re saying that it’s not possible to run with 4x16 MB in Bank A only. Also Bank B  has to be filled with something. Is this something you have experienced?
 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No I have not. I know, that 64 MB on Bank A only are not supposed to work but with the amazon simms I advertised further up in this thread it worked on both my SE/30s.

Edited by Bendix

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Bendix said:

No I have not. I know, that 64 MB on Bank A only are not supposed to work but with the amazon simms I advertised further up in this thread it worked on both my SE/30s.

Sounds promising! For some reason my SE/30 won't boot if I install anything in Bank B. So using 64 MB in Bank A only would give me more than enough RAM, and getting around the issues with Bank B. So I was quick to order the Amazon SIMMs above. But then I started to regret it after I found the other thread. We'll see when they arrive...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I got the yellow ones in the mail yesterday. Will not boot in any combination. Also they are thinner then the other ram so doesnt feel secure when seated, wobbles a mm or two each way. Will try a few more things but glad I got on Amazon so returns shouldn't be a hassle... 

 

Edit: the fit is the issue, I propped it up for gravity to assist, gave them each a wiggle and it booted.... So u guess if you don't mind bumping your desk and your ram gets unseated... 

 

Edit2: actually while it does boot it is not seen, so likely only visiting because not seated properly.

Edited by erichelgeson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So same issue if you put them in Bank A (well seated)? In the other thread I linked someone said larger RAM must be placed in Bank A. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So sorry to hear it. I had actually some wobbling, too, but only with one module. Compared to the others it was a little bit shorter. The guy responded quickly, wanted a pic, I sent it and now there is another simm module in the mail, which could take a while to Germany. Said, if it was not here in 4 weeks, he would send out another. Thought the short module was a single mistake, otherwise I had not recommend the amazon link to you. Sorry!

Edited by Bendix

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After giving everything one more try I've RMA'd the Yellow ones, very quick response from seller, already in the mail.

 

Ordered the ones you sent in the link ~@Bendix~ @SoundChances- hope to have better luck!

Edited by erichelgeson
Corrected tagged person, whoops!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You should be fine with ordering the ones I linked.
I have bought 4M and 16M sticks from them over the years and never had an issue in any compact Macs I've stuck them in. 
I actually just bought another batch of 16M sticks a few weeks ago and they are happily running in an SE/30.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, erichelgeson said:

Any idea why the system software is taking 60mb of my 66 free?

You perhaps need to turn on 32 bit addressing in the memory control panel?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I received 64 mb of RAM today from a seller on eBay. When putting it in Bank A with nothing in B, it did a horizontal zebra strip pattern and a never-ending loud chime thing. Horrible! 

 

I tried doing 16mb x 4 in Bank A, and 256kb x 4 in Bank B. No fix.

 

Then I tried 256kb x 4 in Bank A, and 16mb x 4 in Bank B. It worked!

 

Before installing MODE32, System 7.0 (plan to upgrade) showed 2 MB of RAM. After installing MODE32, activating it, and rebooting, it now shows 65mb! Curiously, the machine seems to do the RAM count during the Happy Mac icon, not before the Happy Mac like my older Macs. Also, it seems that the MODE32 setting is stored in PRAM, as it defaults back to off if I turn off the machine for more than a few seconds.

 

It does feel strange having 256kb sticks in Bank A. Do you all think that I could get another 64mb from the same seller and populate all slots with 16mb sticks, and get 128mb? It's strange to me that I had to do things backwards...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, PotatoFi said:

I tried doing 16mb x 4 in Bank A, and 256kb x 4 in Bank B. No fix.

Then I tried 256kb x 4 in Bank A, and 16mb x 4 in Bank B. It worked!

The bank configs are pretty wacky:

sVm9vl1.png

I would always assume you need to put the larger amounts in the same bank regardless, but go figure.

 

When you get up past the "maximum" by old Apple standards, all bets are off. Even though it supports 16 MB with NOTHING in Bank B... Your working solution seems very similar to the 17 MB config. According to a source that I haven't been able to corroborate, it uses that 1 MB (4x256) for faster video(?), but take that with ...as many grains of salt as one needs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/7/2020 at 2:05 AM, Bendix said:

No I have not. I know, that 64 MB on Bank A only are not supposed to work but with the amazon simms I advertised further up in this thread it worked on both my SE/30s.

I have to correct myself here. Yesterday I received a non wobbling replacement and had another change to test and like all documents say, 64 MB just on bank A do not work, so sorry for this false information.

The replacement module I received again did not work, but Gary, the seller, will ship another two, so it is 2 more weeks waiting for me here in Germany. He said he identified the problem of the modules beeing too slim, cleared his amazon stock and will have produced new ones. At least the support is good. Unfortunately the alternative amazon seller does not ship to Europe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's unfortunate. :-( I ordered the RAM memory in the hope of bypassing the issues my SE/30 seem to have in Bank B. But it now seems that they still have to be installed in Bank B, which will most likely not work in my Mac. Plus the wobble issue... And as you mention, unfortunately, the other seller does not ship to Europe. Guess I have to find some old stock 4 MB SIMMs instead.

Edited by blindowl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am very sorry to hear it and feel bad, that I mislead you. I did a lot of testing in order to solve the wobbling module problem (actually a rubber band fixed it, but that cracked a few days later). While I tested all sorts of configurations (with the crt facing down to the table surface and the atx power extension cable) I was under the firm impression that between many nasty chime of death sounds I had heard the welcome chime with 64 MB on bank A only.

If everything works out with Gary's next delivery I will have 4x1MB spares, so in case you have not found anything then, send me a pm.

 

And vor what it's worth, I currently have 4x16 MB on bank A and 4x4 MB on B, so the larger modules on A seem to work.

Edited by Bendix

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Bendix said:

He said he identified the problem of the modules beeing too slim, cleared his amazon stock and will have produced new ones. At least the support is good. Unfortunately the alternative amazon seller does not ship to Europe.

The problem is most likely the switch to Chinese circuit board manufacturers who only work in metric.

 

The specification for the thickness of the 30 pin SIMMs is .05", which is 1.27 mm.    Many of the new, cheap board manufacturers don't offer 1.27, only 1.2mm and 1.2mm as we are finding here and also in the ROMinator II is just too thin.

 

Older SIMMs should be fine.  New production, which these 16MB SIMMs apparently are, will be problematical, unless the seller took care to actually get 1.27mm thickness.

Edited by trag

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Could tinning the contacts on one or both sides make up the difference? Is it a question of board thickness/socket geometry of the physical interface, or both?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×