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Works perfectly on a Late 2011 MacBook Pro & it Works on 2012 Models too
on January 8, 2014
I'm pleased to report that indeed, 16 GB of RAM does work correctly in the 2011 MacBook Pro, and, it is even recognized at it's full speed: 1600 MHz. All the functions of the MacBook Pro work correctly, including waking from sleep. Having this much RAM may seem like too much, but it is great if one uses several programs at a time or works with large datasets or image files.
Installing this RAM is relatively easy. There are instructions in the MacBook Pro's User Manual and online at Apple Support; even nicer instructions with step-by-step pictures can be found at sites like ifixit. Basically all one has to do is remove the screws on the bottom of the case, being careful to keep track of location of three of the screws that are longer than the rest.
As for quality of the Crucial RAM, the actual memory chips are by Micron, a respected manufacturer that supplies Crucial with most of the RAM they sell. After installing the RAM, I used the Apple Hardware Test (AHT) to verify that this RAM worked as it should in my MacBook Pro. I followed up on the AHT by running Memtest overnight to test the RAM - it passed with flying colors!
You may wonder how come it's ok to use 16 GB of RAM when Apple specified a maximum of 8 GB of DDR3 1333 MHz RAM for the 2011 series of MacBook Pro laptops? As you can see if you peruse the web, there are many, many reports of users installing and successfully using a maximum of 16 GB of RAM in the 2011 MacBook Pro laptops. The reason why Apple specified only 8GB as a maximum is that when these MacBook Pros were released, RAM modules denser than 4GB were not available in the appropriate sized SO-DIMM. With the subsequent improvement in RAM manufacturing technology, it's now possible to use up to 16 GB of RAM in the 2011 MacBook Pros. It's simply the case that Apple has not upgraded the specifications of the 2011 MacBook Pro.
In sum, if you are considering increasing the RAM in your MacBook Pro, and it's a 2011 model, it's safe to use this DDR3 1600 MHz RAM instead of the 1333 MHz RAM. You may ask why would one want to use 1600MHz vs. 1333 MHz. I choose to do so because, surprisingly, the 1600 MHz version was actually cheaper than the slower 1333 MHz type. It may not always be the case because RAM prices are very volatile, but it bears checking into if you are shopping for new RAM.