Well, the Acadamy Awards have come and gone. Once the water cooler talks about who wore it best and who deserved the Oscar more comes to a close, you might be on the hunt for something to distract you this Monday morning. You’re in luck! YouTube great Jonathan Morrison, a.k.a. TLD has done us all a favor by upgrading his 2019 Mac Pro to a whopping 1.5 TB of RAM to pit it against Chrome in the ultimate battle to see who bows out.
First, the hardware. Jonathan is using his 2019 Mac Pro that’s equipped with the top-tier 28-core Intel Xeon W processor, 32GB AMD Radeon Pro Vega II graphics and has upgraded to 1.5 TB of RAM thanks to the folks over at OWC. It’s about as beasty of a machine as you will find anywhere which makes it the perfect testbed for Chrome which is historically known to be a RAM sucking resource hog. On the software side, Mr. Morrison has a couple of applications running in the background but the focus here is just how many Chrome tabs will it take before a meltdown ensues.
The video is roughly eight and a half minutes long and it’s worth watching every minute. Towards the end, Jonathon hands over the reins to musician and composer Khari Mateen to let him give the Mac Pro a go at unhindered creation and it’s a beautiful thing. The first six minutes, however, are is a wonderfully nail-biting tribute to cliffhangers and suspense thrillers. Jonathan uses macOS’ built-in Automator to create a script that opens 1,000 actual websites out of the gate and from there, the fun continues. Check it out.
1.5 TB RAM Mac Pro vs. Google Chrome
If you don’t have the patience or fortitude to watch all of the anxiety-inducing build-ups, you can scrub to the 4m 50s mark to view the climax of this drama. After opening a mind-numbing 6,000 Chrome tabs, the RAM usage on the Mac gets dangerously close to maxing out. Then, Jonathan attempts to kill a single instance of Chrome that isn’t loading. Force killing it crashes Chrome entirely and the Mac’s frees up 1.4 TB of RAM immediately. Attempting to restore the 5,999 closed tabs is a complete failure as Chrome concedes to the massive computing power of this Frankenstein desktop.
Anyway, this was a fun experiment and a great Monday morning distraction. Big shout out to Jonathan Morrison for taking the time to answer the question we didn’t even know we had. If you are running 6,000 Chrome tabs, you now know the minimum amount of RAM you’ll need and while you’re at it, you may need to seek assistance in managing your tab hoarding obsession.