View Full Version : iMac G5 20" and WD Raptor 10,000rpm SATA HD?

Nov 16, 2004, 12:03 PM

I recently purchased an iMac G5 20" 1.8Ghz, and I opted for the 250GB SATA hard drive. I've been using this for about a month now, and I really love the iMac G5 and the only thing I'd change about it is the hard drive.

Does anybody have any details regarding the SATA interface on the iMac G5? Has anybody successfully removed the pre-installed hard drive and replaced it with a Western Digital Raptor 10,000rpm SATA drive? I'm really considering attempting this however I'd like to have a confirmation that it works fine.

I had a Raptor 36GB 10krpm drive back when I owned a PC/x86 however when I got a Mac I got rid of it. Since then WD came out with a 74GB Raptor 10krpm HD. Also with the additional RPM's I'd expect the drive to generate more heat, however if I'm correct the hard drive is mounted near the top of the iMac G5 near the heat vent, so heat dissipation might not be a problem.

Any Thoughts?


Nov 16, 2004, 12:51 PM
Should be fine it there. But you'll lose lots of storage space (unless you get a SATA to FW converter) and I'm not sure if you'll see a big difference it performance - but it'd cool to have a maxxed out 20" (are you going to have 2GB ram in there too.

Nov 16, 2004, 01:21 PM
Actually, I got the 20" G5 with the 1GB RAM. This seems to be working pretty good, and I do monitor my RAM and it hardly hits near 1GB. 2GB is a little too much for me lol.


Nov 16, 2004, 01:23 PM
You had mentioned the "SATA to FW converter". What is this? I thought the imac g5 had SATA on board by default. What needs converting?


Sun Baked
Nov 16, 2004, 01:29 PM
You had mentioned the "SATA to FW converter". What is this? I thought the imac g5 had SATA on board by default. What needs converting?

-RainmanConsidering the iMac only has room for 1 internal drive, not getting SATA to FW converter and sticking the drive in a FW box would be a waste of a 250GB SATA drive -- and all that space.

Nov 16, 2004, 02:04 PM
I'd take the 250GB out of the iMac, and put it in a USB2 or firewire external enclosure, so i can still use the large amount of storage, but i'd try to use SATA 10,000rpm for the internal HD built into the iMac.


Nov 16, 2004, 04:43 PM
You will definitely like the boost in performance you get from putting that Raptor in your Mac! The first thing I did when I got my Dual 2GHz G5 was move the 160GB SATA system drive to the secondary location and put in a 36GB WD Raptor as my system drive. I have thought about the 72GB drive, but I have lots of software on my system (sorry for such a technical term) and still have 20GB of space left. Keep all your data files, etc, on some other drive, particularly the ones that won't benefit from the higher RPMs. MP3's and movies are not going to start up that much faster putting them on a 10K RPM drive, nor should you really want them to, but OS X really reaps the benefit, along with your application start times!

I <3 My Mac!

Nov 16, 2004, 06:14 PM
Apple "claims" that both the SuperDrive and the HD are both special drives that at able to work to their max vertically. I don't see why it would make a difference in this day and age. I've tilted computers on an angle that its not normally in and everything works fine and doesn't slow down the system.

Nov 16, 2004, 06:53 PM
The superdrive is actually something specifically rated to run properly at an angle, and it does make a difference with optical drives.

The SATA hard drive, however, shouldn't have any problem--manufacturers put drives into cases at all sorts of bizarre angles, they're designed for it, and I SERIOUSLY doubt the'll be any issue. Theoretically if you have the screen tilted so the drive isn't on one of it's six axes, it COULD cause issues in the long run, but I think that's highly unlikely.

As for the removed internal drive, are there any cheap SATA-USB/FW converters? Most I've seen are either PATA-only, or on the pricy side. That'll probably change eventually, but right now external SATA-ready cases are in the minority.