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Old Feb 15, 2012, 04:19 PM   #1
tomaszjc7
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Old iMac, New life.

I purchased my iMac in 2008, when the new Aluminum 24" model was release.

Since then the machine's performance has declined and recently the left speaker and hard drive gave out. So, I decided to perform an upgrade. I've read a lot about people upgrading to an SSD + HD – this definitely interested me.

Doing so required the removal of the optical drive - which was easy to part with as I hardly use the thing. However, given that the optical drive is connected via ATAPI (PATA), utilizing such a connection would severely hobble the SSD speed (via optical drive caddy). As a result, I decided to purchase the commell MPX-3132 Sata II mini pcie card forgoing wifi as my machine is wired with Ethernet. Since you cannot boot off the commell card the SSD had to be wired to the logic board’s sata port while the 1TB storage drive would be connected to the commell card.

In all, the upgrade was well worth the time and money spent – the machine hums along very nicely with 10.7.3 installed. Further, the read/write speeds of upgrading from my external firewire 1TB to an internal Sata II are pleasing.

One Issue I ran into was getting power to both hard drives. This was resolved using a simple Sata Power splitter cable. As you can see in the pictures – I had to reposition the 1TB HD to accommodate the new Power/Data sata cables – although it technically shouldn’t fit I figured out a way to make it work.

The upgrade include the flowing equipment:

Western Digital 1TB 7200 Black Caviar
OCZ Vertex 2 120GB SSD
Commell MPX-3132 Card
4GB RAM module (total of 6GB)
One Sata Power Splitter
One Sata data extension cable

Thanks to all those who posted info on upgrading iMacs on the forum!

-Tom
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Old Feb 15, 2012, 04:20 PM   #2
tomaszjc7
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more pics...
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Old Feb 15, 2012, 04:29 PM   #3
Shadow1psc
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That's some pretty boss upgrading. I've taken apart, upgraded and built many PCs in my time (it's my job!), but disassembling an iMac and performing much of the same simple tasks seems like much more of an achievement, and much more intricate. I'd honestly be scared to attempt that
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Old Feb 15, 2012, 04:32 PM   #4
tomaszjc7
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Originally Posted by Shadow1psc View Post
That's some pretty boss upgrading. I've taken apart, upgraded and built many PCs in my time (it's my job!), but disassembling an iMac and performing much of the same simple tasks seems like much more of an achievement, and much more intricate. I'd honestly be scared to attempt that
Thank you! :-)

From everything I've read on the forums many people have that impression -but honestly, with the right tools (suction cups!), some patience and a good guide (ifixtit.com) it's not nearly as impossible as most people make it seem.
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Old Feb 15, 2012, 07:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomaszjc7 View Post
Thank you! :-)

From everything I've read on the forums many people have that impression -but honestly, with the right tools (suction cups!), some patience and a good guide (ifixtit.com) it's not nearly as impossible as most people make it seem.
Usually it's more about keeping track of screws and, like you said, the right tools. Changing iPod batteries was SO MUCH EASIER with plastic tools rather than fingernails...
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Old Feb 16, 2012, 08:43 AM   #6
tomaszjc7
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Originally Posted by nate13 View Post
Usually it's more about keeping track of screws and, like you said, the right tools. Changing iPod batteries was SO MUCH EASIER with plastic tools rather than fingernails...
Exactly... screw management is key.

I'll probably be taking the machine apart again soon as I plan to use the additional SATA II port on the commell card to act as an eSata port. Doing so, I plan to remove the right hand speaker (currently using a bose 3 system), laser etch an opening on the back of the imac to house the eSata port in the same area as the rest of the ports - this upgrade will be a bit more complex but def. worth it.
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Old May 24, 2012, 12:48 AM   #7
chevalier433
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomaszjc7 View Post
Exactly... screw management is key.

I'll probably be taking the machine apart again soon as I plan to use the additional SATA II port on the commell card to act as an eSata port. Doing so, I plan to remove the right hand speaker (currently using a bose 3 system), laser etch an opening on the back of the imac to house the eSata port in the same area as the rest of the ports - this upgrade will be a bit more complex but def. worth it.
I reasearching to do the same mod with commell MPX-3132 to add a third internal SSD plus an extra eSATA but i don't see any positive references about this card regnonized from my mid-2010 iMac.
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Old Jun 10, 2012, 12:07 AM   #8
tomaszjc7
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Originally Posted by chevalier433 View Post
I reasearching to do the same mod with commell MPX-3132 to add a third internal SSD plus an extra eSATA but i don't see any positive references about this card regnonized from my mid-2010 iMac.
yep - i have read that 2010 model imac's do not recognize the commell card.
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Old Jun 10, 2012, 12:44 AM   #9
chevalier433
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That what happens if we give a lot publicity in mods
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Old Jan 21, 2014, 05:12 PM   #10
pagaille
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It looks like the ASM1061 chipset is a nice alternative :

http://www.conrad.be/ce/fr/product/9...CEN20?ref=list

Comes with Mac kexts.

I feel like trying, I'll let you know.

Matthieu
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Old Jan 21, 2014, 07:28 PM   #11
photosmike
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Is there an English site?

Deleted

Last edited by photosmike; Jan 21, 2014 at 08:54 PM.
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Old Feb 3, 2014, 02:06 AM   #12
pagaille
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pagaille View Post
It looks like the ASM1061 chipset is a nice alternative :

http://www.conrad.be/ce/fr/product/9...CEN20?ref=list
Quote:
Update : doesn't work at all : card recognised by the hardware, at least the early 2008 iMac (8,1). Doesn't even show up in lspci.
2nd UPDATE : The card looks to be DOA : I tried it in another computer, it wasn't detected as well.

Anyhow, this update is useless for me since I want to implement a Fusion drive. Since that technology (basically a SSD+HDD logical volume with apple magic) requires both drives to be "bootable" (at least drives have to be readable at early boot, thus without 3rd party drivers), the controller needs an EFI Bios, which is not the case for any SATA controller in this PCI-E form factor.

Last edited by pagaille; Feb 22, 2014 at 10:20 AM.
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Old Feb 3, 2014, 01:15 PM   #13
nouxtywe
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nice job here
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