2010 27" iMac hard disk replacement

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
Hello

Last night my hard drive finally gave up after a few months of being quirky. (4 months before my Apple Care would've expired, if I hadn't forgotten to buy it back then... )

Since I'm not overly confident opening up the machine, I found a local computer store which does mac repairs (Not a licenced apple store). They've done this plenty of times before and gave me an okay price. They though asked me to make sure the new hard drive I bring to have installed, is of the same model so the thermal sensor will fit.

So this is where my question spawns. How will I know which hard drive will have the thermal sensor connect like the current broken hard drive in my iMac?

I always just thought it was some patch of magic tape with a wire sticking out, that was the thermal sensor and thus any 3.5" hard drive should fit...
 

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
Apple doesn't make hard drives... I can't remember from the top of my head what hard drive I have in mine now, but I believe it might be Hitachi. Will check when I get home.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,164
5,311
Home is everywhere and nowhere.
Apple doesn't make hard drives... I can't remember from the top of my head what hard drive I have in mine now, but I believe it might be Hitachi. Will check when I get home.
Yes, they don't make them but they are probably the only one which can deliver these HD's (New).

Apple does not make Logic boards but they are the only one where you can get them from(New).

Apple does not....you get what I mean.
 

G-Mo

macrumors 6502
Nov 6, 2010
466
2
Auckland, NZ
Apple doesn't make the drives, but they do have them made for them with a proprietary connector, can't just use any 3.5", as the temp sensor is built into the SATA connector. Take it somewhere authorised, not somewhere that makes you responsible for sourcing your own hardware replacement!

----------

Have you checked your serial here:
http://www.apple.com/nz/support/imac-harddrive/
 

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
I misunderstood what you meant when you said the thermal connector was part of the SATA connector. Makes more sense now after a bit of research, that if I have a Seagate hard drive for instance, I need to get another Seagate since they keep their thermal connector plugs across the line (mostly).

From what I've found out, as long as I keep that in mind, I can pick pretty much any variation of hard drive as long as it is the same as the original manufacturer of the stock hard drive.

Still hasn't got anything to do with apple branding or apple making proprietary connectors. It's the actual hard drive manufactures proprietary connectors. Hence my confusion.

Edit: But thanks! You confusing me lead me in the right direction :)
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,164
5,311
Home is everywhere and nowhere.
I misunderstood what you meant when you said the thermal connector was part of the SATA connector. Makes more sense now after a bit of research, that if I have a Seagate hard drive for instance, I need to get another Seagate since they keep their thermal connector plugs across the line (mostly).

From what I've found out, as long as I keep that in mind, I can pick pretty much any variation of hard drive as long as it is the same as the original manufacturer of the stock hard drive.

Still hasn't got anything to do with apple branding or apple making proprietary connectors. It's the actual hard drive manufactures proprietary connectors. Hence my confusion.

Edit: But thanks! You confusing me lead me in the right direction :)
See this, yes it's the late 2009 model but I do think it is relevant.

Proprietary cable can put the brakes on upgrading Late ’09 iMacs.

Sometimes even the best educated guesses can be thrown for a loop when an unforeseen “X-Factor” comes into play. Such is the case with the Late 2009 iMacs.

As we were getting information together for the new iMac instructional videos, we came across a little tidbit that, apparently, hasn’t been covered anywhere else: Apple has switched the iMac’s method of hard drive temperature sensing. They’ve gone from an external sensor that attached to the outside surface of the drive to a connector that seems to use the drive’s internal sensors.

On first blush, this would appear to be a good thing; an internal sensor is closer to the drive’s mechanics and is likely to be more accurate regarding drive state. Unfortunately, there are no industry standards regarding the ports/pins used to access this information, and each hard drive manufacturer seems to do it their own way. And more unfortunately, when the iMac gets no sensor information via that cable, the heat exhaust fans kick into permanent high gear, so that cable must be connected.

That means, in order to upgrade the internal drive, you need to have a connector cable that’s compatible with the brand of drive that you’re installing… and that’s an Apple service part not generally available to the end user. Pretty sneaky, Apple!

Fortunately, you can reuse the cable that came with your iMac as long as you replace the drive with another model from the same manufacturer we have confirmed works properly with this thermal sensor cable. To determine what brand hard drive your iMac has, go to About This Mac, click on Serial-ATA, and then look for the drive model installed at the factory. If the model has the preface WD, that’s a Western Digital hard drive and if your drive has a ST, that’s a Seagate hard drive. Once you know what drive came with your Mac, you can upgrade to a larger drive and continue to use the thermal sensor…thus avoiding the “ear pleasing” whoosh of fans on high.
 

jlehman

macrumors member
Apr 16, 2013
38
4
Try using OWC and iFixit as a resource.

I think you can replace with a drive of the same manufacture as the one that came with your Mac. OWC does sell WD and Seagate drives but you might have to do some poking around to make sure you get the right one. You could also call them. I'm sure they could help.

You should be able to get into Disk Utility to find out which drive you have, unless the controller doesn't even pick it up. At that point you might have to open it up.

http://blog.macsales.com/2751-proprietary-cable-can-put-the-brakes-on-upgrading-late-09-iMacs
 

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
Thank you both of you :)

Since I live in Denmark it's not really viable to purchase anything from an American store, but I'm sure I'll find a hard drive that works now :)
 

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
When I got home I command+c booted the iMac to gain access to the hard drive serial number. After I googled it I quickly found out that it was one of the rumoured faulty seagate drives from the 2009-2011 period and I'm eligible for a free replacement. Great success :)

Just wanted to add this update in case someone with a similar problem should stumble upon this thread :)
 

G-Mo

macrumors 6502
Nov 6, 2010
466
2
Auckland, NZ
Ummmmmmm....

When I got home I command+c booted the iMac to gain access to the hard drive serial number. After I googled it I quickly found out that it was one of the rumoured faulty seagate drives from the 2009-2011 period and I'm eligible for a free replacement. Great success :)

Just wanted to add this update in case someone with a similar problem should stumble upon this thread :)
A day late, a dollar less...
 

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
Apple doesn't make hard drives... I can't remember from the top of my head what hard drive I have in mine now, but I believe it might be Hitachi. Will check when I get home.
Ummmmm... and a few hours later not a dime lost. Quite the contrary :p
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,164
5,311
Home is everywhere and nowhere.
Ummmmm... and a few hours later not a dime lost. Quite the contrary :p
From that link:

The program covers affected iMacs for three years after the first retail sale of the unit or until April 12, 2013, whichever provides longer coverage for you. Apple will continue to evaluate service data and will provide further updates to this program as needed.
If I were you I would still contact them, you might get lucky.
 

G-Mo

macrumors 6502
Nov 6, 2010
466
2
Auckland, NZ
From that link:



If I were you I would still contact them, you might get lucky.
Apple regularly make exceptions for machines eligible for this program but outside of the 3 years from date of purchase... I see one a week right now maybe? Call them.
 

Latt

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 13, 2013
38
0
After I checked the SN of my iMac on their 'hard drive replacement program' site yesterday and it told me I was eligible, I did call them just to be certain. Awesome support - Yet another reason to never consider anything but Apple in my home electronics setup :)