Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

Patron_Saint

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 10, 2016
132
101
Is a 2010, 27" iMac still a viable option for modern macOS, factoring in a RAM upgrade to 16GB? Looking at both quad core i5 and i7 configurations.

Primary uses would be:

Media - music, videos, DVDs
Light web design (Rapidweaver)
Photoshop
iOS Development
Light gaming (WoW, Source games, Minecraft)
Target Display Mode w/ consoles. (Hence looking at a 2010, as this is possible via mini display port, but not thunderbolt.)
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,588
12,697
You didn't tell us if you already have this Mac, or if you are considering buying one.

My opinion only:

... it will run a modern Mac OS, but the user experience may be more like the OS is "walking" rather than "running".

Since the advent of Sierra, the Mac OS seems to have been engineered to run best on Macs that have:
1. An SSD, or
2. A "fusion" drive (SSD+HDD).

Macs with only platter-based hard drives are going to experience a "speed hit", often a significant one.

Memory can help -a little-, but the problem really is the drive itself.

If you already have this Mac, what version of the OS is it running now?

I'd suggest 10.8.5 as "the best" one.
 

Patron_Saint

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 10, 2016
132
101
I'm considering buying - currently have no Mac at all, and use an iPad Pro as my main device.

My options are a refurb with 90 day warranty for $650, or used for $500-700, but obviously with no warranty.

An SSD would likely be an upgrade I'd eventually add.
 

Dreadnought

macrumors 68020
Jul 22, 2002
2,060
15
Almere, The Netherlands
See the iMac in my sig. Still running strong and adequate for light gaming. This is also due to the ssd I put in last year. Else it's so slow. However, it's 6 years, probably going to update when the next iMac comes out.
 

Patron_Saint

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 10, 2016
132
101
See the iMac in my sig. Still running strong and adequate for light gaming. This is also due to the ssd I put in last year. Else it's so slow. However, it's 6 years, probably going to update when the next iMac comes out.
Is the HDD slowness due to age, or lack of optimization in macOS for non SSDs?
 

Dreadnought

macrumors 68020
Jul 22, 2002
2,060
15
Almere, The Netherlands
Is the HDD slowness due to age, or lack of optimization in macOS for non SSDs?
The ssd is so much more snappier. Programs open instantly, loading times disappear, copying of files goes much faster. I don't think it was because the hd was 5 years old, I still use it for bootcamp and os 10.8. OsX has become much fatter and the more you install... A ssd really helps overall performance as the hd was the bottleneck and holding the system down.
 

Patron_Saint

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 10, 2016
132
101
Thanks for the info. I know the pre-2012 iMacs are much easier to work on - is the SSD install fairly straightforward?
 

Dreadnought

macrumors 68020
Jul 22, 2002
2,060
15
Almere, The Netherlands
Yes! Just take your time, do a backup before you start (timemachine) and have another Mac or iPad next to you with the how to video of OWC. I ordered their kit and a Samsung 850 Evo. Make sure you watch their video a couple of times before you start.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Patron_Saint

padams35

macrumors 6502
Nov 10, 2016
479
314
Thanks for the info. I know the pre-2012 iMacs are much easier to work on - is the SSD install fairly straightforward?

Not really. It is somewhat involved and requires a bit more manual dexterity than the install videos imply. It is certainly doable but when I upgraded my 2011 I was constantly wishing I had a second pair of smaller hands.
 

JGC1986

macrumors regular
Jul 5, 2008
114
1
I'm debating trading my Mid 2010 MacBook Pro for a Mid 2010 27" iMac myself.
 

JGC1986

macrumors regular
Jul 5, 2008
114
1
Yeah if I keep my MacBook Pro it's getting an SSD and 8GB, maybe 12GB of RAM before High Sierra releases.
 

redheeler

macrumors G3
Oct 17, 2014
8,465
8,921
Colorado, USA
It's way easier to put an SSD in the MacBook Pro.
A bit easier, yes. But the pluses to the iMac are also huge: Core i5 instead of Core 2 Duo, 27" screen instead of 13", dedicated graphics card. I'd take the iMac over the MacBook Pro any day.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.