2011 iMac Hard Drive Replacement

Discussion in 'iMac' started by rdubya5, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. rdubya5 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2009
    #1
    I waited till the new models came out some months ago to buy my iMac. My plan was to buy the 1TB model and either replace it with a 3TB drive myself or use a local Apple certified shop. I got the 2011 when they came out but the rest of this plan went on hold when I read that there were specific firmware issues with the hard drives that controlled the fan speed. I realize that you can just use a fan speed program after putting in a non compatible drive however I was curious if this issue has been resolved. Can I purchase a compatible 3TB drive or even a 2TB drive that will work without issue?
     
  2. Icarus73 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    #2
    From what I hear, the hard drive in the 2011 iMacs are not user replaceable.
     
  3. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #3
    I's Not A Job I'd Tackle

    Not a great idea to crack open a newbie. If you need that kind of storage consider the NAS solutions , and a little while longer the larger SSD'S will be available.
    http://www.lacie.com/more/index.htm?id=10112

    And the stuff I use:
    http://www.synology.com/index.php?lang=default

    I have the 27" iTB iMac, and with good data management across a small network you can archive stuff...Just a thought
     
  4. daftpunkstu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2011
    Location:
    Edinburgh
    #4
    i dont think you can replace them? im not entirely sure though! have you considered getting HDD's and external housing or just simple external hdds?[​IMG]
     
  5. jazzkids macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Providence, RI
    #5
  6. panzer06 macrumors 68030

    panzer06

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Location:
    Kilrath
    #6
    There are AASC (Apple Authorized Service Centers) that will perform this upgrade. Just keep the original drive and make sure that are truly a service center so they can handle any warranty work.

    Cheers,
     
  7. Detrius macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2008
    Location:
    Asheville, NC
    #7
    Also, Thunderbolt is faster than SATA, so it's plausible that you could have a faster external drive than internal.
     
  8. craniumbox macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    Windsor, On
    #8
    128 ssd

    Well I'm gonna try putting a crucial M4 in my 27" 2011 tomorrow and let you guys know how it went. I have a friend who owns an Apple repair shop so he has the screen removal cups.
     
  9. dmylrea macrumors 68000

    dmylrea

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2005
    #9
    Let us know how it goes. I have a Samsung 830 256GB SSD drive waiting to be put into my early 2011 iMac 21. I have done the upgrade on my early 2011 iMac 27, but only by keeping the original HDD and adding a SDD to the 2nd SATA port.

    Looking over the answers in this thread, i'm amazed at how much compromise iMac owners are willing to accept. External drive??? The beauty of the iMac is it's all in one design. Who wants a "wart" hanging off all the time just to add a drive that should be able to be installed internally? Wunderbolt? Yea, right. By the time we ever see affordable, stable Thunderbolt enclosures, the iMac 2013's will be out with USB 3.0. Like others, I feel Apple did it's customers a big disservice not including any industry standard high speed external ports in the 2011 iMacs (eSATA, USB 3.0), and instead, handing us a magical port with no peripherals. Weren't manufacturers given the specs early on so the development would be done at launch? Here we are, almost 1 year later, and still there are, what, two overpriced devices?

    As I have all but switched from Windows PC's, with their plethora of high speed ports, to iMacs, it's frustrating I am having to settle with USB 2.0 and FW800 for my "high speed" external needs.

    And in the end, Apple has restricted us from putting our own SSD's in these wonderful machines.
     
  10. LeandrodaFL macrumors 6502a

    LeandrodaFL

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    #10
    You would need at least 2 SSD in RAID 0, otherwise a solo SSD doesnt saturate Sata, and HDD is the same on both conections
     
  11. Detrius macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2008
    Location:
    Asheville, NC
    #11
    This says nothing to dispute my point that you don't need to jump through hoops to replace an internal drive when you have thunderbolt on the outside.
     
  12. orthorim macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2008
    #12
    Non-user-replaceable hard drives ... that is soooooooooo dumb.

    That's why I am not getting one. I want to get my own boot SSD - both faster and cheaper than Apple's BTO version. And I might want to put a massive drive in it at some later date. Unlike a laptop, I'd imagine a desktop to last 5 years and also act as a file server / torrent station.

    Thunderbolt? I'd definitely do that if I already had an iMac but if I am looking to purchase an all-in-one, adding an external drive from the get-go doesn't make much sense.
     
  13. panzer06 macrumors 68030

    panzer06

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Location:
    Kilrath
    #13
    I agree. Perhaps the next refresh will offer such an option. Or at the very least an easy way to "jack in" a SSD or other 2.5" drive with the 3.5" remaining inaccessible. I could at least live with that.

    Cheers,
     
  14. blow45 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #14
    Synology are the best by far nas, servers, and very well and thoughtfully tailored to the :apple: ecosystem.
     
  15. krravi macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2010
    #15
    Sorry to ask but I think this thread has taken the direction of going external using thunderbolt etc etc....

    So still there is no way for a user to replace the Hard Drive on late 2011 iMac?

    Will Apple at least sell the hard drive with their custom firmware so we can upgrade it ourselves?

    Has no one been able to read the firmware and come out with a program to flash the firmware of similar hard drives?
     
  16. cantanko macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2012
    Location:
    Burton on Trent, UK
    #16
    Possible hardware workaround

    Hi,

    I think I may have a hardware workaround for this which I describe on my blog here.

    It precludes the use of both a mechanical drive and an SSD, but it does allow you to use after-market mechanical HDDs without the fans going bonkers.

    Cheers,
    Harry
     

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