4k imac ssd version

Discussion in 'iMac' started by iforlife, Feb 9, 2016.

  1. iforlife macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    #1
    Hi fellow forumer, i am in the midst of purchasing the 4k imac, if i were to get the ssd version, will the hdd bay be empty? So i can add in one hdd in there in the future to increase the storage capacity?
     
  2. DarthVader! macrumors member

    DarthVader!

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    #2
    Yes, it will be empty, but I believe the drive cage/adapter is not included so its not as easy as sliding a new drive into the bay.
     
  3. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #3
    As Darth says empty but with no SATA connector or drive bay.
     
  4. iforlife thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    #4
    Sigh, tot i can add in later. Guess i will stick with the ssd then. And external hdd
     
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
  6. makrom macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2015
    #6
    Yeah, like a new motherboard.
     
  7. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #7
  8. Lankyman macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 14, 2011
    Location:
    U.K.
    #8
    Yes but whilst it was a relatively easy task with my mid-2011 iMac that is no longer the case. I could never see me spending serious money on a computer then cutting the screen open with a blade. Putting the screen back can be a nightmare as you only get the one chance to align it. If you find out later there is a finger mark or some dust on the screen it's goodnight Vienna.
     
  9. makrom macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2015
    #9
    Weird, so you are saying that the 4k models still come with a SATA port if you ordered it with an SSD?
     
  10. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #10
    Yes they only use one motherboard and that can take a SATA and PCIe for the 2 drives they need in their fusion solution.
     
  11. makrom, Feb 10, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2016

    makrom macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2015
    #11
    Interesting, didn't know that. So there's actually an aspect where the 4k trumps the 5k in upgradeability. They don't use the same boards for models with and without SSDs though, only the ones with an SSD come with a PCIe slot. But it seems they apply a different policy for the SATA port then.
     
  12. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #12
    Damn I think you might be right, but just because there is no connector doesn't mean you can't add drives just not PCIe ones.

    This quote should give anyone all the info they need.

    "All of these systems have a 6 Gb/s Serial ATA (Revision 3.0) connector that is occupied by a hard drive in the default configurations -- a 2.5" hard drive in 21.5-Inch models and a 3.5" hard drive in 27-Inch models. An SSD can be installed in this hard drive space and some systems support a smaller PCIe-based "blade" SSD, as well.

    Specifically, as first discovered via teardowns from iFixit and others, if the 21.5-Inch "Late 2012", "Early 2013", and "Late 2013" iMac models were configured with an SSD or a "Fusion Drive" at the time of purchase, the SSD module is connected via a dedicated PCIe connector and another SSD can be installed in its place. Unfortunately, if the system only was configured with a hard drive, the needed connector is not present on the motherboard and there is not a way to add a PCIe-based "blade" SSD afterwards.

    Likewise, as first determined by site sponsor Other World Computing, subsequent 21.5-Inch models -- like the entry-level iMac "Core i5" 1.4 21.5-Inch (Mid-2014) and the 21.5-Inch "Late 2015" models as well -- do not have the connector for a PCIe-based "blade" SSD if one is not installed at the time of initial system purchase.

    By contrast, the 27-Inch "Late 2012" and "Late 2013" as well as the "Late 2014" and "Mid-2015" Retina/5K iMac models do have this connector on the motherboard even if the system only is configured with a hard drive at the time of purchase, so it is possible to add a PCIe-based "blade" SSD to these models after the initial system purchase.

    For the 27-Inch "Late 2015" Retina/5K iMac models, OWC was first to report that these models have a second PCIe connector (PCIe 2.0 x4 NVMexpress interface) that accommodates the SSD if the system is configured with a "Fusion Drive" by default. A reader kindly shared that the connector is present as well even if the system only is configured with a hard drive at the time of initial system purchase. Consequently, it is possible to add a compatible "blade" SSD later, too."


    Seems to me that anyone's best bet for future upgradeability is to order a fusion drive.
     
  13. makrom macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2015
    #13
    I think that text is a bit misleading. "All of these systems have a 6 Gb/s Serial ATA (Revision 3.0) connector that is occupied by a hard drive in the default configurations" this really only seems to apply to systems that are equipped with a hard drive. Which they all do in their default configurations, but the way I understand this sentence is that all of these systems have a SATA port, which is definitely not the case for models with an SSD, at least for the 27" models I know this for a fact.
    In theory your conclusion about getting the best upgradeability when picking a FD is correct, but there are severe caveats. Compatible PCIe SSDs cost a fortune. And you can't have a pure SSD configuration until you butcher your iMac and thereby forfeit your warranty. Until then, you'll have to live with a maximum 128GB SSD, and even then you paid for an upgraded FD which you are basically throwing away when upgrading. For most people, like me, the 128GB SSD is fine, but if you want to upgrade your iMac to what's maximally possible and are willing to spend accordingly, you might have bigger expectations than "most people".
     

Share This Page