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zoran

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Jun 30, 2005
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On my mid 2010 corei7 iMac, i have installed a second drive, an SSD drive. Im wondering if its possible to replace the 1T spinning drive (that my iMac came with) with an SSD drive. And if so, will the existing cables (that the spinning drive uses) be enough to connect the SSD, or will i need new/different cables for it?
 
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Juicy Box

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Sep 23, 2014
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People have been doing this for a long while, and it is pretty straight forward.

The existing cables will work without issue.

The only thing that you need is a SATA 3.5" to 2.5" adapter bracket or caddy, this can be purchased for less than $10 on ebay or Amazon.

You could also get an external temperature sensor SATA adapter. These tend to be less than $40, and sometimes you can find them for cheaper. It isn't required, as there are other solutions, such as SW, shorting the temp sensor wire pins, or adding your own temp sensor.

I suggest just getting the SATA adapter, as you do it once, and you never need to worry about it again. It also will give the OS accurate temp readings and adjust the fan speeds accordingly.

Here is the SATA temp sensor adapter cable by OWC:

That link also included the tool kit, which is just a little more, and would probably be worth to get it if you do not have one already.

Here is a bunch of brackets:

Some people even just use double face tape, but the adapters are so cheap, you might as well just do it right.
 
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zoran

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Jun 30, 2005
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The existing cables will work without issue.
Are you referring to the existing cables that the spinner is already connect to? So i will not need anything else (cable related) for connecting the ssd?

You could also get an external temperature sensor SATA adapter. These tend to be less than $40, and sometimes you can find them for cheaper. It isn't required, as there are other solutions, such as SW, shorting the temp sensor wire pins, or adding your own temp sensor.
Im prefer to make the cheapest expenses for this task. So maybe it be better to short the temp sensor wire pins... but i have absolutely no clue how to do that :-D
Btw would you recommend to make the shorting or to buy the sensor?
 

Juicy Box

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Sep 23, 2014
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Are you referring to the existing cables that the spinner is already connect to?
Yes. SATA ports on the HDD are the same as ones on a SATA SSD.
So i will not need anything else (cable related) for connecting the ssd?
You don't 'need' any other cable, but I suggest getting the temp sensor adapter.


Btw would you recommend to make the shorting or to buy the sensor?
I would suggest getting the sensor over just shorting it, as it would give the OS accurate temp sensor readings. Shorting it basically tells the OS that the HDD area is cold. The Mac would probably be fine with this, but I think an external sensor would be the way to go.

If you really do not want to spend any money on it, you could use a SW solution.

Many people, including myself, have used Macs Fan Control app (free to try) to manual control the fans based off of certain sensors.

Once you set it up, it should be fine, but I prefer the physical sensor for the iMac over SW based solutions.
 
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zoom25

macrumors regular
Jul 30, 2018
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On my Late 2009 27" iMac, I replaced the internal Seagate 1TB HDD with a Samsung 860 Evo 1TB.

You need the OWC in-line thermal sensor. Without the sensor, your fans will spin at max nonstop. You can either opt for digital control, or go for the safest and best option, the OWC in-line thermal sensor.

On my iMac, I also needed T8 and T10 torx screwdrivers. T10 to open up the screen and T8 for the HDD bracket.

I ordered the following kit: OWCDIYIMACHDD09

This kit includes all the essential tools and the thermal sensor. In addition to that, I also ordered a Nt (NewerTechnology) Adaptadrive 2.5" to 3.5" drive bay adapter.

I think my kit (late 2009-2010) also works for your iMac, but double check. It's super quick now. I only have a Core 2 Duo in that, but it's so responsive. When I went from Mountain Lion to High Sierra with the HDD, the OS installation took around 10-12 hours. With the SSD installed, going from Mountain Lion to High Sierra took 20-25 mins. It's quick (and silent).

Make sure to thoroughly clean out the insides. Expect a lot of dust. Have a bottle or two of compressed air.
 
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zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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@vertical smile Sorry for getting back on this -regarding the thermal sensor- apart from the extra cost, it is something that will take extra time to ship, and this might be a problem.
So let me straighten this out, just to be certain of your suggestion. The reason that u suggest it, is purely out of perfection, so that everything is sorted as it should be, or is it something that is really needed for some reason i cannot think of?
Then again when i come to think of it, do SSD's get hot so that they need a thermal sensor?
 
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Juicy Box

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Sep 23, 2014
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The reason that u suggest it, is purely out of perfection, so that everything is sorted as it should be, or is it something that is really needed for some reason i cannot think of?
As I already mentioned, there are other solutions for the temp sensor, so it is not 100% necessary.

To me, it is worth the extra cost so you can just install everything all ready to go, and never think about it again. It also gives the OS a more accurate temperature reading throughout the Mac compared to shorting out the pins, although this may not matter as much.


it is something that will take extra time to ship
I don't think so, but I have no idea where you are or how shipping things typically work for you location.

I have Amazon Prime, and it says free shipping for Thursday delivery. That is pretty fast to me.

do SSD's get hot so that they need a thermal sensor?
The SSD's do not necessarily get hot from usage, they typically stay relatively cool. The issues is that there are other things in the HDD area that could have an influence on the temperature.

The GPU gets really hot in the Macs and do not have adequate cooling. Removing the really hot HDD helps lower the temps a lot, but the hot GPU could have an impact on the SSD.

Not enough to hurt the SSD, but maybe enough that would warrant the fan to increase RPM, but maybe it wouldn't because the OS reads the temp of the HDD as cold with the pins shorted.
 
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zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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Ok thanks i get it :)

Two more things...
1. incase i go for the shorted option, what do i need to make the pins shorting. And where are those pins to do so?
2. Would it be better to go for an SSD, a Hybrid drive or should i just go back to a spinner? What are the pros and cons of each option, and what would you suggest?
 
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zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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he SSD's do not necessarily get hot from usage, they typically stay relatively cool. The issues is that there are other things in the HDD area that could have an influence on the temperature.

The GPU gets really hot in the Macs and do not have adequate cooling. Removing the really hot HDD helps lower the temps a lot, but the hot GPU could have an impact on the SSD.
Is this the thermal sensor you are talking about?
 

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Nguyen Duc Hieu

macrumors 68000
Jul 5, 2020
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Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Is this the thermal sensor you are talking about?

On iMac 2009 and 2010, just cut off the head of the sensor cable and twisted the wires together. The temp will be read as around 9 degree and you will have a cool & quiet machine. If you still want to blow some air in using the HDD fan, use Mac Fan Control to set fan speed. The following picture is the locations of the 2 SSDs inside my iMac 2010. The little thing which was dangling next to the Apple logo is the HDD sensor, which I made with a small transistor (a total failure, wrong reading of temperature, but it keeps the fans down)

68747470733a2f2f332e70696b2e766e2f3230323038343834386233392d666338662d346164342d396133612d3738333136356361613432612e706e67



I was able to purchase a flimsy 3.5" to 2x 2.5" adapter (2$), but reluctant to disassemble the logic board to replace the ODD cable for a third SSD. Better use the ODD to 2.5" adapter (3$) and re-use the ODD cable without the need to disassemble the logic board.

Here's how the adapter looks like. The position was wrong, it were later flipped to avoid intrusion with the LCD. There's still space for another 2.5' drive under the black SSD.

68747470733a2f2f332e70696b2e766e2f3230323037333761613231372d663762312d343232322d383235372d3263376363383731633565352e706e67
 
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zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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Guys i ordered an SSD and this thermal sensor, but i think theres something missing :(
I dont see the Logic Board connector cable coming with it (thats the cable that one end should connect to the port of the sensor board and the other end in the temp sensor port on the logic board).
Should that cable already be in my iMac... if not, what is it called so i can search and order it? (im certainly gonna have a heart attack now)
 
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KennyW

macrumors 6502
Sep 5, 2007
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Guys i ordered an SSD and this thermal sensor, but i think theres something missing :(
I dont see the Logic Board connector cable coming with it (thats the cable that one end should connect to the port of the sensor board and the other end in the temp sensor port on the logic board).
Should that cable already be in my iMac... if not, what is it called so i can search and order it? (im certainly gonna have a heart attack now)
That kit is for HD but not SSD. It is also specifically made for different brands, like Hitachi, Segate, etc but not for all.
And it is expensive.

I just bought instead the ODD sensor cable ($2-3), which connects from the logic board to the DVD drive, and attached it to the SSD surface with heat tape and the other end to the HD sensor plug on the logic board.
Just serve the same purpose.
 
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zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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The green arrow indicates the missing cable that im talking about
 

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zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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I will not get a return. Cant i find that missing cable else were?
 

Juicy Box

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Sep 23, 2014
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Guys i ordered an SSD and this thermal sensor, but i think theres something missing :(
You didn't post a link to the cable you purchased, just photo. Can you post a link?

That looks like a OWC cable for a Mid 2011 iMac. It should work fine if you had a Mid 2011 iMac, but you do not.

I would say return it, and buy one for your iMac, or maybe you could contact OWC for the part that is missing.

That kit is for HD but not SSD. It is also specifically made for different brands, like Hitachi, Segate, etc but not for all.
And it is expensive.
You totally lost me here.

Not sure why this wouldn't work for a SSD, nor why it would be brand specific?

Could you elaborate?
 

zoran

macrumors 601
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Jun 30, 2005
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This is the part i ordered. The cable missing is the one used for plugging the HD sensor plug on the iMac logic board... correct?
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G5
Jul 30, 2003
12,302
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Delaware
That part that you listed is for the 2011 iMac, and does not need the extra cable.
The cable is included with the sensor adapter used with a 2009 or 2010 iMac
If your iMac is 2009 or 2010, then that part is incorrect. The site where you ordered your cable is showing a 2011 iMac cable, and that is what you purchased. It is not sold for a 2009 iMac. I'm not sure if just adding the 2-wire cable will make it work. The 2-wire cable might be easy to make, and maybe that's all you need. I don't know for certain if that is true.
OWC page for the 2009-2010 correct cable (has the extra cable included) -
OWC page for 2011 cable (no extra cable)

Maybe if you contact OWC support with your question about the cable, and that you think you are missing just that small cable, maybe they will help you with that. (I know you can't order directly from OWC from other countries, but you might get some help if you explain what you need, and that the company where you ordered listed the wrong part.
 
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zoran

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How did u find out that the part i listed is for the 2011 iMac? It clearly says on the title, that its for the 2009-2010 iMacs. You think maybe they have uploaded a wrong pic?
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G5
Jul 30, 2003
12,302
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Delaware
The text in the site where you ordered the cable is correct.
The picture is not correct.
You received the part in the picture, so the site must have incorrectly identified it.
And, you did get the part as it appears in the picture.

That's why I posted both pages from the OWC website, just to show the difference is quite small, just the two-wire cable. It's also possible that the small card where that extra cable plugs is actually a different card on the two cables. I don't know that for certain. And, that's why I suggested contacting OWC tech support. They may be able to help you with this.
finally, I could not find just that small cable on OWC web site. I don't know if they have it available separately. That's when OWC tech support might give you an answer about just that small cable.
 
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KennyW

macrumors 6502
Sep 5, 2007
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You didn't post a link to the cable you purchased, just photo. Can you post a link?

That looks like a OWC cable for a Mid 2011 iMac. It should work fine if you had a Mid 2011 iMac, but you do not.

I would say return it, and buy one for your iMac, or maybe you could contact OWC for the part that is missing.


You totally lost me here.

Not sure why this wouldn't work for a SSD, nor why it would be brand specific?

Could you elaborate?
In the early years when I changed my iMac HD, there were specific versions of these inline sensors for different brand of HDs, and you needed to order the correct one for compatibility. Perhaps the new version has overcome that limit and becomes universal as i haven't looked into them for quite a long time.

While it does no harm for SSD connection, since I continued to use it after switching to SSD, I wonder whether it is needed since I have been using all this software based digital monitoring like MacsFanControl, SMCFansControl etc ... I even changed it to a simple cheap ODD sensor cable (less than 1/10 of the cost) with no discernible difference upon testing.

As some found out, you can even short the wires for the HD sensor to disable it when you use a SSD, relying solely on digital monitor instead of hardware monitoring. Thus I think it is an overpriced product that isn't necessary nowadays for SSD.
 
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