Do You Think Fusion Drives Will Be Standard On The Next iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Gym Hellwig, Mar 2, 2013.

  1. Gym Hellwig macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2013
    SSD prices have plummeted the past few years. In 2013 there is no excuse for 5400 drives on $1000+ desktop machines. That said, do you think a standard fusion drive will be a reality on the next imacs?

    It would be pretty comical if apple released a 5400 drive on a 2014 machine. To be honest, I would start laughing out loud and walk away from apple forever if they pulled a stunt like that.
  2. Spink10 Suspended


    Nov 3, 2011
  3. Gym Hellwig thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2013
    Doesn't do much to answer the question, but thanks for the input!
  4. Spink10 Suspended


    Nov 3, 2011
    Yes it will.
  5. gmanist1000 macrumors 68030


    Sep 22, 2009
    I really hope so. It's hard going from an SSD to a regular Hard Drive. The fusion drive being standard on the next iMac makes a lot of sense.
  6. mushroomtip macrumors 6502


    Oct 27, 2012
    I think there will be more SSD options with the FD being the base. not only will Apple not hear your Laughter but I truly believe they will not care or notice you walking away forever.
  7. phoenixsan macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2012

    in a serie of factors, for me:

    a)-The Fusion drive concept catch up with the demands of consumers? They want to pay a premium or not?

    b)-Prices of components, in this case flash SSD and drives.

    But still, if Apple still is in the comfort zone and have a lot of cash, they can made the decission of all Macs with Fusion, some, or back to normal (unlikely)

  8. DisMyMac macrumors 65816


    Sep 30, 2009
    FD standard and other cost-cutting gimmicks? Yes.
  9. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    I'd rather have a 256GB SSD standard and have Apple start the big push toward the cloud.

    Fusion as BTO if you want WAY more storage space.
  10. trustever macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2013
    I really doubt that next gen will have fusion as standard when apple can easily charge a premium for it. What I bet is that there will be more option for a full SSD in terms o size but still the lower end 21,5 will be still with a HDD.
  11. smiddlehurst macrumors 65816

    Jun 5, 2007
    Hmm, you're looking at two different things here. The first is Fusion and looking at the 21" iMac tear downs I can't help but feel they're looking to go in this direction. Will it be standard in 2014? Hmm... no, I don't think so. I think it'll be standard in, say, the higher end default spec but it's still going to add too much to the bill of materials to pop into the lower spec model as standard. Would love to be wrong on that one of course.

    You then bring up the 5,400rpm drives but I really don't see they have much choice. Looking at the enclosure and teardown for the 21" machines I suspect they're pushing the thermal envelope as it is, a 7,200rpm drive would possibly get too close to the edge of what Apple considers acceptable. Only a theory of course but look at the BTO options - no 7,200rpm upgrade which suggests that they really can't do it otherwise why not offer it and make some more money? Now maybe Haswell will lower the cooling requirements of the CPU down enough to allow the extra heat of a faster hard drive but I wouldn't be at all surprised if we never see a 7,200rpm option in the current (and probably future) 21" iMac design.
  12. azentropy macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2002
    It should have been standard on the 2012 Model.

    As I calculated in another thread - For the base 21.5 iMac they could have gone with a 500gb HDD paired with a 64gb SSD (or possibly more) for roughly the same cost as the 1TB HDD.
  13. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    Not gonna happen on 21.5". I think will be a standard 7200rpm hdd with option for fusion drive. For 27" will be standard with option for ssd
  14. theSeb macrumors 604


    Aug 10, 2010
    Poole, England
    I think it will be the standard option in the next generation. I hope to see an increase to 256 GB SSD as the "cache" drive.
  15. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    Not really. Seagate is going to stop making 2.5" 7200 RPM drives.

    Seagate doesn't particularly see a market for 7200 RPM drives going forward. Going from 5400 to 10K is a jump and I suspect they'll continue to make 2.5" 10K drives. However, the jump from 5400 to 7200 is very marginal when consider the alternatives ( add a more substantive cache ).

    If flash is "dirt cheap" then HDD manufacturers can add Flash to a 5200 RPM drive and end up with something like a Fusion drive but using less space than Apple's implementation. That said Apple's approach is a high percentage of caching so I don't think they are going to drop it any time soon.
  16. LeandrodaFL macrumors 6502a


    Apr 6, 2011
    Yes, Fusion will be standart

    And the final goal for the iMac is to make it as thin as possible, so Apple will want to redesign the iMac into Flash soldered right into the motherboard, like the retina macbook. In the future....maybe 2014....when its more afordable
  17. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    Unless going to make the HDDs substantially larger that isn't likely.

    ~10% is a huge step up from the normal caching levels of an HDD ( 0.0000064% 64MB for 1TB ). However, going from 10% to 20% is going to start to hit high diminishing returns for increased amounts. For mainstream users most will have a healthy chunk of there "hotspot" data in the 100GB the SSD provides.

    The differences between the two caching step ups isn't material ( that the SSD can persistantly hold the data isn't the core issue. ).

    The only improvement for folks would get with roughtly another 100GB of workspace for the cache is if their hotspot workset is larger than 100GB but smaller than 200GB. That is a small group of folks.

    It would be far, far , far, far better for Apple just to lower the price and stick with 128GB. For instance, make Fusion standard in the default price. Or minimally just make it a $100-150 tack on instead of extremely high markup of $250 it is now.


    It isn't soldered on the motherboard. It is on cards just like it is in the iMac.

    The RAM is soldered to the motherboard. The storage drives are not.

    The only place Flash is soldered is in iOS devices. Apple has not done that at all for the Mac line up. Probably don't have any plans to do it either. It is a waste of space; especially if solder VRAM onto the board.
  18. joeysarks macrumors regular

    Mar 21, 2011
    I hope not, cuz I haven't used an internal drive for a storage device in years. I went with a rMBP because of this. Less heat, less noise, less chance of breaking down internally...I just want lightening fast boot times for my OS stuff these days:)
  19. emsworthboy macrumors member

    Dec 20, 2012
    Emsworth, England
    YES, it's the best feature of the new iMac

    After one months use I would say its an essential, not an option.:D
  20. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    What configuration do you have?
  21. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030


    May 20, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    I think you're missing the bigger picture here. What's comical isn't the use of a 5400RPM drive on a desktop, as 5400 RPM desktop drives are sold everywhere and are proven to be more reliable than their 7200RPM counterparts.

    What IS comical is the necessity to use 2.5" drives in a desktop computer. Given the design of the 21.5" iMac, there really shouldn't be a 3.5" drive in that machine lest it has the heating problems of its Late 2009-Mid 2011 predecessors, but still, the fact that either generation of iMac need to be so thin that it requires smaller drives, is ridiculous. It's a freakin' desktop. It doesn't need to be thin.

    As for your assertion that the Fusion Drives will be a standard feature, my guess is that they won't ever be. What you might see is a diminishing amount of hard/fusion drive options with an increasing amount of SSD options on the iMac as SSDs start to climb in capacity. Though, really, as far as desktops go, I don't foresee SSDs overtaking hard drives as quickly as they will/are for laptops.
  22. Gym Hellwig thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2013
    As their stock price continues to plummet...
  23. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    Thinness likely has little to do with the issue. Turns the middle where the HDDs are there was no huge thinness reduction. More likely it is cheaper for Apple to share 2.5" drives with the Mac mini. More drives bought in higher number. Shared components across the Mac line up is standard Apple practice.

    It is also a bit simpler to do the fan as they did.

    Comparing the two insides the 21.5 model mounts the HDD horizontally.
    [ from iFixit teardown ]

    versus the 27" model vertically.
    [ another 27" found on the web. ]

    If the 21.5 model moved the fan out of the way (higher ) along with some tweaks to the speaker/air channel assembly they probably could slide a 3.5" drive in there. It would drive up Mini costs and 21.5 costs but they could do it. I'm sure they'd pass along the cost increase too.

    As storage densities increase those the 27" will likely pick up 2.5" drives ( further broadening the parts commonality) rather than trying to push 3.5" into the 21.5" with a tweaked design. Folks are right Fusion over time largely address performance issues. Natural HDD evolution will address capacity. Price and capacity are the only dimensions HDDs can win at against SSDs. They have to get better or disappear.

    This is nonsense that any single drive characteristic RPM or platter diameter makes a drive not appropriate for desktops. Far more higher priority for most users is cost and capacity.
  24. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030


    May 20, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    I think you're missing my point. I have no doubt that there was enough PHYSICAL space for a 3.5" hard drive in these new 2012 21.5" iMacs just as there was enough physical space for them in their Mid 2011 predecessors. But what there isn't and wasn't was enough space to keep those drives running at cooler temperatures. Think about it; Apple also switched away from MXM graphics boards in these machines to using the same video chipsets found in the 15" MacBook Pros of current (both retina and non-retina), which was an increase in performance from last year's cards, but more than that, a substantial increase in thermal efficiency. As a result, these 21.5" iMacs run cooler and lack most of (if not all of) the reliability problems that plagued their predecessors.

    Well, yes, for the target demographic for 21.5" iMacs, most users won't care about anything but capacity. But for a starting price of $1300, to only get a drive with 5400RPM, let alone a low-mid-range graphics card on a 21.5" display only carrying a 1920x1080 resolution and a low-voltage Core i5, is extremely laughable and absurd. At that point, you're over-paying for cosmetics, unnecessary slimness, and the ability to run OS X on a desktop without hackintoshing. For the difference, you'd at least hope that the hardware is comparable to what you could build for hundreds less than that.
  25. Raima macrumors 6502

    Jan 21, 2010
    Fusion drive is only a transition period until they're able to go to full SSD and beyond.

    Doesn't really impact us on whether we can predict if fusion drive becomes standard or not. It will be what it will be.

Share This Page