Finally upgraded my 21.5 (mid 2009) iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Awgd8, Sep 30, 2017.

  1. Awgd8 macrumors member

    Awgd8

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Location:
    WI
    #1
    Hi guys, I really don’t frequently post here.

    I bought my first iMac 21.5” in 2009 and sold it recently for $150 with wireless mouse and keyboard. LOL!
    It’s in great shape and still working great, but it’s getting too slow for my Video editing using Filmora.

    So last week, I bought a 27” iMac 5k base model with 1Tb fusion drive.

    I already upgraded the memory to 24Gig of RAM . I’ve heard 24Gig of Ram is the ideal amount for video editing base from iMac RAM youtube tester. Anything higher doesn’t benefit you much for the money.

    Then I bought an external Samsung T5 500 Gb SSD for $197 ( I could not afford Apple SSD 500GB- 1TB SSD right now.)
    I formatted the T5 to the new MacOS High Sierra APFS and boot the system from the External T5. I’m also using a TRIM app for the external SSD.

    Here is the speed of the Samsung T5 via USB-C connection to iMac Thunderbolt 3.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I just use the internal 1TB Fusion drive for storage. BTW, I also have the MacOS High Sierra installed in the fusion drive and converted the remaining space to APFS. Although, I don’t boot the iMac from that drive and fusion drive doesnt benefit much to the new APFS.

    BTW, I love the magic mouse and keyboard...

    Here is my old 21.5 “

    [​IMG]

    My new 27” 5k

    [​IMG]

    Unfortunately, I haven't tested the system yet for my video editing seession..

    Any recommendation or something that I’ve missed?
     
  2. crb595 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    #2
    I am glad I found your post as I am thinking of doing pretty much the same thing you have done. I have a mid-2011 iMac with an HDD that is getting long in the tooth. I use it mainly for photo editing (Lightroom, Photoshop, various plug-ins) and am investigating the mid 2017 iMac. I thought about having it configured with an internal SSD replacing the fusion drive, but if the external Samsung T5 works well, that may save me a bit of money. Did you rename the external T5 to Macintosh HD or leave that name with your internal fusion drive? Any other insights you might have would be greatly appreciated.
     
  3. Awgd8, Nov 1, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2017

    Awgd8 thread starter macrumors member

    Awgd8

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Location:
    WI
    #3
    I highly recommend going at least 256 SSD internal and upgrade and add at least an external SSD (Samsung T5 256GB $120 or 512GB $197)
    The internal SSD almost double the write speed of the T5 and tripled the read speed too...

    If you have not bought the 27” iMac yet.
    Go with the base model with upgraded 256GB SSD and buy an aftermarket extra 8 Gig of ram.

    The reason why you don’t want the Fusion drive is even if you have a fast T5
    the fusion drive will slow you down transfering files from fusion drive to T5 vice versa.

    You want a fast 256 internal SSD to a fast external T5.

    The T5 is great, but I returned it already.
    My current setup now (a bit expensive)
    I bought an Akitio 2520 external Sata enclosure with USB-C connection.
    Added a 2 Sata3 SSD Samsung pro (256GB) ran it on raid 0
    and use that as my main boot drive.

    Here is my thread about it.

    https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...o-2521-usb-c-enclosure.2079227/#post-25258394
     
  4. crb595 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    #4
    You have created a very elegant solution. I have not purchased my 2017 iMac yet so your reply couldn’t have come at a more opportune time.

    Did you get two of the Samsung 850 PRO 256GB SSD’s for the Akitio enclosure to replace the T5? Are you connecting the Akitio to the USB C port, and does it have enough power?

    How are you using the fusion drive?

    Are all your data on external drives connected to the Thunderbolt 3 port?

    Thanks for your insights.
     
  5. Pascal325 Suspended

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2017
    #5
    I just bought a second hand Thermatake external 500gb SSD Thunderbolt/USB 3 drive. Plan to use it as the boot on my late 2012 iMAC to bring some life into it. Any recommendations on how to do this?
     
  6. Awgd8, Nov 1, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2017

    Awgd8 thread starter macrumors member

    Awgd8

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Location:
    WI
    #6
    Yes, I bought 2 Samsung Pro SSD 256GB and Raid 0 it with the Akitio external. The iMac Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) port gives enough power for the Akitio enclosure.

    The Akitio enclosure has 3 tiny LED light.
    The middle LED is the power and this never turns off even when I put the iMac on standby. The other 2 LEDs are for each Sata SSD.

    All my important data are stored in another external drives. So I don’t mind running Raid 0 as my bootup drive and as main working drive (scratch drive) too.

    I have 1TB fusion drive and I unlinked the SSD drive (28Gig) from the HD fusion. Now I have 2 separate internal drives. The internal SSD one is fast like 800-1400 MB/s transfer speed, but only has 28Gig capacity. I use that disk to run all my application such as my video editing software (Filmora) etc.

    The 1TB Internal HD is mainly for large backup files. (Not very important)

    I also have another MacOS high Sierra installed in the 1TB fusion drive as a backup if my Akitio Raid 0 (boot drive) starts to give me troubles in the future.

    The Akitio enclosure on Raid 0 has a transfer speed of 800 plus. Better than the T5 , but a bit more $ ( Akitio enclosure is like $97 and the Samsung pro is $127 each - Amazon sale)

    Just an FYi, the cheaper Samsung EVo Sata SSD ($99) will not work on Raid 0 setup. That was my original plan, but through research, it’s a no go for Raid 0.

    If I were you get an SSD 256 internal , an extra 8 gig of RAm (not apple brand) total of 16Gb RAM and maybe a T5 256GB SSD for $127.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 1, 2017 ---
    That is better than an internal HD.
    Just upgrade your internal HD to high Sierra and keep that as your backup boot up drive. From there use disk utilities to format your Thermatake.
    Use the APFS format.

    Run another install of high sierra OS while still logged in to the Internal HD High Sierra Os. During the installation, it will prompt you to choose which drive you would like the High Sierra OS to be installed. (Pick the thermatake)

    Just follow the prompt afterwrds.
     
  7. crb595 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    #7
    I really appreciate your insights. Sounds like you mainly do video editing. Do you find the 3.4 gHz processor satisfactory? I mainly do photo editing.
     
  8. Awgd8 thread starter macrumors member

    Awgd8

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Location:
    WI
    #8
    I also do photo editing via Lightroom only. I do video editing as a hobby too.

    Coming from late 2009 iMac 21.5”
    yes, the 3.4 Ghz is more than enough.
    LOL! Here’s a video I made from the 2008 iMac... can you see the details? ;-)

     
  9. crb595 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2012
    #9
    Very nice video. Enjoy your new iMac.
     
  10. robeddie Suspended

    robeddie

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2003
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #10
    Nice vid. But while you tongue in cheek wrote ‘too drunk to remember’ where was that shot, wisconsin? Whereever it is, it seems like the midwest.

    Edit: I just saw from your profile page that you ARE from wisconsin. I totally guessed that right from the landscapes!
     
  11. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #11
    Pascal wrote:
    "I just bought a second hand Thermatake external 500gb SSD Thunderbolt/USB 3 drive. Plan to use it as the boot on my late 2012 iMAC to bring some life into it. Any recommendations on how to do this?"

    First, you want to erase the drive and re-initialize it to HFS+ with journaling enabled.

    If you have less than 500gb "used" on the iMac's internal drive, you could use CarbonCopyCloner to clone the internal drive to the SSD. Then just go to the startup disk preference pane and set the SSD to be the boot drive.
    (CCC is FREE to download and use for 30 days)

    If that won't work, you can install a fresh copy of the OS on the SSD.
    I -STRONGLY SUGGEST- that you create a bootable USB flashdrive to do this.
    Once the OS is installed, you can set up the drive as you like.

    I would put applications and -some- user data on the SSD.
    If you have large libraries of pics, movies or music that won't fit on the SSD, leave those libraries on the internal drive, and then "point" your apps to them.
    They'll run fine that way.
     
  12. Awgd8 thread starter macrumors member

    Awgd8

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Location:
    WI
    #12
    Thanks!
    --- Post Merged, Nov 2, 2017 ---
    It’s hwy 38 heading south to Racine.
     
  13. Pascal325 Suspended

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2017
    #13
    Thanks to those in this thread that helped me. I got the new external SSD working just fine and trim enabled. Man the machine flies now. I like using this machine instead of my gaming rig for reading sites, etc and not for gaming because it doesn't heat up the bedroom so hot! :)

    Was expecting more speed, but this will do. 274 write and 384.8 read
     
  14. Awgd8 thread starter macrumors member

    Awgd8

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Location:
    WI
    #14
    Better than my HDD fusion drive @ 120-160 speed.
     

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13 September 30, 2017