iMac 2011 27" Apple stock SSD swap

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Deividdo71, May 9, 2017.

  1. Deividdo71 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 9, 2017
    #1
    Hi guys! Thought I'd post this here since there's little information about this exact procedure. Today I proceeded to swap the original Apple TS256C 256GBSSD with a Samsung EVO 850 250GB in my iMac 27" mid-2011 12,2. It's a pretty straight forward procedure and you can follow the instructions up to 4:10 in this video. The factory installed SSD lies behind the DVD drive. Once you get there, you simply remove the 3 screws holding the SSD brackets in place. Simply attach those brackets to your new SSD, screw them in place and reassemble the iMac. Before doing it, I wasn't sure if I would have to take out the logic board but there's no need to.

    Next time you reboot, enable TRIM support by going in the terminal and typing: sudo trimforce enable and follow the instructions until the computer reboots (it takes a little while).

    The performance difference is pretty noticeable on boot and application launch times, as well as when user switching. Xbench showed 100% better score than stock SSD and Black Magic reports around 495 MB/s write and 505 MB/s read, up from 120 MB/s write and 200 MB/s read. Very glad with the upgrade and hope this can help someone. Attached is a picture of the installed SSD before reassembly.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. briloronmacrumo macrumors 6502

    briloronmacrumo

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #2
    There is/was no "factory installed SSD" on the 2011 iMac. What you found is an aftermarket upgrade. It is also possible to simply replace the spinning HD with an SSD using a 2.5 to 3.5 inch drive adapter, a temperature sensor and the SSD. These can all be found on OWC.
     
  3. Deividdo71, May 11, 2017
    Last edited: May 11, 2017

    Deividdo71 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 9, 2017
    #3
    This was no aftermarket upgrade, it was a BTO option, just look at this page under storage. Plus the drive I pulled was a Apple branded Toshiba SSD, specifically, TS256C. But I guess you're right in the sense that it was not factory installed so I changed the title.
     
  4. briloronmacrumo macrumors 6502

    briloronmacrumo

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #4
    Ah, thanks for the correction. I'd forgotten about that BTO option.
     
  5. brookter1 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2015
    #5

    Indeed, I've got the BTO 256GB SSD plus internal 2TB HD and they're both still going strong. I hadn't thought about upgrading the SSD -- thanks for the suggestion and the instructions.
     
  6. Deividdo71 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 9, 2017
    #6
    Same setup here. Truth be told I didn't plan to do this at first but I'm glad I did, gives a good little boost, and it was quite easy. If you ever do it, be careful with the top left vertical sync connector, the wires are tiny and easy to break, thought I did for a second. And aside from a good Torx kit, you need a suction cup to remove the glass panel. I used the one from a windshield mounted iPhone cradle, worked perfectly. Enjoy!
     
  7. John Frum macrumors newbie

    John Frum

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    #7
    I'm repairing an iMac identical to yours. Even though it won't go beyond High Sierra, it's been a workhorse and is still quite useful. While roomy SSDs are still relatively cheap, it's a comparatively lousy time to buy a new (or even refurbished) iMac, and I have the the 2011 apart, I might as well upgrade its SSD. I take it you enabled 6Gbps SATA when that firmware upgrade was released, shortly after this iMac was?
     
  8. mikehalloran macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2018
    Location:
    The Sillie Con Valley
    #8
    Yes, there was a BTO option. That's where the spare SATA port lies that OWC converts to eSATA. Only the 2010–2011 have these. I had it done on mine back in the day but with large SSDs nowadays, I don't see the point.

    The firmware update made both of those ports SATA III but left the optical port SATA II.

    On the 2012–2014, that spare port became PCIe 2. On the 2015, it became PCIe 3/4 although Apple still used the PCIe 2 blades like the 2012–14. Installing an NVMe PCIe 3/4 blade into a 2015 iMac gives you the equivalent of a 2017 but with TB2 instead of TB3/USB-C.
     

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