Imac 27" hard drive upgrade

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by rambosamboo, Sep 27, 2010.

  1. rambosamboo macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2010
    hey everyone,

    I am looking to replace my Imac's (late 2009) harddrive (1 TB Seagate drive just died) with a 2TB hard drive. I read a lot on the forums on Caviar Green and Black series but still have some questions.

    1. Which drive do you recommend for the Imac? Primary use for me would be to use the Imac as a media hub for Itunes, Iphoto and VLC. Am also planning to use it with the new Apple TV.
    2. How much faster is the black series compared to the green series? (e.g. 10% or more?)
    3. How does the Caviar Green 5400rpm compare to the Caviar Green 7200rpm in terms of noise and speed?
    4. Will any 3,5" drive fit into the Imac or are there any limitations such as with the new mac mini?

    many thanks in advance!
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    You should still be under warranty so why don't you call Apple and let them replace the HD? Maybe you can even pay little $ to get the 2TB instead of 1TB.
  3. rambosamboo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2010
    already tried that with no luck. they will only replace the same same 1GB drive. Was planning to use it with an external case and buy a 2TB drive myself...
  4. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    There are temperature sensor considerations that force you to stay with the same manufacturer of your original drive.
  5. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Let me be clearer. Since your original drive was a Seagate, the replacement must be a Seagate. The Western Digital drives won't work because the internal temperature sensors are not compatible.
  6. The.316 macrumors 65816


    Jul 14, 2010
    25100 GR
    Is this true? You cant swap out the Seagate HD for a different brand because of temp sensors?
  7. foodog macrumors 6502a


    Sep 6, 2006
    Atlanta, GA
    yes its true

    I even tried a couple of Seagate drives and they didn't "work" either. By work I mean the drive functioned fine but the Mac couldn't read the drive temp so the drive and system fans would start running faster and faster until they would be running wide open.... quite loud and annoying.

    OWC is now offering a turnkey upgrade solution so they must have compatible drives now.
  8. newtonuk macrumors member


    Jun 17, 2005
    West Yorkshire, UK
    Rubbish! As long as it is SMART compliant the drive will be fine. What will be different is the operating temperatures of each drive and how that affects the tolerances built into the iMac, e.g. if Seagate drives operate at 45-55C and the iMac's fans kick in at 57C then you will hardly notice the fans at all, but if the WD operates at 50-60C, the iMacs fans will kick in when the WD is in its normal operating temperature range which will seem like all of the time.
  9. PLin macrumors 6502

    Oct 9, 2003
    It's not rubbish. The older iMacs used an adhesive temperature sensor that could be removed from the original drive an attached to a new drive. The temperature sensor on the 2009+ iMacs is now a cable that plugs directly into the drive, which is different for each hard drive manufacturer.

    Apple's service manual even tells technicians not to reuse the cable when installing a replacement drive for that reason. A new matching cable is included with each replacement drive.

    If you install a drive made by a different manufacturer and can't reuse your cable, then your fans will always be running.

    OWC has more information on this and a list of drives that are compatible depending on your original drive:

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