iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) Intermittently Unresponsive

Discussion in 'iMac' started by tubeexperience, May 30, 2018.

  1. tubeexperience, May 30, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018

    tubeexperience macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #1
    I got an an iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) from my boss.

    Anyhow, it's really slow.

    I mean, it sometime takes 10 minutes to boot and opening app causes the computer to become unresponsive and the beachball appears.

    This probably intermitted. Sometimes the computer boot under a minute and everything act normally.

    Then it would suddenly become slow and unresponsive, then it would run normally again.

    Apple Diagnostic said "No issues found".

    Specs of iMac:

    3.2 GHz Intel Core i5

    8 GB DDR3

    1 TB HDD

    NVIDIA GeForce GT 755M with 1GB GDDR5

    UPDATE:

    I am going to be replacing the hard drive with a solid state drive.

    I will update this thread as things progresses.

    ...lot of photos, of cause!

    Let's hope that you like drama.
     
  2. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #2
    It’s a 5 year old computer it most likely needs a new hard drive, replace it with an ssd and have a blazing fast computer.

    To test just boot from an external bootable drive if that works fine then it’s almost undoubtedly a dying hard drive.
     
  3. NajamQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2018
    #3
    It happens when a hard drive starts failing. Replace it with an SSD and it will be 10 times better.
     
  4. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #4
    The problem is the drive inside -- it's a platter-based hard drive and they're going to be slow with modern (Mavericks and later) versions of the Mac OS.

    The internal drive isn't necessarily "dying" -- it's just.... "slow".

    You have two choices:
    1. Pry open the iMac and install an SSD.
    2. Attach a USB3 SSD and then set it up to be an external boot drive.

    I recommend option 2 as the "fastest, easiest, safest" way to do things. There's a definite risk of breaking something by doing "iMac surgery". Completely avoided by using an external SSD as the boot drive.

    Be aware that you will lose a slight amount of speed by booting/running via USB3, but you should still get about 85% (or more) of the speed you would see by installing the drive internally. I think that's a "good enough" trade-off.

    You could use a Samsung t5 drive, or something like this:
    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00ZTRY532?tag=delt-20

    This will breathe new life into an aging iMac.
    You should easily get 3-4 more years out of it.
    And did I mention it's the fastest, easiest, safest way to do it?
     
  5. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #5
    That's what I thought too.

    I just didn't wanted to start by inject my opinion and influence anyone's opinion.

    The irony is that we already upgraded most of the iMac with SSDs.

    This one didn't get upgraded because it was in the boss's office and no one wants to go into the boss's office (for obvious reasons).

    No, it's was actually dying. In fact, it's now dead and won't boot post the loading screen.

    I am actually planning on installing an internal SSD.

    One thing you forgot to mention is that I need install a thermal sensor to prevent the fan from spinning at maximum speed all the time.

    thermal sensor:

    https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/DIDIMACHDD12/
     
  6. NajamQ, May 31, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2018

    NajamQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2018
    #6
    Two thumbs up for thinking about thermal sensor beforehand. Good luck, you are going to be awesome.
     
  7. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #7
    Do you think I should get an iMac service wedge?

    https://www.ifixit.com/Store/Tools/iMac-Service-Wedge/IF145-224

    The iMac would be off balance with the display removed.

    I would preferable have someone hold the iMac for me, but my roommate is moving out and she won't be around. (bedtime conflict + I hate her boyfriend)
     
  8. NajamQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2018
    #8
    I think the same can be achieved by using styrofoam, which is usually lying around.

    Yes, it's two person job to remove the glass panel. Also the glass panel is fused with the display which means there will he connector ribbons at the bottom. One person would hold the display and other would disconnect them.

    Disassembling is relatively easy. Reassembling is another challenge. Better not do it alone just to be on safe side.
     
  9. sracer, Jun 1, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2018

    sracer macrumors 604

    sracer

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    #9
    Edited for clarification: (replacement/old referred to the iMac itself)

    I've had the same symptoms on my iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2013) 2.75 Mhz, 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD for quite some time, and decided yesterday to run some tests. EtreCheck, Disk Utility, and DriveDx all reported the same thing... the hard drive is going/gone.

    I just ordered a replacement (a new iMac), but will use the suggestions in this thread by @Fishrrman to use this old one (iMac) for some other purpose.


    Screen Shot 2018-06-01 at 4.11.15 AM.png
     
  10. NajamQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2018
    #10
    Using an old one for any purpose is not a good idea. Dying hard drives are volatile.

    Just give it to some repair shop. Or open it and use an acrylic box to make it into an exhibit for it served you well in long years.
     
  11. sracer macrumors 604

    sracer

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    #11
    I agree, I've had a good run with it. It isn't work the cost of repairing it though. Since I have no plans on using the internal drive, I see no problems with using an external bootable USB SSD to boot from (as previously suggested) and another external drive for data. It won't be used for critical purposes.
     
  12. tubeexperience, Jun 1, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2018

    tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #12
    I have upgraded quite a few of these at work. (...have to make some money because education is expensive!!!)

    A lot of the guides show one person holding the displaying with one hand and removing/reinstalling a couple of cables with the other hand.

    I tried that the first time and it was really hard because of the weight of the display.

    I ended up having someone helped me hold the display: it made the job 10x easier.

    Don't reuse a failing hard drive.

    One other thing from hindsight worthy of mention: It's really easy to get your hair caught on the adhesive.

    If you are a girl, tie your hair back!

    If you are guy, maybe get a hair net? (IDK)
     
  13. sracer macrumors 604

    sracer

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    #13
    Sorry, I was not clear in my previous post. When I referred to the "old one" I was referring to the old iMac. :)
     
  14. NajamQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2018
    #14
    It's good to have hardware experience. Good luck. Do update us with SSD speed results later.
     
  15. tubeexperience, Jun 7, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  16. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #16
    (roommate in the background)

    ...still waiting for the SSD to arrive.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  17. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #17
    Almost done

    Unfortunately, my roommate left, so I need to find someone to help me lift the display while I reconnect it.

    Oh, where is my strong and handsome prince when I need one?

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  18. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #18
    Sometimes, you have got to stop asking people for help and do things yourself

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  19. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #19
    [​IMG]
     
  20. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #20
    I have the same machine at work, and I can safely say that it is caused by the SLOW HDD, as I have installed enough SSD's to know the difference. My 2013 work iMac is sooo much slower than my personal 2011 iMac at home, simply because the latter has an SSD.
     
  21. tubeexperience thread starter macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #21
    Can you upgrade your work iMac and have your work cover the cost?
     
  22. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #22
    Unfortunately not.
     
  23. NajamQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2018
    #23
    Awesome work.
     

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