iMac mid 2010 ssd upgrade

timsun28

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 2, 2014
17
0
Dear readers,
I'm looking to put an ssd in my iMac mid 2010 to make it last a year longer.
I was looking at the new sata 3 ssds from samsung, but after a bit of research i found out that the imac mid 2010 doesnt have a sata 3 port and only supports sata.
Is there a way to make it work with a sata 3 disk or some other way to fix this problem or is the only solution to buy an old ssd that supports sata?
If I indeed need to buy an old ssd, do you guys have any suggestions? Preferably around 0,5 tb, but if 256 gb is only thing available thats okay with me too.

Thank you for your time and hope i can make this iMac run a bit smoother!

Timsun
 

yjchua95

macrumors 604
Apr 23, 2011
6,725
230
GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
Dear readers,
I'm looking to put an ssd in my iMac mid 2010 to make it last a year longer.
I was looking at the new sata 3 ssds from samsung, but after a bit of research i found out that the imac mid 2010 doesnt have a sata 3 port and only supports sata.
Is there a way to make it work with a sata 3 disk or some other way to fix this problem or is the only solution to buy an old ssd that supports sata?
If I indeed need to buy an old ssd, do you guys have any suggestions? Preferably around 0,5 tb, but if 256 gb is only thing available thats okay with me too.

Thank you for your time and hope i can make this iMac run a bit smoother!

Timsun
You can use SATA3 SSDs; they're almost always backward compatible with SATA2 on your iMac.
 

timsun28

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 2, 2014
17
0
You can use SATA3 SSDs; they're almost always backward compatible with SATA2 on your iMac.
So does that mean I can buy any sata 3 ssd, or do I need to check for some specifications?
It would realy save a lot of money if i could buy one of those samsung 850 evos!

Thanks for the reply!

Timsun
 

andy9l

macrumors 68000
Aug 31, 2009
1,698
362
England, UK
A few years ago, I did exactly what you're planning on doing. A few important things to note:

1. You cannot simply remove your HDD and replace it with a SSD
This is due to a proprietary thermal sensor (the fans will spin at 100% all the time if you do). You either add the SSD as a secondary drive inside the iMac, or you buy and install this cable with your replacement drive.

2. You can use a SATA 3 drives in your iMac, but it will negotiate at SATA 2 speed
This doesn't matter to you, really. It'll still be extremely fast compared to your HDD.

3. It's not an easy task to put a secondary SSD inside your iMac
Lots of fiddly bits for the amateur.

4. I would personally recommend OWC
I used this video and bought this kit and this drive to install mine. I now have the original 1TB HDD and a 256GB SSD inside my iMac. I only use the SSD, really.
 

timsun28

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 2, 2014
17
0
A few years ago, I did exactly what you're planning on doing. A few important things to note:

1. You cannot simply remove your HDD and replace it with a SSD
This is due to a proprietary thermal sensor (the fans will spin at 100% all the time if you do). You either add the SSD as a secondary drive inside the iMac, or you buy and install this cable with your replacement drive.

2. You can use a SATA 3 drives in your iMac, but it will negotiate at SATA 2 speed
This doesn't matter to you, really. It'll still be extremely fast compared to your HDD.

3. It's not an easy task to put a secondary SSD inside your iMac
Lots of fiddly bits for the amateur.

4. I would personally recommend OWC
I used this video and bought this kit and this drive to install mine. I now have the original 1TB HDD and a 256GB SSD inside my iMac. I only use the SSD, really.
Thanks you for the advise, i just have a few questions left. Is the cable for the cd/dvd drive also sata 2? And why do you suggest the owc ssd? Is it reliable or because it is a sata drive and not a sata 3? I was looking at the samsung 840 evo (500 gb), but is there a chance that it will not work? Or will all ssds work?
And would you suggest changing the ssd with the cd drive over the ssd with the hdd?

And how long did it take you from start to end?

Thanks for the help man!

Timsun
 

timsun28

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 2, 2014
17
0
Serious question

Only problem i have left is that i have a 21,5 inch iMac, and the video and tools are about the 27" iMac. Are these the same or will there be no place for an extra ssd in the 21,5" iMac and do you need to take out the cd drive?

Hope there is someone who can help me!

Timsun
 

andy9l

macrumors 68000
Aug 31, 2009
1,698
362
England, UK
Thanks you for the advise, i just have a few questions left. Is the cable for the cd/dvd drive also sata 2? And why do you suggest the owc ssd? Is it reliable or because it is a sata drive and not a sata 3? I was looking at the samsung 840 evo (500 gb), but is there a chance that it will not work? Or will all ssds work?
And would you suggest changing the ssd with the cd drive over the ssd with the hdd?

And how long did it take you from start to end?

Thanks for the help man!

Timsun
I recommend OWC as they are Mac specialists and are, in my experience, very reliable. Any SSD should work - Samsung are a good brand to go for. I used a Samsung 840 in my 2009 MBP. As I mentioned, you can fit a SATA 3 drive to your iMac, it will just operate at SATA 2 speeds.

It took me at least 3 hours to do, but I was being extremely cautious.

Edit: The steps are unlikely to be the same for the 21" iMac.
 

sebastius

macrumors newbie
Feb 22, 2015
12
2
The best way to get an SSD in a 27inch 2010 iMac is to get the special bracket, the special powercable and SATA cable. A bit expensive, the cost could easily mean just installing a bigger SSD instead of the harddrive. Any SSD will work.
 

andy9l

macrumors 68000
Aug 31, 2009
1,698
362
England, UK
The best way to get an SSD in a 27inch 2010 iMac is to get the special bracket, the special powercable and SATA cable. A bit expensive, the cost could easily mean just installing a bigger SSD instead of the harddrive. Any SSD will work.
He's looking to get it in a 21" ;)