Imac upgrade question

Discussion in 'iMac' started by iBaba, Oct 7, 2018.

  1. iBaba macrumors member

    iBaba

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2018
    #1
    I have a Late 2012 27 Inch Imac. Has not been used very much and in excellent condition.

    Specs:
    2.9 GHz i5
    8GB Ram

    I started running Lightroom & Photoshop on it and it's a bit on thew slow side.

    I don't have the option to buy a new one right now.

    How much of a difference in speed would it make if I do the following:

    1) Upgrade the RAM to 32GB

    2) Upgrade the HD to a SSD

    Also what is the cost I should expect for those upgrades?
     
  2. jerwin macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2015
    #2
  3. iBaba thread starter macrumors member

    iBaba

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2018
    #3
    Hey thanks for that.

    How much of difference would it really make to increase the ram and put in a SSD?
     
  4. MadDane macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2015
    #4
    I would definitely suggest SSD over RAM if it were me. However, you could also install an SSD and just buy an additional 8GB RAM for a total of 16GB. That should be enough and should be a lot cheaper than buying 32GB all at once.

    The difference should be very noticeable when installing an SSD. In short, everything should just run a lot smoother. At least that is what I have experienced.
     
  5. iBaba thread starter macrumors member

    iBaba

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2018
    #5
    Thanks!

    Some people say you can use an external SSD instead of internal since its easier and cheaper. Does that makes sense?

    Like the system and apps on there and the rest in the internal SATA drive
     
  6. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    OP asked:
    "Some people say you can use an external SSD instead of internal since its easier and cheaper. Does that makes sense?
    Like the system and apps on there and the rest in the internal SATA drive"


    Yes, this makes good sense.
    It's the fastest, easiest and safest way to upgrade to an SSD, because you don't have to pry open the iMac.

    An external USB3 SSD will give you about 85% (or more) of the speeds you would get with the same drive installed internally -- but again, without any of the risk.

    You won't really understand how good a solution this is, until you've actually tried it for yourself.
     
  7. MadDane macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2015
    #7
    I agree with Fishrrman, an external SSD is far easier than opening the iMac. I have done "open heart surgery" where I replaced the dead HDD with an SSD on one 2012 27" iMac, and it definitely is doable. But if it were me and my own machine (the one I opened was not mine) I would just go the external. And yes, make sure that the SSD at least has the OS and all applications on it. You can then use the internal HDD for storing media (like you suggest yourself).
     
  8. J.Gallardo macrumors regular

    J.Gallardo

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2017
    Location:
    Spain
    #8
    Ok to everything said... BUT upgrading RAM is cheap, and you may notice faster behaviour with 16GB. 8Gb RAM may be somewhat short (and specially with apps OP named). My iMac is using about 13GB right now.
    I don't think more than 16Gb is generally needed, but the step up from 8Gb should be noticeable.
     
  9. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 68000

    nambuccaheadsau

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #9
    Go with the fisho's suggestion on the external SSD connected via USB3.
     
  10. iBaba thread starter macrumors member

    iBaba

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2018
    #10
    Awesome replies guys. thanks so much.

    Isn't it better to go with a SSD through thunderbolt? Also I believe the USB ports are USB2 only. Have to check on that.
     
  11. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 68000

    nambuccaheadsau

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #11
    If it is USB2 it ain't a 2012 model. We can only go on the information provided and all 2012 models are US B3. If it is USB2, a TB external drive will be the go. Put the OS on it and use the slow old platter for applications etc.
     
  12. iBaba thread starter macrumors member

    iBaba

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2018
    #12
    Yes correct they are USB3. So since they are USB3 there is no need to go over thunderbolt with an SSD right?

    Also, if I plug in a usb hub with 4 extra ports can I use those extra ports at full speed or is it better to plug HD's to copy files directly in the Mac? Just a little inconvenient since they're in the back fo the screen.
     
  13. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #13
    "Yes correct they are USB3. So since they are USB3 there is no need to go over thunderbolt with an SSD right?"

    If you have USB3, get a USB3 external SSD.
    They are cheaper than thunderbolt, and often faster, as well.

    You can still use a USB3 hub, I don't see where that would change anything at all.
     

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12 October 7, 2018