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ravinder08

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 11, 2010
361
79
Just curious, looking to get the new M1 iMac larger model when it’s released hopefully soon. Does anyone experience beach balls on the new machines? My old 2012 27” iMac is painfully slow now when I have multiple apps and windows open.
 
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lostom

macrumors regular
Nov 11, 2010
227
157
I have the same model, fairly well spec'd up, beach ball is pretty common for a while, particularly when switching users, no such issues with the M1 MBA that I also use.
 
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Kung gu

Suspended
Oct 20, 2018
1,379
2,434
You do get beach balls but not due to the slowness but thru user error or apps that are not responding.
But other that M1 is snappy and quick.
 
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za9ra22

macrumors 65816
Sep 25, 2003
1,019
936
I get a beachball every now and then when something has gone wrong - usually associated with external devices attached via a hub, which I suspect may not be in great working condition. No beachballs in normal use, even with multiple apps and tabs open.
 

uller6

macrumors 65816
May 14, 2010
1,019
1,619
My M1 beachballs more often than I've seen any Mac do in years. I haven't seen this many beach balls since I last used a mechanical HDD over 10 years ago.

Edit: it happens most with Safari, so I think this is still some software hiccups with the M1. I'm certainly not pushing the machine to the extreme.
 
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harriska2

macrumors 68000
Mar 16, 2011
1,913
1,036
Oregon
Weird. I have a 2018 mini on Mojave that beachballs maybe 1x a year, usually due to bad software or because my external 5400 rpm data drive is spinning up for the day.
 
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MistrSynistr

macrumors 68000
May 15, 2014
1,693
2,073
My M1 beachballs more often than I've seen any Mac do in years. I haven't seen this many beach balls since I last used a mechanical HDD over 10 years ago.

Edit: it happens most with Safari, so I think this is still some software hiccups with the M1. I'm certainly not pushing the machine to the extreme.
I have noticed this the other day, only with Safari.
 

4sallypat

macrumors 68040
Sep 16, 2016
3,454
3,267
So Calif
I have both the M1 Mini and iMac and have only seen the spinning beach ball when accessing data from my external drives (DVD & SSD).

Contrasting the Intel Macs that had spinning beach balls galore; the M1 has almost none - especially with apps opening & multi tabs on web browsers (I run 3 at the same time).
 
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srbNYC

macrumors 68000
Jul 7, 2020
1,757
1,596
New York, NY
I've had my M1 MBA (16gb RAM, 512GB HD) for about six months—and I don't think I realized that I haven't seen a beachball until you just mentioned it! Cool.
 
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Malus120

macrumors 6502a
Jun 28, 2002
672
1,387
Yes, the M1 will beachball just like any other Mac if you put it under enough load. Of course its much less common than with an older mac that might be CPU or thermal bound but... Even with 16GB of Ram, and the thermal mod (makes it perform like the M1 MBP/Mini), my M1 MBA somehow STILL manages to get itself into yellow memory pressure at which point, while it mostly just chugs, it does occasionally beachball for a second or two. I've noticed that Mac laptops seem to handle memory pressure a lot worse than Mac (and hackintosh) desktops and I'm not really sure why.

Anyway, while 16GB of ram will help (A LOT, do not get 8GB M1 machines if you do any kind of multitasking IMO) you need to be realistic with your expectations (or wait for M1X/M2 MBPs with, hopefully, 32GB of Ram available)
 

Ledgem

macrumors 68020
Jan 18, 2008
2,034
924
Hawaii, USA
Just curious, looking to get the new M1 iMac larger model when it’s released hopefully soon. Does anyone experience beach balls on the new machines? My old 2012 27” iMac is painfully slow now when I have multiple apps and windows open.
Looking at your signature, you have 8 GB of RAM and a 1 TB HD that I'm guessing is a standard HDD, rather than a SSD. The hard drive will slow you down, and the limited amount of RAM means your computer will have to store contents of the RAM on your hard drive (page file), further slowing you down. The M1's use of a SSD would speed things up for you dramatically, but you don't need a M1-based system to have that. I'm not sure if the 2012 systems support booting from an external SSD, but that and a RAM upgrade would improve your performance without upgrading the entire thing.
 
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ravinder08

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 11, 2010
361
79
Looking at your signature, you have 8 GB of RAM and a 1 TB HD that I'm guessing is a standard HDD, rather than a SSD. The hard drive will slow you down, and the limited amount of RAM means your computer will have to store contents of the RAM on your hard drive (page file), further slowing you down. The M1's use of a SSD would speed things up for you dramatically, but you don't need a M1-based system to have that. I'm not sure if the 2012 systems support booting from an external SSD, but that and a RAM upgrade would improve your performance without upgrading the entire thing.
Thank you yes 8GB memory 1TB spinning hard drive has served me well for last 9 years I think rather than spending money on this old machine might be worth selling it and getting the new bigger iMac which should last me another 8-10 years hopefully.
 

harriska2

macrumors 68000
Mar 16, 2011
1,913
1,036
Oregon
Thank you yes 8GB memory 1TB spinning hard drive has served me well for last 9 years I think rather than spending money on this old machine might be worth selling it and getting the new bigger iMac which should last me another 8-10 years hopefully.
We put SSDs in all of our imacs (2008 (brother), 2009 (parents), 2013 (basement)) and the performance has been amazing. They are *all* still running and used daily. The 2013 27" is a snot to remove the screen and get the drive in but it was well worth it. She is running Mojave very nicely. Man we support some really old stuff. The 2018 mac minis come with SSDs but they charge an arm, leg, torso, and first born.
 

Eric_WVGG

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2016
250
485
gentrification fallout zone
In my humble experience, the largest source of beachballs — going all the way back to "Cheetah" — is disk i/o hold-ups.

I feel like it's a bit of a coin toss if your 2012 iMac has a spinning disk or an SSD; it might be at retirement age, but you might be amazed by what a cheap $100 SSD would do to it.

(coincidentally, I'm performing a similar upgrade for a friend's similar-gen iMac later this week, fun times…)
 
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trsblader

macrumors 6502
May 20, 2011
450
203
I can consistently get beachballs with a few pieces of software we use for work or slower than intel start-ups. Workbench won't beachballs but takes > 60 seconds to open. Postman will beachball for about 15 seconds. PHPStorm which was a constant source of beachballs on an 8700 hasn't beach balled on me yet with an M1.

I also can get pretty regular beachballs if I open Spotify and try to play music on my HomePod Mini.

This is all on a 16/256 setup. Still fewer beachballs than my 8700 setup.
 

familychoice

macrumors regular
Mar 5, 2015
206
114
In my humble experience, the largest source of beachballs — going all the way back to "Cheetah" — is disk i/o hold-ups.

I feel like it's a bit of a coin toss if your 2012 iMac has a spinning disk or an SSD; it might be at retirement age, but you might be amazed by what a cheap $100 SSD would do to it.

(coincidentally, I'm performing a similar upgrade for a friend's similar-gen iMac later this week, fun times…)
A £60 Samsung SSD totally revitalised my 2012 MBP - OS installed on the SSD, plugged in via USB, near ten times faster than the old HD.
 
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