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levmc

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 18, 2019
687
25
It seems pretty hard with all that taking apart of the display.
I already upgraded RAM which is of course really easy, but I'm thinking I really need the upgrade to SSD.
 

rc3105

macrumors member
Oct 30, 2019
79
23
First part covers opening the case to get to the hd

 
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Juicy Box

macrumors 604
Sep 23, 2014
7,509
8,824
It seems pretty hard with all that taking apart of the display.
Can you post your Mac and its specs?

I'm thinking I really need the upgrade to SSD.
I have replaced many Macs' HDDs for SSD, and it does make a huge difference. RAM can also make a huge difference and it is often what many people suggest to do first, but I think that the SSD swap would be a much noticeable impact than just RAM alone.

Even if you are page swapping a lot, the SSD would still improve with the speed of that.

I highly recommend using a SSD, and if you feel like opening your Mac might be beyond your skills, you can always use an external SSD.

Post your Mac's details, and it would help us give better advice.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,143
12,303
What kind of drive is in it RIGHT NOW?

IF you want to "keep things external", here are some options:
1. USB3 SSD -- will give you reads around 430MBps
2. USB3.1 gen2 enclosure with nvme blade drive -- reads around 965MBps
3. Thunderbolt3 drive (such as Samsung X5) -- reads up around 2,000MBps (or thereabouts).
 

velocityg4

macrumors 604
Dec 19, 2004
7,328
4,713
Georgia
It is 2017 iMac 27''

Replacing the internal is quite difficult for the inexperienced. If this isn't something you're comfortable with. Use an external SSD.
- You can get a Thunderbolt 3 NVMe SSD all ready to go like the Samsung X5 or OWC Envoy Pro EX.
- If you think you will want further NVMe expansion in the future. You can get the OWC Express 4M2 with support for up to 4 M.2 NVMe SSD. It's a pricey enclosure but cheaper than multiple separate enclosures.
- There are single NVMe Thunderbolt 3 enclosures. It is cheaper than the pre packaged models. I can't really recommend one in particular. Just be careful in your searches. As they'll bring up cheap USB 3.1 Gen 2 NVMe enclosures. These don't offer close to the same performance.
- Finally, you can get USB 3.1 Gen 2 NVMe enclosures. While not as fast as Thunderbolt 3. They are still a lot faster than SATA SSD. I'd only pair these with a cheap NVMe like the Crucial P1. As faster SSD are pointless. This is still a big upgrade over a HDD or SATA SSD. So, if you want a boost on a budget. These are a good way to go.

Be careful choosing enclosures. Not all M.2 enclosures are NVMe. They may be M.2 SATA. If they don't specifically list NVMe support. They are likely SATA.
 

snow755

macrumors 68000
Sep 12, 2012
1,872
829
How much would that be?

it depends on how much space storage you need and how much you want too spend
[automerge]1588096987[/automerge]
dos my passport work ok with Mac ? I want too upgrade too a iMac 4k i3 2019 but want too transfer Mac OS too a SSD drive once I get and used the 1T hard drive for storage

 
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levmc

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 18, 2019
687
25
Replacing the internal is quite difficult for the inexperienced. If this isn't something you're comfortable with. Use an external SSD.
- You can get a Thunderbolt 3 NVMe SSD all ready to go like the Samsung X5 or OWC Envoy Pro EX.
- If you think you will want further NVMe expansion in the future. You can get the OWC Express 4M2 with support for up to 4 M.2 NVMe SSD. It's a pricey enclosure but cheaper than multiple separate enclosures.
- There are single NVMe Thunderbolt 3 enclosures. It is cheaper than the pre packaged models. I can't really recommend one in particular. Just be careful in your searches. As they'll bring up cheap USB 3.1 Gen 2 NVMe enclosures. These don't offer close to the same performance.
- Finally, you can get USB 3.1 Gen 2 NVMe enclosures. While not as fast as Thunderbolt 3. They are still a lot faster than SATA SSD. I'd only pair these with a cheap NVMe like the Crucial P1. As faster SSD are pointless. This is still a big upgrade over a HDD or SATA SSD. So, if you want a boost on a budget. These are a good way to go.

Be careful choosing enclosures. Not all M.2 enclosures are NVMe. They may be M.2 SATA. If they don't specifically list NVMe support. They are likely SATA.
That X5 is very expensive at $400. If you want to go external for SSD, but don't use thunderbolt, will the SSD run slower than if you were to install it internally?
 

snow755

macrumors 68000
Sep 12, 2012
1,872
829
I ended up ordering this one


I got the 512GB SSD model

 
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tkukoc

Cancelled
Sep 16, 2014
1,533
1,915
Easier to hand a 2.5" SSD usb3 or TB3 connector off the back with velcro and boot off that.
Absolutely the way to go. I did the same with my current imac, set that up with the latest macOS and left the internal with the older stuff in case I want to boot back into that for whatever reason. Plus the internal drive can be used as some storage while i work on some video projects.. then when I'm done.. delete and move on. But I agree, external SSD is so much easier then messing with internals.
 

velocityg4

macrumors 604
Dec 19, 2004
7,328
4,713
Georgia
That X5 is very expensive at $400. If you want to go external for SSD, but don't use thunderbolt, will the SSD run slower than if you were to install it internally?
With NVMe the only other option right now is USB 3.1 Gen 2 for externals. Which won’t be as fast as an internal.

If you don’t want to pay for the X5. You can always get those $120 to $150 no name Thunderbolt 3 enclosures for NVMe. Then install a good SSD.
 

levmc

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 18, 2019
687
25
Would a good SSD and no name enclosure be cheaper than 400 bucks?
 

velocityg4

macrumors 604
Dec 19, 2004
7,328
4,713
Georgia
Would a good SSD and no name enclosure be cheaper than 400 bucks?

You could do it for around $300 for 1TB. Still nowhere as cheap as internal. But you don't risk damage to your computer. Plus you can easily upgrade the storage later if 1TB gets a bit tight.

The HP EX 950 is an excellent budget friendly and fast NVMe. It goes well against the 970 Evo. It even takes on the 970 Evo Plus in a number of tests.
 

logiman

macrumors newbie
Apr 29, 2020
7
0
Nashville
Hi @levmc. Have you made a decision on this?

I just upgraded my HDD to SSD yesterday on a 27" mid-2010 iMac with 16GB RAM. It made a HUGE difference. It's like a new computer. I'm ecstatic with the results. Boot time is now less than 30 seconds. Resource-intensive apps like Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop are lightning fast.

I purchased a 1TB Samsung 860 QVO on Amazon for $130 and an upgrade kit from OWC. As an alternative, you can just purchase their SSD upgrade kit for $244 I think. Either way, follow their excellent step by step video. I found it to be quite easy and I had never opened my iMac before.

The video doesn't tell you that following their instructions ADDS a drive to your Mac rather than replaces the original HDD. That actually worked to my advantage.

Once the SSD was added, I booted normally and formatted it using the OS X Disk Utility. Then, also using Disk Utility, I cloned my HD to the SSD which took about 5 hours. Finally, I switched the boot drive to the new SSD using System Preferences.

There were two videos I followed.

1) the OWC DIY video mentioned above and referenced below. It's very straightforward.


2) was this video which is actually for an external drive. But, the process is exactly that same.


To summarize, adding an SSD boot drive was VERY effective for me. It was easy and inexpensive in my experience. Best of luck!
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,143
12,303
levmac asked:
"Would a good SSD and no name enclosure be cheaper than 400 bucks?"

Yes.
MUCH cheaper.

This is what you need:
1. A 2.5" SATA SSD. You DON'T need to buy "the fastest, most expensive" one. Just about any SSD will do the job.
2. A 2.5" USB3 enclosure. It should be advertised as supporting "UASP" (USB attached SCSI protocol). Some go together with a couple of screws. Others just snap together. As easy as it gets.

3. CarbonCopyCloner. CCC is FREE to download and use for 30 days. Get it here:

When you have these items, do this:
a. Put the SSD into the enclosure and connect it to the Mac
b. Open disk utility.
c. If you are using either Mojave or Catalina, erase the SSD to APFS with GUID partition format.
d. If you are using High Sierra or earlier, erase the SSD to Mac OS extended with journaling enabled, GUID partition format
e. Quit disk utility and open CCC.
f. Accept all of CCC's defaults.
g. Put your source drive (the internal drive) "on the left".
h. Put the target drive (the SSD) "in the middle".
i. IGNORE the "scheduling" area on the right -- you don't need this.
j. Click the clone button and "follow through".
k. If CCC offers to clone the recovery partition, YES, you want to do this, too.

CCC will "clone over" the contents of your internal drive to the SSD. It will take some time.

When done, quit CCC.
Open the startup disk preference pane.
Do you now see the SSD there as a "boot source option"?
If so, select it (you may have to click the lock and enter your password).
Once that's done, reboot.

You should boot from the SSD, and it will go faster.
Does this work for you?
 
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levmc

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 18, 2019
687
25
Hi @logiman, I'll try your method if I do decide to get an SSD in the near future.
It's good to know that it would be adding to not replacing the HDD.
 

logiman

macrumors newbie
Apr 29, 2020
7
0
Nashville
@levmc, @nambuccaheadsau makes a good point. It was really easy following those instructions for a 2010 iMac. I watched it through before starting. I have a work laptop that I used to re-watch the video as I completed every step.

If you have a recent machine, it could be a different animal altogether. You may want to review the video for your Mac on the OWC web site.

You can find yours here:


If you don't know what model you have, click the Apple logo in the top left corner of your screen and select 'About This Mac'. Best of luck to you.
 

snow755

macrumors 68000
Sep 12, 2012
1,872
829
hey I was wanting too no can you used a flash drive USB has a boot load ?
 

logiman

macrumors newbie
Apr 29, 2020
7
0
Nashville
hey I was wanting too no can you used a flash drive USB has a boot load ?

Yes. You can. It must be at least an 12GB flash drive (8GB for some earlier OS versions). The exact process may vary a bit depending on which OS version you are running.

See this link.

 
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