Late 2013 21.5 iMac HDD upgrade question

Discussion in 'iMac' started by vyruzreaper, Jul 19, 2015.


what would you do if you wanted to upgrade to a SDD on your late 2013 iMac

  1. Replace the HDD with a SDD in the same slot

    3 vote(s)
  2. Use an external drive via TB or USB3.0

    3 vote(s)
  1. vyruzreaper, Jul 19, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2015

    vyruzreaper macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2015

    I have a base late 2013 21.5 iMac and the stock 5400RPM HDD is a dog. I recently snagged a a great deal on a 500GB Samsung EVO 850 SSD. I want to throw that sucker in there. So my questions are:

    • What type of 2.5/3.5 conversion kit do I need? Just the brackets or additional wires?
    • Will I have a problem with the thermal sensor for running the fans? I see that OWC sells these for the 2011 iMac but no mention of it being a problem for the late 2013 models.
    • Any additional tools or information I need to know of?

    I understand the risk and pita to tear these apart. ifixit has me covered and I'd be doing it with someone that has done this sort of thing before. I thought about slapping the SSD into an enclosure and running it through TB/USB3.0 but want a clean setup. Anyone want to convince me otherwise?
  2. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    The spinning hard drive in your 21.5 iMac is a 2.5-inch hard drive (laptop size), so no 2.5-3.5 adapter is needed.
  3. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    Taking apart a current iMac is not for the average user ... plus it will probably void any warranty you may still have.

    I would put your 850EVO SSD into a bus powered enclosure and stick it on the back of the iMac stand out of sight. I prefer using Thunderbolt enclosures for this (LaCie "Rugged" refurbished 1TB disks are $80 and easy to swap the hard disk for your SSD. You can sell or repurpose the removed 1TB hard disk). Use the iMac internal hard disk for backup and/or archive data (music, videos, etc.) which don't benefit from any speed. You could also use a cheaper USB 3.0 enclosure with UASP available for $20-30 if you desire.
  4. vyruzreaper thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2015
    Awesome, thanks. just checked and you're right :)
  5. vyruzreaper thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2015

    $80 for a TB enclosure is money. I would rather put that towards a professional installer haha.

    I am way past my warranty period, so not too worried about that.
  6. vyruzreaper thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2015
    Also, any ideas on fan problems and additional connectors I would need?
  7. vyruzreaper thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2015
    So I went with a USB UASP 3.0 enclosure. I am getting speeds of 380/420 - those are great but a little under what is advertised.

    However, I am getting random reboots. Anyone else experience something like this?

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