Need advice on adding SSD drive to late 2009 iMAC!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by moviemaykr, Jan 30, 2014.

  1. moviemaykr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2014
    #1
    I have the 27 inch iMac 2.66 GHz Intel Core i5 late 2009 model with the 1tb hard drive.
    Im wanting to replace that drive with a SAMSUNG 840 Pro Series 2.5" 256GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive. I do NOT want to do it myself and live in the Los Angeles area and will probably get someone like Melrose MAC to install it.
    I'm a cinematographer and video editor moving eventually to some 4k footage. I have a subscription to the Adobe Creative Cloud and will be editing with Adobe Premiere going forward.
    I have heard about how much faster the programs would be with the SSD drive so I wanted to get advice from some people that have done it. Is the addition of an SSD drive for my OS and applications worth swapping out the drives?

    I have already edited my last feature film on my iMac with firewire G-Drives and it was fine but i would like to add the upgrade if it means my adobe programs will run a-lot faster. Any advice would be great and please don't link to other forums about someone who did this 2-3 years ago.
     
  2. Drharrington macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    #2
    In short, yes. 3-4 times faster then your traditional HD. ~you should run about 230mbps versus 50-70 Mbps your currently running. Well worth the upgrade IMHO. Get you another 3-4 years out of the machine.
     
  3. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #3
    While an SSD will be a nice upgrade to what you're doing currently, there's no way your current iMac will handle 4K video editing.
     
  4. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    #4
    Swapped in a standard 830 on a i7 2009 27 just before I sold it. I have no experience with Premiere or final cut, but Photoshop CS6 was much faster. Since the 09 imac is sata2, I put the SSD in the optical slot. The 830Pro will net you nothing in that iMac. Right now, an EVO would be cheaper and just as reliable. People will complain about bus speed, but the overall experience of using the computer was not far from a late 2012 I had at the same time. The jump to USB3 was a more dramatic item on the 2012 for externals. Good Luck
     
  5. jetlife2 macrumors regular

    jetlife2

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    Location:
    Cincinnati, Oh
    #5
    Check with Other World Computing

    Check with Other World Computing.

    They have a lot of information on their site about SSD upgrades. They also offer an installation service.

    I have an OEM Apple SSD-Hard Drive combo in my mid-2010 i7 imac and it is fantastic. This can be the best of both worlds. You can leave the OS , applications and scratch space on the SSD and keep the internal HD for storage, as two separate drives. Or you can combine them together into a Fusion drive and let the OS manage between the SSD and HD. I have run mine both ways and the Fusion drive is the best for me. It appears as a single 1.2TB drive but nearly all the time feels as fast as SSD.

    Since this is a pricey upgrade you might consider upgrading to the mid-2010 or later imac before investing the money into the SSD. The CPU and GPU power are key for video editing and your 2009 imac is behind the curve in that area.

    Good luck, post back here what you decide!
     
  6. marzer macrumors 65816

    marzer

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #6
    I just did this over the holidays. Put a 840 EVO in place of the 1TB hard drive in a 2009 i7 iMac. And yes, it does speed up OS and application startup times quite a bit. Is it worth it? Only if you find your HD performance to be a problem for you. In my case, I wanted speedier drive performance in the 2009 after experiencing the speed of Fusion in my 2012 iMac and SSD in my wife's MBA. The result was very noticeable and a big improvement.

    I too was hesitant to do it myself but following the iFixit guide it actually turned out to be much easier than I anticipated.

    image.jpg

    I used a OWC SSD shuttle for this mod.
     
  7. moviemaykr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2014
    #7
    Thanks guys for the good advice!

    I'm now thinking since I never use the optical drive maybe I will get a 250 gig SSD for my programs and replace the internal hard drive with a larger one such as a 3tb drive. Can I install a newer 3 tb drive to replace my old 1 TB?
    I also have an external Blu Ray drive so I wont miss the optical drive I think.
    I think that will extend the life of my iMac a few years.
    I just wish there was a way to install USB 3 on it as well.
     
  8. marzer macrumors 65816

    marzer

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #8
    Yes. A 3TB will work fine in place of the old 1TB. If you use a Seagate Barracuda, it will have the 4-pin port for the thermal sensor cable.

    The OWC optical replacement kit will have the cable and shuttle needed to connect the SSD drive in the optical bay. That was my original intent, but my optical SATA port turned out to be flaky, so the SSD kept dropping out over time. That's the only reason it went in place of the hard drive. Otherwise, my original plan was to create a Fusion drive with the SSD in the optical bay and the internal hard drive.
     
  9. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    #9
    If I remember correctly, You must use a matching series of either the Seagate or WD in the 09, unless you want to go to a lot of trouble with hacking the thermal sensor wire. Your local shop might know a way around it. OWC should have that info.
     

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