Need advice on upgrading late 2009 iMac SSHD

Discussion in 'iMac' started by IconicM, Jun 25, 2017.

  1. IconicM macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Houston, Tx
    Hello everyone,

    I am seeking advice on SSHD and SSD upgrade options.

    My 3 year old 1.2 TB SSHD seems to be dead. I had partitioned 1 TB for OS X and 200 GB for windows, but I never installed windows. However, I used about 800 GB on the OS X side, mostly pictures and music.

    This is a 27" 11,1 model with 2.66 GHz core i5 processor with 12 GB RAM.

    Because I am close to 1 TB in capacity, I am looking to upgrade to a Seagate Firecuda 2 TB SSHD and adding a second drive, a Mushkin 500 GB SSD (behind the optical drive). Mushkin because of price, $150

    1. I am adding the SSD to get (and keep) a good speed boost. Planning to load OS X and Office on SSD and the rest on SSHD. Will this work well? Any suggestions on setting up iTunes?

    2. I am worried about these dropping back to SATA 1 speeds. I searched and I know some have had trouble with SATA 3 drives dropping down to SATA 1 speeds but I could not find any related threads. Will I need to resort to SATA 2 specific drives to get the most speed?

    3. If there are no issues with the above plan, I would be using time machine to back up to a 4TB external drive. Is this fairly straight forward or any suggestions otherwise?

    Thanks in advance for your help and tips.
  2. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    Re the SATA speeds, it seems to be specific to one controller (the nvidia MCP79) interacting with certain SSD's. I have a Mushkin Reactor (500 Gb) in an early 2009 iMac and it runs at sata 2 most of the time, although very occasionally it will boot up and run at sata 1 speed. (I have no proof that the same thing didn't happen with the original HDD!) As far as I know, there is no SSD that is 100% guaranteed to always 100% of the time run at SATA 2 with that crappy controller. The good news: a) once the iMac negotiates sata 2, it seems to stay that way until a reboot, and b) the perceived difference is actually minimal most of the time.
  3. IconicM thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Houston, Tx
    Thanks for that info kschendel!

    Well I ended up buying a WD Gold 2TB drive and the Mushkin 500 GB SSD, plus a drive cadd, all from New Egg. I was going to buy the Seagate FireCuda from MacSales, as I like to support them when I can,but the SSHD that failed is also a seagate and I looked through my records and figured out I had installed in March 2015 so it ran a little over 2 years. Not very good.

    For back-up I might use a different solution than time machine, but I will be backing up the SSD and SSHD to two separate drives to keep that clean and kosher

    Hope it goes well.

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