Need to replace the Hard Drive in my iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by terry007, Apr 16, 2017.

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  1. terry007, Apr 16, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2017

    terry007 macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    #1
    Hi,

    I have an iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2012) -2.9 GHz Intel Core i5-
    8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3 and according to the Mac repair shop here in Los Angeles, I would need to replace my HD very soon. It keeps spinning when I open the puter. We did give it a tune up nut not much has changed and the HD is only 1/3 used

    What would you recommend? The salesman mentioned the solid state.I will fine installing a non solidate HD too
    Not sure if I should get that of not, and if so where can I buy an HD and can I replace it myself?

    Thanks
    Terry
     
  2. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #2
    If you want to decide about replacing the hard drive yourself, you can check out this repair guide from iFixit.
    Of course, you can replace the hard drive with a 2.5-inch SSD, using that same guide.
    There's a different guide for replacing an SSD, but that means you need to have an iMac that came with an SSD originally. The necessary connector is not there with a hard drive-only iMac.

    Did you ask at the shop how much they would charge to replace the hard drive, and if they can replace with an SSD (which is a wonderful upgrade for your iMac!)
     
  3. terry007 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    #3
    thank you for the reply
    the shop will charge me 420 dollars for the same HD that was in my iMac and $620 for a solid state
     
  4. MRxROBOT macrumors 6502

    MRxROBOT

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    #4
    That is exorbitant. Do the repair yourself (if comfortable) or find an alternative shop.
     
  5. chscag macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #5
    Be advised that opening up a 2012 iMac is a very difficult task. You can find instructions for replacing the hard drive at www.ifixit.com. If there is an Apple store nearby, I would take it there to have the drive replaced as they will do the job right and also warranty the new hard drive for 90 days. I don't know which Mac repair shop you went to in LA but the prices sound too high. There are many Apple Stores in the LA area, take it to one of them to get a free estimate.
     
  6. terry007 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    #6
    thank you
    I live in Studio City, The repair shop wanted $420 for the job that would include: replacing hd with a desktop 500GB mine was 1TB - reinstalling OS X-restore user data
     
  7. jashic01 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 17, 2016
    #7
    That's a ton of money but if that isn't a concern for you, then I suggest you move up to an SSD. I've upgraded my 2011 iMac to an SSD and its considerably faster and more responsive. It feels like a new computer.

    Also, I noticed that a used 2012 21.5 inch iMac with 1TB drive is about $700 on craigslist. So...in other words, you're basically paying to replace the computer. A 500GB drive is less than $100 new and a 500GB SSD is less than $175 new ... so you do the math.

    The 2012 is the thinner iMac, correct? Doing that yourself is going to be a trickier due to the screen being literally glued on via adhesives. It's doable but you should get the kit being sold at ifixit.com so you have all the tools handy. Read the entire hard drive replacement instructions for both taking it apart and putting it back together before you commit to doing it.
     
  8. terry007 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    #8
    thank you for the reply. I do care about the money and thought it was excessive. What kind of I tb HD would you recommend?
    --- Post Merged, Apr 16, 2017 ---
    or which sSSD would recommend?
     
  9. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #9
    Your post #6 said that the shop would replace the HD with a desktop hard drive.
    This is incorrect, as the 21.5-inch takes a laptop-size (2.5-inch) hard drive, not the larger desktop (3.5-inch) hard drive.

    But, ANOTHER option is to simply ignore the internal drive. Your late-2012 iMac has USB 3.0 ports. Get a decent external SSD, such as this.
    Plug it in. Install macOS on that external. Restore your files from the internal drive.
    (No disassembly needed :D )
    With a little velcro, you can tuck that little drive out of the way, behind your iMac.
    It's NOT quite the same as having the internal replaced (but much easier job), and you would lose one USB port, which might be a deal-breaker for some folks.
    But, it's also a workable solution that will give you a noticeable boost in performance, compared to your original hard drive.
     
  10. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #10
    OP:

    First off, what really makes you believe that the existing drive is "going bad"?
    Does it just seem slower lately?
    Or... something else?
    If you run Disk Utility and check it, what kind of report do you get?

    Secondly:
    If the drive does actually fail, you can get back-up-and-running VERY quickly, easily, and without much cost.
    You can buy an EXTERNAL SSD, plug it in, initialize it, and then put a copy of the OS onto it.
    Put your applications and account onto it as well.

    It can then run as an "external booter", and you'll get speeds about 4x as fast as you see now.
    It will be like before -- only much faster.

    IT'S NOT WORTH paying the repair guy for what you'll get from it.
     
  11. terry007 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    #11
    Thanks for the reply.
    I did run Disk Utility and all systems were good, it showed no issues
    yet was getting the beach ball and was getting a hard time using the computer.
    I took it to a repair shop near me, they did a tune up and the verdict was, you need a new HD.
    on his list to do things he suggested using a desktop HD.
    Unfortunately, I'm not savvy when it comes to computer HD so I can only go by what he told me and actually wrote on the receipt.

    I may wanna do what you suggested as I found it very expensive to fix my computer and questioned his judgment.
     
  12. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #12
    I'm going to guess that your internal hard drive (which is almost certainly a platter-based "spinning" drive) has become somewhat fragmented and slow over time.

    This doesn't mean it's "bad". It can probably be re-initialized (erased) and used for storage once you get up-and-running with an external SSD.

    Go to amazon, and look at these:
    https://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-Extreme-Portable-480GB-SDSSDEXT-480G-G25/dp/B00ZTRY5IW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1492453618&sr=8-1&keywords=sandisk+ssd+external&th=1

    Just buy one and plug it in. Get the 480gb size if you can afford it, or else the 240gb should do fine.
    Then -- initialize it.
    Then -- either install a clean copy of OS X and "migrate" from the internal, or
    ... use CarbonCopyCloner to "clone over" the internal to the external.

    What you do depends on how much "stuff" is on the internal, and whether the external SSD can hold it all (there should always be at least 10-15gb of free space left on the SSD).

    If you have lots of pictures, movies and music, you can leave these libraries on the internal drive. They don't "need speed" to run.

    The external SSD should have the OS, your applications, and your accounts (less the large libraries see above).

    This is not hard to do.
    All you need to do is to take the right steps in the proper order.

    You can attach the external SSD to the iMac's "arm" with a piece of velcro, and it will be out-of-the-way.
     
  13. jashic01, Apr 17, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2017

    jashic01 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 17, 2016
    #13
    I agree with the recommendation to use an external SSD based hard drive. There are many options. I personally prefer G-Drive SSD drives but in reality, any reputable company with a good metal case for heat dissipation will do. G-Drive's are meant to be used for heavy processing so are durable.

    Here is one:

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1204462-REG/g_technology_0g04755_500gb_g_drive_ev_raw.html

    Getting a 1 TB SSD drive is extremely expensive.

    For regular drives, I would recommend these because they are also heavy duty cases:

    http://www.g-technology.com/products/g-drive-usb

    https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/EliteALmini/eSATA-FW800-FW400-USB

    I would also go get a second opinion. Why not ask the Apple Store? They are also fairly expensive but at least you know you're getting the right parts and they know what they are doing.
     
  14. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 6502a

    nambuccaheadsau

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #14
    Follow the Fishrrman and get the SSD as he recommends. You really do not want a slow old 7200rpm drive in a case. Hook it up to the ports on the rear, I prefer Thunderbolt ~ he prefers USB3, clone it over, go into System Preferences > Startup Disk and select it as the boot drive.

    When I did this with my older 21.5" I lashed out on a Twelve South Back Pack unit, see link, which has a bench the drive sits on, attached to the leg of the iMac.

    Fishermen may tell stories about their fish but NOT their computers!


    https://www.twelvesouth.com/product/backpack-for-imac
     
  15. terry007 thread starter macrumors member

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    May 27, 2010
  16. terry007 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    #16
    Hi
    So thank you all for your replies.I have decided to order and eternal HD and to use it as my main HD as mine is dying.
    I understand I need to transfer the content of my HD into the new drive I will purchase today, but is there a link on this site that will help with this procedure?
    Thanks.
    Terry
     
  17. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 6502a

    nambuccaheadsau

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #17
    Bit of a risk copying over if the drive is close to failing. Suggest downloading whatever your operating system is from the App Sore and burning to a thumb drive +8GB in size using DiskmakerX, attach the new drive, hopefully Disk Utility will show it. format Mac OS Extended (Journaled) and under Partition > Options select GUID.

    Boot from the thumb drive, select the new SSD and install. Then use Migration Assistant to transfer your information over. Go into System Preferences > Startup Disk and select the new external SSD as the boot drive.

    Hopefully the old drive will last this operation. Then consider getting a drive to use as your backup.


    http://diskmakerx.com
     
  18. kpgh554 macrumors regular

    kpgh554

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Location:
    iver england
    #18
    you can go to macupdate.com and search for c.c.c carbon copy cloner and download that you get a 30 day trial which enough to transfer your whole system to new drive so not lose anything
     
  19. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 6502a

    nambuccaheadsau

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    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    #19
  20. kpgh554 macrumors regular

    kpgh554

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Location:
    iver england
    #20
    iv'e never had any probs with macupdate but don't forget that the app they are showing is now a windows app and they all filled with same crap click this to load click that not to load then get peeved when click wrong and have trouble trying to get rid. ( yes i too have a windows machine and loaded skype on both comps)
     

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