New 27-Inch iMac Disassembled, Aftermarket SSD Install Deemed Difficult

MacRumors

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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Yesterday, we noted that Apple's new 27" iMac for the first time allows users to configure their machines with a second hard drive, offering a 256 GB solid state drive as an option for the second bay.



Location of second hard drive bay in new 27" iMac

A number of consumers have wondered about the possibility of aftermarket installation of drives into this bay, should they choose to go with the single-drive option at purchase and perhaps add a second drive later as prices drop and/or capacities increase. To answer that question, Other World Computing has opened up one of the new iMacs and unfortunately found that the task would not be a simple one unless the machine originally shipped with dual drives.
The good news is that the SSD bay available in the new iMacs holds a standard 2.5" form factor drive, which means you can install a high-performance OWC Mercury Extreme SSD for the speed advantage over Apple's SSDs.

The bad news is that, unless your Mid 2010 iMac originally came with an Apple SSD, there's no graceful way to install an OWC one. The appropriate mounting bracket and connector cables are nowhere to be found on the non-SSD models.
The report goes on to detail one somewhat inelegant method in which a user of a single-drive iMac could add a second drive, but the solution is certainly not ideal.

Article Link: New 27-Inch iMac Disassembled, Aftermarket SSD Install Deemed Difficult
 

thecartoonguy

macrumors 6502a
Jun 28, 2008
582
0
We (the genius bar team) would cringe because these are a pain to fix. Taking out the glass and replacing it without getting lint, dust or anything is almost impossible. But trying to mod it? *faints*
 

RMo

macrumors 65816
Aug 7, 2007
1,213
207
Iowa, USA
Is there a functioning link to the article anywhere? The one in the MacRumors article just takes me to a "nothing found" page.

(I know, how dare I read the original article. :))
 

Osnabrueck

macrumors member
Feb 9, 2010
71
1
You mean Apple doesn't have the common courtesy to include instructions and hardware for mounting aftermarket SSD drives?

This is an epic fail Apple. Shame on u!
 

WildCowboy

Administrator/Editor
Staff member
Jan 20, 2005
17,243
1,139
Is there a functioning link to the article anywhere? The one in the MacRumors article just takes me to a "nothing found" page.

(I know, how dare I read the original article. :))
Sorry about that. Crazily enough, they used a curly quote in the URL for the "inches" sign, and the encoding broke when I published the article. Should be fixed now.
 

SaaGua

macrumors member
Apr 22, 2010
61
0
I think apple engineers go out of their way to design macs to be difficult for consumers to upgrade.

engineer1: Let's design it this way.

engineer2: Nah, let's design it, THIS way!
 

lilo777

macrumors 603
Nov 25, 2009
5,144
0
Well, as they say - it's capitalism. Apple needs your money and they know how to get you. In the end, Apple will lose though.
 

tofagerl

macrumors 6502a
May 16, 2006
954
395
Okay, this is just horrible! There's no way to explain this as anything but a big fat "screw the consumer", and I for one - a huge Apple fan - really hate it when they pull this crap.
 

macduke

macrumors G4
Jun 27, 2007
10,617
14,189
Central U.S.
It's too bad it doesn't have an empty slot.

Can't we simply buy the 1tb model, replace that drive with a SSD, and use large, cheap external drives? I picked up a 2tb external drive from Western Digital about two months ago for only $120. It is beautiful glossy black with matte top and I wouldn't hesitate putting it next to an iMac (or you could get that "backpack" bracket and mount it up high behind the unit on the stand to eliminate clutter). You could also get an external enclosure for the 1tb drive and use it like this.

If I bought an iMac I would do this.
 

idea_hamster

macrumors 65816
Jul 11, 2003
1,096
1
NYC, or thereabouts
Apple

Total jackass move. :rolleyes:

In other news, iFixit, OWC, transintl and others are sitting up tonight drawing plans for a $0.07 piece of stamped aluminum that they can sell to us for $50.

And you know what? I think I'll buy one—not because I have an iMac (or plan to) but because I like to support the folks who make life tough for the jackasses.
 

willy-wonkapple

macrumors newbie
Jul 28, 2010
18
0
Total jackass move. :rolleyes:

In other news, iFixit, OWC, transintl and others are sitting up tonight drawing plans for a $0.07 piece of stamped aluminum that they can sell to us for $50.

And you know what? I think I'll buy one—not because I have an iMac (or plan to) but because I like to support the folks who make life tough for the jackasses.
Yeah! +100
 

NetJunkie

macrumors newbie
Mar 6, 2010
29
1
Not surprising...

I've opened up two of the 27" iMacs to install SSDs and if anyone thinks Apple is screwing people you're wrong. There is just no room in those things to make it easy to add an SSD. I'm amazed they did this at all. It's an amazing piece of engineering how it fits together and I was curious how they did this new setup.

It would be nice if they all had the cables and brackets but honestly, it's a VERY small percentage of customers that would ever go through the hassle to crack open this system. Most people get scared at step 1, popping the glass off the front.
 

ladeer

macrumors 6502
Feb 15, 2007
391
10
i don't comment much here, but come on are u guys delusional? these iMac are not Dell or HP desktop boxes, but a laptop size PC w/ LCD built in. it is bigger than laptop but it also uses Desktop parts. how can you fault Apple for not leaving room, mounting bracket, or cable for you to add a second hard drive?! heck it's never designed for you to dissemble it like that (pic). why don't u bash how every laptop out there doesn't allow u to add a second hard drive or a car doesn't let you install a second engine? are you going to tell me that other desktops could? well, iMac is NOT a typical desktop. how many all in one PC can?

fyi Apple does make a typical desktop PC w/ slots to upgrade it's called Mac Pro