The Fusion Drive on my iMac 2019 died

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Abbas, Apr 17, 2019.

  1. Abbas macrumors regular

    Abbas

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    Dubai
    #1
    So, 18 days after purchasing the new top-model 27-inch iMac that the Apple Store stocks, the Fusion Drive on my Mac just died. I walked into the office today and the iMac was displaying a folder with a question mark on it.

    Took it back to the Apple Store and they replaced it with a new iMac with identical specs but I'm wondering if was just unlucky or if I should return this replacement and do a BTO with 512GB SSD. I was perfectly happy with the performance of the iMac.
     
  2. macduke macrumors G4

    macduke

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    Jun 27, 2007
    Location:
    Central U.S.
    #2
    SSD is always going to be better. Always. The Fusion Drive has two points of failure: the old spinning HDD tech, and the tiny little SSD that is constantly being written to so it has your most recently used stuff on it. The Fusion Drive will also slow down more as the drive fills up. The SSD will never slow down.
     
  3. JustMartin macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    No doubt you will be deluged by people telling you that this is perfectly normal for a fusion drive and that you should be getting an SSD. I would guess that it was a one-off, some hard drives do just die (I'm presuming it was the hard drive and not the SSD). If you're happy with the performance, I would stick with the Fusion.
     
  4. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #4
    Yes, you were.

    My Fusion Drive failed on my Late 2012 iMac, but it started to fail after about 1.5 years. It kept passing the Apple Store's HW diagnostic, so they refused to replace it, but it totally failed 12 days before my Apple Care was up, and they finally replaced it.

    But, 18 days is just really unlucky.
    There are very few people on this forum that would recommend a Fusion Drive over a SSD, but if you are happy with the performance of the Fusion Drive, and would prefer keeping your storage internal over external and not spending $500 - $1,000 to do it, then keep the Fusion Drive.

    Is it the 1TB Fusion or the 2TB Fusion?

    Originally the 1TB Fusion Drive had a 128GB SSD, but Apple changed that a while back and put a much smaller SSD in them. The 2019 has only a 32GB SSD for the 1TB Fusion Drive.

    All of the 2TB Fusion Drives and up have a 128GB SSD.

    I would not recommend the 1TB Fusion in the 2019 iMac, it is just a tiny bit better than just a HDD.
     
  5. Abbas thread starter macrumors regular

    Abbas

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    Dubai
    #5
    Fusion Drive failing after 1.5 years doesn’t give me much confidence!

     
  6. AppleFan360 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    #6
    The 1TB fusion drive in my late 2014 iMac is still running. They do last. You only hear from the ones that failed here on this forum. If you are happy with the performance of the fusion drive then keep it. Yes, an internal SSD would be better but if it is cost prohibitive, then don't worry about it.
     
  7. rvivancoITA, Apr 17, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2019

    rvivancoITA macrumors newbie

    rvivancoITA

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2019
    Location:
    Switzerland
    #7
    Being “happy with the performance” in only 18 days is not enough to realize that the performance of such type of disk is not on pair with the current technology (SSD). IT IS A SIGN! Buy Sdd and forget this “out of date technology” that apple “insist” on us to buy.

    JUST MY 2 cents!
     
  8. Apple fanboy macrumors Nehalem

    Apple fanboy

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    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    Behind the Lens, UK
    #8
    Retired my 1TB fusion drive 2012 iMac last year. Still works well. Yes I west with a 2TB SSD on my new Mac mini, but only because I could afford it.
     
  9. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #9
    I am sure I was just unlucky and this is not the norm.

    This is true, as people don't usually make it a point to say that things are working as intended.

    Just a note, if the OP is using a 1TB Fusion, keep in mind that the performance of your 1TB Fusion Drive in your 2014 iMac would be very different from the OP's experience. Your Fusion has a 128GB SSD, while the OP's only has 32GB.

    The smaller SSD would also cause the HDD to run more often too.

    The more you use the Fusion Drive, the better it gets, especially if you repeat the same tasks or use the same files often.

    I would recommend a SSD too, but if one wants a large amount of internal storage, and doesn't want to spend $1K for the 2TB SSD, a 2TB Fusion Drive would have good performance, for a much cheaper price tag.
     
  10. mj_ macrumors 6502

    mj_

    Joined:
    May 18, 2017
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #10
    OP bought the, and I quote, new top-model 27-inch iMac that the Apple Store stocks. The top model 27-inch iMac comes with a 2TB Fusion Drive, which in return comes with a 2TB HDD and 128GB SSD. You're thinking of the 1TB Fusion Drive that ships with a 24GB SSD. The 2TB and 3TB model ship with a 128GB SSD.

    Either way, @Abbas you were just unlucky. Unless Apple somehow ended up with a batch of defective HDDs from Seagate/Hitachi/WD then it's a pure coincidence. Users on these forums (and all other Apple forums on the internet) are biased heavily towards SSDs and will tell you that a Fusion Drive is practically unusable in 2019 and that SSDs are the only way to go. If you were happy with your iMac's performance then there is no reason to pay Apple's ridiculous SSD premium.
     
  11. tomscott1988 macrumors 6502a

    tomscott1988

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    UK
    #11
    I don't know why people buying new would take the chance its not a good compromise in any way imo.

    Especially when there are plenty of ports and 4tb drives are like £100 8tb like £160.
     
  12. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #12
    Yea, I read that, but just to be clear that it was the "top-model" I asked the OP to clarify which Fusion Drive is on the iMac that they have. Some people might say they bought the top model, but this may not always be accurate.

    This is incorrect.

    The 2019 1TB Fusion Drive has a 32GB SSD.

    The Original 2012 1TB had the 128GB SSD, and it stayed that way until the 2015 (I think) iMac model when they switched to a tiny 24GB SSD. Apple then increased this to 32GB for the 2017 iMac, and kept the 32GB for the 2019 iMac with the 1TB Fusion Drive.

    Yup, I know, as mentioned from this post to the OP above:
    I agree with you on this.
     
  13. mj_ macrumors 6502

    mj_

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    May 18, 2017
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #13
    You're right, the 2017 has a 32GB SSD although macOS uses just 28GB thereof by default:

    I was thinking of the 2015 models, my bad.
     
  14. Abbas thread starter macrumors regular

    Abbas

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    Dubai
    #14
    As @mj_ guessed, I purchased the top-of-the-line model which comes with 2TB Fusion Drive. I guess it was a one-off and I'll setup the new iMac with the 2TB version. Is it worth getting Apple Care?


     
  15. smoking monkey macrumors 65816

    smoking monkey

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    You Only Live Twice
    #15
    YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  16. QCassidy352 macrumors G4

    QCassidy352

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    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #16
    Any storage device dying after 18 days is an unlucky fluke. That said, SSDs will last longer, on average, than fusion drives. Although, we should be talking about a number of years either way. My mom's 2012 iMac with fusion drive is still going strong today.

    If it were me, I'd get a SSD for the OS and your most used files/apps and an external if you need more space for media or big project files or something like that.
     
  17. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #17
    I would.

    I think that Apple's HW quality has dropped a bit over the past 6-7 years.

    Actually, the first time I have ever gotten Apple Care was on my maxed out Late 2012 with a 1TB Fusion Drive. It was a brand new design, and really thin, so I got Apple Care just to cover myself if there was some design flaw.

    It ended up working out, as my Fusion Drive took a crap.

    So I think AC is worth it.

    Then again, the frustration of having to deal with Apple, and the many of wasted trips to the Apple Store paying tolls and the gas for the drive there, it would have probably been better if I would have not gotten Apple Care, and just replace the drive myself.
     
  18. mj_ macrumors 6502

    mj_

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    #18
    That is the understatement of the year :p

    With MacBooks and MacBook Pros I absolutely agree with you: AppleCare+ is a must have and not optional since you can't fix or replace anything Apple laptops anymore. Plus, given Apple's track record with their mobile devices it's almost certain that something is going to break after your standard 1-year warranty expired, be it the keyboard, the display cable, the display coating, the GPU, the Touch Bar, etc.

    With iMacs I'm not as certain to be honest, because they are much easier to work on once opened. If your livelyhood depends on it then yes, AppleCare is an absolute must have. My 27" is my main workhorse and I need it for my job every single day so I went ahead and spent the extra $170 on AppleCare+ for an extra two years of coverage for extra peace of mind.
     
  19. vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #19
    Yea, I am not sure either. That is why I posted this:

    On one hand, the piece of mind of having everything covered is nice, but like you said, once opened, it isn't that hard to replace most of the basics.

    Even then, I am unsure about the iMac. If the user would never want to attempt to fix it themselves, then yes, definitely get AC.

    When it came to my Fusion Drive issue, the Apple Store refused to fix it for almost a year due to the drive passing their HW diagnostic test, and I had to bring it back to them many times only to have them refuse to fix it before it total died.

    If I had not ever gotten Apple Car, I would have just replaced the drive myself, and put a SSD in it in place of the HDD..... So, I have mixed feelings about it.
     
  20. PlayUltimate macrumors regular

    PlayUltimate

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    Jul 29, 2016
    Location:
    Boulder, CO
    #20
    For desktops, AppleCare is probably less needed than for portable devices. However, the value proposition made it worth it to me. AppleCare for iMacs is less than 10% of the cost. You more than make your money back on one repair.
     
  21. Ubele macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    #21
    One thing I like to bring up that I rarely see mentioned: If you use Apple's iCloud storage plan, any files you want to go in iCloud have to go in the Documents folder, which has to be on the system drive. (Your Photos and iTunes libraries can be on external drives.) My wife and I share the 2 TB iCloud plan, which is cheaper than two 1 TB Dropbox plans. A couple years ago, I replaced the HDDs in our 2012 Mac minis with Fusion drives. They've been working flawlessly.

    An alternative is to boot from a large-enough external SSD. That's what I do with my 2015 256 GB MacBook Pro: boot from a 1 TB external SSD is a USB 3 enclosure. That way, I have all my files on both my Mac mini and my MBP. For what I do (office productivity apps and hobbyist-level web design, photo editing, music, and video), I haven't noticed any practical difference in speed between the MBP's internal SSD and the external SSD, even though I know the internal is faster.

    If I were to get a new iMac, ideally I'd go with an internal 1 TB SSD, but that's too expensive for me, so I'd probably go with a 2 TB Fusion drive. It all depends on your needs.
     
  22. s15119 macrumors 68000

    s15119

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2010
    #22
    Do you have any actual evidence to support this claim?

    Hear it on the forums is not actual evidence.
     
  23. adamk77, Apr 18, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019

    adamk77 macrumors 6502a

    adamk77

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    Jan 6, 2008
    #23
    I can understand the personal choice of wanting peace of mind. However, an extended warranty, including AppleCare, is not worth it in a strict business sense. I heard from an actuary who said that for the price that Apple charges for AppleCare, you could cover all the electronics in your house, including accidental damage, and whoever sold you the extended warranty would still be giddy about making all that money off of you. I'm sure it offers a peace of mind, and if this is something that's important to you, then by all means. I think the better course of action is to charge it on a credit card that offers extended warranty as a benefit to its members.
     
  24. kazmac macrumors 604

    kazmac

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    #24
    Yes. Definitely get Apple Care.
     
  25. nihil0 macrumors regular

    nihil0

    Joined:
    May 19, 2016
    #25
    I have 2017 iMac with 2 TB fusion drive and in june it will be 2 years since I have it. So far, no problems with it.
     

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42 April 17, 2019