Upgrade Original SSD - Mid 2011 iMac

MendotaMike

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 1, 2011
30
0
Twin Cities, MN
I've been trying to find information on how to upgrade the original SSD that came with my mid-2011 iMac. I ordered the machine with both an SSD and a spinning hard disk (250GB + 1TB), but the SSD has always been on the hairy edge of being full, especially with part of it partitioned off to run a Windows virtual machine in Parallels.

Everything I find when I search for information about how to upgrade the SSD talks only about replacing a HD with an SSD, or adding an SSD to a machine with only an original HD. Nothing about how to replace the factory SSD. Can anyone tell me what kind of SSD Apple actually put in these machines, and if they are user upgradeable? Links?

Thanks much.
 

MendotaMike

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 1, 2011
30
0
Twin Cities, MN
Yes, I've seen these videos. Unfortunately neither of these say anything about the original Apple SSD, only how to add an aftermarket SSD to a system that only has a regular HD. What I'm looking for is information about how to upgrade the existing SSD that shipped with the machine. Is it a "packaged" SSD like those that you buy aftermarket (and thus "plug and play"?) or is it one of the variety that is more typically found in a laptop?
 

Dreadnought

macrumors 68020
Jul 22, 2002
2,055
14
Almere, The Netherlands
You don't need to replace it, you can also add another ssd as you have an extra sata port on the logic board. Also, the factory installed ssd probably has a heat sensor, just like the normal HD. Keep that in mind when replacing the ssd. That's the reason why I just added a ssd next to the normal HD, so that I didn't gave to install a temperaturecable or do a softwaremod.
 

Dopeyman

macrumors 6502a
Sep 5, 2005
604
45
Los Angeles!
You don't need to replace it, you can also add another ssd as you have an extra sata port on the logic board. Also, the factory installed ssd probably has a heat sensor, just like the normal HD. Keep that in mind when replacing the ssd. That's the reason why I just added a ssd next to the normal HD, so that I didn't gave to install a temperaturecable or do a softwaremod.
The 27" only has 3 SATA ports. One of them is used by his main 3.5" drive and the other is used by the SSD. The "extra" port that you're referring to is used by the optical drive. And it's a SATA2 I believe. So if it's going to be a bit slow.

And no, the factory installed SSD does NOT have a temperature sensor like the main 3.5" port/drive.
 

TechZeke

macrumors 68020
Jul 29, 2012
2,377
2,030
San Antonio, TX
I personally did such an upgrade to my iMac. Removing the screen is a trickiest part. I used OWC's kit with a 480GB OWC SSD. Worked like a charm.

Any standard 2.5" SATA SSD should work.
 

jefe2000

macrumors member
Jul 23, 2002
30
25
San Francisco Bay Area
That is correct
Where is the OEM SSD installed inside the case?

I ask because I'm planning to swap out the 2 TiB hard drive in my 27" 2011 iMac. I'm expecting that the hard drive is installed in the bay in the center of the machine, just above the logic board, as shown in the iFixit guides. But, I'll be in for an unpleasant surprise if the OEM SSD is there and the hard drive is somewhere else inside the machine.
 
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