Discussion in 'iMac' started by KaPOWitsCHRIS, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. KaPOWitsCHRIS macrumors 6502


    Apr 8, 2010
    Coventry, UK
    I am considering upgrading my Mac to hopefully prevent any slow down over the next couple of OS X releases. So my plan is to get an SSD and upgrade my 12GB to the max of 16GB. I should mention I have a mid-2011 21.5" iMac. I've thought it through and decided I have 3 options as followed

    #1 - Paying a local authorised Apple service centre to install the SSD into my iMac

    #2 - Installing the SSD myself

    #3 - Using the SSD externally via Thunderbolt with the Seagate adapter.

    Question is, what option do I go for? What would work best/is the safest?
  2. accountforit macrumors 6502a

    Jan 22, 2014

    If you can follow simple directions, #2.
  3. Lucianrider macrumors member

    Jan 1, 2012
    St. Lucia, West Indies
    Personally after having done it myself, I would recommend option 1.

    Here is a thread I started with some of my experience: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1685719

    I have opened various iMacs and replaced power supplies and hard drives but working on my own 21.5" 2011 iMac was incredibly nerve wracking.

    I maintain and rebuild PC's for a TV station and do other electrical work so I believe I am qualified to do my own upgrades, but I would not recommend doing it yourself unless you are very comfortable with cramped spaces and difficult to remove connectors. I found that even when following the guides like the one at ifixit.com it was difficult to separate some of the connectors the first time. After removing them over and over again to correct the problem with the SSD power connector they got easier and I gained confidence to work inside the iMac.

    However I became somewhat paranoid that the more times I went in the odds of causing damage became greater.

    Was it worth it in the end?? For me yes because it all worked out. If I had screwed something up I would still be cursing my stupidity because I cannot get my iMac repaired locally. I would have had to ship it back to Apple and pay the exorbitant cost for couriering it to the US and back again.

    If you can find an Apple tech to do it, pay them to do it!!
  4. DeltaMac macrumors G3


    Jul 30, 2003
    Just to correct one point: The 21.5-inch, Mid 2011 iMac can have as much as 32 GB of RAM installed, double what Apple suggests.
    Most normal use would not show any significant advantage when you already have 12 GB. Maybe using _several_ simultaneous VMs, or working with enormous graphic images, maybe a few other tasks.
    But - thought I'd just mention that capability.

    In addition, your iMac can have TWO internal hard drives/SSDs, without removing the optical drive. You can get kits for that from OWC, and maybe others. It's even more challenging than just swapping the hard drive for an SSD, but it's a great upgrade if you want something like that.
  5. mvmanolov macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2013
    i've also done it myself, and it really is super easy, just follow the instructions, and if you need to remove the logic board either a) buy the tool (cheap) or b) use two small gauge drill bits (cheaper) :D i did option b :D
  6. marzer macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    Having just replaced the hard drive in my 2009 27" iMac with an SSD, I recommend #2. It was much easier than I expected. And, due to the lighter screen, can only imagine the 21" is easier to open up. I followed the iFixit guide.
  7. Lucianrider macrumors member

    Jan 1, 2012
    St. Lucia, West Indies
    The author has an iMac, not Mac Mini. I've just done a HD swap on a new Mini and it was very easy, almost as easy as the 20" white G4 iMac....
  8. mvmanolov macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2013
    Ha, thank you for pointing that out... i read too fast and missed that important point!:eek:

    To OP, obviously totally disregard my previous comment... :(

    And good luck :D

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