What can I do to make my 2008 iMac run fast again?

Vivara

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 7, 2012
3
0
I have a 24-inch iMac (early 2008) with 2GB RAM, running OS X 10.8.

What's the cheapest way to get this running fast?

I always planned to upgrade the RAM to the 6GB option, but never had the money. I know 2GB is pretty pitiful. Or will there be a noticeable difference over 4GB? I run memory intensive apps frequently, so I would be inclined to think so.

My HDD is a 320GB SATA disk which is in place of the original drive which failed about two years ago. I don't really have an issue with space. Should I just replace the entire drive with an SDD?

Would this get me running close to a new iMac, or thereabouts?

Thanks!
 

fastlanephil

macrumors 65816
Nov 17, 2007
1,145
191
Max out the RAM with 3rd part memory. This is your best option for a noticeable speed increase.

A SSD will load applications and files much quicker but it won't generally make your iMac faster.
 

RedCroissant

Suspended
Aug 13, 2011
2,268
94
I have a 24-inch iMac (early 2008) with 2GB RAM, running OS X 10.8.

What's the cheapest way to get this running fast?

I always planned to upgrade the RAM to the 6GB option, but never had the money. I know 2GB is pretty pitiful. Or will there be a noticeable difference over 4GB? I run memory intensive apps frequently, so I would be inclined to think so.

My HDD is a 320GB SATA disk which is in place of the original drive which failed about two years ago. I don't really have an issue with space. Should I just replace the entire drive with an SDD?

Would this get me running close to a new iMac, or thereabouts?

Thanks!
First, backup your data. Then reinstall the OS and see if that does anything for you. After that, upgrade the RAM to the max. You could get a SSD but I don't think that's necessary. I recently upgraded my 2009 iMac with 8GB of RAM and that's all it needed.
 

GimmeSlack12

macrumors 603
Apr 29, 2005
5,395
8
San Francisco
I upgraded my early 2008 iMac with an SSD last October. Noticeable difference in performance. Though, the obvious thing for the OP is to put in as much RAM as possible.

The combination of putting 6gb of RAM and an SSD in your iMac will make you :) again. It is a quality resurrection of a 4 year old machine.
 

Mike in Kansas

macrumors 6502a
Sep 2, 2008
962
71
Metro Kansas City
I upgraded my early 2008 iMac with an SSD last October. Noticeable difference in performance. Though, the obvious thing for the OP is to put in as much RAM as possible.

The combination of putting 6gb of RAM and an SSD in your iMac will make you :) again. It is a quality resurrection of a 4 year old machine.
I second this. I did the same thing myself and it's been noticeably faster, particularly in Aperture. I will definitely be able to put off upgrading until 2013, or until the next version of OSX won't be able to be installed on my machine. I'm in my 5th year on this machine, which is better than I was expecting.
 

canonwire

macrumors member
Jun 25, 2007
34
0
North Carolina
Honestly, a SSD is the best upgrade available. Boot up time blazes. I have a 2006 24" iMac that is a "kid" computer. I took out the old HD and stuck a SSD in. Boots up quick, gets to apps quick. Just wish I could run Lion on it. It is maxed out at 3g of RAM.

SSD all the way!
 

Vivara

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 7, 2012
3
0
Thanks guys!

Can anyone link me to a reputable site where I can buy the 6GB RAM for my iMac and maybe look at some reasonably priced SSD options?
 

mmomega

macrumors 68040
Dec 30, 2009
3,382
1,539
DFW, TX
I'd check Newegg, you're looking for 200pin SO DIMM DDR2-800 RAM.
Here

and a good SSD not sure what size you're looking at....me I don't use much more than 120'ish GB in most of my Macs as I have plenty of external storage for the big files.
I've been using Corsair Force GT's recently.
Here