Which 5400 drive does the retina Mac use?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by vapourtrails, Jun 11, 2018.

  1. vapourtrails macrumors regular

    vapourtrails

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    #1
    Can anyone tell me the Hard drive specs on the stock 21” Retina iMac? How do they perform in real world use? Work is buying a bunch of them (education) but unfortunately they budgeted for the slower hard drive.
     
  2. flyinmac macrumors 68040

    flyinmac

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Location:
    United States
    #2
    It will be whatever brand and model they put in it. Sadly that is the most accurate answer. You can order 10 identical computers, and they may either all have the same hard drive, or many of them may have a different one.

    The only way to really know, is to find someone who has one, and ask them which model is in their system. And, then, do the same of other users.

    In the end, you will probably only be able to narrow it down to 2 or 3 possible options. Which in the sample of machines that your office purchases, is probably what you'll get. Either all the same, or 2 to 3 different models of hard drives used.

    It really just depends on what they had in the stack as your production run went through.
     
  3. tubeexperience macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #3
    As @flyinmac said.

    Anyway, this is not a problem.

    You can just replace the HDDs with SSDs as soon as funding allows.

    Upgrading from HDDs => SSDs is easy and should take less than an hour.
     
  4. vapourtrails thread starter macrumors regular

    vapourtrails

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    #4
    that is unlikely to happen as I do not control the installation and it would
    Be for an entire classroom.

     
  5. tubeexperience, Jun 11, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018

    tubeexperience macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #5
    I actually work for my University as a part time job (full time student).

    We have gradually been upgrading our iMac (along with other PCs) with SSDs.
     
  6. padams35 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2016
    #6
    iFixit teardowns have consistently revealed HGST Travelstars as the included 5400rpm HDD. However that sample size is small and could be subject to change.

    Anecdotal evidence suggests those do OK with clean installs (aside from the usual slow HDD system startup times) right up until the user installs some combination of Microsoft, Google Chrome, and Dropbox at which point the cumulative weight of background updaters and file syncing leads to HDD bottlenecks that spawn beachballs during normal use.
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    OP:

    Is this a computer that you currently have?
    Or... is it one you're thinking about buying?

    My advice:
    DO NOT buy ANY iMac that has only a platter-based hard drive inside.

    Get one with an internal SSD instead.

    Even if you can afford only a 256gb SSD, get that.
    You can always plug in a USB3 hard drive for "more space".

    This will be the most important buying decision you make.
    Don't blow it !!
     
  8. George Dawes macrumors 6502a

    George Dawes

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    Jul 17, 2014
    Location:
    =VH=
  9. Kermit262 macrumors 6502

    Kermit262

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Central Ohio
    #9
    I have a 21.5" iMac arriving in a few hours, with the build-to-order 1TB SSD. My 5 year-old iMac has slowed to a crawl over the last several months and I'm sure the slower-than-molasses 5400 RPM hard drive is at fault. I'll never go back to that technology again - good riddance!
     
  10. tubeexperience macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    #10
    Well, the problem is that the iMac with SSD only doesn't come SATA cable and it's tedious having to remove logic board to install the SATA cable.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 12, 2018 ---
    You should upgrade your old iMac with a 1 TB SSD.

    You can get a 1TB SSD for ~$200

    No need to spend money on a new iMac.
     
  11. Kermit262 macrumors 6502

    Kermit262

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Central Ohio
    #11
    I bought the Mac refurbished and am selling my old one, and the remaining cost is worth it to get the 5 years of improvements.
     
  12. vapourtrails thread starter macrumors regular

    vapourtrails

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    #12
    As stated in the original post I don’t have control over what drive is used. These are work computers. I was simply trying to get info on which drives Apple uses so that I can get a better picture of what the real world use will be like.

     
  13. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #13
    It will be extremely slow whenever it needs to read from the harddrive. Which is quite often.
     
  14. padams35 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2016
    #14
    Since you don't have any control and will be getting them anyway we eagerly await your unbiased review. Previous reports have come from a mix of professional video editors who are understandably not impressed, people who seek out tech forums because their mac is too slow providing confirmation bias, and Best Buy reviews that are inexplicably 4+ stars.

    My only experience is 2nd hand reports from a relative who upgraded from a 2011 MBP with a 5400rpm HDD to a 2009 iMac with a 7200rpm HDD and insists the new old iMac is faster.

    If you want actual numbers then here is the comparison between the Seagate Barracuda found in a 2014 5K iFixit tear down vs the HGST Travelstar seen in the 2017 4K tear down. http://hdd.userbenchmark.com/Compar...B-vs-HGST-Travelstar-5K1000-25--1TB/1849vsm72
     

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