Why can't Refurb iMacs be upgraded for their hard drive?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by SD-B, Nov 18, 2014.

  1. SD-B macrumors 6502


    Apr 1, 2009
    Why can't refurb iMacs be upgraded? At least as far as their hard drives?
    They are at Apple so couldn't they upgrade them there OR for some reason or another?

    I keep seeing a refurb iMac I want but NONE of them but one I don't want comes with the typical 1TB drive.
    I won't consider one without a fusion or ssd drive so I am now going to have to pass on refurbs for this one reason..
    Hence, wondering why it can't be upgraded while it is in Apples possession?

    2nd Question, CAN I upgrade the memory (ram) easily upgraded by me?

  2. crsh1976 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2011
    Refurbs come and go, you will eventually see the exact model you're looking for with the specific specs you want, but there's no telling whether it's days, weeks or months away. Check often, that's about all you can do.

    As far as RAM upgrades go, which model are you talking about? The 21.5-inch model's RAM cannot easily be upgraded later on (it's possible but not easy), but the 27-inch can.
  3. FreemanW macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2012
    The Real Northern California
    You may upgrade it. You buy the refurb unit you want, then, bring it into an Apple service center and pay them to install the hard drive of your choice. ;)

    Oh, but you say that that would be too expensive?

    Now you're catching on to the reason why upgrading a refurbished units is not an option.
  4. sharon22 macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2014
    Just so you know, there are a LOT of *extremely detailed* YouTube videos on how to upgrade iMacs yourself. Some are pretty simple, others are daunting.

    In the old days, Father-Son project = working on old chevy in garage while wife brings lemonade. Nowadays, Father-Son project = upgrading the iMac :)

    (Except wife won't have time bringing lemonade -- she will have to run to the computer store for Torx screwdriver, suction cups, and fiddly bit devices nobody has LOL)
  5. redheeler macrumors 603


    Oct 17, 2014
    Void the warranty on my new iMac? NEVER! :eek:

    But to those who aren't afraid, iFixit is your friend ;)

    BTW, they don't use magnets anymore. Now it's glued in. No more suction cups, instead you have to pry it off.
  6. sharon22 macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2014
    Redheeler, GOOD POINT about voiding warranties.... Usually I'm really OCD about making sure I "disclaim" myself by saying "proceed at your own risk," so thank you for that! And, yes, I LOVE those iFixit videos. I have one already bookmarked for when I take my iMac apart. Fortunately, mine is a mid-2007, and there's like ONE connector to slip off, and voila, there's my old hard drive. Pop in an SSD and some chewing gum to hold it in place, and I'm off to the races!! :D

    So, yes, that will DEFINITELY void your warranty, AND, the new iMacs, they are NOT for the faint-of-heart. Whoever tackles one of those is my hero!

    I think someone at Apple decided to use glue, on purpose. Probably some geek with those square glasses, and messy hair, and those pin-stripe shirts with pocket protectors... "um hey boss, let's glue the glass in [geeky laughter follows]." Right? Or am I right? I think glue is dumb. NO GLUE IN THE WORLD is permanent.... it is something that will crack and break over time. Who EVER heard of glue being used on a car body, for example? "Yes, to remove the hood, you loosen this bolt here, undo this bolt over here, and then pry away the glue......." NOT! hahahaha
  7. redheeler macrumors 603


    Oct 17, 2014
    Actually the windows of a car are glued in. I even used this as an example once.

    Imagine the only way you can get into your car is to unglue the windshield, and reapply glue before you drive. That's what working on a newer iMac is like.

    Also, the reason they removed the magnets was to make it thinner. That's why.
  8. nrubenstein macrumors 6502

    Aug 5, 2008
    Washington, DC
    Actually, they are starting to bond structural components in cars. IIRC, the Lotus Elise frame bonded with some riveting. You're also seeing factory panel repair kits from, say, BMW that are bonded only. In the case of steel, the problem with welding is that welds rust. And welds under less than ideal conditions rust very quickly. Edit: http://rts.i-car.com/collision-repa...ng-technology-on-steel-bmw-vehicle-parts.html

    Furthermore, while a glue/epoxy bonded component may be weaker on a per square inch basis, you can generally bond the entire contact surface, which gives a much stronger attachment than a weld around the edges.

    Oh yeah, and bonding is something that moved DOWN to cars from Aviation. Substantial portions of any plane will be bonded together, especially ones integrating composite materials like the newest generation Boeing and Airbus models.

    So yes, glue is here to stay and used for a lot more intensive tasks than holding on a monitor.
  9. SD-B thread starter macrumors 6502


    Apr 1, 2009
    Its the 27" Retina I'm pretty sure now will be the one I will buy.
    Now just deciding if i took this long to do so, whether to wait until Black Friday and at the least, get a $150 gift card IF INDEED one does get one..
    ( have to double check that )

    So i get from what you said that the 21" can't be but the 27" can. If it is all about being this as some of you suspect, aren't they really both equally thin?
    If so, why would one be able to and not the other, if you don't mind my curiosity?

    LOL oh thats an understatement :)

    Cute!! Except the man in this house is a dinosaur and feels the iPad is all he needs.
    That leaves only me to figure it all out :)

    So I am guessing that the bottom line is that whatever I buy this 27" retina iMac with would be better off buying at 16 gigs for installing that later on is impossible for someone like myself which would mean I would have to drag it out to a store etc to have it done then, is that correct? :(
  10. Arran macrumors 601


    Mar 7, 2008
    Atlanta, USA
    It's not about logistics. It's all about margin protection.

    Selling highly-discounted refurbs is how Apple offers "as-new" product to buyers who won't (or can't) pay full price. If Apple made the refurb channel as convenient and predictable as the regular retail channel, customers would have no incentive to pay full price at retail. They'd all buy refurbs and Apple would lose money.
  11. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    Adding RAM to the riMac is dead easy; even the dinosaur could do it. You pop open a door and stick it in. About as difficult as plugging in headphones or USB cables. Well, a tad more, but not much. Don't pay anyone to do it.

    The 21" iMacs have the RAM inside, with no door and no way to access it. I imagine that it's in part a space issue; a 21" is basically a 27" crammed into a smaller container.
  12. SD-B thread starter macrumors 6502


    Apr 1, 2009

    What about the regular top of the line 27"?

    I was just about to pull the button for the Retina, but I went into Apple today and played with it for a while and in all honesty, as beautiful as it is, i really just use my screen for heavy internet usage, email, more than anything else.
    I don't use photoshop, i don't make videos or watch them.......so even the apple guy i spoke to said it really wasn't necessary for me to get retina as disappointing as it was to hear that.

    So I am now pretty sure i will just spend the same money but bump up the regular 27" with higher specs instead BUT...........just so I so know for sure this answer, is the 27' non retina as easy, or not?

    It doesn't sound to be..........?

    Thank's in advance..

    You are right and down deep i did know that. I was just hoping I was wrong
    Thank you.
  13. sharon22 macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2014
    Oops, you are right, again! (I should have known that, I watched the speedy glass repairman glue a windshield into a car!). My goodness, I need to go on a mountain wilderness retreat and re-find my "center." I am goofing up too much! (I did switch from "English Breakfast Tea" to "Scottish Breakfast Tea." That must be the reason!)
  14. crsh1976 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2011
    Since Apple introduced the new super-thin iMac design, the 21.5-inch model lost the little door in the back where we could easily upgrade the RAM ourselves, the 27-inch (retina and non-retina) still has that feature, though.

    The "why?" part is up to debate: to save on space for the super-thin design (it's really cramped in there), to make buyers pay Apple a little more for additional RAM right at purchase time, all of the above, etc.

    If you look at the iFixIt tear-apart/replacement guide for the 2012-2013 21.5-inch model, the RAM is still upgradeable, but we now need to take the whole machine apart to get to those RAM slots.

    As mentioned, there are plenty of guides and videos out there, it's doable, but it's definitely not for beginners. I've been assembling my own machines for years and I'm not even sure I would give it a try - you can find experienced techs to do it for you, tho.

Share This Page