Worth Replacing iMac HD, or buy new iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by kevin1182, Nov 15, 2013.

  1. kevin1182 macrumors member

    Jun 8, 2005
    Hi everyone,

    I have a version 11,1 iMac from 2009 and the 1 TB internal Seagate drive just died. I am kicking myself - I knew it was out of warranty, and had inquired about a trade-in value from powermax and nearly did that recently, and of course now the hard drive goes! This iMac has a quad core i7 2.8 GhZ and I upgraded to 16 gb ram as well, so it is quite powerful.

    Now, I have a couple options. Replace the drive as cheap as possible, trade in, and buy new iMac, or, if I keep the computer, I am now debating adding a 240 or 480 gb SSD from OWC using their optical drive kit - http://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/DDMMCL0GB/
    If I do this, I am hoping to get a few more years out of the machine. It was feeling a bit sluggish, but I am thinking it may have been the disk beginning to fail. With a new SSD and a clean install of the new OS, I imagine the machine would feel much faster.

    What would you do? Do you think I would notice a substantial speed improvement with a new iMac? I imagine that with the SSD the old machine will feel quite fast. A new machine would cost roughly 2K, and I could get ~900 for a trade-in (after replacing the old disk) so getting a SSD for the old machine is clearly the cheaper option still.

    Thanks much for any advice,

  2. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    First you should find out if your system qualifies for iMac 1TB Seagate Hard Drive Replacement Program. If it does, that changes your options.

    You haven't said what you use your system for, so it will be hard to advise you.
  3. phoenixsan macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2012
    I think.....

    the SSD upgrade can help you improving booting times and with fast access to documents/apps. Seems like a worthy upgrade for me, if you have the budget and the technical prowess to tackle it (in DIY mode).

    Good luck with the upgrade.....:D

  4. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Hi there I would just stick in a new hard drive and an ssd, there is space in your case for both but you may need a connection kit. You can leave your superdrive as is. Boot into disk utility in mountain lion or mavericks and it'll give you the option to create a fusion drive. Your old imac will fly and see you another few years.
  5. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000


    Mar 20, 2009
    Near London, UK.
    I would put an SSD in , either you or pay a specialist to do it, will give it a big lease of life.
    I dont understand why you'd replace the optical drive though when the HD died. Why wouldnt you replace that?
  6. kevin1182 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 8, 2005
    Thanks for the replies everyone!

    This computer is not eligible for that replacement, I checked.

    I was proposing replacing the optical drive because OWC does not have a kit to swap the SSD in place of the original hard drive so this seemed like the best bet. I contacted OWC support and this is what they said:

    Thank you for contacting OWC. Unfortunately, for the iMac11,1 2009 model, there isn't a Hard Drive replacement cable for the fan issue. You'd want to replace the Hard Drive with one from the same manufacturer.

    I have an external Blu Ray drive so I hardly use the internal optical drive anyway.

    I am thinking I will go the SSD route. I do a lot of programming and run a Linux VM, and also use it for mail, ripping blu rays, supporting a large iTunes library (which is on an external Drobo). I don't need a ton of capacity on the main drive since most media is on the Drobo anyway. The main thing I need a fair amount of storage for on the boot drive itself is the Linux VM which is 100 GB.

    Thanks again, all.

  7. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    I've got that model iMac, same hard drive (replaced under the recall, though), but with 8GB of RAM. Frankly if my hard drive failed again, now outside of warranty, I'd just replace the drive with another. I wouldn't replace it with a SSD because I just don't see pouring money into an older system. Making it operable, though is cost effective! I sleep my iMac (and all of our Macs for that matter) when not in use and keep apps running (Cmd-W to close windows rather than Cmd-Q to quit) which eliminates startup and boot-up/shutdown delays.

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