Would you/Have you sent in your iMac to OWC for SSD(s)/eSATA?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Crunch, Sep 20, 2010.


Would you/Have you sent in your iMac to OWC for SSD(s)/eSATA?

  1. Yes, I would, except... (please post what's holding you back)

    7 vote(s)
  2. Yes, I have. The outcome was... (please post your experience)

    2 vote(s)
  3. No, I wouldn't, because... (please post reason)

    10 vote(s)
  1. Crunch macrumors 6502a


    Hey everyone!

    I'm still astounded at how many problematic iMac's keep coming out of Apple but I would really LOVE to take advantage of OWC's TurnKey program and get one or two of my SSD's professionally installed by them. They offer to put up to three in your iMac and then there's the optional eSATA port, too, of course. <drool>

    So what do you think? For the purpose of this poll, let's say that money is no object. Would you or Have you sent your iMac off to a highly reputable company for the purpose of getting 1 or 2 Solid State Drives and/or an eSATA port installed in your machine? You have the option of buying one of their SSD's or send yours and just pay for labor and shipping.

    I'm obviously very much on the fence, but I know that the pay-off would be tremendous because I have had Intel SSD's in my notebooks for almost two years and the difference is simply stunning! What say you?
  2. tears2040 macrumors 6502

    Aug 27, 2010

    Waste of money...... I use a Mac Pro at school and a iMac at home. If I had 2K I would buy a Mac pro which has all the ports in the world ( expandability ) as opposed to this 21.5" bare bone system
  3. Santabean2000 macrumors 68000


    Nov 20, 2007
    Not everyone wants a big ol' tower filling up the room. I know a lot of home users (non-pros) who would love the extra performance, esp with video editing, but don't want a massive unit. The iMac is a sleek machine.

    I would love to do it, except that I don't live in the States and don't fancy shippin' my iMac all that way. [Actually, I have previous gen i7, so don't know if it's even capable of the upgrade anyway.]
  4. wirelessness macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2010
    Not to mention the fact that they cost more than $2K.
  5. tears2040 macrumors 6502

    Aug 27, 2010
    lol, have you guys ever used a Mac Pro?

    20.1 inches (51.1 cm)
    8.1 inches (20.6 cm)
    18.7 inches (47.5 cm)


    27" Imac

    20.4 inches (51.7 cm)
    25.6 inches (65.0 cm)
    8.15 inches (20.7 cm)

    So the Imac is taller & wider, but the Mac Pro has more depth. Basically you would store your Mac Pro under your desk or even on top and you can still connect a nice monitor next to it. People thinking a Mac Pro is some huge beast just shows me they have never used one.

    Mac Pro 2.66GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon

    This model while costing $2119 will run circles around the top of the line iMac $2199. So the advantage with the imac is the nice Led Monitor, but realistically even me owning an imac it's really not that special as I would rather have more computing powers + all of the options the MP has.
  6. Mromberg macrumors newbie

    Sep 21, 2010
    Ordered, waiting nervously

    I ordered a 27" i7, shipped directly to OWC, and I'm having them upgrade the RAM to 8 GB and install the 60 GB SSD. I'm nervous about not laying eyes/hands on the machine before extra hardware is installed. Between the screen and noise issues this whole thing seems a little risky. This is the most money I've spent on a Mac, which simpy adds to the anxiety. Having said that, however, I guess I wasn't willing to pay the extra shipping to get the computer here, then send it off to OWC.

    In general, my experience with Apple and OWC has been stellar in the past. Simply exchanging my iMac for a new one in the event of problem will not be easy, however.

    If it all works out, I will have saved about $500 for a smaller but supposedly higher performance SSD. I'll keep the forum posted -- not expecting the finished product until early in October.
  7. wirelessness macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2010
    False!!! It's been well established that the i7 2.93 will exceed the 2.66 Xeon in almost every benchmark utility. The bus speed is higher and there is more memory available. The only area where this MP would exceed the iMac i7 is in 3D rendering due to the superior GPU.

    Now, if you are talking about customization and expandability then yes, the MP is a better choice.

    You can't disregard the true cost of an equivalent 27" monitor when comparing the costs between the iMac and the Mac Pro the 27" display costs $999. The cost is much higher but you definitely gain flexibility.
  8. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    But a nice monitor, like the new 27" Apple LED Cinema display, is :
    Height: 19.35 inches (49.1 cm)
    Width: 25.7 inches (65 cm)
    Depth (with stand): 8.15 inches (20.7 cm)

    the same footprint (widthxdepth) as the iMac! Going with a Mac Pro takes additional space equal to the size of the Mac Pro.:)
  9. rootsmaneuver macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2006
    IF I were an iMac owner...

    ...which I may become in the next 12 months or so, I would definitely get the eSATA port installed, as well as an SSD in the optical drive bay. I've got an external RAID setup and I currently use the firewire 800 port. I would love to be able get full functionality out of the sweet piece of gear my RAID is.

    Though, if I came close to buying the iMac, I would definitely have an internal debate whether to buy the iMac or MacPro. The iMac is beautiful and all in one, but the all-in-one quality of the machine makes it difficult to upgrade and that is a turn off. iMac has a beautiful, huge screen, but I care more about future proofing my investments than a stunning display. If one chooses Mac Pro, you can do all the upgrades yourself, saving hundreds compared to shipping to OWC.

    But YES, if I were an iMac owner today, I would do the upgrades mentioned above.
  10. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Back to the original question, I wouldn't because of warranty repair concerns. I wouldn't want to be shipping my iMac back to OWC for any failure when there is an Apple store minutes away from where I live and work.
  11. smetvid macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2009
    This is a silly comparison because you still need a monitor which you would have to factor in how much space overall it takes up. If you factor both together the Mac Pro takes up a lot more space.

    Plus if you subtract the price of the monitor you are basically getting a quad core machine for $1,000.00 as opposed to $2,400.00 for the headless Mac Pro. In my opinion that is a massive price difference. Nobody questions if a Mac Pro doesn't have more options in terms of expansion but you really have to ask yourself if that expansion is really worth the extra $1,400.00. Most people I know with Mac Pros including the Mac Lab at the college I teach at never add or expand the machines anyway. It is nice to have that ability but it isn't a necessity for a lot of people.

    There are only 3 things worth expanding on a Mac Pro that give it an advantage right now.

    1. Internal hard drives with or without raid. This can have a huge advantage over an iMac but only if you deal with material that needs that kind of datarate.
    2. External storage expansion cards. ESATA with or without port multiplying. Basically the same as #1 but external. This may also cover USB3 someday if Apple ever supports it.
    3. Video capture/output cards. For those who do need some form of analog or HD-SDI capture and print to tape capabilities.

    So basically the only advantage you gain with the Mac Pro is faster storage for massive datarate applications and options for external video support outside of file based video and firewire.
  12. scott6003 macrumors member

    Feb 14, 2010
    When I ordered my i7 was knew I was going to get a ssd. The thing is I have a apple store just 10 minutes away. If I have any problems I just want to bring it in. So I got the ssd from apple, and the I ordered the ram from OWC. If I have any problems I will pop out the owc ram and put the apple ram back in.
  13. lbeck macrumors 6502


    Dec 5, 2009
    Dont think it will run circles around the new core i7, 2.93 quad core. The iMac is a faster machine than the MP you listed.
  14. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    I didn't catch this before -- you are comparing a refurbished Mac Pro with a new iMac. The Refurbished 2.93GHz i7 Mac Pro is $1899 and the refurbished 2.8GHz i7 Mac Pro is $1699. I believe even the older 2.8GHz iMac is faster than the 2.66GHz Quad core Mac Pro.
  15. Crunch thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Hey, thanks a lot for hi-jacking my thread with your non-nonsensical blabber about some old refurb Mac Pro. As everyone else here correctly noted, you're not comparing :apple:'s to :apple:'s.

    Add to that the fact that I happen to like and prefer the iMac, not just because of cost, but also because of its form factor. And since you're so loquacious, why is it that you're not taking your own advice as you list an iMac in your sig yourself?

    Then you're comparing a refurbished Mac Pro with older technology without even a basic monitor vs. a brand new iMac that includes a high-end high-resolution 27" IPS screen as well as Intel's brand new micro-architecture that even the late 2009 iMac doesn't have, even though they appear to be almost the same.

    Now what? I really wanted an idea as to how other members here think about the question I outlined in my OP.

    Next time, may I suggest that you not question my (or anyone else's) motives if we're asking a specific question about a specific situation that we would sincerely appreciate an answer to.
  16. endi78 macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2008
    You forget you still have to buy a display!
    And a 27" display costs 999$, so the Mac Pro would be 3k+
  17. symbology macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2010
    IMO, eSata is a pain...... When the machine sleeps, or the drive enclosure gets power off often times a reboot of the machine is necessary to get the drives mounted again. You just cannot connect things and have them work like the FW and USB connections.

    I also would not do eSata unless you can reverse the process and be able to get warranty coverage from Apple.

    For the SSD's, I would not send this off to them to do the install. Just do it yourself. It really is pretty easy. Their SSD's are not necessarily over priced, but you can get better deals elsewhere.

    Do you plan on using Raid if you run multiple SSD's? I wanted to run two (not in a raid set) and I had issues. The SSD that I was not booting from would get ejected when I put the machine in sleep mode. The only way to get it back was to reboot, the disk would not even show up in Diskutil....
  18. Crunch thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Thanks for the first OT (ON-topic lol) response...

    I agree on the eSATA port. I read that someone who has sent it in complained about how it "looked ugly". lol...I also don't like eSATA's issues with mandatory reboots, drive mounting issues, and there is at least one other thing that specifically eSATA does not support.

    As for the SSD's, I may or may not RAID them. Either way, I've been using my beloved Intel X25-M's for two years and going back to a hard drive, no matter if it is a 15,000rpm drive, is plain painful. Now that I've been using my iMac for a couple of months, it has slowed down considerably.

    I'm also only using 150GB out of my main (750GB) partition, so as to keep it as empty as possible and not cause even more of a slowdown by filling it up too much. Well, that strategy is not working either. Booting into OS X takes over 30 seconds! That's more than three times slower than with an SSD without RAID, so I'd really love the SSD! Even if I can only have one. :eek:

    What should I do.....
  19. The.316 macrumors 65816


    Jul 14, 2010
    25100 GR
    Have you thought about just installing the SSDs yourself? I found it quite simple to get to the logic board inside, and connect the SSD, even though I had a minor issue.
  20. Crunch thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Yes, definitely! However, after watching the guys from iFixit take apart a 2009 iMac, it seemed like a good idea to let a pro with the right tools handle this.

    I say this despite the fact that I have upgraded the CPU, WiFi N card and dual-SSD's in my ThinkPad T60p because I wanted all of the above but didn't want to lose my beloved IPS screen that I have in the T60p. So I'm definitely not uncomfortable with installing hardware at all.

    Is the SSD bracket easier to get to than the hard drive in the 2009 model? I know they're almost the same, but the board is different. I don't know if this helps but as far as the SSD(s) are concerned, I have a bunch of the tiny 1.8" Intel X18-M's, which are identical to the regular 2.5" X25-M models except for the size obviously. I also have Samsung SSD's, also in 1.8" form factor, along with the interposer connector in case that's necessary.

    That said, I wouldn't even be able to take the screen off, so I'd have to get that tool first. I also found a couple of Apple certified shops that can do it I guess, now that I decided against the eSATA mod. Would I have to take the entire screen apart?

    Would you attempt something like this yourself?
  21. wirelessness macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2010
    These handles are readily available and work very nicely. Just be sure to set the cups right at the edge of the top of the glass panel. There are small little metal points that act as 'feelers' or something under normal use but are not needed for this purpose. The handle attaches very securely and makes lifting and moving the panel around very easy. Even though it's secure don't rely on the handle 100% just use it to get the panel lifted and then use the other hand as well for security.

  22. Mromberg macrumors newbie

    Sep 21, 2010
    Upgraded 27" i7 received!

    So, I received my iMac from OWC on 9/30. Impressions below.

    1. Fast service. I ordered my iMac from Apple and sent it directly to OWC. They received it on Monday, shipped it out on Tuesday, at my house by Thursday!

    2. Fast iMac. I had OWC up the RAM to 8 GB and add a 60 GB SSD. They cloned the HDD to the SSD, but when it arrived I immediately reinstalled OSX to ensure a trimmer system per macperformanceguide.com recommendations.

    3. iMac screen -- good enough (?) with one hiccup. It appears that my screen has the slightest yellowing, one dead pixel, but the hiccup was what appeared to be a piece of styrofoam stuck between the glass and the screen. At first this really annoyed me because it was clearly a result of OWC not paying attention, at least not after reinstalling the glass. So, I picked up some suction cups, took a deep breath and pulled the glass off myself and removed the culprit. Easy enough and problem solved.

    4. Overall very satisfied, and would recommend it to others.
  23. Crunch thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Woah! NICE! Congrats! :) The part about the piece of styrofoam left in there by one of their "specialists" is exactly what I'm worried about. The fast service is great but I'd rather wait an extra couple of days and have it done right.

    That's awesome, though, that you were able to just get rid of the issue on your own. Well done!

    May I ask as to how much this whole thing cost you? I guess you didn't get the eSATA port installed. What did they charge you for overnight shipping? I hope this didn't affect your warranty with Apple in any way?

    Thanks for sharing your story.
  24. Mromberg macrumors newbie

    Sep 21, 2010
    OWC Costs

    The cost for increasing the RAM to 8 GB and installing a 60 GB SSD, including 2nd-day FedEx shipping was around $460. There wasn't an additional charge for the 2nd-day shipping.

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