Ssd For 2009 Imac?

deke

Registered
Hello, I have 4 Macs, but my trusty go to home desk/office machine is the oldest, a 2009 27" iMac. I use it for everything from R and some web dev stuff to Final Cut Pro and tons of music software including Ableton Live, Logic and different guitar amp modeling software. The old gal hums along great, though can be a little slow on start up (DropBox...) and starting things like Logic. I have 8 GB RAM (max) and a 650 GB internal drive, but only use about 300 GB as I have all my media and other files (including a 1 TB iTunes music repository) on a few external firewire drives. I also have it on a ErgoTech swing mount (so cool). I have thought about upgrading to a new Retina iMac, but that would entail many upgrades including new faster external drives (Thunderbolt would be nice), a new Ergotech arm (old mount/adapter won't work) not to mention the cost of an internal SSD and more RAM. All told, it would cost me 3kish. I can afford that, but it would hurt am not exactly thrilled with the idea since the old iMac seems quite capable. So, question. Would upgrading the 2009 iMac with an internal SSD give me a "wow" difference in boot ups and loading some of these heavy hitting apps like Logic or Ableton.

I could relegate the old gal to full time duty as a music server, but with a new iMac I am not happy with drive options (cost as well). I am skeptical about fusion drives and, as I understand it, am unable to install 3rd party SSDs in new iMacs unless I have an electronic degree and am willing to void the warranty.

Or am I being too nostalgic? I have owned at least 15 Macs and this one has really stood the test of time.
 

DeltaMac

Tech
More RAM wouldn't hurt (4 x 8GB = 32GB max), particularly if you like using several of your major audio apps together.
But, an SSD would be a grand upgrade for your iMac. Prices continue to come down - you can sometimes find deals for 512GB SSD around $100.
This is a little more than $100, but a good one from Crucial!
Or Samsung works OK, too :D
 

deke

Registered
Thanks to both of you. The music and video is just a hobby for me and other than waiting a minute or two for Logic to boot up, I have had zero problems, even with running probably too many audio plugins. Oh DeltaMac, the 2009 iMac will only take 8 GB of RAM! I did watch all those videos and read up on stuff and I ordered a SSD today (Samsung).

I also have a newer MacBook, but use this mainly for work and I want a big screen in the home office/studio. When the iMac gets too old I can use that, get a monitor (probably non Apple) and I can certainly move this drive to it or another machine.

Here's the thing. I could spend $3k on a new computer or $3k on new guitars, synthesizers or camera lenses! Choice is kind of obvious to me! :)
 

DeltaMac

Tech
8GB is enough for many uses, but your Late 2009 27-inch WILL take 8GB sticks - in each of the 4 slots. Adding that together makes 32GB. :D
You should do more research on sites that support Macs. Even Apple says your 2009 iMac 27-inch (iMac10,1 or iMac11,1 depending on the processor) will take 16GB, and other third party sources, such as OWC and Mactracker app, state 32GB is the maximum. Even the 21.5-inch iMac will take up to 16GB. I don't know which processor you have, as the Core 2 Duo is recommended for 16GB max, and the i5 or i7 (quad core) processors will take the maximum 32 GB.

If you do decide to go for a RAM upgrade, those older Macs that take PC3-8500 RAM can be finicky, and you should go with a quality RAM supplier, such as OWC, Crucial, or Data Memory Systems. I like the last for my needs, and the prices are good.

Even so, for most uses, you will find that the SSD upgrade will have more effect than adding to your RAM.
 

deke

Registered
Thanks DeltaMac - I actually mistyped. I have an early 2009 24". From what I understand that model won't recognize bigger chips. I'd like to be wrong, but I searched a bit and that seems to be the case.
 

DeltaMac

Tech
Well, yes, that makes a big difference :rolleyes:
And, you are correct. 8GB is maximum on your Early 2009 24-inch.

But - you still get a nice performance jump when you upgrade to SSD ...
 

deke

Registered
P.S. I ordered a Samsung and am now seeing mixed reports on potential TRIM problems...
 

deke

Registered
Holy schmoly, the SSD is in and it is awesome. Really gives life to the old iMac. No more grinding away and everything is so much quicker. The online OWC videos are perfect for this. Quite a few steps, but not hard. FYI, I turned on Trim. Probably not needed, but what the heck.
 

deke

Registered
Not sure if anyone is paying attention, so I leave this either for myself or the future, but the upgrade is well worth the cost and effort. The OWC install video was crucial (for me). My advice, find the right video for your Mac, watch it a few times until you can practically recite the steps, then make sure you have the right tools and you will be fine. I had no surprises, except one annoying thing - I wanted to replace the clock battery, but realized I needed a BR2032 and had a CR2032 - apparently there is a difference, so I didn't chance that.

A few things. The first boot up was terrifying in that I had a grey screen for what seemed like way too long, then the old Apple popped up and boot up was fast. Whew! Second, I used a set of terminal commands to turn on Trim, but after checking in System profiler it was not on. I seemed to get a few weird errors. Later I downloaded and installed Trim Enabler and it is fine. Last, but perhaps not least. I had a never before experienced crash via a kernel panic while viewing a somewhat shady (no not that kind) website with all kinds of pop ups and those annoying "install this to protect your Mac" messages - of course I did not. I thought, uh oh, what did I do (and here we go), but it has not happened since. This was prior to my installing Trim enabler. Connection? I have no idea.

Short summary. If I ca do this, almost anyone else can. The price on these drives continue to fall and it can recharge your Mac, old or new.
 

SGilbert

Registered
FYI, I've been following this all along. Good job!
I would have thought that all SSD's that OWC sold would be trim enabled since their main focus is Mac.
 

DeltaMac

Tech
... I had no surprises, except one annoying thing - I wanted to replace the clock battery, but realized I needed a BR2032 and had a CR2032 - apparently there is a difference, so I didn't chance that.
...
Just for future thought - Using a BR2032 in place of a CR2032 (and vice versa) will not damage equipment, and in most cases will function properly.
 

deke

Registered
FYI, I've been following this all along. Good job!
I would have thought that all SSD's that OWC sold would be trim enabled since their main focus is Mac.
Well thank you sir. Sorry for the confusion! I bought a Samsung elsewhere (Amazon), but used the OWC (or now Macsales.com) videos. I have given OWC plenty of money over the years, so I don't feel guilty. I actually just bought some RAM from them to upgrade a Macbook, then upgraded that to El Capitan just for kicks. It has been quite the geeky fun week here!
 

deke

Registered
Just for future thought - Using a BR2032 in place of a CR2032 (and vice versa) will not damage equipment, and in most cases will function properly.
Oh man... thanks for the info. However, I was super nervous about messing anything up or complicating any potential trouble shooting, so that's okay. Plus. getting to the battery isn't that hard, now that I now how to take this thing apart.
 

DeltaMac

Tech
FYI, I've been following this all along. Good job!
I would have thought that all SSD's that OWC sold would be trim enabled since their main focus is Mac.
OWC, in their blogs, usually downplays the importance of trim, particularly with the more recent SSD controllers.
That would make it unlikely that they would sell SSDs with trim enabled!
 

deke

Registered
OWC, in their blogs, usually downplays the importance of trim, particularly with the more recent SSD controllers.
That would make it unlikely that they would sell SSDs with trim enabled!
Oh, just to be clear again I did not buy an OWC drive (Samsung), but did use their install video. Apologies if you were making a general statement/reply about OWC and Trim. Also, to reiterate, I am not a complete bum in sing OWC only for their video as I have purchased a lot from them.
 
Top