New 27-Inch iMac Disassembled, Aftermarket SSD Install Deemed Difficult

Yesterday, we noted that Apple's new 27" iMac for the first time allows users to configure their machines with a second hard drive, offering a 256 GB solid state drive as an option for the second bay.

215433 2010 27 inch imac open 500
Location of second hard drive bay in new 27" iMac

A number of consumers have wondered about the possibility of aftermarket installation of drives into this bay, should they choose to go with the single-drive option at purchase and perhaps add a second drive later as prices drop and/or capacities increase. To answer that question, Other World Computing has opened up one of the new iMacs and unfortunately found that the task would not be a simple one unless the machine originally shipped with dual drives.

The good news is that the SSD bay available in the new iMacs holds a standard 2.5" form factor drive, which means you can install a high-performance OWC Mercury Extreme SSD for the speed advantage over Apple's SSDs.

The bad news is that, unless your Mid 2010 iMac originally came with an Apple SSD, there's no graceful way to install an OWC one. The appropriate mounting bracket and connector cables are nowhere to be found on the non-SSD models.

The report goes on to detail one somewhat inelegant method in which a user of a single-drive iMac could add a second drive, but the solution is certainly not ideal.

Related Roundup: iMac
Buyer's Guide: iMac (Neutral)
Related Forum: iMac

Top Rated Comments

gnasher729 Avatar
146 months ago
Haha, labor? It's Chinese wage-slave factory workers, the labor is dirt cheap for them. You're also missing the point, they make user-installation quite tricky when it doesn't really need to be.

User installation of a second drive is exactly the same or easier as with the previous model. There's a lesson to be learned here: Make something better, by adding the option to buy the computer with two drives installed, and people will find something to complain about. If Apple didn't offer the iMac with two drives, nobody would complain. So this is totally irrational.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NetJunkie Avatar
146 months ago
Umm... if Apple can find space in the NEW iMacs to ship with a 2nd drive in there, I think that space should still exist even if the new 27" iMac comes with only 1 drive.

Yeah..but why put the parts in when they aren't needed? Costs money. Takes time to install them. Then you have people that crack it open and install their own and find out the cable is bad..so there are more warranty claims. It's about money...simple.

This isn't Apple. This is everyone. When I order servers if I don't order an option the manufacturer doesn't go ahead and include the SAS RAID cage just because...or the cables to hook it up.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Object-X Avatar
146 months ago
Meme

You can take the user out of the PC, but you can't take the PC out of the user.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Patrick J Avatar
146 months ago
Your installing it wrong.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
eemsTV Avatar
132 months ago
So basically, I can't get an SSD installed since I got the HDD only edition?
Score: 0 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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