Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 2:36 PM (in response to kennyap)
Disclaimer - For me the Apple Support Communities are an international user to user technical support forum. As a man from Mexico my first language is Spanish. I do not speak English, however I do write in English with the aid of the Mac OS X spelling and grammar checks. I also live in a culture very different from that found in most 1st world nations, such as that in the two dominant North American countries. Written language has no tone. When offering advice in the ASC, my comments are not meant to be anything more than helpful and certainly not to be taken as insults.
iMac CPUs and GPUs are usually soldered or glued to the motherboard. Good luck with that.'09 Mac mini, iPad 2, iPhone 4S, Mac OS X (10.7.4), iOS (5.1.1) Mac user since 1984
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 4:00 PM (in response to kennyap)
Additionally, as far as I know, unless the iMac could have originally been ordered as a custom unit with a different graphics card, they are not interchangeable - only replaceable with the same card.
In general, Macs are not user upgradeable (except for the RAM; even hard drive replacement should be done by an AASP). Additionally, if your Mac is still under warranty, it will be voided with the things you are proposing to do.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 4:05 PM (in response to babowa)
That is true, the user guides for the latest edition 21.5 and 27 inch iMacs are clear that the only user upgrades permitted are memory, the user is not permitted to open the back of the computer.
Curious where the order for the upgrade equipment was filed, and why they did not advise against that...must not have been a Mac specialist source.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 4:11 PM (in response to Ralph Landry1)
Well, I'll certainly be looking forward to seeing the results of his efforts....
He also just answered someone else's question recommending that he order the same graphics card - that is dangerous advice:
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 4:38 PM (in response to babowa)
Thanks for the responses; the 2011 iMac 27" can be upgraded with the components I'll be receiving this week, they are removable (not soldered). The warranty will be void after I remove the cpu heatsink. My iMac was a gift my wife purchased while visiting Honduras, so I'm not concerned about the warranty.
If anyone would like, I can post the specific links to this information -- the teardowns, walkthrough videos, and posts by individuals who've succeeded with the upgrades I will be doing, or you can also find this if you google "2011 imac gpu upgrade", etc.
Ralph Landry1 : the cpu can be ordered as a stock item from newegg, tigerdirect, etc., but the only two vendors I've seen who provide the Radeon HD 6970M specifically for the 2011 iMac are www.dvwarehouse.com and www.welovemacs.com
Any other questions just ask and I'll do my best to answer them.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 4:45 PM (in response to kennyap)
Since the hardware warranty is very specific, it is generally best not to recommend things that will void the warranty. At the very minimum, add that such work will void the warranty; otherwise you could cause the other user some major headaches.
I've seen the videos and don't intend to do anything to void my Applecare. If I want an upgradeable Mac, I can buy a Mac Pro or a different iMac.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 5:17 PM (in response to babowa)
Most mac owners under warranty are afraid to upgrade themselves and void the warranty. Some have no business even thinking about it. But to some experienced users it is well worth it, much more so than going and buying "a different iMac" like you posted above.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 14, 2012 7:20 PM (in response to David M Brewer)
I don't have any questions on this topic. I'm a little taken back with how skittish some users are about even the thought of a major upgrade -- no offense intended. I'm a network administrator at my workplace (vmware, windows) always used windows pcs. Bought my first mac 18 months ago, now I have all mac computers at home: 17" Macbook Pro, 11"Macbook Air, 13" Macbook Air, 27" iMac. Customizing/upgrading my computers as much as I can has always been second nature to me. My apologies to everyone if my posts are different than what you're used to hearing.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 15, 2012 8:36 AM (in response to kennyap)
Customizing/upgrading my computers as much as I can has always been second nature to me. My apologies to everyone if my posts are different than what you're used to hearing.
The Macintosh world is a distinctly different culture than that. You are free to do anything you want to your system, but if it doesn't work, you are on your own. Because there is no culture like that, there will be no one to help. If you were doing this with Linux on a self-built PC, there is a culture to support it. Not here.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 15, 2012 10:21 AM (in response to etresoft)
The culture is changing with the ability to upgrade the newer machines. I've noticed a lot of people on this forum more closed to the idea of upgrading, most are unaware it can even be done, which is sad in my opinion. Maybe because this is the official support forum. But the other mac sites are like what I'm used to in the past working with pcs:
check out these:
the list goes on.
etresoft, we know that mac computers are the best...period. Hardware upgrades are also better for some of the same reasons that make apple computers better; not as customizable -- only certain upgrade paths are possible. Upgrade process more difficult because of mac's intricate design. But once you do the upgrade right, it just works beautifully. And you extend the life of you machine another two years at less than half the cost of getting a new mac.
Open you mind brother. Apple has done everything right, this is just another part of their strategy and I think it's great.
Currently Being ModeratedJul 15, 2012 10:49 AM (in response to kennyap)
In my opinion, the best way to upgrade an iMac is to buy a new one and sell the older one to offset the price. Since Macs hold their value better than PCs do, then it's likely not to cost you much (if any) more to upgrade that way than trying to do it as you propose.
Now, if you just want to muck around on the inside of your iMac without regard to cost or labor, then that's an okay hobby-project. But recommending it to others is not wise.