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New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jardster
Date: April 01, 2019 08:42PM
Our 2013 iMac's logic board died last week. Didn't think a $500 fix was worth it, so purchased a brand new (just updated). It's used by my wife for simple web surfing, email, iMessages, and Photos. Nothing heavy.

It's a 4K, 8 GB RAM, 1 TB 5400 HD.

So.... it's SOOOOO slow. Spinning beachballs all the time. Try to open an app and it takes 10-12 seconds to open. Everything is like mud.

I've made a new user, and it's still bad. I know that Photos takes some time to load everything and Spotlight needs to index things, but still, this is terrible. I've never had a Mac experience this bad.

Any ideas?

TIA



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: GGD
Date: April 01, 2019 08:47PM
Quote
jardster
1 TB 5400 HD.

Any ideas?

Running the latest macOS on a rotating disk drive, and to top it off, a slow rotating disk drive.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Gilbert
Date: April 01, 2019 08:49PM
I worked in Apple retail part time for a while and I always tried to steer people clear of the entry level iMac with the 5400RPM HD. It is just unbearably slow. I imagine Apple keeps it in the lineup to hit a price point. It was painful when someone bought one and wanted to set it up in the store. It just took forever to do anything. I would always recommend customers to at least get a model with afusion drive but some people didn't care and would buy it anyways.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: April 01, 2019 08:49PM
Wrong speed hard drive.



C(-)ris
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: ka jowct
Date: April 01, 2019 08:53PM
They should be ashamed to sell anything with a 5400 rpm drive.

Is the RAM soldered?



My life goes smoothly and in regular intervals
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jardster
Date: April 01, 2019 08:54PM
I was afraid of that... a little disappointing that this drive is what they have as the "default".... guess I'll be returning it for one with either an SSD (prices are pretty high) or a "fusion drive"....


What is the consensus on the fusion drive. Does it make this thing useable?


And BTW... the old 2013 iMac had a 5400 drive, and the thing worked great.



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Sarcany
Date: April 01, 2019 08:55PM
You have a 2-week return window.

Do it now.

No version of the Mac OS since 10.12 will run at even halfway decent speed on a spinning-platter hard drive.

Even a Fusion drive is pretty slow.

Get a Mac with a SSD boot drive.

Tim Cook should be ashamed. Not just for selling Macs with hard drives this far into the 21st century, but for making an OS and file system so poorly optimized for their jobs.







Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/01/2019 08:59PM by Sarcany.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jdc
Date: April 01, 2019 09:14PM
Fusion drives are just fine, even the crippled 1 TB one.

But it really sounds like something more was amiss? Did you call apple? 90 days free phone support.



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: sekker
Date: April 01, 2019 09:24PM
I’d still take it back and get a fusion drive or ssd.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Forrest
Date: April 01, 2019 09:26PM
Return and get a model with an SSD drive.

FYI, Apple was smart with the Mac mini - every model has an SSD and standard hard drives are not available.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Filliam H. Muffman
Date: April 01, 2019 09:36PM
I think you should consider getting an external boot SSD. SSD prices have come way down. A 1 TB SSD in a 2.5" size format is about $100, and a $30 USB 3.2 Gen 2 case will give you a five time speedup over the 5400 rpm hard drive.

Upgrading to the model with a puny Apple 256 GB SSD will be at least $200 more.



In tha 360. MRF User Map



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/01/2019 09:46PM by Filliam H. Muffman.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: AllGold
Date: April 01, 2019 09:47PM
I think the RAM and hard drive should be easily user-upgradeable. But I suppose no one asked me.



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jdc
Date: April 01, 2019 09:59PM
Quote
AllGold
I think the RAM and hard drive should be easily user-upgradeable. But I suppose no one asked me.

Yeah, but its not. =(

External boot aint a bad idea. 500 GB NMVe drive + case. maybe $150? And thats a 3500 MB/s drive. Or a plain 2.5" SSD, but only 500 MB/s.

Assuming you got a new 2019 model for $1299, $1499 gets you a 1 TB fusion + 6 core i5 + faster 4 GB video card, so not horrible for $200.

Or course, its should cost $999... but I digress.



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Speedy
Date: April 01, 2019 10:51PM
Leader! But only half heartedly because you didn’t get at a minimum a fusion drive.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Winston
Date: April 01, 2019 10:58PM
Filliam & jdc have a good suggestion on the external drive.

We have my wife's several-year-old 21" tapered edge iMac running off of a 2.5" SSD in a USB 3.0 case. I've velcroed it to the back of the iMac, so on her desk you don't even see it. I think it also has a slow 5400 RPM drive. The internal drive is now a Carbon Copy Cloner backup drive.

When I looked into replacing the internal drive, I gave up immediately - you've got to disassemble most of the iMac (ditto for RAM upgrade - that was even worse), starting with pulling off the entire glued on screen. I've replaced the screen on a MacBook Pro, but not interested in touching the iMac.


Good luck.

- Winston



------------------------
Be seeing you.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Rolando
Date: April 01, 2019 11:46PM
Quote
jardster
It's used by my wife for simple web surfing, email, iMessages, and Photos. Nothing heavy.
For this, have you considered an iPad Pro?



San Antonio, TX (in the old city)


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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jdc
Date: April 02, 2019 01:01AM
Quote
Rolando
Quote
jardster
It's used by my wife for simple web surfing, email, iMessages, and Photos. Nothing heavy.
For this, have you considered an iPad Pro?

You know, thats an excellent suggestion.

bought my wife a 10.5 iPP 1.5 years ago -- I actually dont think shes used her iMac more than a handful of times since then.

Not at all in the last 6+ months. Does everything easily, fast and she takes it all over the house. Email, messages, surfing, hulu, netflix, outlook for work, bill paying, and wireless printing.

Think they still have some of the 2017 10.5" left. Screen and speakers are better on the old one. My wife likes to watch TV in the kitchen, its really loud and sound is great.

Although got her airpods... cause it was sometimes too loud... =)



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Article Accelerator
Date: April 02, 2019 01:36AM
Quote
jardster
…purchased a brand new (just updated). It's used by my wife for simple web surfing, email, iMessages, and Photos. Nothing heavy.

It's a 4K, 8 GB RAM, 1 TB 5400 HD.

Too bad you didn't try it out before migrating the old system over. That would have given you a proper performance baseline.

Anyway, 8 GB of RAM is light and that spinning HD is no bueno for current macOS versions.

Quote

What is the consensus on the fusion drive. Does it make this thing useable?

Yep, very useable.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 04/02/2019 01:37AM by Article Accelerator.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: April 02, 2019 04:56AM
Quote
jdc
Assuming you got a new 2019 model for $1299, $1499 gets you a 1 TB fusion + 6 core i5 + faster 4 GB video card, so not horrible for $200.
Or course, its should cost $999... but I digress.
agree smiley
The 6-core @ $1499 is the deal. If you don't want to spend that much, then...
$1189 @ Apple Store Refurbs gets you this:

iMac (2017) 3.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i5
21.5-inch (diagonal) Retina 4K display
8GB of 2400MHz DDR4 onboard memory
1TB Fusion Drive
FaceTime HD camera
Radeon Pro 560 4GB
Magic Keyboard
Magic Mouse 2
Power cord
Lightning to USB Cable
1-Year Warranty



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jardster
Date: April 02, 2019 05:40AM
Ok. Return it is.

But... I'm just not sure about the fusion drive. 1TB is good, but it's only 32GB SSD that worries me. My wife will NOT be happy if I buy a new machine that is just as slow as this thing.

I don't really like the idea of having external drives, but I guess another way to go is having a smaller internal SSD and a larger USB drive (I really don't like this option).

Anyone out there have a recent iMac running Mojave with a fusion drive?



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: robfilms
Date: April 02, 2019 06:24AM
i have a late 2015 i7/4.0 with 40gb ram running mojave 10.14.2 with a 3tb fusion drive and i have no issue with speed.

ymmv

thumbs up.

rob
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jardster
Date: April 02, 2019 06:28AM
I wish that I could get a 2 TB fusion, which has 128 GB of SSD (instead of the paltry 32 GB), but that isn't an option for the 21" iMac.



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: rjmacs
Date: April 02, 2019 08:06AM
Quote
jardster
I wish that I could get a 2 TB fusion, which has 128 GB of SSD (instead of the paltry 32 GB), but that isn't an option for the 21" iMac.

I know that an external drive adds complication to any setup, but remember that on an iMac, you can 3M Command Strip an external 2.5" drive in a slim USB 3 case to the aluminum stand on the back of the iMac and keep it permanently plugged in. No space taken on desktop, no visible cables, easy access to remove/replace/service drive. You can use any bus-powered drive, platter or SSD. I wouldn't sweat not having a lot of internal storage...



rj
AKA
Vreemac, Moth of the Future
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: April 02, 2019 08:28AM
Ok. Return it is.

But... I'm just not sure about the fusion drive. 1TB is good, but it's only 32GB SSD that worries me. My wife will NOT be happy...



I say that that iMac's performance is off the mark. It shouldn't take that long to open most apps. Maybe Photos, Garage Band, etc.

But Mail, Messages, and lightweight apps should just take a couple of bounces or three. Did you get this at an Apple Store? When there, try a demo model. I'm sure you won't see performance that bad.

That said, you should see a marked increase in performance from your current iMac to one with a Fusion drive.


I know that an external drive adds complication to any setup, but remember that on an iMac, you can 3M Command Strip an external 2.5" drive in a slim USB 3 case to the aluminum stand on the back of the iMac and keep it permanently plugged in. No space taken on desktop, no visible cables, easy access to remove/replace/service drive. You can use any bus-powered drive, platter or SSD. I wouldn't sweat not having a lot of internal storage...

This.

ALL this.

Clean, very functional, do it once and forget all about it. I've bought cheap 2.5" WD, HGST, and somebody else's 2 and 4T externals that have run 24/7 for going on two years and more, no problems.

An SSD over a fusion, if it's in your budget, and add an external 2 or 4T as above (and a back up) and you've got fast, clean setup.

I've ordered a mini 5, but I'm also considering a 2017 64G/WiFi 10.5" iPP. They seem to be disappearing, though.




When a good man is hurt,
all who would be called good
must suffer with him.

You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead.

There is no safety for honest men except
by believing all possible evil of evil men.

We don’t do focus groups. They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products. —Sir Jonathan Ive

Perfection is the enemy of progress. -Winston Churchill

-An armed society is a polite society.
And hope is a lousy defense.

You make me pull, I'll put you down.

Mister, that's a ten-gallon hat on a twenty-gallon head.

I *love* SIGs. It's Glocks I hate.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: sekker
Date: April 02, 2019 08:34AM
I voted to return the spinny Mac, but I concur that a good iPad would also do the job and be fully portable.

I wouldn't spend the extra $$ on a 2018 iPad Pro.

But either a 2019 iPad Air or a 10.5" iPad Pro (similar models, the latter has better speakers) are really terrific machines.

I think the external connector is far worse on the 2018 iPad Pros meaning external keyboards are better on the older iPad Pros and the 2019 iPad Air.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jardster
Date: April 02, 2019 08:36AM
Thanks for all the help.

I decided to spend a little extra, since this computer should last 5 years easy, and just get an SSD in there. I can always add external storage if need be later (mostly for photos), but for now it'll be good and my wife won't start thinking negative thoughts about Macs.



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jdc
Date: April 02, 2019 11:52AM
I use a 1 TB Fusion drive all day, everyday with hundreds of graphics files. Never a problem, and its SSD fast.

You wifes use would never even touch the drive. 32 GB Fusion would be fine.

And like RAM, I think there was something not right with the current iMac. Maybe something during migration. Even with a spinny drive, the iMac shoulndt act like that.

Its your money, but IMHO you just threw more at something that might not have even been a problem...

NVME drives are tiny, case is 4.5 x 1.5 x 0.4 inches.



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Winston
Date: April 02, 2019 12:17PM
Quote
jardster
But... I'm just not sure about the fusion drive. 1TB is good, but it's only 32GB SSD that worries me. My wife will NOT be happy if I buy a new machine that is just as slow as this thing.

I don't really like the idea of having external drives, but I guess another way to go is having a smaller internal SSD and a larger USB drive (I really don't like this option).

Anyone out there have a recent iMac running Mojave with a fusion drive?

The previous drive I had on my 2010 MacBook Pro was a 500 GB Seagate fusion drive which only had 2 GB SSD. It was not particularly slow. This was running 10.10 I think. Not directly comparable, but the MBP has a 2.4 GHz Core2Duo, so both older Mac and older OS. This makes me think that the 1 TB/32 GB fusion combination would work OK for Mojave. What's the speed of the rotating drive in that combination? (Still 5400 RPM?)

My wife's iMac is a 21" 2012. Has a 2.7 GHz i5 with 8 GB RAM. Internal drive is a 1 TB 5400 RPM, and it was slow with that. It's quite snappy running Mojave from the external SSD.


Good luck.

- Winston



------------------------
Be seeing you.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Buck
Date: April 02, 2019 12:18PM
Is it still indexing?
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: April 02, 2019 12:54PM
Quote
jdc -
Maybe something during migration.

Migration Assistant, the first thing I thought of...




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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: April 02, 2019 01:04PM
Migration Assistant, the first thing I thought of...

LOL!




When a good man is hurt,
all who would be called good
must suffer with him.

You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead.

There is no safety for honest men except
by believing all possible evil of evil men.

We don’t do focus groups. They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products. —Sir Jonathan Ive

Perfection is the enemy of progress. -Winston Churchill

-An armed society is a polite society.
And hope is a lousy defense.

You make me pull, I'll put you down.

Mister, that's a ten-gallon hat on a twenty-gallon head.

I *love* SIGs. It's Glocks I hate.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: April 02, 2019 01:19PM
Oh, I just ordered a 2017, 10.5", 64G WiFi iPP, Space Gray.

Laminated display
ProMotion
P3 Gamut
Trutone
4 speakers

I blame YOU, jdc.




When a good man is hurt,
all who would be called good
must suffer with him.

You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead.

There is no safety for honest men except
by believing all possible evil of evil men.

We don’t do focus groups. They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products. —Sir Jonathan Ive

Perfection is the enemy of progress. -Winston Churchill

-An armed society is a polite society.
And hope is a lousy defense.

You make me pull, I'll put you down.

Mister, that's a ten-gallon hat on a twenty-gallon head.

I *love* SIGs. It's Glocks I hate.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: jdc
Date: April 02, 2019 01:38PM
emoticon-tv-015 sucker!

If you really use an iPad a lot its worth it. Maybe some air pods too =)



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Article Accelerator
Date: April 02, 2019 02:10PM
Quote
jardster
Ok. Return it is.

But... I'm just not sure about the fusion drive. 1TB is good, but it's only 32GB SSD that worries me.

That Fusion Drive configuration works great in my 27" 2017 iMac. Don't worry about the SSD capacity.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: hal
Date: April 02, 2019 02:36PM
Maybe I'm too late, but I've noticed that systems that are migrated from another machine act wonky UNTIL you do a safe boot. Afterward - all is well.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Article Accelerator
Date: April 02, 2019 04:57PM
Quote
hal
Maybe I'm too late, but I've noticed that systems that are migrated from another machine act wonky UNTIL you do a safe boot. Afterward - all is well.

Good point.
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Lew Zealand
Date: April 02, 2019 05:05PM
Step 1: Return any Mac with a 5400 RPM drive
Step 2: Buy *anything* else
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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: April 02, 2019 05:11PM
Quote
Lew Zealand
Step 1: Return any Mac with a 5400 RPM drive
Step 2: Buy *anything* else

Step 3: Listen to Barry White

thumbsup smiley



39°36'17"N 75°44'43"W

The search engine that doesn't track you.

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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: Sarcany
Date: April 02, 2019 06:13PM
Quote
RAMd®d

I say that that iMac's performance is off the mark. It shouldn't take that long to open most apps. Maybe Photos, Garage Band, etc.

But Mail, Messages, and lightweight apps should just take a couple of bounces or three.

Mojave is sludge when run off of a hard drive. It's way slower than you'd expect even on a clean-install. A significant portion of the slowdown appears to be related to APFS, but even if you get Mojave going under HFS, it's still unreasonably slow. I have an external drive with boot vols from various operating systems and after putting Mojave on one of the volumes and trying it for awhile I had to buy a SSD. Just for Mojave. Couldn't deal with the wait times just to boot and load some lightweight diagnostic apps.



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Re: New iMac basically unusable
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: April 02, 2019 10:15PM
If you really use an iPad a lot its worth it. Maybe some air pods too =)

I do, and with the Pencil, I'll be using it more.

AirPods are already in da house.




When a good man is hurt,
all who would be called good
must suffer with him.

You and I have memories longer than the road that stretches out ahead.

There is no safety for honest men except
by believing all possible evil of evil men.

We don’t do focus groups. They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products. —Sir Jonathan Ive

Perfection is the enemy of progress. -Winston Churchill

-An armed society is a polite society.
And hope is a lousy defense.

You make me pull, I'll put you down.

Mister, that's a ten-gallon hat on a twenty-gallon head.

I *love* SIGs. It's Glocks I hate.
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