Previous generations of Apple's iMac have been relatively easy to upgrade thanks to workarounds but its new 2011 range has proved far more restrictive, causing mixed reactions amongst Apple fans
An investigation by Other World computing
has revealed that Apple has stepped up its battle against end users tinkering with the innards of its products.
Apple's 2011 line of iMacs, according to the investigation, have taken this battle one step further by altering the SATA power connector on the hard disk provided with the machine from a standard 4-wire power configuration to a 7-wire configuration.
In addition, hard disk temperature control is now regulated by a combination of this cable and Apple proprietary firmware on the hard disk itself. This makes workarounds, which have been possible in the past, much more difficult.
The crux of the issue comes when trying to replace the included hard disk with another - this now results in the hard disk bay cooling fan spinning up to full, ear-splitting speed (up to 5,600rpm according to another source).
In addition, the article went on to say that 'replacing the drive with any non-Apple original drive will result in the iMac failing the Apple Hardware Test (AHT)'
Apple has often tried to prevent end users from performing the same kind of upgrades on Macs that they can with their PC. However, with upgrading an old computer more popular now than ever, and end users more keen to be able to boost their PCs performance as well as being able to replace failed hardware, Apple's move appears to have caused a rift among Mac users. The more tech-savvy are concerned that the move is too restrictive.
Were you considering purchasing a new iMac? What do you make of the issue? Let us know in the forum