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OWC Announces Upgrade Service For All Mid-2011 Apple iMacs

Other World Computing announced today its OWC Turnkey Upgrade Installation Program for the Mid-2011 Apple iMac that enables any 2011 21.5″ or 27″ iMac model owner to have OWC professionally install up to three award winning OWC Mercury 6G Solid State Drives up to 480GB each, a larger capacity hard drive up to 3.0TB, and OWC Memory Upgrades up to 32GB. 27″ iMac owners also have the option of OWC installing the industry’s only eSATA interface and experience data transfer rates up to 600MB/s. OWC’s installation service program offers multiple configuration options starting at $169 with a 48 business hours or less installation turnaround.

OWC Options Create A Better Than Factory Built 2011 iMac

Owners of a 2011 iMac can experience the following benefits from the OWC Upgrade Program and enjoy a superior performing iMac than what is available direct from the factory:


  • Over Twice As Fast & Double The Capacity Solid State Drive

OWC Mercury 6G SSDs offer capacities up to 480GB, up to nearly double the capacity than the single factory 256GB SSD option, and offer read/write speeds in excess of 550MB/sover twice the performance than the factory 3G speed limited SSDs. Support for a RAID-0 configuration allows data rates of up to 1GB/s (1000MB/s), nearly four times the data performance vs. factory options in available multi-SSD configurations. Depending on other options selected, up to three OWC Mercury 6G SSDs can be installed for a total of up to 1.44TB SSD capacity.

  • More ‘Main Bay’ Storage Configuration Options

iMac owners requiring more storage capacity than the factory stock 500GB-1.0TB hard drive can have OWC replace it with up to a 3.0TB drive for up to 6X greater platter based storage. Or, instead of a traditional hard drive, OWC can add additional OWC Mercury 6G SSD capacity of up to from 480GB to the 3.5” drive bay.

  • Additional & Lower Cost Memory Options Than Factory

Add up to 4X the factory maximum installed RAM with the OWC RAM 32GB option. Or, select from OWC Memory Upgrade kits providing 8GB total RAM starting from $80. For iMac owners only seeking a memory upgrade, OWC Memory Kits for the 2011 iMac are also available with savings up to 77% compared to factory upgrades and come backed by OWC’s free installation videos and lifetime support.

  • Only eSATA Interface Option Offered For iMac

With fast data transfer rates up to 600MB/s, OWC’s external eSATA port option for the 2011 27” iMac lets users take advantage of plentiful and affordable eSATA external drives for data backups and transfers at up to 6X faster than the built in FireWire 800 interface.


The 2011 iMac comes equipped with up to Quad-Core i7 Intel Processors and can provide performance that rivals the currently available Mac Pros except for inherent upgrade limitations based on its design and factory options,” said Larry O’Connor, Founder and CEO, Other World Computing. “Being able to add memory and drives through our Turnkey service, iMac owners now can utilize the full potential of their iMac for intensive A/V, graphics, and other professional creative services tasks and turn their machine into a full blown desktop production workstation.”


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  • Hi, is there a possibilty thar in the future you could sell a DIY hard drive replacement/upgrade kit for the mid 2011 iMac? I live outside the US and it’s impossible for me to send my computer to your turnkey upgrade program.


    • Certain aspects of this upgrade are and/or will be available for ‘DIY’, such as installing additional drives internally. However, that particular aspect has not been finalized yet and we do not know a projected release date. When available, it will be announced here on the OWC Blog first, so stay tuned.

  • Okay, so now you can upgrade your 2011, bypassing the firmware and installing new HDs.

    Can it be done without sending the iMac in? I live in europe, and would prefer to install it myself any day over a send in..

    Also, I wasn’t able to find the 60GB 6G SSD drive as an option. Will it be available for upgrade?

    • we’re planning to offer 3TB Hard Drive Kits and SSD Bay Kits that will allow an Apple Certified technician to install upgrades in your iMac without having to send it to us. More on that as things develop so again, just keep revisiting the Blog to learn about those details.

      • Can you clarify this a bit? As far as I understand optical bay is SATA2 and what I really want is SATA3 SSD in there (as the only drive really; for other storage I am planning to rely solely on Thunderbolt solution of some sort… hopefully Drobo if they get their game straight and release TB version).

        Are you planning to release a DIY kit to replace main HDD (3.5″, isn’t it?) with an SSD (2.5″)?

  • I forgot to ask : is there a way to change the video card too ? (not talking about the crappy costly apple upgrade)

  • I’ve read pretty much everywhere that 16Go was the max amount of ram you could get working in the 2011 iMac.
    Can I simply just install more or is there a need for something special installed first, like software or hardware wise.

    • Through the OWC MaxRAM Memory Certification program, OWC supports up to 32GB of OWC memory in the 2011 iMacs.

      While OWC “MaxRAM” configurations exceed Apple’s officially supported maximums, all OWC brand memory upgrades are assured to perform flawlessly and are covered by a Lifetime Advance Replacement Warranty and Money Back Guarantee.

    • Correct – the eSATA port installed with the iMac Turnkey Service can only connect a single device – port multiplier devices are not supported.

  • I thought that the 2001 iMacs had HDs that were not replacable? They supposedly had firmware on them that prevented this from being possible (without the fans going full blast). I’d be curious as to how this was bypassed!

    • Assuming you meant the 2011 there. :-)

      We’ve got a hardware solution that gets around the firmware problem. We can’t give out details on how that solution works, but it does resolve the problem nicely.

      • But if I just want to add an SSD, in the special SSD slot, do i need your solution? So i would have the standard HD + OWC SSD like their BTO iMacs. Does it need special firmware/hardware solution? Thanks!

        • If you know what you’re doing, adding an SSD to the iMac 2010 or 2011 (easier on the 2011) is DIY doable and we are looking at a proper DIY kit to support this. It’s still an involved installation.. and very important you run power directly from the logic board and not shortcut with a power Y-splitter of the hard drive bay… Splitting power off the HD line isn’t a power level issue – but it kills the Apple SMC monitoring line implementation and tells the iMac there is no hard drive in the HD bay… what this then does is not affect the drive from being on the bus – but rather results in no temperature being reported from the HD bay and no fan speed control by SMC to keep things cool under load… and ultimately can cook the drive. Proper installation results in no such issue and there is no special firmware or other hardware needed for this install. Again – not the easiest installation, but can be done right DIY.

          • Hi OWC. I’m ordering my new iMac now in New Zealand. I’d like to order your upgrade kit and have my brother here in NZ, who is an Apple Cert Tech (in training, nearly there!) do the install locally rather than have to ship the unit to other side of the world and back! I see from your site that I can order 2 SSD’s (which I will setup as raid 0) and a 3TB HDD, plus some good value RAM and plenty of other nice accessories. You mention “we are looking at a proper DIY kit to support this”… Understanding that you have a proprietary complete upgrade service which is available now by shipping the iMac to you… please advise: what are we waiting for in terms of the proper DIY kit to do it ourselves? I’d bet there are tons of worldwide customers like myself who are keen to buy your upgrade components now, but not keen on crazy big shipping costs. Would be grateful if you could please explain exactly what else is needed other than the existing upgrade components and instructions… and when these missing DIY parts are likely to come available? Looking forward to placing an order soon, the upgrade looks fantastic! Cheers, Matt.