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Can I upgrade my CPU on iMac from i5-2500S to i7-2600?

Can I upgrade my CPU on iMac from i5-2500S to i7-2600?

TPD is 65W on the i5, and 95W on the i7. Both share the same socket (LGA 1155)

Asked by: Guest | Views: 156
Total answers/comments: 6
bert [Entry]


I used regluar i7-2600, not unlocked ""K"" SKU. So, it should be ""BX80623I72600"". And now, as I'm using this setup for a week, I can just say that there is not difference in system behaviour. So, system fans are not spinning faster, machine is not noisier, it's 100% stable system... iStat dashboard widget says that CPU temp right now is 43C (CPU fan 938 RPM). Simply, system works as it's supposed to work.

Unfortunately, similar applies for system speed - it's hard to notice big difference if you're ""casual user"" of computer.

PS: Before I put new CPU instead of old-one I changed thermal paste - I used Artic Silver thermal compound (2-3 eur/package)."
bert [Entry]

"The I7 2600 S will work all the way up too High Sierra.

While you'er in their add a pair of Samsung SSD 's and run them in RAID 0 config (Either take the optical drive out and use the spare SATA port or pull the HD) and max out the RAM. You'll think you'er using a 2017 system! The speed is amazing. I built one a little while ago and I'm about to build another.

Oh, by the way use a high quality thermal paste on the CPU and GPU chips while your in there too.

Have fun... Gerard"
bert [Entry]



I got much faster boot times but that's because I primarily did upgrade because of SSD installation. I installed Intel SSD 510 250 GB as well so boot time is now just couple of seconds.


@Aman Patel

Here are some benchmarks. I don't have XBench but you can see here Cinebench and Geekbench.



PS: OK, I downloaded XBench as well and I realized that it doesn't work under Lion... It hangs on Thread Test... Here is screenshot of test completed but without Thread component...

bert [Entry]

"Today I took the plunge & was able to upgrade my 2011 27"" Core i5 2.7Ghz iMac to a Core i7-2600S. I followed the instructions here using the regular i7-2600S (BX80623I72600S), not the unlocked ""2600K"" version & using the instructions here on ifixit for the Dual Hard Drive Kit ""Installing iMac Intel 27"" EMC 2429 Dual Drive Kit (HDD or SSD) as a guide for disassembly & reassembly.

Everything is working without a hitch. iMac is running like a champ now.

It was tedious, but not that difficult. The hardest part was getting the dust off the LCD between the glass at the end.

Well worth the effort. For the same price of Apple's SSD upgrade cost I was able to get a 256Gb SSD & a Core i7.

Thanks everyone for this thread & site. I probably wouldn't have attempted it without it."
bert [Entry]

"There seems to be no clear answer in this thread! I would like to update my iMac 27 - Mid 2011 - Core i5 (I5-2500S) @ 2.7GHz to a i7 processor and still be compatible with El Captain or Sierra.

So far from what I can understand these two i7 processors Apple used in the iMac 27""

Core i7 (I7-2600S) 2.8 GHz - S being the lower power version of the i7Core i7 (I7-2600) 3.4 GHz - Locked i7

And then there is also this CPU:

Core i7 (I7-2600K) 3.4 GHz - K meaning its unlocked & overclockable

So question is what CPU to use??"
bert [Entry]


I'm from Portugal, and I was thinking to upgrade my iMac 21'5 2011, from a i5 2500s to a i7 2600k (I can't find the 2600 right now), so... can I upgrade with the i7 2600k??