Model A1224 / Mid 2007 and Early 2008 / 2, 2.4, or 2.66 GHz Core 2 Duo processor

545 Questions View all

replacing X7900 to T9300 for macOS Sierra install Is it worth it?

Im wanting people to weigh in on installing macOS Sierra on 20" 2007 iMac. I installed a X7900 in it a few years back, but this cpu doesn't support sse4.1 instructions. The T9300 does and should work in this iMac. Same socket and same FSB 800. Im also upgrading wifi card to a BCM94360CAX combo card. Using an adapter and U.FL to MHF4 antenna adapters.

Does anyone see any problem with this being able to work after the upgrades are in place?

Update (01/09/2017)

So with the macOS 10.12.4 beta 1 and beta 2 the iSight camera doesn't work on our 2007 iMacs. It shows up in hardware but won't turn on. I am working on how to fix this.

Also, If you want Night Shift to work on our iMacs you can use clover boot loader with a smbios to trick the iMac into thinking it is a late 2013. You will have to apply a fix for USB because changing it to a late 2013 iMac smbios breaks all but one USB and also bluetooth (which is considered to be on an internal USB port) the patch that I have fixes all this. If anyone is interested let me know and ill make a right up.

Im thinking of making some videos to post on youtube at my channel Nandor690. I do AppleTV stuff right now but I think I'm going to also get into making videos on hackintoshes and unsupported real Macs as well

Update (01/09/2017) #2

I have figured out how to get Night Shift to work natively (Without using clover or doing any crazy hacks). Ill be posting a write up on this thread.

I'm still working on getting iSight working on 10.12.4 beta 1 and 2. Will keep everyone updated.

Update (01/27/2017)

What I am working on now.

As you know, macOS 10.12.4 comes with the new feature Night Shift. But it doesn't work on our iMacs because they don't support Metal. late 2012 iMac is the first year for that.

I used Clover boot loader to make a smbios for a 2012 iMac and now my iMac thinks its a 2012 and night shift works!

a few draw backs are

2 of the 3 usb don't work

bluetooth don't work

iSight camera don't work.

I am working on fixes for these now. (Remember, those things don't work because I made my iMac think it is a 2012 instead of a 2007. NOT because I updated to 10.12.4. It is safe to update.

Ill report back when I have fixes ready. I plan on setting up a couple threads in different forums and will link them here for you guys

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

Is this a good question?

Score 7

Comments:

@nandor690 - I'm very impressed with your efforts here.

Not to be a downer but you do have one problem you can't overcome here which is the systems memory limit of 6 GB. While you got the system too run it will be limited to simple tasks as it just won't have the needed memory to run many of todays Apps and it will be dog slow.

You might be able to off set the slowness of the system constantly using virtual RAM (disk) by upgrading the HD to a SSD. But you'll then hit the next bump here on the size of the SSD. You'll need to get at least a 512 GB unit if not larger and the SATA port speed of this series is SATA II (3.0 Gb/s).

As to it being worth it? I would say most people wouldn't have the skills to pull it off and at the end it might be more cost effective to buy even a used system which has better bones. I do realize in some countries this system still has value (like India) as its just to costly to get a replacement system for most.

by

Hi, Dan. I have done it last week, and it's worth it. I already installed a 256 Gb SSD 3 years ago, and I have 6 Gb of ram. Here we are talking about people, like me, that was already using this iMac every day for work. Upgrading to T9300 and new Airport card made it compatible with Sierra and faster. That's it. Every function of Sierra works (apart from Night Shift, that I don't care) and 6 Gb and a fast SSD are enough to make the system feel snappy in almost every operation (also, remember that the minimum official ram requirement for Sierra is 2 Gb, and 6 is theee times that).

My job is translation work, not graphic design or video editing (even if I can use Photos and iMovie without any problem).

The money spent on this was 50 dollars, so FOR ME it was worth it!

by

While I do agree with Dan and do appreciate his input, I do also agree that the people that actually find this thread are going to mostly be people like kautame that are looking to do an upgrade like this to begin with.

I have 6 GB ram and a 256 ssd that I installed almost 4 years ago. With the cpu and airport combo card this platform still feels pretty good while running on macOS Sierra.

While I use my i5 3750k hackintosh to do most of my work, the 2007 iMac still handles transcoding from Plex, and video editing with final cut pro well.

Mostly, this is just a hobby for me but I have found a small niche of people that what to do this. So I decided to get as much info out there that I could

by

hi, any updates for this, re: bluetooth, usb, isight?

by

Hi, Mark, this is already and old thread. Nandor had problems because he made his Mac think that it was a 2012 model, just to activate Night Shift. But that's not necessary anymore. After you make the hardware upgrade as Nandor explains in the following answer, you install Sierra on the 2007 iMac using macOS Sierra Patch Tool, from here:

http://dosdude1.com/sierrapatch.html

Everything should work EXCEPT for the brightness control, that on this Mac is broken from 10.12.4 on. To enable Night Shift you can just use an app called NightEnabler that you can find in this thread from MacRumors:

https://goo.gl/GTdgFd

If you need more details you can just read that thread.

by

Show 5 more comments

Add a comment

6 Answers

Chosen Solution

The process of upgrading the hardware in my 20" 2007 iMac is complete. I am running the latest beta of macOS 10.12.3 (16D30a). I have 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.0 so I have full support for Continuity.

I.E. Handoff and Universal Clipboard.

First I'll start out the the processor swap. I was running the X7900 Core 2 Extreme for a long time.

Specs X7900:

  • Base frequency: 2.80GHz
  • Cache: 4MB L2
  • Bus speed: 800 MHz FSB
  • TDP: 44W
  • Voltage range: 1.100-1.375
  • Number of
  • transistors: 291 million
  • Does NOT support sse4.1 instructions

GeekBench:

Block Image

This was a good processor. I first installed it while using OS X Lion. Other than running a little hot it seemed to run OS X great until I got to OS X Yosemite. There I started to get beachballs and very jittery movements in animations. It wasn't so bad that I couldn't deal with it but I just assumed my time with the 2007 iMac was coming to an end. With the lack of support for macOS it was really starting to seem real. I just assumed that with an almost 10 year old iMac there wouldn't be any processors that would support sse4.1 and work in my iMac. I was wrong. Pretty much, there are 3 CPU's to choose from;

  • T9300
  • T9500
  • X9000

Those are the only 3 that I found that support sse4.1 AND have an 800 FSB. That is because the 7,1 iMac only supports 800 FSB. Anything higher than that won't boot. I tried. I bought an E8135 for $6.00 on Ebay just to try out because it was so cheap. And the iMac wouldn't completely boot.

I decided to go with the T9300. It was $18 USD is pretty much what it came down to. All three of these processors have the same exact specs except for base frequency and also the X9000 TDP is 44W and not 35W like the other 2.

Specs T9300:

  • Base frequency: 2.50GHz
  • Cache: 6MB L2
  • Bus speed: 800 MHz FSB
  • TDP: 35W
  • Voltage range: 1.00-1.250
  • Number of
  • Transistors: 410 million
  • It Does support sse4.1

GeekBench

Block Image

Now while the T9300 Benchmarks less than the X7900, the T9300 runs macOS much smoother than the X7900 ran OS X Yosemite and El Capitan. I don't know a whole lot about specs for processors but I think its because the T9300 has the 6MB L2 Cache, it runs at a significantly lower temp due to lower TDP and voltage and because it has over 1 million more transistors than the X7900.

One thing to note tho. The T9300 is recognized as only being a 400MHz base frequency processor. I assumed that with the Geekbench being the numbers that it was, I was pretty sure that it was actually running at a higher frequency than that. But I wanted to make sure and after long hours of searching for a app that would allow me to see frequency I figured out that there must not be a way to do that natively in macOS. So I decided to add the FakeSMC.kext sensor kext that you would use in a hackintosh and installed them into /Library/Extensions and then rebuilt the cache with kext utility. I thought it was a long shot but it actually worked. I can confirm that at idle the T9300 is at 1.19GHz and at almost full throttle it is at 2.39 GHz.

Block Image

That is just a little lower than the 2.50GHz but if you look at istat menus the cpu is not quite maxed out yet.

Next I did research on adding 802.11ac and bluetooth 4.0 support. I found a post from Clemens on here Wireless Airport Card Replacement with New 802.11ac and he listed every thing we need to upgrade our iMacs. I will list it here again but I am giving him all the credit. So if you check this link out please give him the credit. The post I am pasting this from is the second post down from the question.

  • An Apple Broadcom BCM94360CSAX combo card, approx $10.- on ebay

OR

  • An Apple Broadcom BCM943602CS (BT 4.1) combo card, approx $17.- on ebay

AND

  • A compatible M.2 (NGFF) to mini PCIe adapter (also named as BCM94360CD to mini PCIe adapter), approx $4.- on ebay
  • 3x U.FL female to MHF4 male plug antenna adapter cable, approx $3.- per piece, so total $9.- on ebay

After that all you need to do is make a custom macOS USB Installer using the macOS Sierra Patcher tool.

Everything that I bought to upgrade my iMac was $48 USD to upgrade my iMac so it would support macOS and all of its features. So to answer my own question, YES I would definitely say it was worth it!!!

Was this answer helpful?

Score 9

Comments:

Holy cow. What a great write-up. Thanks for posting it!

I understand everything (I think) up to that last step:

> After that all you need to do is make a custom macOS USB Installer using the macOS Sierra Patcher tool.

Can you link to a guide for that? I have never heard of this.

by

Boyd, just search Google for "mac OS Sierra Patch tool" and the first result is the right one, with all the necessary instructions. You need to patch Sierra with that tool because otherwise the installer will recognize your Mac as unsupported.

by

Yes, thanks very much! I found it yesterday, in the process of getting Sierra up and running on the MacPro3,1!

by

How is everything going for you guys?

by

Hi, Nandor690. For me, I 'm still waiting for the different parts to arrive from other countries (mainly from China). After that, I'll do the "hack" and let you know.

by

Show 26 more comments

Add a comment

Here is a quick guide to enable Night Shift on unsupported Macs if you want to try it.

What you will need:

So you know, I created the link for the download so I assure you it is safe

  • Once downloaded you will need to place the app in your /Applications folder

How to edit CoreBrightness:

  • First you will need to navigate to /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks
  • Once you are there, look for the framework named CoreBrightness.framework
  • Right click on CoreBrightness.framework and 'Open in New Tab'
  • Next, navigate to /Versions/A
  • Now that we are here we need to make a copy of your CoreBrightness just in case something goes wrong. So right click on CoreBrightness and choose 'Copy "CoreBrightness"' and then paste it to the Desktop or somewhere that you will be able to find it later incase you need it.
  • Now right click on coreBrightness again and this time choose 'Open With' and choose 'Other...'

Block Image

  • That will open up a window that takes you to your Applications folder. You will choose 0xED

Block Image

Once it opens we will be ready to edit the file.

Editing CoreBrightness

This can look intimidating, but if you follow along you will be fine

You should now be looking at this

Block Image

  • First thing we need to do is navigate to the Offset so we can find the Hex that we need to change. To do that just look in the top right corner and you will see 'Go To Offset' and in the box above it will say 'Hex'. Click in that box and type 1D490 and then hit Enter on your keyboard. You should now see a blue cursor like this

Block Image

The cursor will be on a 09 and that is the start of the string that has all the different Mac models that support Night Shift.

The Mac models and corresponding hex number is as followed.

0900 0000 0D00 0000 0600 0000 0500 0000 0600 0000 0800 0000

  • MacBookPro 09
  • iMac 0D
  • Macmini 06
  • MacBookAir 05
  • MacPro 06
  • MacBook 08

These number correspond to the Mac identifier number i.e. 7,1 or 13,1. And these identifiers correspond to the year of the Mac. So this is telling the software what the earliest Mac is that it wants to see that will give you the Night Shift option

So as an example lets look at the iMac in the list. Its position is 0D. If you look up D as a hex number and convert it to a decimal you will see that it corresponds to 13. So the earliest identifier for iMac that the software wants to see is 13,x. Now, if you look up 'iMac 13,1" you will see that that identifier corresponds to the late 2012 iMac. Meaning that the only iMacs that officially support Night Shift are from late 2012 to the most recent. Got it? Ok, lets do one more. Look at MacBook Pro. The hex number is 09. This DOES NOT mean that Night Shift is supported on 2009 MacBook Pros. Rather, the 09 hex corresponds to the identifier 9,x. If you look up MacBook Pro 9,1 you will notice that corresponds to the model year mid 2012. See how it works now?

NOTE: Notice that the Mac mini and the Mac Pro have the same number. If you are editing for either of these platforms make sure you edit the right location. Also note that I have listed each model in order that it appears so it is easier for you to follow.

You need to know the identifier of your Mac for this next part. If you don't know it just look it up in 'About This Mac' 'System Report'

Block Image

Now that you have the identifier you need to go to this http://www.binaryhexconverter.com/decima... and type the first number of your identifier and convert it. Now that you have the hex number just add a zero in front of it and we are ready to change it in CoreBrightness.

As an example, the identifier of my iMac is 7,1. So I type in 7 in the converter and I get 7 as the hex number. Now I just add a zero to it and I have 07 now. Now I look at the list of Macs and see that the hex number I need to edit is 0D. So I highlight 0D in the file like this

Block Image

And then type 07, like this

Block Image

Now just make sure you save it before you close the application. To make sure you changed it you can reopen it and navigate back to the location and see that the change you made is still there.

NOTE: You need to make sure you highlight it like I did or you won't actually change it, you will instead just be adding your hex number to the string and that will cause it to not work. To check and make sure you changed it right just go back and match up the string of numbers that I provided above and it should be exactly the same EXCEPT for the hex number you changed for your Mac.

The last thing we need to do is re-sign the patched framework binary with:

sudo codesign -f -s - /S*/L*/PrivateFrameworks/CoreBrightness.framework/Versions/Current/CoreBrightness

in Terminal. Since we are using 'sudo' you will have to type in your password after you enter this.

Once you do this all you need to do now is restart your Mac and you will have the Night Shift option in Display in System Preferences.

IF when you click on Display, System Preferences crashes, that means that you didn't edit it right OR you didn't type the command into terminal properly. This is why you must have a backup of the CoreBrightness file like I told you to make at the beginning of this write up.

As always, If you have any questions just leave them here and I am always more that happy to help. I will eventually be making a video on how to do this to go along with my hackintosh videos on youtube.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 4

Comments:

I try to avoid binary downloads from Megaupload. I downloaded it ok from the developer's site:

http://www.suavetech.com/0xed/

Apparently signed with a valid Apple Developer cert.

Some alternative hex editors:

* http://ridiculousfish.com/hexfiend/

* https://marketplace.visualstudio.com/ite...

As always, the emacs that is already on your Mac knows how to do this already. No extra software required! (look, if you hare read this far already, your pain threshold is high enough for emacs.)

by

not sure what you mean by emacs

by

Add a comment

Thank you, nandor690! Great post indeed.

I've already bought all the parts on eBay, and I'm eager to begin working on my old iMac!

Update (02/06/2017)

Ok, I did it too! I replaced the CPU (from X7900 to T9300), the Wireless card (wi-fi + bluetooth) and even the PRAM battery. Everything went fine (apart from a little problem I had installing Sierra, as described at the end of this post).

My iMac (6Gb of ram, 256GB SSD) is now snappier than before, EVEN now that processes like photoanalysisd are still using a lot of the CPU power (but I don't have so many photos to analyse, so it should stop in a couple of days).

Thank you very much, nandor690. Only a couple of months ago I was thinking that my iMac was too old and that I had to buy a new one, but thanks to you, now I have a faster machine, up to date, and that can also do all the pretty stuff like Airdrop, Continuity, Handoff. I'm happy! :-D

P.S.

I had a problem when I installed Sierra (with the macOS Sierra Patch Tool) on the internal disk, because at the point when I had to reboot once again from the installer drive to use the "macOS Post install" (to add the specific patch for this machine), the system wasn't able to reboot from the USB stick and just showed the prohibitory symbol (the circle with a slash that means that it's trying to start from the wrong version of macOS). Pressing C at startup didn't do anything, but pressing X worked: I was able to chose the USB stick as the startup volume and after that I applied the patch and now everything is fine.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 1

Comments:

Awesome!!! Cant wait to see how it goes. if you have any questions installing macOS just let me know

by

Thanks for posting the problem you had and how you where able to solve it! I'm sure that will help other people that see this.

Glad I was able to help you and that your machine is running great!

by

Thanks to you again, Nandor690. But… what about your post about trying a CPU with more than 800 FSB with an hack? I received a mail from Ifixit with that post, but then I couldn't find it here. Did you deleted it?

by

No, that comment is at the top. its weird how this website handles comments. But it won't work. the chipset in the 2007 iMacs only supports 800, so even when I tried it with the hack it wouldn't even get to the boot menu to do anything.

by

Now I have a new problem. I decided to make the last possible upgrade of my iMac, the graphic card, and bought on Ebay an ATI Radeon HD 2600 256 MB for iMac 7,1, since I had an ATI Radeon HD 2400 XT 128 MB. But after I installed it, according to System Profiler it's the exact same card: ATI Radeon HD 2400 XT 128 MB. Could this be a System Profiler error (like the 400 MHz one), or they just sent me the wrong card? The seller (100% good reviews on Ebay) just wrote me that for him ther are no mistakes and that the card he sent me is the HD 2600. Is there a way to check this apart from System Profiler? Or it's just the wrong card?

by

Show 12 more comments

Add a comment

IT'S ALIIIVE!!

Have not yet upgraded the WiFi, but Bluetooth and the rest work fine!

Wifi drivers are the bane of tinkerers... I am kicking around and update that uses the Broadcom binary blob method used by Linux. Not expecting easy fix, but maybe. I've done worse before.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 1

Comments:

so you want to flash your wifi card?

by

Add a comment

There is a why to upgrade our iMacs to High Sierra. At the moment of this post APFS is not supported but will be in probably the next day or two. I will post more details soon. Maybe a video on my youtube channel

Was this answer helpful?

Score 0
Add a comment

Has anybody done this upgrade with the X9000? Nandor690 says it's an option but has anybody done it and confirmed it's worked? I'm trying to decide which chip to buy and I'd like to get the fastest one if possible.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 0

Comments:

I am waiting for the processor X9000. I will confirm if it worked when I'll do the upgrade

by

Add a comment

Add your answer

nandor690 will be eternally grateful.
View Statistics:

Past 24 Hours: 13

Past 7 Days: 77

Past 30 Days: 305

All Time: 3,226