I have a 1.4 GHz iMac (8GB RAM and Intel HD Graphics 5000 1536 MB). Running a simple code or creating a level in Unreal Engine makes everything work very slow. The graphics performance is lagging behind a lot when editing a level in Unreal Engine plus the whole UI freezes and seems a little hazy or blurry with screen tearing.

So if I raid the HDD and external SSD together will it solve my graphics performance issue?

I have already gone through this post (Would upgrading to SSD solve my performance issues?), but this guy has a MacBook so that doesn't answers my question!

I don't have many options and I believe an external SSD would be the best solution. Apple has now support for external GPUs. Can I insert a CPU into the GPU case, and improve the overall performance of my iMac?

And one more thing: Can I insert a processor into the eGPU enclosure in order to bypass my iMac's internal hardware such as the graphics card and the slow 1.4 GHz Intel processor?

  • 3
    It may improve the general performance but it won't change the graphics card itself imho
    – Solar Mike
    Sep 30, 2017 at 14:58
  • 3
    Raiding an internal HD & external SSD would be a "bad idea". Replacing the HD altogether would be better - but nothing is going to speed up an Intel GPU to make it anything like 'fast'.
    – Tetsujin
    Sep 30, 2017 at 14:58
  • @Tetsujin But I guess replacing HDD is not possible in an iMac and can I replace the processor and the Graphics?
    – Sayan
    Sep 30, 2017 at 15:04
  • SSD replacement is probably one of the easier tasks, google has a million guides, but CPU/GPU... you'd be better off getting a new machine. The Intel "GPU" is actually physically part of the CPU itself. See imore.com/cpu-vs-ram-vs-ssd-which-mac-upgrades-make-most-sense
    – Tetsujin
    Sep 30, 2017 at 15:08
  • 1
    Please adhere to the habits and rules here! You are overloading your questions by adding additional - more or less - unrelated questions (hours later) in your articles or as comments. ASE doesn't work like this. It's no discussion board. And take the time to search ASE for adequate answers first.
    – klanomath
    Sep 30, 2017 at 17:11

1 Answer 1


It depends by what you define as "increased performance."

An SSD will increase performance with respect to getting digital assets off the drive and into memory and the CPU. If you were having lag due to slow read/write times, an SSD will help.

If you have framerate issues, an SSD will do nothing to help your situation. If your GPU chokes on 30 fps, it will still choke on 30 fps after an SSD upgrade.

I have already gone through this post (Would upgrading to SSD solve my performance issues?), but this guy has a MacBook so that doesn't answers my question!

Technically speaking, that iMac is closer to a MacBook Pro than an actual desktop because it's using the Intel® Core™ i5-4260U Processor which is a processor aimed at the mobile (laptop) segment.

The HD5000 video chipset is shared video memory so even with 8GB RAM, you actually only have 6.5GB max available to you.

There's no amount of RAIDing or setting up external GPUs that's going to overcome this performance deficit. This is like trying to supercharge a moped with the expectation it will haul freight.

Your best option is to get the most powerful older Mac Pro with a proper GPU that you can afford rather than try and bodge a new iMac into something it really can't be.

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