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Model A1225 / Early 2009 / 2.66, 2.93, or 3.06 GHz Core 2 Duo processor

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Possible to "UPGRADE" the GFX card Early 2009 iMac NVIDIA GT120?

Hi guys,

This is my first ever post here! I have an early 2009 imac 2.93ghz with nvidia gt120 gfx card.

I'd like to know if it's possible to upgrade this card to a newer card and have my mac still work?

I have read about possible EFI/driver issues and wondered if anyone has any experience of this or can provide me with some info on how to fix them if they occur.

The nvidia gt120 & gt130 has an unaddressed issue that apple has never fixed that causes crashes, so I would like to replace this card, with a new card and it needs to be an upgrade as this card no longer works with anything after Snow Leopard 10.6.3 without crashing.

Many thanks guys,

hardtofin :)

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Apple part #661-4990. Yes it can be swapped out. Here's the guide: iMac Intel 24" EMC 2267 Graphics Card Replacement

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Many thanks but I've already read that thread. My question is whether or not I can UPGRADE it? I don't want to put the same card back in it.

Many thanks.



Video Card, NVIDIA, GeForce GT130 w/512MB GDDR3


This is a replacement 512MB NVIDIA GeForce video card for the Early 2009 24-inch iMac.


Are these nvidia gt cards the only ones I can put in? Both of these cards cause crashes, so I wanted to put in anything BUT the gt120 or gt130. I was hoping for a 2011 card or something.

Thanks again.



Apple has updated Software Update and its support website with a small update called iMac Graphic FW Update 3.0 which it says will fix "a graphics issue that will cause an iMac to hang under certain conditions" for Intel-based iMacs running OS X Lion. The bug apparently exists inside the firmware for the graphics card in recent iMacs.

Read more:


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iMac Graphic FW Update 3.0 is NOT for the generation of iMac that suffer this issue (early 2009 with GT120 o GT130 Video Cards) and this thing is very frustrating because Apple did NOT help all these users after all these years putting out a stupid right software update. That one you mention is useful for imac younger than the model we're talking about. It's Embarrassing thinking that these expensive iMac (they costed more than 2000 bucks) become dead stuff at the moment you upgrade from 10.6 to 10.6.3 and above... something in the new code breaks the "equilibrium" of this damned video card and your iMac that one hour before worked in excellent way now crashes anytime. Always kernel panic: ALWAYS

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Is this only happening with the NVidia cards? Has anyone replaced the GT 120/130 with the ATI Radeon card to see if the problem can be subdued in any way?

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I'm afraid that Radeon HD4850 has the same problem as Nvidia GT 120-130 causes kernel panics that will make you punch the crap out of the iMac, I'm not kidding


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