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Model A1224 / Early 2009 / 2.66 GHz Core 2 Duo processor

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Why's my iMac won't turn on?

Hi guys,

I have this old iMac (A1224, 20”) which looks very good but there’s no sign of life from it.

I disassembled it and connect the cord to it and - #1 diagnostic LED is turned on, that’s it, nothing else.

Of course I tried to turn it on but the only sign I watched is the fan (left on) moving a bit when I click on the power button - but that’s it (I can add a video of it - it barely moving).

So the power button is okay, but I’m not sure what is causing the problem - it can be the power supply or the logic board? or something else?

I want to give it back to life - but I’m not sure what can I do with it right now and if it’s even worth it….


Update (09/16/2019)

As I saw in here: A1224

Mine probably has the E8135 CPU (on the bottom there's sticker says 2.66) - which should to be the best option available to my system, is that correct?

And according to the website above - mine is also a iMac 9,1 model - So if everything will work after the PSU replacing - I will be able to make the rest of the upgrades (SSD, RAM and OS) in order to bring it back to life! :)

Dan, you're great!

I will update when I'll get the part I need - Thank you very much!

Update (10/23/2019)

Same issue after replacing to a new PSU

Hello Dan,

I finally got the PSU and it looks good, but after I connect it inside with all the cables, it turn on the #1 LED but the issue remain the same, so the fan is barely moving one time only when I click on the power button.

I assume that my original PSU is just fine but I’m wondering if my problem is larger than what originally thought and if it’s worth fixing it.

I’ll glad to hear any help. Thanks!

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Your system is within this group A1224 your system is somewhat limited as it can only use El Capitan OS-X 10.11 .x and also only can support 8 GB RAM.

So do keep this in mind. This is still a great system for writing and limited web surfing.


Thank you Dan for your answer!

If it’s only the PSU I think I can afford it.

I always thought that Led -1- is working means that PSU is fine.

Anyway, I made a GIF that shows what I described after clicking the power button:

And I have another additional question if you don’t mind. I might change it to SSD/8GB ram if I’ll make it work.

BUT - There’s an option to upgrade the CPU?

Nowdays these era’s CPUs are very cheap, I’m not sure if I able do it in my model (EMC2266) but if I can I would like to do so, to boost a little the system, and especially for upgrade the OS (I need Sierra and above to get my language support).

If it’s possible - which are the TOP 3 CPUs I can upgrade to?

Thank you very much - again!


Your GIF is indeed showing what I see when the power supply fails. The fan will often jerk forward slightly.

As far as upgrading the HDD to an SSD that's not a bad upgrade (as well as 8 GB of RAM)! Here's a kit that iFixit sells iMac Intel 20" and 24" (Mid 2007-Early 2009) SSD Upgrade Kit Or you can get your own and adapter frame. Do be careful! As you'll need a SATA II (3.0 Gb/s) drive many of the newer drives sold today only work properly in SATA III (6.0 Gb/s) systems. I personally recommend the Samsung SSD's

Sadly your system won't support the newer CPU's and only supports the older Core2Duo CPU's. The best you can get is the 2.66 GHz Core 2 Duo (click on the blue URL I posted above).

Using macOS Sierra Patcher Tool for Unsupported Macs you could install macOS Sierra on your system but its limited to iMac 8,1 and 9,1 models.


Hi, I can see that answer had edited but I won’t able to see any new chagne at the text. I got the same issue with a new PSU and I don’t know what to do. any help would be appreciated!


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From your description it sounds like your power supply has failed. you’ll need this part iMac Intel 20" 2.66 GHz EMC 2266 Power Supply and here’s the guide iMac Intel 20" EMC 2266 Power Supply Replacement

Diagnostic LEDs

The iMac has built-in diagnostic LEDs on the main logic board that can help you to troubleshoot the computer. The LEDs are located to the right of the battery (see photo below).

LED #1 - Indicates the trickle voltage from the power supply has been detected by the logic board. This LED will remain ON whenever the iMac is connected to a working AC power source. The LED will remain on even when the computer has been shut down or put to sleep. The LED will turn off only if the AC power source is disconnected or the power supply is faulty.

LED #2 - Indicates the main logic board has detected proper power from the power supply when the computer is turned on. This LED will be ON when the computer is turned on and the power supply is working correctly.

LED #3 - Note: This LED is not used on systems that have integrated graphics, which includes all

configurations of the iMac (20-inch, Early/Mid 2009).

LED #4 - Indicates the computer and the LCD display panel are communicating. This LED will be ON when the computer is turned on and video signal is being generated. If the LED is ON and there is no image on the LCD display panel, the LCD display panel or inverter might be installed incorrectly or need replacement.

iMac Intel 20" 2.66 GHz EMC 2266 Power Supply Afbeelding


iMac Intel 20" 2.66 GHz EMC 2266 Power Supply


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ariec7 - I've added the diagnostics LED meaning in my answer above. As you can see LED #2 should be lit if the power supply is working properly.

To you have a DVM and know how to use it?

I'm not sure if you got a bad part or something else is going on here within the logic board. Do you know if this system was plugged into a surge suppressor? At the only thing I can think of is a a lightning hit jumped to the logic board damaging it.


@danj Thanks again for answering!

I think both PSUs are good, as they both, old and new one - had turned the first LED on, so maybe the problem is really the logic board or something else.

I don't know the past of this PC unfortunately, and I know to use DVM(multimeter?) in a very basic way(checking baterries voltage etc) so I'm not sure where exacly I need to point the needles inside the PC in order to make a proper checking...

Do you think there is any chance to fix it on the budget or it's a dead horse? I don't mind to get a little adventure if it's not very complicated or expensive...

Thanks again!


What about LED #2 ?? Thats the key here!

The problem you are likely facing is an issue many power supplies of the time faced! Capacitor Plague Here's some more images How to Spot Faulty Capacitors

Basically I still think you got a bad power supply (both!)


LED #2 is only turn on when the PC is on, right?

If so, it just not turning on as the PC won't turn on as well.

As for the power supply - I can't be sure if it’s faulty because they are both looking just fine, and I obviously won't buy another one again if I’m not 100% sure that is the main problem here. In a quick look it seems very clean and the capacitors are not looking bad in both of them - also, both of them turning the #1 LED on.


LED #2 - Indicates the main logic board has detected proper power from the power supply when the computer is turned on. This LED will be ON when the computer is turned on and the power supply is working correctly.

So your power supply is still in question! Check your voltages.


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ariec 7 makes me wonder if LED 2 does not come on because your computer does not come on.

LED #2 - Indicates the main logic board has detected proper power from the power supply when the computer is turned on. This LED will be ON when the computer is turned on and the power supply is working correctly.

Check this with emphasis on #5 and#6

1. Power ON system. Verify if there is any indication that the system has powered up (fan rotation, hard drive or optical drive noise, backlight turns on).

Yes The symptom is powering up.

Jump to Won’t Start Up.

No Go to step 2.

2. Remove front bezel and locate diagnostic LED’s on logic board. Plug power cord into system. Verify whether diagnostic LED #1 turns ON.


Trickle voltage being supplied by power supply. Go to step 3.


Replace power supply.

3. Press power button while monitoring diagnostic LED’s. Does diagnostic LED #2 turn ON and remain ON after pressing the power button?


Power supply functioning and logic board detects supply voltages. Jump to Won’t Start Up.


Go to step 5.

4. Disconnect power then remove power supply and carefully inspect AC inlet and DC output connectors and cables for damage or poor connections. Were any problems identified?


Replace damaged part.


Go to step 5.

5. Inspect power button and verify that it is properly connected to the logic board.


Visual inspection OK.

Go to step 6.


Reconnect power button. Replace rear housing (which includes power button) or logic board if damage is present.

6. Disconnect power button from logic board and verify continuity between two pins when power button is pressed.


Power button is functioning correctly. Go to step 7.


Power button faulty. Replace rear housing which includes power button.

7. Press power button and verify whether system turns ON.


Power supply is functioning. If system still does not boot jump to Won’t Start Up.


Replace power supply. Retest.

If No Power symptom persists after all steps have been followed use Minimum Configuration troubleshooting to proceed. Try disconnecting the hard drive, optical drive, AirPort, and Bluetooth modules to determine if one of them is preventing the power supply from functioning.

Let us know what 820-XXXX your logic board is. There may be a way to try to use power-on pads to see if it comes on.

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