Installing an SSD in the new Mac mini is a breeze

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Agnoslibertine, Dec 1, 2012.

  1. Agnoslibertine, Dec 1, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2012

    macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #1
    It was so easy, compared to fixing up PC's all my life, it was really great. Sure it was a bit hard with the small wires and all, but what really impressed me was the CMD and R. How easy it was to install the Mountain lion on the new SSD. That was really impressive. I had a Crucial m4 (128gb) in my PC, so I took that one.

    But about the hardware, I have to confess, I could had trouble putting in the SSD, so I put it on top of the Original HDD. The silly thing is that it isn't used since i don't own another set of SATA (or whatever) cable. But I will get it eventually I suppose.

    Now all I need is some more ram. 4gb just doesn't do it for me, when it comes to video editing..
     
  2. thread starter macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #2
    by the way for those of you who haven't SSD yet, you really should. Gives everything you do a snappy speed to it.

    Been using a SSD on my PC for a couple of months, it felt kind of slowish going from PC to mac. But now I feel happy again. :)

    Seriously, if you don't have a SSD, get one, even if you can only afford a small sized one.
     
  3. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2007
    #3
    I agree, especially with the videos it was rather easy. The hardest part to me was getting the original hard drive back in because of the power cables on the right. I just could not get it to fit perfectly in there even after trying for 20 minutes. I figured I made it fit good enough. Also upgraded to 16GB at the same time. My 5 year old iMac was maxed out with 4GB for all these years so I figured I might as well max out the mini while doing the upgrade...
     
  4. thread starter macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #4
    exactly, those damn cables on the right. :)

    But I can't believe that there is room for two hard drives there. If I was insane, I would get two 256gb SSD's and raid them for extra speed. But that would be just crazy right?

    which brand of ram did you get?
     
  5. macrumors 65816

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    Portsmouth, UK
  6. thread starter macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #6
    yepp, 2,5 standard.
     
  7. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
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    Portsmouth, UK
    #7
    cheers
     
  8. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Location:
    Athens, Greece
    #8
    Hi there, since you done this before, and anyone who knows, I want to ask just to make sure I have it right

    Im buying a new 2.3 i7 mini and I ve already bought a 256gb m4 ssd

    I will install the ssd out of the box, the mini will not power up with its original hdd
    All I have to do to install ML will be CMD+R?
    Do I have to set the ssd in any special mode like in windows IDE-AHCI?
    Will I have a problem with a wireless keyboard doing the above?

    Sorry for dumb questions, fellow noob needing support, this is my first time
     
  9. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #9
    I you CMD+R at restart, you will go to internet recovery and can choose where to install Mac OS. However, DO NOT install the SSD until you boot it up and get it running at least initially on the stock hardware. What if you got a bum system? You might end up having to tear it all apart again just to put it back to stock to return it. I don't even recommend people install memory until they have at least tried their mini in stock form.
     
  10. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    #10
    i too had no problem installing my SSD. I bought the kit from OWC and dropped a 128GB M4 in. Also dropped in 16GB RAM at the same time

    I will admit that it was a bit scary with the logic board removal tool. Im not sure if anyone else noticed this, but my logic board would not break away from the chassis as easy as some of the videos indicated. I guess I was just timid about putting enough pressure there to pop it out.

    Loving it now though!!!!!
     
  11. thread starter macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #11
    The SSD in my mac mini works really great. I also got a external drive (western digital, 2tb, usb3) today, and I moved the home folder to it.

    works super swell..

    I do video editing with fcpx, and the mac mini really impresses. But mostly I think FCPx is genius programming. Best program ever.

    all I need now is 16 gb ram...
     
  12. fig
    macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #12
    My only concern with swapping out the hard drive myself is voiding the warranty.

    I've got a Crucial m4 in my old iMac at home and it's immensely improved the usability, it feels like a new machine.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #13
    I was thinking the same thing when I bought the mac mini.
    But now...
    if you ask me, its worth the risk.... no doubt...
    The ssd is that good. :)
     
  14. fig
    macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 13, 2012
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    Houston, TX
    #14
    Oh, no argument there. I'm just debating whether to get the preinstalled SSD or not, probably getting mine in February or so.
     
  15. macrumors 6502a

    nsayer

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    #15
    I went the extra step and got the OWC data doubler kit for my mid 2011 mini and an SSD and made a DIY fusion drive.

    The process was easier than I expected. Apart from the obligatory dump/restore cycle (I used a USB 2 hard disk, and each direction took about 5 hours), it was completely painless.

    I believe adding 120 GB of SSD to a 768 GB spinny disk yields most of the benefit of going all SSD.

    I mean, Safari is a lot snappier. :rolleyes:
     
  16. thread starter macrumors member

    Agnoslibertine

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Sweden
    #16
    Hell yeah, safari is snappier. But Chrome goes even faster.

    I use a external hdd (usb 3) 3tb drive for music, movies and photos. And the OS and programs on the SSD. Its a sort of a compromise that seems to work really great.
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    Location:
    NY|NJ
    #17
    do you have a i7? any hiccups...
     
  18. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    #18
    I don't have any issues other than drive related ( guess)
    When i put my ssd it was a faster but not that fas as should be, also got heat issues and put hdd back, seems no heat probs but it's strange when waking up after sleep mode, very long waking up. But no i7 issues though
     
  19. pure3d2, Dec 11, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2012

    macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    #19
    Haha I rolled the dice and tore my mac mini apart to install 16GB of ram, a 256GB SSD and the original 500GB drive.

    It's working great!

    I didn't use the logic board removal tool since I didn't buy a kit. I just used two small screwdrivers that were 4" long to push the logic board out. The longer screwdrivers give you more leverage than that short U-shaped tool.
     
  20. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    #20
    none whatsoever. Very happy with my purchase.

    As for the warranty, I'll buy AppleCare next month as it is only $100 with a student discount, and know that I will just take the SSD out and drop the original RAM back in if I have any issues. Even though the drive is non-user replaceable, it only takes me 30 minutes to get to back to day one status.
     
  21. macrumors member

    Exodist

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Location:
    Buenavista, Agusan Del Norte, Philippines
    #21
    I have a 256GB Samsung 830 series I plan on removing from my gaming pc and sticking in my Mac Mini. Question I have is TRIM support? When I try to look this up most of the information I come up with is 2011 Minis or older. Any comments on this?

    Thanks,
    Joe
     
  22. macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

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    www.emiliana.cl
    #22
  23. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2012
    #23
    Just installed an SSD on my mac mini 2012 today...

    Problems:

    1. Connecting back the Wifi cable, the connectors are very small

    2. Screwing back the Wifi metal plate (i dunno what i did wrong but only one side of the holes aligned correctly, thus now another hole is currently unscrewed)

    3. Getting the rubber grommets into the holes on the disk frame

    4. Sitting the top hard drive correctly. Careful if u are pulling the harddrive out to readjust the seating, the two sata cables from the different drives may lock together and u might rip them if u pull hard enuff.

    5. The ribbon cable from owc seems a bit long, thus it overshots the sata port. What i did was connect it to the sata port, and then installed the original hdd ontop of my 2nd hdd

    6. I think i made a few minute scratches on the Fan and might have voided my warranty.

    Nevertheless managed to fix it all back together, though the wifi plate remains unscrewed, and the SSD works perfectly. . I would advise future modders to know the screwdrivers names before hand (if ur following owc video using owc tools), and screw everything tightly so other screw holes align correctly. Also since yours is a new unmodded drive, everything will be tight :), so u have to apply some pressure when pulling stuff out

    Sry for the long text...
     
  24. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2012
    #24
    i think the main issue people are having with getting the screws/logic board/ plates aligned is due to the original hard drive that sits on top. if you notice, the original hhd (or ssd depending what you pre-ordered), has these rubber stopper things already in the sides. you have to align those things directly into the holes in the bottom of the mac mini. i had to redo this step two or three times during installation. even though it may seem like its in, it may not be. there only way you can tell for sure is if you kind of shake the mini a bit and the harddrive barely moves. if you don't completely fit the original drive all the way in, none of the remaining screws will align properly.

    if you notice, the slots that the rubber stoppers fit into are actually toward the top side of the mac mini. if you simply slide the hard drive into the location above the logic board, the tendency is for the harddrive to move toward the bottom side of the mac mini. my method of working around this is after sliding the hard drive in, i stuck a ruler into the space and moved the inside half of the harddrive toward to top of the mac mini case. with a little bit of jiggling, the rubber stoppers will eventually slide right into the holes at the side of the case. you should be able to test if its secure by shaking the mini a bit. if the inner side of the hard drive doesn't slide at all, then you can be sure that the hard drive is secure.

    take my word for it, i had to retry that step 2-3 times before finally getting all my screws and plates properly aligned.


    p.s. sorry for the long post... :eek:
     

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