2014 1tb mini - how to make it usable

roadkill401

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Original poster
Jan 11, 2015
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I had a 2012 mini that I added a disk doubler kit from OWC to install a 240gb SSD drive into and converted the 500gb hd into a fusion drive. it made it usable. But sadly the unit died.

I found a 2014 i5-2.6gh with a 1tb hard drive for a reasonable price and picked it up, but it is just dog slow to use. I could rip the unit open and pull out the 1tb hard drive and replace it with the 240gb SSD, but that would require a bit of pulling everything apart and I am getting older and not as agile as I was 5 years ago.

I see that OWC sell a blade drive kit that you can add in the SSD without the need to remove the whole motherboard. Is this the option that most do? Is there other vendors that sell a similar item at a better cost? I live in Canada so I'd be buying from Amazon.ca

Or does everyone just buy a standard SSD drive and connect it external via the USB3 port and run it that way.
 
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bulletspongesquarepants

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Feb 22, 2020
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I use a Samsung T5 Portable SSD with Mojave on it. Works great. It gave me a huge boost in speed when i made the switch from the internal HDD to the external SSD. It felt like having a new computer. For everyday tasks its more then adequate. The internal drive is now only used for storing files.
 
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Boyd01

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Feb 21, 2012
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An external SSD like the T5 is a great way to do this. I run my 2012 quad Mini from a Samsung T3 (the previous version of the T5) and it is very fast. Now, the OWC blade drive is going to be faster than an external, but may not matter a lot for everyday use. I have not installed one of those, but the video on OWC's site does look very easy on the 2014 Mini.
 

getrealbro

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Sep 25, 2015
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Here’s a thread about how to speed up a 2014 Mini with HDD vs internal & external SSD speed comparisons.


I chose an external Samsung T5 because I could easily reuse it when I got my 2018 Mini.

GetRealBro
 
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Boyd01

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That is a good thread, however @roadkill401 isn't quite so bad off... he has a 2.6ghz Mini and that thread is about the lowly 1.4ghz Mini with only 4gb RAM. I have a 2.8ghz 2014 Mini with 8gb RAM. It had a fusion drive, so I split the 128gb SSD to use as a startup drive and that made it very fast. I use this machine as an iTunes server and just moved my media library to a 4TB external USB 3.0 SSD which is a big improvement over my old 7200RPM USB hard drive. :)
 

getrealbro

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Sep 25, 2015
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That is a good thread, however @roadkill401 isn't quite so bad off... :)
Agreed.

FWIW my late 2014 Mini with 8GB, 2.6 GHz i5, and 1TB HDD, is currently a file/TM backup/media server. And it does that limited task very well even booted from the HDD. But occasionally I actually use it for interactive stuff as simple as web browsing. And the slow HDD makes it painful.

Like the OP, my choices to speed it up are limited to roughly…
1 - 450 MB/sec => an external 1TB SSD like the T5 for $160

https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-T5-P...lGA&hsa_cr_id=4083693700801&ref_=sb_s_sparkle

2 - 750 MB/sec => an OWC 1TB SSD Kit with tools, instructs, etc. for nearly twice as much as a 1TB T5

https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/ssd/owc/mac-mini/2014

3 - 750 MB/sec => a combination of a 1TB SSD + various install parts/tools/costs as described in this thread

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/using-a-standard-m-2-pcie-nvme-ssd-in-the-2014-mini.2118732/

GetRealBro
 
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