Dual drive upgrade

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Chippy99, May 22, 2012.

  1. Chippy99 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 28, 2012
    I just wanted to do a quick poll to see if many people around here have added a 2nd drive to their 2011 Mini, and if so how difficult it was?

    I have ordered a couple of 256GB SSD's and the extra sata cable and screws, grommets etc and am waiting for it all to arrive. But I have to say I am quite daunted about the whole upgrade procedure, having to remove the motherboard and PSU etc.

    Replacing the existing drive with a 500GB SSD would be a lot easier, but they are so ****ing expensive!

    Any positive (or negative!) experiences? Tips? Things to watch out for?
  2. Tsuchiya macrumors 68020


    Jun 7, 2008
    It's really not too difficult, I followed the OWC guide to install a 240gb SSD and it went pretty smoothly.

    All I can say is that be very careful when disconnecting cables from the logic board. I know it goes without saying, but on mine the IR connector popped off before I even started tugging on the cable. It hardly seemed fixed down :-/

    Just take your time with it, some bits like the grill with the Airport attached are a bitch to get to fit in place again but you'll get there eventually.
  3. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    this. also the logic board can be moved about 1/4 inch to do this job. it does not need to be fully removed.
  4. lostedge macrumors newbie

    May 15, 2012

    It can be done without removing the logic board, which means a few less logic board connections to detach. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymGnXdwvabg

    When you are removing anything from the logic board, make sure you are extremely careful. In my case, I used a precision flat head to remove the fan connection from the logic board, and while working from the wrong side, I removed the entire connection. Stupid mistake and now a real pain for me. (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1349896)

    Good luck!
  5. Chippy99, May 22, 2012
    Last edited: May 22, 2012

    Chippy99 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Apr 28, 2012
    Are you guys sure you can add and additional drive without removing the logic board (and PSU)? Clearly you can replace the existing drive. But if you add a 2nd drive it has to go in the top bay (below the existing drive as you hold the Mini upside down to work on it). And securing it in the drive bay requires removal of the drive bay itself, which in turn means removal of the logic board.

    Unless you are advocating just popping the drive in and not securing it?

    EDIT: OK, just watched the video so I can see what you mean.

    I am not *entirely* sure I approve of mounting the 2nd drive like this. On the other hand, I am not too keen on removing the logic board and PSU either! I guess when I attempt the job, I can work out how difficult it is and decide on the best approach.

    Thanks for your advice guys.
  6. Lance-AR macrumors 6502

    May 7, 2012
    Little Rock, AR
    There are sockets that fit the screws on the side of the drives. The top drive also screws into the air mesh. This will secure both sides of the top drive but only one side of the bottom drive. Once it is in place, I think you will find there is not a lot of too off it to travel.
  7. Pheo macrumors regular

    Jun 13, 2011
    I didn't fully remove the logic board and installed an SSD in addition to the original drive.

    Also be careful you reseat the connectors properly - my fan one popped off! Turns out the mini can run passive :-/ wouldn't recommend it

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