Installing RAM from 2011 MBP into 2009 Mac Mini - A Possibility?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by mac1984user, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. mac1984user macrumors 6502a


    Dec 10, 2009
    United Kingdom
    Hey there,

    I am fully aware that the RAM in the 2011 MBP and the 2009 Mac Mini are different speeds (1333 vs 1066 MHz). However, they are the same size chips and as I recall, you can install RAM into a computer that is faster than what the motherboard can handle; it will simply be limited to the speed the mobo can accommodate.

    Basically, I have a 2011 MBP with 4GB of RAM that I would like to upgrade to 8GB. I would like to take that 4GB and put it into my Late 2009 Mac Mini, which at the moment only has 2GB of RAM. This would save me the added expense of having to buy BOTH an 8GB set for the MBP and a 4GB set for the Mini. My only question is: will it work? Has anyone had any experience with this?

    Kind regards,
  2. mdgm macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    I don't know the answer to your question but in my opinion if you are going to go to all the trouble of upgrading the RAM in your Mini you may as well put 8GB (2x4GB) in there. It will handle 8GB RAM.
  3. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    It should work. But you never know. If money is tight give it a shot..

    No one can give a perfect answer unless they have the same mini with a cloned hdd all the same software and the same network. More then likely it will sImply downclock. Except if there is software or hardware (add ons a printer an external hdd etc) that does not want to downclock.
  4. Newfiebill macrumors regular


    Jan 6, 2011
    Go ahead and put in the MBP RAM, it will work fine, it will downclock as you have stated but it will boot up. Make sure that the RAM Modules are "seated" real good, don't be weary, give 'em a little shove....
  5. mac1984user, Jun 11, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2011

    mac1984user thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Dec 10, 2009
    United Kingdom
    Thanks for the input. Sounds like I should be able to save myself a bit of money. =) That's good news. However, I don't know if I trust myself opening up the Mac Mini and getting all the way down to the RAM, which as I understand it, is quite buried under all the other components. I did once open an iPhone 3G and replace the battery, but I don't think I'd ever want to do that again. Anyone had much experience opening these Minis? Is it as bad as it looks?
  6. undieman macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2011
    I've had a successful go at replacing the HDD on my mini and it worked well. I read the guide at iFixit and the OWC video on youtube for replacing the HDD. Once you get to the HDD the ram is right there too.

    My earlier experience had been putting a new HDD in a macbook which is a hell of a lot easier.

    There are a few tricky steps, I don't know if I would leap straight into it without having mucked around with other less fiddly projects.

    Also if you do go for it read/watch a few different guides because there are different ways to go about it and it will help to see a few.

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