Just got a 2012 refurb - upgrade options?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Cbdboz, Jan 27, 2015.

  1. Cbdboz macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #1
    Just snagged a late 2012 QC i7 2.3ghz. With 1TB HD (4g ram)

    Just wanted to check what I can do to upgrade, and would appreciate advice

    1 Ram - this seems a no brainer, and presumably OWC or others mentioned on forum would be a cheap route.

    I am also picking up a new r-iMac ( yes I know it sounds like all my Christmas's have come at once but trust me, I have been on the fence for ages and finally have a replacement for my 2008 iMac, and this refurb mini as hub of home theatre, server, 2nd Mac for family and NAS)

    ? Can I use the 2x4g Ram from the new i-Mac and put in the refurb mini? ( as will look to get 2x8g for r-iMac)

    2 Storage - was looking for the fusion on the Mac mini, but obviously don't get huge choice on returns.

    ? Can I replace the internal HDD, with a fusion drive... Or maybe even just pure ssd.... And if so, how does this rate in terms of difficulty and risk of catastrophe if I get it wrong?

    (My idea was internal ssd for OS and apps, and use WD my book 4tb as server storage.

    3 Apple Care -

    ? is it worth getting, and which of the above upgrades would render the warranty void? (Unless it can all be put back together in original refurb state etc)


    4 any other worthwhile upgrades.... If so, what, why, and how difficult?

    Cheers
     
  2. dyt1983 macrumors 65816

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    #2
    My GF jumped from a 2008 iMac to a iMac5K too. She's not that impressed with the speed. ;-)

    Yes, both use DDR3 SODIMMs. The iMac5K has 4 slots, the rMini 2. So you can do what you wrote, but also put the rMini's 4GB back into the iMac5K for 20GB so you don't waste the 4GB. You could also put the 2x8GB in the rMini, then put the 2x2GB into the iMac5K and have 12GB. It depends on your usage requirements.

    You don't really replace the internal HDD to make a fusion drive, you just add an SSD (120-160-180-240GB or so) and then "fuse" them.

    AppleCare has a lot of factors. Some people like new hardware all the time, and something breaking gives a perfect excuse for the upgrade.
     
  3. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    #3
    Hoping I see a dramatic improvement on my new r-iMac, as its full spec 27" v 2.66gz Intel core duo with 4 g of ram :)

    Only so many spinning wheels I can suffer... Tho granted a lot of that is due to a full 560g HDD ;)


    Re Ram - great news.......may even think about recycling from my old iMac as well (1067 MHz ddr3 2x2 g in slots)

    Re HDD..... Is it easy to put in a new ssd drive, and then how would I set up so that the is and apps run on ssd, and files are written to and read from a hdd ( either the existing internal, or the 4tb wd my book I have just bought to be my media storage... Connected to rmini by usb)

    Cheers
     
  4. dyt1983, Jan 28, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015

    dyt1983 macrumors 65816

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    #4
    edit: To remove personally identifying info not relevant to the conversation.
     
  5. scottsjack macrumors 68000

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    #5
    I keep it simple;

    1 Mini RAM - Always 16GB, about $145.00. iMac RAM - At least 16GB (2x8GB).

    2 An SSD is always better than a Fusion Drive. Assuming the typical OEM configuration replace the lower bay OEM drive with an SSD (not to bad of a job) or do that and move the OEM drive to the upper bay (PITA but doable).

    3 Apple Care always. You never know what is going to happen. Things do happen to iMacs fairly regularly if one can believe the forums. Minis are more reliable but Apple Care is really cheap so get it.
     
  6. unplugme71 macrumors 68030

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    #6
    Dissecting the mac mini was easy for me. I can remove all parts and put it back together and power on in 5 minutes. But that's because I've done it a dozen times :)
     
  7. scottsjack macrumors 68000

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    #7
    Same here. I've done it four or five times and it seems pretty straight forward. I do remember though that the first time it did the complete job I was listening to OWC Larry's tutorial on my MBP and shaking in my boots at the same time!
     
  8. newellj macrumors 601

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    #8
    I agree with you both, but some people manage to break connectors or have other accidents doing this sort of thing. :eek:
     
  9. RoastingPig macrumors 68000

    RoastingPig

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    #9
    the hardest part is putting that black plastic blade thing on the left side
     
  10. hallux macrumors 68020

    hallux

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    #10
    For the record, OWC and cheap don't go hand-in-hand. Compare their prices to those on Amazon for, say, the Corsair Vengeance kit of the same size.

    Here, I'll compare it for you:

    OWC is $193 for the 16 GB kit.

    Amazon is $146 for the Corsair Vengeance low-voltage kit I have in my MBP (I have the 8 GB version in my Mini). And this kit has a lower CAS latency than the OWC kit. It may be a small increase but it IS a little faster.
     
  11. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #11
    Thanks for the advice - and I will look at i fixit for instructions ( actually looking forward to a bit of tinkering:) )

    On the ram - as long as get the right spec, is it much of a muchness as to which vendor I source it from.. And hence just go for the cheapest online price..... Or is there a few 'go to' vendors that this forum would use ?
     
  12. iamMacPerson macrumors 68030

    iamMacPerson

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    #12
    On RAM I stick to a few choice brands, all of which are used by Apple as OEM manufactures: Micron (who owns Crucial), Samsung, and Hynix. OWC RAM is also pretty good, but I would mainly buy their RAM because of their stellar customer service. I bought 4 DIMMs for my Mac Pro (from OWC Garage Sale, they were used). One died recently, and they replaced all 4 DIMMs for me with brand new DIMMs. To top it off, they even upgraded the speed from 1066MHz to 1333 for free because of my troubles. I have used Corsair and Kingston in the past but not in my own personal applications so I cannot speak for reliability on them.
     
  13. Santabean2000 macrumors 68000

    Santabean2000

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    #13
    Haha, I know the feeling!

    If you rush, or get impatient, this can definitely happen. The hardest one from my experience was the IR connector. Not the end of the world if this breaks, but always best to try not to obviously. The right tools help; get a proper kit.

    Newegg, Crucial and Amazon are good places to look.
     
  14. bluedukies8 macrumors 6502

    bluedukies8

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    #14
    Sorry to jump in but is PNY - 16GB 1.6GHz PC3-12800 DDR3 Laptop Memory a good upgrade or should I stay with Crucial? Only reason I ask is PNY is on sale at Best Buy for $125 and Crucial is $140-$150ish on Amazon.
     
  15. hallux macrumors 68020

    hallux

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    #15
    I used iFixit for my teardown when I did my SSD install.

    As for the memory, the brands mentioned by the other poster are probably a good bet. Corsair is generally well regarded in the Windows computer world and it satisfies the Mac specs, my 2 machines have been running fine on the Corsair Vengeance modules. Corsair has a lifetime warranty on their DRAM modules.
     
  16. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

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    #16
  17. bluedukies8 macrumors 6502

    bluedukies8

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    #17
  18. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #18
    Maybe I should have changed title to "downgrade options"...,,,

    Fired up the Mac mini, and discovered that a download software ( sky player for Sky TV) is not compatible with the installed version of the OS ( Mavericks I believe)

    I have an old copy of lion.... Can I install lion... And when sky catch up with apple OS, can I then upgrade back to Mavericks (or even Yosemite) for free???
     
  19. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

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    #19
    I'm not sure whether Lion would work but you can install Mountain Lion.
    If you completely erase your hard drive (or install a new hard drive) you should be able to perform an Internet Recovery which will download the OS that came with your machine.
    The 2012s originally came with Mountain Lion but if you bought yours recently it may have come with Mavericks and you might end up with Mavericks again.
    I'm not sure how the Apple servers keep track of such things.
    If it doesn't automatically install Mountain Lion I guess you'd have to buy it from the App Store.
    Then you can upgrade to Yosemite in the future for free.
     
  20. Cbdboz, Jan 29, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2015

    Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    #20
    Ok - so assuming I can install mountain lion ( as I have the disks still), it sounds like I should then be able to re-install Yosemite at a later stage.... And no cost ...correct?


    ...also realised that the Mac mini shipped with 10.9.4 ... I presume Yosemite?
     
  21. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

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    #21
    Correct.
     
  22. hallux macrumors 68020

    hallux

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  23. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    #23
    Thanks - yes it's mavericks.

    Trying desperately to find a work around to get the sky desktop player working with Mavericks.... But may have to try and get mountain lion on it ( as this is the latest OS the application supports)
     
  24. Fishrrman macrumors G3

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    #24
    When the late-2012 Minis were introduced, they shipped with a slightly-customized version of 10.8.2. At the time, the latest "general release" of the OS was still 10.8.1, I believe.

    So, you will need -at least- 10.8.2 to use with the late-2012.
    If you were to download the 10.8.0 installer, it probably won't boot.

    If you can find a "general installer" that is 10.8.3, 10.8.4, or 10.8.5, you should be fine.

    Suggestion:
    You may have to search in "alternative" places to find such software (i.e., go outside of the "official" Apple channels and download distributions)...
     
  25. hallux macrumors 68020

    hallux

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    #25
    I still have ML in my "Purchases" tab in the MAS, if the OP had previously bought ML, it's possible they could DL it, build an install drive and install a fresh OS on the computer. Downloading it that way would get the latest version of the OS, not 10.8.0.
     

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