Mac Mini Custom bottom plate = Decreased Temps!!

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Zackmd1, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. Zackmd1, Jan 31, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2016

    Zackmd1 macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 3, 2010
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    Maryland US
    #1
    Hello all,

    Just wanted to post this new bottom plate I designed for the mac mini (excluding 2014 as the plate is not user removable) I originally designed this for my custom Mac Mini hackintosh build (link below) but it will work on any unibody mac mini. As you can see from the pictures, the plate has cooling vents and itself is 3mm taller then the OEM cover. This will allow much more internal airflow in the mac mini case. I cannot specify numbers for true mac mini's but my hackintosh saw a temperature decrease on average of 2-5 degrees C on the CPU.

    Link to hackintosh build:

    http://www.tonymacx86.com/others/182708-mac-mini-2011-build.html

    The link below will lead you to my shapeways shop where you can order your custom 3D printed bottom plate!

    https://www.shapeways.com/product/X...om-plate?key=5953236b514190a23232b34c3b09a1ed
     

    Attached Files:

  2. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #2
    Kudos to you if this really works. Nice to see some thought where Apple didn't.
     
  3. davekro macrumors regular

    davekro

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    Mar 31, 2011
    Location:
    No. Calif.
    #3
    Ha Ha! Zackmd1
    Good to see you on the MacRumors forum! Besides Mustang6G.com, MacRumors is my 'other' favorite forum!

    Small but virtual world my friend.
     
  4. Zackmd1 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    Ha!!! Nice to see you here too! I have been on this site for awhile now but haven't been all that active as of late. M6g takes up most of my time!
     
  5. Cape Dave macrumors 68000

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    Northeast
    #5
    I am always about less heat. This is BRILLIANT! I wish I still had my mini!
     
  6. D.T. macrumors 603

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #6
    Funny, I was thinking of drilling out my bottom plate on my Mini - I've got my '12 2.3/QC sitting on a Cooler Master 120mm fan, blue LED (clear, looks very cool), ultra quiet - I wired it into a USB cable and plug that into the Mini (so when it's off it shuts it down), and I used some little rubber feet/standoffs on the corners of both sides so it gives it a little space, grip and solid stability. Used a shredded USB cable and a fan sitting in a box of parts so it was free :D I figured if the internals were more exposed that that cooling airflow, it would be even more effective.

    Side note: I'm pretty active over on M6G, I've got a '16 GT PP convertible (see car thread for pics and misc rambling)
     
  7. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #7
    You guys going to hate me because I had a 67 Camaro and later a 69 Malibu?
     
  8. oneMadRssn macrumors 68040

    oneMadRssn

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    Boston, MA
    #8
    Any chance you would sell the file? I would like to make a few mods and print my own.
     
  9. Zackmd1 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 3, 2010
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    Maryland US
    #9
    I would prefer not to distribute the file. With that said, here is a link to the files I referenced.

    https://grabcad.com/library/mac-mini-1
     
  10. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
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    #10
    Can't understand the obsession some have with Mac Mini temperature. Blow the dust out every couple or three years, but otherwise, in my experience, the standard Mini does an OK job of looking after itself.

    Where I live the ambient temperature reaches 30 - 34ºC most days. Living in a well ventilated apartment, I don't use air-conditioning, or even a fan. My Mac Mini runs happily with the heat sensors in the mid 50's to low 60's, and the fan around a lazy 1,500 RPM. Load it up a bit, the sensors get a little hotter and the fan spins up to the low 2,000 RPM range.

    Mid last year temperatures and the fan did go a bit crazy, whirring up to a noisy 5,500 RPM. A clean out sorted that. The previous clean out was about 3 years before, when it was about 3 years old.
     
  11. Cape Dave macrumors 68000

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    Northeast
    #11
    Cooler is better. Period. End of story.
     
  12. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    #12
    Why? Please explain the obsession.
     
  13. Cape Dave macrumors 68000

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    #13
    It is not an obsession, just a reality. Heat, moisture and dust are the enemy of electronics. Less of those = more reliability. It is a concrete thing that we can do that will effect longevity. Plus it puts some control back in our hands, rather than Apple. It is no secret that Apple pushes the heat envelope sometimes.
     
  14. oneMadRssn macrumors 68040

    oneMadRssn

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    Boston, MA
    #14
    First, why do you criticize those who strive to improve cooling? You have literally nothing to gain from doing so, while those that do try to improve cooling might have something to gain.

    Improved cooling means the CPU can run faster longer. For example, the Intel i7-3615QM (quad-core from 2012 that everyone loves on this forum) runs normally at 2.3Ghz. It can TurboBoost to 3.3Ghz though, when there is a demanding task. It cannot stay at 3.3Ghz for very long, and it will clock back down before it overheats. If we improve cooling, we increase the time it can stay at 3.3Ghz before it needs to clock back down. This is a real measurable benefit.

    Improved cooling also means improved longevity. There is no doubt that heat is bad, hence periods of high heat cause damage. If I can make those periods of high head slightly less hot, it reduces the damage. If I can add even a month of time to the end of the life of my computer by something as simple as improving airflow or changing the thermal paste, I will do it. In terms of cost of ownership per month, it's obviously worth the cost..
     
  15. davekro macrumors regular

    davekro

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    Mar 31, 2011
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    No. Calif.
    #15
    As Zack is an M6G 'aholic, I'm sure he won't mind a bit of off topic car talk... ;)
    No Chevy hate here. My hottest car in my youth was a 69 Malibu (350, 4 speed Munsie, headers). After reading that the 2015 300 HP V6's (that I and Zack went with) had the same power as the V8 GT's of 10 years ago had, I had quite the laugh looking up and seeing my old 69 Chevelle had only 265 HP. A very fun car!

    Ok, back on topic. Mac Minis are cool! :D
     
  16. phrehdd, Feb 2, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2016

    phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #16
    I'll just say I have been around 4 Minis that turn to toast due to heat. They were all trying to do some very CPU intensive work as well as some doing graphics oriented. Each time, best I understood was trying to multi-task and 3 of the 4 had the power supply go and the last had other MB issues. Just so its clear, all 4 owners went on their own for service and each time it was identified as related to power usage and heat. Add to that two of them actually went to an Apple store as well and go similar comments. The reality is that the Mini is quite impressive for what it does with respect to size. However, since it is a "folded" design, it does have some aspects of not evenly cooling with the fan supplied. In fairness, I have been around lots of Minis and these were just noted cases.

    I am all in praise of those that work with the Mini and find ways to improve performance which includes better cooling. It is this same constructive angst that allowed various other cooling methods to be adopted by well known makers of computer parts ranging from liquid cooling systems to "tunnel" venting which is akin to the Mac Pro these days and so forth. Again, kudos to the OP.
     
  17. Micky Do, Feb 2, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2016

    Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    #17
    Yes, I am aware that heat, moisture and dust (which traps moisture and heat) are the enemies of electronics. My point was that for many, if not most Mac Mini users, a clean out every couple of years or so will keep things sweet. I, for one, am quite happy to have my computer looking after things. I want to just do stuff, not be tinkering with the machine.

    Did I criticise?

    I did say I don't understand, and please explain……. and got a rant that suggests that better cooling is better because there is a possibility that better cooling might be good to have for the odd time the computer might hit Turboboost to possibly increase the life of a computer a month or so.

    Frankly, if you are regularly hitting the maximum performance potential of a Mac Mini, you would probably be better off with an iMac or a Mac Pro that has the grunt you need.

    Thanks for this post, which does offer an explanation, and looks at the bigger picture.
     
  18. Miat, Feb 3, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016

    Miat macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    #18
    Nice work.

    I suggest a possible modification.

    The Mini has a specific path through it for air flow. Notice the inside surface of the base plate has a seal in it (blue arrow) around the silver area. When you install and lock down the plate it pushes that seal up against the corresponding surface on the body. This forces air to be drawn in through the front of the base plate (the black part, between the red arrows). If you confine your vent holes to there, and keep the seal structure intact (bit tricky, I agree), it may work better.

    Mini Filter Base 6.jpg

    Pic from this thread.
     
  19. Osty macrumors 6502a

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    Melbourne, AU
    #19
    @Zackmd1 - mate that's awesome, would you consider crowdfunding the production of those at scale?
     
  20. jimmyco2008 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    #20
    Any chance you'd be willing to share the CAD file(s) for this, for those of us with 3D printers? I'm sure we could reproduce it or something like it with time, but I figure why reinvent the wheel, you know?
     
  21. !!! macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2013
    #21
    Well I just put my Mac mini on its side and took it completely off. I can use an external fan to cool it off even more if I'm doing a heat-intensive job.
     
  22. MysticCow macrumors 6502a

    MysticCow

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    May 27, 2013
    #22
    I'm definitely getting one of these from you.
     
  23. Kaida macrumors regular

    Kaida

    Joined:
    May 28, 2016
    Location:
    Singapore
    #23
    I bought some small speakers spikes and initially didn't want to use the cover at all, then I found this perforated cover for mac mini...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  24. roadkill401 macrumors 6502

    roadkill401

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2015
    #24
    That looks really cool. I like the idea of lifting the unit up so that cooler air can get around all surfaces.
     
  25. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    #25
    Just two suggestions

    Add vesa type holes so it also helps with mounting options

    Add a companion product, a custom shaped external tube that covers the long air exit port and can direct the hot exhaust away from the body. Would love one for my minis new enclosure.

    Start off flat then curve into round over several inches. I can then make a hole in my enclosure that matches the tube!
     

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