Mac mini upgrade problem.

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Oneness, Aug 12, 2008.

  1. Oneness macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2007
    Location:
    Cowtown
    #1
    Okay, I'm hoping someone here has an idea about what's wrong with my Mini.:rolleyes:
    I have a 1.66ghz Core Duo w/ 512 of RAM. I upgraded to a 2.33ghz Core 2 Duo with 2gb of RAM (I initally did 4gb but then realized that I have the 1.1 version of the Mini firmware which if I understand rightly can only accept 2GB of RAM).
    So I do the upgrade and start her up and... nothing. You can hear the hard drive's initial start up, but then quiet. Power light is on but no video output - just a blank screen.
    I did try both the PRAM and SMC reset (and I did do the intel version not the PPC version) but sitll no luck.
    Now this is where it gets weird.
    I put back the original processor (1.66 core duo) and RAM and everything worked fine. So, I put back the 2.33 ghz processor, but did not reattach the heat sink because I did not want to keep having to take it off if I needed to switch back the processors for fear of breaking one of the plastic posts. So here is a breakdown of results:
    1. 2.33 processor/original RAM (512 total) with no heat sink attached.
    Mac mini boots up fine with no problem. Max fan noise.
    2. 2.33 processor/new RAM (2GB total) with heat sink attached. No
    boot and no video output. Power light is on and you hear the initial
    hard drive start up but that's all. PRAM zapped.
    3. 2.33 processor/original RAM with heatsink attached. PRAM zapped.
    Same result as #2.
    4. 1.66 processor/original RAM with NO heatsink. Same result as #2.
    PRAM then zapped and Mini boots up no problem.
    5. 2.33 processor/original RAM with NO heatsink. Mini boots up with
    no problem but with max fan noise.
    6. 2.33 processor/original RAM with heatsink installed. Same result
    as #2.

    ARRRRGH!!!!!!!!!!
    I am at wit's end. Unless there is some brillant, insightful help amongst the genuises that populate this forum I guess it's off to an Apple service center for me and my Mini.
     
  2. iToaster macrumors 68000

    iToaster

    Joined:
    May 3, 2007
    Location:
    In front of my MacBook Pro
    #2
    All I can say is that you want to have a heat sink on your processor before you use it or else it will get very hot and the fans will spin wildly to try to cool it. Judging from your results I would say you have a RAM problem. Is the 2 GB 1 stick or 2? If it's a single stick, that's your problem, it can only handle 2 x 1 GB.
     
  3. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #3
    With the earlier Mini's you may have to do the SMC reset differently.

    Try this:

    After #2 do the SMC reset this way...

    Have all wires disconnected. Holding the power button in, connect the power cord and keep holding for 15 seconds. Release the power button. Now connect your display, keyboard etc. Try the power on again.
     
  4. Oneness thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2007
    Location:
    Cowtown
    #4
    Yeah, I was a bit timid about trying to boot up without the heat sink attached , but I didn't want to have to keep squeezing the plastic posts off because I had read where some people had broken them off and them I would have another headahe. And since I was just going to boot up and shut down a took the chance.:eek:
    The thing is I had the original 2 x 256 RAM in the Mini when I reattached the heat sink and still no boot.

    I was under the impression (from the Apple support docs) that this was the procedure for resetting the PMU in the PPC Macs and this is the SMC procedure for the Intel Macs.
     
  5. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #5
    True, but it wouldn't hurt to try it, followed by another PRAM reset.

    You have a very strange problem there. Why it works without the heat sink and doesn't work with the heat sink is baffling. Are the old and new processors the same height when sitting side-by-side (on a table)? Is it possible that the heat sink on the new processor is putting too much pressure on it when you put the two halves of the computer together?
     
  6. Oneness thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2007
    Location:
    Cowtown
    #6
    Yes, very strange indeed.
    I thought about the processor height after I got everything back together and was wondering if that is the problem. I will take a look at that tonite when I get home.
    I also thought that maybe the posts themselves are excerting more pressure since I have squeezed the tops of them quite a number of times now. (I know that probably doesn't make since if you don't have a visual, but I don't think the posts on the heat sink sit as flat as they used to)
     
  7. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #7
    I have some other questions...

    According to Apple's site, the current minis use a 2.0GHZ C2D cpu, like the one I have.

    How did you do this upgrade to 2.33GHZ cpu? Is this a 3rd party upgrade and if so, who's kit and where did you buy it? Your system board may not support it since it was based for a slower, 32bit CoreDuo cpu.
     
  8. Oneness thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2007
    Location:
    Cowtown
    #8
    It is an Intel 2.33ghz Merom Core 2 Duo chip. There are numerous reports of successful upgrades from the Core Duo chips to the Core 2 Duo chips. I am certainly not a computer hardware expert so I am going off of other's reports and experiences but it seems to be a valid and doable upgrade.
     
  9. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #9
    I found this on the web. It is a guide for doing what you are attempting. It makes note of a few things like the "thermal paste" (between the heat sink and cpu) as well as the heat sensor. Maybe this can help you. It has photos showing everything.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/21979/Mac-Mini-Intel-Core-Duo-Upgrade-Guide
     
  10. Oneness thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2007
    Location:
    Cowtown
    #10
    I have seen this website before. It is a very good guide to the upgrade.
    I acutally went to the Artic 5 website and followed their instructions on applying the thermal paste.
    Thanks merl1n for the posts. I do appreciate them. Do you think you could wave your wand over my mini and get it work?:)
     
  11. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #11
    My wand isn't long enough to reach it. :D

    It's hard to tell where your problem resides without physically being able to see your process. Remember, once you break the bond of the thermal paste, you cant reuse it and must clean both the cpu and heat sink each time, and apply a new layer of paste. The layer can't be too thin or thick.

    Again, it almost sounds like to much pressure is being put on the heat sink against the cpu and against the system board. If the system board is being flexed at all, you may have a bad etch (the thin silver lines going from chip to chip) that opens when the board is flexed (with the heat sink on) causing an "open circuit". With the heat sink off and no pressure on the board, the etch remains closed making a good circuit.
     
  12. Oneness thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2007
    Location:
    Cowtown
    #12
    I do clean off the thermal paste each time I take off the heat sink.
    I am going to try to see if I can relieve some pressure off the chip tonite. I'll let you know how it goes.
     

Share This Page