Screwed up while trying to install SSD

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by guf, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. guf, Mar 27, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012

    guf macrumors newbie

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    sf
    #1
    The very first step I broke it!!!

    When pulling the fan cable out i pulled off the connector that attaches to the logic board...Damn IT!! What do I do now?
    2011 2.3 base model.
    any suggestions? thanks
    guf
     
  2. parestailor macrumors regular

    parestailor

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    #3
  3. guf thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Apple store quoted me $350 for new logic board. Local Apple repair shop said 95$ to attempt and then $50 -100 extra. I could attempt myself? (but we saw how well that went with the install). Could i just attach the wires and leave the header off?

    Could i install the ssd and run with out a fan? I only use it for htpc.
     
  4. Pheo macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2011
    #5
    Did you pull the connector off the wire connected to the fan, or the socket off the board?

    If you pulled the socket off the board, you are a bit boned.

    However if you pulled the connector off the fan, replace the fan. Relatively easier and cheaper to find!
     
  5. aarond12 macrumors 65816

    aarond12

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    Dallas, TX USA
    #6
    Not a wise idea, especially with today's fast CPUs. I agree with Pheo. Replace the fan... sometimes you can get a cheap replacement one on eBay. Just make sure to get the correct model (go by your Mac's model number).

    -Aaron-
     
  6. guf thread starter macrumors newbie

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  7. srxtr macrumors 6502a

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  8. guf thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9

    since jan 5th
     
  9. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

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    #10
  10. Edge macrumors member

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    Jul 28, 2005
    #11
    Can you upload a photo, to give us an idea of how much damage you did?

    In theory, you could do a tiny solder job on the connectors to rewire the fan. Or you could splice a connector into the PSU/motherboard connector or a USB header on the motherboard for 5V.

    And running the Mac mini without a fan is a definite no-no.
     
  11. philipma1957, Mar 28, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012

    philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

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    #12
    The op is about the 20th poster that has pull a connector out. the socket on the board is shaped like the letter c an most posters that do this are not able to fix it. soldering to the board is beyond the skills on most people that break it. Find a good tech and 200 is easy to spend. give me UNTIL THUR I will post the cheap fix.

    this is why the seagate t-bolt adapter is not as expensive as you think.


    there is an ebay logic board repair guy charges 219.00

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mac-mini-A1...ultDomain_0&hash=item35b7e7688a#ht_2738wt_837

    I HAVE NO IDEA IF HE IS ANY GOOD!! OR IF HE IS ANY BAD!!!


    here are some photo ideas for a fan fix.
     

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  12. guf thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #13
    after the debacle it was smooth sailing after that. I just needed to take my time and follow the instructions instead of saying" i know what to do".

    I will probably take it to the local repair center here in sf and see what they say. If it's around 150 -200 I'll maybe go for it.
    I really like the external usb fan suggestion. The mini is only for home theater. I could jerry rig something and make it look good. the temp now is floating around 75 with base on and light use. thanks for the suggestions,

    (confessions) I didn't accidentally pull it off... I friggen pried it off! thinking it was one of the connectors that needed to be. so i deserved it.
     
  13. guf thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    I have one on order. I was impatient
     
  14. saulinpa macrumors 6502

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    Jun 15, 2008
    #15
    There are some companies that do logic board repair and soldering. I had an iBook a few years ago that I had the power connector re-attached. Also had them fix a video problem. They charged about $75.
     
  15. guf, Apr 1, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2012

    guf thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #16
    So this was my fix.
    Modified (took apart) the suggested usb fan, removed the oem fan, Velcroed new fan in place, and then relocated the speed adjustment. the temperature is floating around 72-75 degrees durning plex use. Total fix cost about 15$.

    Thanks Phillipma for the suggestions!
     

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  16. glhiii macrumors regular

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    Nov 4, 2006
    #17
    Do not remove fan cable

    It is quite easy to replace the hard disk of a new mini without unplugging the fan. Unfortunately, ifixit says otherwise -- I almost ruined my connection also the first time I changed the disk (fortunately, it still works). After that, I haven't touched the cable but have been able to change the hard disk without problems.
     
  17. silverjam, Apr 25, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2012

    silverjam macrumors regular

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    Apr 25, 2012
    #18
    Suggested fix

    I did the same thing and came up with the following fix.

    Basically I could not reconnect the plug back to the mother board. I tried liquid solder (silver based glue) but I think that will only work if it is partially broken or you need to fix circuit boards so that did not work.

    I connected the MacMini fan via USB instead. I used an old apple charger cable and cut the usb connector end of with a few inches to spare. then ran a few test on which of the fan wires ran on the two positive and negative usb wires using a usb charger for power. Pretty soon you figure the correct combo of two of the fan wires connecting to two of the USB wires. The USB provide the 5 volts needed to run the MacMini Fan.

    Simply put, I have wired the fan directly to a USB port os it runs when the Mac starts up and turns of when you shut it down. Its up to you how you feed the wire through to the outside of the case so you can plug the cable in but I found feeding the wire under the heat sink and drilling a hole the width of the cable. Obviously you need to do this first (once you have sorted the wiring out) then feed the cable through. Solder the two usb wires to two of the fan wires and your done. Just clean it up and tape unused wires down (I cut them off). and your done. I have ran that config for 6 months now with no problem.

    Note, The other fan cables not used are simply for controlling but the OS. Just pick the two that operate the fan at 5v on a nice permanent speed.

    Cons:

    Yes, it is not perfect. Obviously the fan does not run according to the temp controller but Mac OSX doesn't seem to notice or care. I installed SMC fan control to show the temp but it sits at 30-40'c in normal operation and max 85 when doing heavy duty video editing. SMC shows the fan speed as 0 and the temp as it is.

    Is the fan running at full and noisy? No I think it runs at about 1/2 to 3/4 speed (permanently). I have another MacMini (Server) and when it heats up it runs loader/faster than my MacMini.

    Only thing is I tend to switch it off a a little more when not in use because I am trying to conserve the life of the fan.

    Cost to fix: $0 if you have an old USB cable. I looked at the logic board option and tried the fan option first. If you don't like the fan option simply unplug it from the USB and throw it (or re-solder the old wires back to the fan and try another option - if you know if one?)

    PRO's: You keep the original fan and the patented Apple fan suction through the front vent (underneath) work perfectly. It looks and operate identical to my other MacMini except for the small cable neatly coming out the back and plugging into one of the USB ports and also the fan runs permanently.

    I have never had any over heating issues either.

    Sorry, Not sure how to upload pics? Can you only add pics though weblinks?

    Also, sorry to disagree with Guf but the MacMini patented fan system only works with the black base on. It draws air through the Hard drive edge of the black base, through the hard drives then across the logic board and CPU then through the fan and most importantly across the heat sink and out the back. You MUST use this system to cool your Mac Mini otherwise the heat sink is not operating properly (or at all) and the CPU is not cooled. You can't simply blow air on the logic board. Google patent apple machine fan or similar. See also image if it uploads. On that note, if you really want to cool down your MacMini use arctic silver heat sink past and sit the mac mini on its side in a Newer technology stand. Drawing in of air works perfectly and both sides are cool. My temp on both my mac minis is around 35-40'c (do the maths) with the MacMini server (with a proper fan) rarely heating up for any length of time.

    [​IMG]

    Silver.
     
  18. silverjam macrumors regular

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    Apr 25, 2012
    #19
    Pics of the fix

    See pics...
     

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  19. plucky duck macrumors 6502

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    Jan 5, 2012
    #20
    Neat fix! Now you can replace the fan whenever it dies with ease since you know how to do it now. Depending on the angle of where it's sitting, no one would ever know what you did to it :)
     
  20. lostedge, May 18, 2012
    Last edited: May 18, 2012

    lostedge macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 15, 2012
    #21
    Thanks for the post Silverjam, if this works it could end up saving me a couple hundred bucks, at least.

    Made the same mistake of prying off both the male and female portions of the fan-logic board connection earlier this week. Going to attempt this same fix tomorrow. Anyone have any tips for someone novice enough at soldering that he'll have to actually go buy a solder gun? Not trying to solder the connection back to the logic board, only going to solder the USB wires to the fan wires as you describe. I also assume there is no way to drill the hole in the back of the unit without removing the contents of the Mini case so as to not get dust and bits all over the logic board.

    -LE
     
  21. lilsoccakid74 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    #22
    I must say, I really like how you replaced it, and it seems like it would perform very well for cooling.:)

    SUggestion, I noticed that I needed to clean the inside of the mini much more since using a laptop fan to blow extra air through the bottom of the mini. Getting a filter to catch dust around the intake will do you wonders!
     
  22. silverjam macrumors regular

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    Apr 25, 2012
    #23
    Thanks for the positive comments.

    I have been running the usb powered mac fan for about a year in all climates and with all processor loads. I also run Win 7 on Parallels and did a lot of video coding and it was fine.

    A couple of suggestions, run a few tests on getting the two wires right on the fan. I think there is five wires. If you have a lot of trouble finding them I can always check mine, just means I have to open the bottom.

    The USB cable has two data and two 5 voltage wires (one pos one neg). to find the pos and neg is easy and you can do that by connecting the wires to a 'two wire' fan or something simple first. Once you have the two 5 volt wires you then connect them through process of elimination to the mac fan. I used a mac wall socket charger with usb port to check the voltage. That way you have dedicated 5v. Don't use a computer usb port to test for voltage.

    Note you must get the fan suction/blow around the right way. See the diagram on the apple patent above. It blows air on the logic board whilst also blowing the air to expel out the back.

    Also you might want to look at using arctic five heat sink past to replace on your heat sink. it works very well. You can probably get away with lifting the heatsink while carefully feeding the usb wire under it. Up to you.

    Let me know if you get any problems. I can always double check my config.
     
  23. silverjam macrumors regular

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    Apr 25, 2012
    #24
    Note on soldering: I tried that. I could get two or three soldered but could not keep the connections separated and clean when you try all the wires. You also start to muck up the logic board. I was thinking of trying a hybrid of my ersions with using usb for voltage and the logic board for control with the remaining wires soldered. you would have to be adventurous to tray that thought. And I'm not sure if the config is even possible. I think if your going to solder take it to an expert with a micro solderer.

    Also I tried liquid solder (check ebay). Its a silver or carbon based glue that is conductive. I bought the expensive silver version and that didn't work either. I just couldn't get the dot of glue small enough and separated from the next contact as with the normal soldering.

    Also I should reiterate, my config has the black bottom on so there is no need for filters etc.
     
  24. silverjam macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #25
    OK. Here are the pics. That way you save a bit of time and having any more problems. I am sure it is the two outside wires on the fan. The two inside wires are just taped to stop any short circuiting. Note which ones attach to red and black on the USB wire. Double check with your system though because it may be different. Note also I use an apple cable to maintain the warranty (ha ha ha yeah right). Having said that my fix is entirely apple products (except solder and tape).

    Also see my attempt at soldering. You might have to bend the silver metal on the other side of the black back plate (the peripheral port plate (USB, HDMI etc)) when you drill the hole. You will know what I mean when you go to drill the small hole for the USB cable. I just bent it back instead of drilling through it was well. Double check any edges that might cut the wire.

    I forgot to mention, you will have to take the logic board out as well. You may be able to get away with not taking it out, but you will need to re-wire the cable through the chassis differently to my config. Check on the web if you don't know how to do that.

    iFixit has a good summary of how to do this. Just ignore all the hard drive comments as it relates to changing you hard drive. you can use two screw drivers or similar to dislodge the logic board in the instructions instead of their U shaped tool.

    http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Installing-Mac-Mini-Mid-2011-Hard-Drive-Replacement/6422/1#.T7bhiI5zrlI

    Finally, use the App SMC Fan Control and set it to show temp only. It sits in your menu bar showing the temp so you have peace of mind.

    http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/23049/smcfancontrol

    Hope this helps.

    Silver
     

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