SSD Upgrade Mid 2011

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by fortytwoeleven, Jul 14, 2015.

  1. fortytwoeleven macrumors newbie

    Aug 24, 2012
    Looking to get my old mac mini out of the dust bin and use it strictly for photoshop CS6 editing.

    I need to upgrade the ram and SSD.
    I am new to SSD's and have a few quick questions,

    Will any SSD fit?
    What should i look for when buying an SSD, Is it just the read and write speeds?
    How do I know what good Read/Write speeds are?

  2. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    Any SSD should fit.

    Does the 2011 Mini have a SATA-2 or a SATA-3 bus for the drive connector?

    If it is SATA-2, it doesn't matter which SSD you buy (speed-wise), because ALL of them will move data more quickly than the bus can handle it. That is to say, they should all be "equal in speed".

    SATA-3 -- I still doubt you'll see much perceptible difference in speeds. Perhaps a small amount vis-a-vis the "fastest" and "slower" drives, but that's it.

    Just buy a drive from a "known-good" manufacturer (I like Crucial and Intel), and you should be fine...
  3. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    I'd recommend Crucial. I haven't had any complaints (as of the time of writing) and there have been 40+ SSDs fitted in Macs at work. I've got an 840 EVO in mine though and no real issues with that.

    Any SSD will fit.

    Read/write speeds depend on the SATA interface. Most SSDs claim up to around 550-600MB/s though you're more than likely to find 400-500MB/s on a SATA 3 interface with a modern SSD (tested on Blackmagic). SATA 2 can only support up to 3Gb/s which is around about 330MB/s, so you won't be getting much higher than 300MB/s read/write on a SATA 2.

    Speeds will also depend slightly on the CPU but not much.

    At any rate it'll be a massive upgrade and will increase performance exponentially in literally every area.
  4. fortytwoeleven thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 24, 2012
    Thanks for that guys!

    Did a quick look and it seems to be Sata 3.

    Could not find and Crucial SSD's on the cheaper end at the moment..
    But did come across Sandisk 240GB SSD Plus (SDSSDA-240G-Q25) for $77 USD delivered.

    However i'm not sure on the quality of this model :S
  5. throAU macrumors 603


    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    What to look for in an SSD?


    They're all fast - and all modern SSDs will max out your SATA bus. Find the one with the best reliability reports you can find.
  6. Neodym macrumors 68000


    Jul 5, 2002
    Very important: If you want to install the SSD in addition to the existing HDD, you will need a 2nd (proprietary) SATA cable. If you purchase a cheap SATA cable, use this exclusively to connect the HDD and plug the SSD into the original SATA cable. Those cheap cables can cause all kinds of problems with SSD's (but usually are fine with spinning drives).

    If you intend to ever go for 2 SSD's in that machine (the SSD prices are coming down constantly), I would recommend to buy the 2nd cable either directly from Apple or from a manufacturer who officially advertises SSD compatibility for the cable. Over here a "proper" SATA cable can be (sometimes more than) twice as expensive as the cheap ones.
  7. crazeazn macrumors member

    Mar 20, 2009
    interesting that is the first time i've heard that.
  8. ccontreras, Jul 15, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2015

    ccontreras macrumors member


    Dec 31, 2007
    Miami, FL
    which iMac model you have? I have a 2011mid 27"
    I followed the steps of videos OWC, right there buy cables and tools, plus a temperature sensor for changing HDD + SSD in my case. The imac 27 "2011 have a third port SATA3 internally, it is not necessary to remove the DVD player or the original HDD.
  9. hallux macrumors 68030


    Apr 25, 2012
    The cable from iFixit seems to work just fine for my OCZ Vertex 3 in my Mini. Their kit is advertised as a dual drive kit but no mention of SSD specifically.
  10. Neodym macrumors 68000


    Jul 5, 2002
    It's possible that the chinese manufacturers have upped their game and now offer improved cables. I looked up a dealer on my local Amazon site who used to warn people not to use his product for SSD's. In his listing he now explicitly mentions compatibility with both HDD and SSD. However, there still might be older cables out there in the wild, so if in doubt better ask before purchase (if you don't intend to ever have 2 SSD's in the Mini, it doesn't matter anyway ...)

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9 July 14, 2015