Thought I'd change the Mac Mini processor

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by BIGMACsandwich, Mar 19, 2009.

  1. BIGMACsandwich macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #1
    I'm thinking of taking a 2.26 GHz (25W) Mac Mini and changing the processor to a core 2 quad q9100 at 2.26 GHz (45W). Forget about the expense, I don't care. I also have an idea about how to desolder the old processor from the board. What I wonder is will the other components on the motherboard respond to the new processor and will OS freak out?
     
  2. NRose8989 macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    I say go for it, I would like to see what happens if this is attempted.
     
  3. opeter macrumors 65816

    opeter

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    #3
    Isn't the CPU in the new Mac minis soldered to the motherboard?

    The old Mac mini (2007) model could be updated to a max. 2.33 GHz T7600 Merom CPU with 4 MB L2 cache and 667 MHz FSB, a CPU, that is sometimes faster (according to Geekbench) than the newest 2.26 GHz P8400.
     
  4. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #4
    I have an idea how to convert an old iron for ski wax into a square about the size of the CPU pins. It should drop out, but getting the new CPU in could be a bear. I may just solder a socket in, then try the new CPU.
    The thing I'm worried about is not that it fits but that the other components on the logic board will accept the quad core CPU. And also whether Leopard will recognize the new CPU.
     
  5. opeter macrumors 65816

    opeter

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    #5
    Someone has to try it ...
     
  6. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #6
    It's still in the planning stages. I have to get the Q9100~$500 on Ebay. I going to try attaching an old piece of square metal to my ski iron (it's a Seal with adjustable heat), to see if it gets hot enough to make solder flow.
     
  7. Smacky macrumors 6502

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    #7
    If you get this done, then there very might well be a business opportunity in it for you given interest from other mac mini owners
     
  8. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #8
    Houston we have a problem. I did alittle more studying. The current chip in the Mac Mini is a Micro-FCBGA while the quad core Q9100 is a Micro-FCPGA. This means the Q9100 is better suited for a socket, and the P8400 is not for a socket at all. Basically what I learned is that the Mac Mini CPU is NOT SOLDERED in!!!!! IT'S EPOXIED IN PLACE!!! Micro-FCBGA means micro flip chip BALL grid array. Micro-FCPGA means micro flip chip PIN grid array. With Micro-FCBGA the CPU rests on contacts and is glued in place. So if you can figure out how to remove the epoxy without destroying the logic board, then you can replace the Mini's CPU with another Micro-FCBGA type CPU. I'll get back to you guys when I learn more.
     
  9. opeter macrumors 65816

    opeter

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    #9
    And will/can you figure this out?
    That's becoming more and more interesting :eek:
     
  10. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #10
    I looked at all the other quads and some dual cores and basically you need to switch to a socket somehow to use them.
     
  11. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #11
    Next question is can a Socket P be mounted to the logic board with epoxy like the CPU was? If so we may be in business:cool:
     
  12. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #12
    Ok, I back. Someone posted a picture of the old Mac Mini logic board with e socket. This great because if someone has a bunch of blown logic boards I could theoretically get the socket off one of those and use it on the new board, then throw in the Q9100 and boom baby. :D
     

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  13. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #13
    Anybody got any idea about epoxy removal? heat gun maybe? Solvents are risky, I bet the manufacturers have ways to deal with mistakes.
     
  14. TrapOx macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Heat won't do much to the epoxy that holds it in place or the need to resolder the 478 pins.
     
  15. Smacky macrumors 6502

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    Jul 23, 2008
    #15
    They probably use machines for it, so very few if any mistakes
     
  16. Lordedmond macrumors regular

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    #16
    Bet they use file13 ( waste bin ) for it would not be cost effective to repair the board ,the cost of the board to them would only be a couple of quid
     
  17. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

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    #17
    very ambitious project....good luck, I hope you succeed
     
  18. rrijkers macrumors 6502

    rrijkers

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    #18
    Agreed, but it needs some testing and failures first
     
  19. Old Mac Geezer macrumors member

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    Mar 9, 2007
    #19
    Do you think the mini can dissipate the heat? The faster quad core at a higher voltage has got to give off a lot more heat than the dual core, assuming you can find a way to break the epoxy holding it in. I don't think this project is going to be doable without ruining a lot of motherboards and other parts.
     
  20. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #20
    Worse, if I understand correctly - it's epoxied onto the logic board.

    Edit: Oops. I see you've discovered it:

     
  21. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #21
    Well, I figure the Q9100 gives 45W which is acceptable for a laptop. If it's OK for a Laptop it should be fine for a Mini, but you never know. I'm sure it will be toasty though under the right circumstances. Weren't the second generation Minis High W output.
     
  22. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    NYC
    #22
    If it was socketed it would be ZIF socket with lock; if it's epoxied it would have to be soldered.
     
  23. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

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    Sep 16, 2007
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    Northeastern Ohio
    #23
    If it's epoxied, you may have to "sacrifice" the original processor and just chip it away with a sharp knife. If the original processor has pins like you mentioned, it's probably just epoxied around the edges and you can just chip away the epoxy with a very sharp exacto knife or something just as sharp.

    This is new and if you want to be the "originator" of this idea, then you need to take chances and go for it. See exactly how the chip is mounted to the logic board. Once someone has tried this, many others will follow and someone will succeed and then everyone will be doing it.

    Maybe the new ones are socketed since they use pins but it's just glued down to save space from the lever mechanism.
     
  24. BIGMACsandwich thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #24
    Not according to Intel's website. Micro FCBGA packages rest on contacts and held in place by epoxy at the edges.
     
  25. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #25
    Do you know how much space is above the processor? Is there enough room for adding a socket? If one were so inclined, it could be possible to cut the pins on the current processor, solder in a new (compatible) socket and add your chip.
     

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