Upgrading to an SSD

Drezin

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 9, 2010
46
0
Brazil
I have a late 2014 Mac Mini which came with that slow 5400 rpm HDD, is it possible to upgrade to a SSD? Will they do it at the Apple Store?

Thanks in advance.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,140
6,574
OP wrote above:
"I have a late 2014 Mac Mini which came with that slow 5400 rpm HDD, is it possible to upgrade to a SSD? Will they do it at the Apple Store?"

As Spink10 mentioned above, you can't get this done at the Apple Store.
Some "independent" Apple shops might be willing to do the job, for $$$$$.

You have three possible choices:
1. Buy an SSD and an external USB3 case with UASP support, and create an "external booter" (quite fast and this is the easiest of all three - this is the option I would recommend)

2. Buy a SATA SSD and install it into the Mini's internal SATA port (be sure you're capable of doing "the internal surgery")

3. Buy a used PCIe "blade drive" from ebay, and also buy the internal PCIe cable/bracket assembly, and install it "over" the internal 5400rpm HDD.

Choice #3 is actually pretty easy to do IF you separate the PCIe cable from the bracket and then install that "on top of" the bracket that is already there.
BUT -- you will PAY A PREMIUM to get ahold of the PCIe blade drive, IF you can even find one.

Your experience illustrates why I -ALWAYS- advise new Mini buyers to get AT LEAST the 1tb "fusion drive option", which includes a 128gb SSD -and- a 1tb HDD.
 

allisonv7

macrumors 6502
Jul 20, 2004
426
1
1. Buy an SSD and an external USB3 case with UASP support, and create an "external booter" (quite fast and this is the easiest of all three - this is the option I would recommend)
I'd be interested in doing this, does someone have a tutorial they'd recommend?
 

Ebenezum

macrumors 6502a
Mar 31, 2015
782
259
I wouldn't call it easy. Yes its possible but harder compared to previous models.

I'd be interested in doing this, does someone have a tutorial they'd recommend?
There is no need for guide, just purchase SSD and external USB3 case (check it supports UASP, it will mentioned on the technical details) then place SSD into case, connect it into Mac Mini and clone your internal drive into SSD, you can use software such Disk Utility (unfortunately Apple maimed it in El Capitan), SuperDuper or Carbon Copy Cloner. Once cloning is ready just boot into SSD by selecting it in System preferences and your done.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,140
6,574

allisonv7

macrumors 6502
Jul 20, 2004
426
1
Try the one I linked two posts above yours.
Thanks, I did some research. I have a 2011 Mini, so I need a more expensive enclosure to make it work externally. Not sure what I'm going to do. My experience with hardware is limited, and I'm afraid upgrading the internal drive is out of my skill range.
 

Partron22

macrumors 68030
Apr 13, 2011
2,562
750
Yes
Once you're running off your speedy external SSD, that pokey 5400 internal makes a great place to dump your music library, some books, old photos, even a Time Machine or SuperDuper! backup.
 

D.T.

macrumors G4
Sep 15, 2011
10,343
9,430
Vilano Beach, FL
If the HDD only model uses the "top" bay (bottom when turned upside down ...), then it's a piece of cake, you don't have to do 2/3rds of what's outlined in that iFixIt DIY, assuming you don't want to pull your HDD and want to +add+ an SSD.

I had an i5 HDD model '12 Mini, swapped out the HDD for an SSD, then changed to a QC i7 '12 Mini, and I was able to remove the i5 SSD, reinstall the OEM HDD, and remove and replace the "bottom" HDD in the i7 machine in < 30 minutes. It's really very simple, just a couple of steps you have to exercise a little additional caution as you're dealing with very small connectors.

Once you're running off your speedy external SSD, that pokey 5400 internal makes a great place to dump your music library, some books, old photos, even a Time Machine or SuperDuper! backup.
Yep, that's a great option. I have a server spec QC i7 '12 Mini, I pulled the bottom drive, swapped in my MX100 SSD, left the top 1TB HDD in place, it's where all my VM backups, media, client archives, and some other "offline" files reside. :) In fact, I need to migrate more "slow files" to the HDD!

Untitled.png
 

ironman78

macrumors newbie
Oct 14, 2015
10
2
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Hi,...
I have the same mac mini as you...
I replaced the HHD with SSD easily by following this video tutorial:
Took me about 20 minutes total. So I would totally advice you to do it! Boot time is now 8 seconds.
Startup of applications such as Photoshop takes 5 seconds.

I got the Crucial MX200 500GB. More than enough for me.
 

Celerondon

macrumors 6502a
Oct 17, 2013
679
124
Southern Cal
Instead of buying an SSD and enclosure, I got an external USB3 ssd from Amazon at the below link for $60. Installation was easy as can be and it's super fast. I honestly can't tell the difference between the mini booting from an external usb3 ssd and my iMac with a sata ssd.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EZ2FRU2?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o08_s00
This could be great advice for folks like the OP. Unfortunately it will not help as much for Allisonv7 and others whose machines lack the USB 3.0 interface.
 

Similar threads

  • Hrothgar
21
Replies
21
Views
681
  • elliot.rose
7
Replies
7
Views
654
  • mVICm
8
Replies
8
Views
795
Replies
3
Views
758
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.