What about RAM upgrades?


pacmania1982

macrumors 6502a
Nov 19, 2006
990
186
Birmingham, UK
There is an article on Support Apple about RAM upgrade: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT205041 so probably it should be covered with warranty but on the other hand if something goes wrong and Mac was damaged by unauthorized person warranty will not over this: https://www.apple.com/legal/warranty/products/embedded-mac-warranty-us.html
I do find the new Mac mini a conundrum. It says on the first link posted 'Mac mini (2018) does not have user-installable RAM. You can configure the memory in your Mac mini (2018) when you purchase it.' yet when it was announced, they mentioned socketed RAM. So what's the point in it being socketed if upgrading isn't classed as user-installable?
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
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Delaware
The mini is not alone at Apple (socketed RAM, but called "not user-installable)
Most 21.5-inch iMacs have the RAM in sockets, but require major disassembly because the RAM sockets are on the back side of the logic board. You have to pull out the logic board, just to replace RAM.
I think Apple calls out the user on that because you would not be expected, as a normal user, to be able to replace the RAM yourself, partly due to electrical safety considerations.
Can you actually do it? Sure, several sites have posted instructions, or good videos to follow.
But, if you damage your Mac as part of the upgrade, Apple won't cover it for warranty (it's your fault, eh?)
 

oneMadRssn

macrumors 601
Sep 8, 2011
4,815
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The Magnuson–Moss Warranty Act exists to prevent unreasonable disclaimers on warranties. Some provisions in this act have been applied to prevent voiding warranties for using third-party parts or third-party service providers. Recently Microsoft and Sony got a bit of a slap when the FTC told them to stop using misleading "Warranty Void If Removed" stickers on their products, and clarified that such disclaimers are unenforceable.
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/ne9qdq/warranty-void-if-removed-stickers-illegal-ftc

I haven't run into this issue personally, but my bet is the average Apple Genius would refuse to honor the warranty if they see you upgraded the RAM with third-party parts. In that situation, I would turn it around on them and say that under the Magnuson-Moss Act they have to honor the warranty unless they can show the cause of the issue is the third-party RAM. In other words, run the diagnostics and figure it out Genius! Worst-case, if they still refused, I would put the OEM RAM back into the computer and try again. In that case, they literally cannot refuse service under the Act.
 

russell_314

macrumors 6502a
Feb 10, 2019
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906
USA
I do find the new Mac mini a conundrum. It says on the first link posted 'Mac mini (2018) does not have user-installable RAM. You can configure the memory in your Mac mini (2018) when you purchase it.' yet when it was announced, they mentioned socketed RAM. So what's the point in it being socketed if upgrading isn't classed as user-installable?
The key word is "user". The point is you can have it upgraded by a Apple tech unlike if it was soldered to the motherboard you could not. I upgraded the RAM on my Mac mini but I did this with the full understanding that if I damaged it I would be SOL. While by law Apple can't void your warranty if you open the case, they can refuse to work on it if you damage something while doing so. There's a popular YouTuber that cried like a big baby because Apple wouldn't fix his iMac pro after he dropped it while taking it apart. Of course 5K wasn't anything to him it was more just drama for views. If you have a little experience working on laptop computers, have lots of patience, and the right tools you can do it yourself. The only scary thing about it is you're not careful you can damage some of the connectors that attach to the motherboard.
 

Cruciarius

macrumors member
Aug 18, 2013
84
12
Massachusetts
I went to the Apple store a few weeks ago and asked staff in person if I was to upgrade the RAM myself, if it voids the warranty. According to them, it does not void the warranty, so that's what I'm going off of.
 

russell_314

macrumors 6502a
Feb 10, 2019
673
906
USA
I went to the Apple store a few weeks ago and asked staff in person if I was to upgrade the RAM myself, if it voids the warranty. According to them, it does not void the warranty, so that's what I'm going off of.
I wouldn't take a comment by one Apple employee as policy but what he said is what I would expect the policy to be. Just remember if you damage something while replacing the RAM don't expect Apple to fix it
 

Cruciarius

macrumors member
Aug 18, 2013
84
12
Massachusetts
I wouldn't take a comment by one Apple employee as policy but what he said is what I would expect the policy to be. Just remember if you damage something while replacing the RAM don't expect Apple to fix it
Oh I know & he said that too. Apple doesn't expect many people to be knowledgable in the process, so they just say it's not upgradable, but if you have the tools and do know how, you're fine. Again though, if you break anything, it's on you.
 
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Lankyman

macrumors 68000
May 14, 2011
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Most 21.5-inch iMacs have the RAM in sockets, but require major disassembly because the RAM sockets are on the back side of the logic board. You have to pull out the logic board, just to replace RAM.
Nah! just two little screws underneath the screen on my 21.5 inch iMac. :)
 

DeltaMac

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Jul 30, 2003
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Nah! just two little screws underneath the screen on my 21.5 inch iMac. :)
I did say "most 21.5-inch", and yours is a pre-2012 iMac, before Apple went to the thin bodied iMac design. Those require major disassembly to get to the RAM slots. Your iMac is older than that, with the RAM access door on the bottom.
 

Lankyman

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May 14, 2011
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I did say "most 21.5-inch", and yours is a pre-2012 iMac, before Apple went to the thin bodied iMac design. Those require major disassembly to get to the RAM slots. Your iMac is older than that, with the RAM access door on the bottom.
I would go further and say the 2011 iMac was the last of the '''proper" iMac's and ones you could actually work on.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,595
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Delaware
You're not talking about me... After more than 25 years working as a Mac tech, I have "actually worked on" almost every Mac you can imagine. Some are simply more challenging, and a few are limited as far as hardware upgrades, but repairs are always possible.
But that doesn't really address the OP's questions about the new mini.

I apologize for taking this thread a bit off-topic...
 

dandeco

macrumors 6502
Dec 5, 2008
295
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Brockton, MA
From what I saw, disassembling the 2018 Mac Mini to get to the RAM sockets is no different from when I disassembled my 2012 Mac Mini to replace its' failing hard drive. (And I'm going to be doing that again soon to swap it out with a solid state drive!) So upgrading the RAM in the 2018 Mac Mini shouldn't be too hard for me (once I eventually buy one, I'll just buy it with the stock 8 GB of RAM and then upgrade it myself to 16 or even 32 GB, to save some money.)
 

fuchsdh

macrumors 65816
Jun 19, 2014
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From what I saw, disassembling the 2018 Mac Mini to get to the RAM sockets is no different from when I disassembled my 2012 Mac Mini to replace its' failing hard drive. (And I'm going to be doing that again soon to swap it out with a solid state drive!) So upgrading the RAM in the 2018 Mac Mini shouldn't be too hard for me (once I eventually buy one, I'll just buy it with the stock 8 GB of RAM and then upgrade it myself to 16 or even 32 GB, to save some money.)
Yeah, It's really not that bad. But if you're starting out, it's daunting. I sent away my 2011 Mac Mini for the SSD upgrade at the time because I wasn't confident about the process. After having done processor upgrades on a Mac Pro and swapping an iMac's hard drive since then I'd feel perfectly fine doing it myself. I think the RAM shield has freaked out people more about Apple 'locking' you out of upgrades because if you don't know what it's purpose is it certainly feels like a user-hostile barrier.
 

IngerMan

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Feb 21, 2011
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From what I saw, disassembling the 2018 Mac Mini to get to the RAM sockets is no different from when I disassembled my 2012 Mac Mini to replace its' failing hard drive. (And I'm going to be doing that again soon to swap it out with a solid state drive!) So upgrading the RAM in the 2018 Mac Mini shouldn't be too hard for me (once I eventually buy one, I'll just buy it with the stock 8 GB of RAM and then upgrade it myself to 16 or even 32 GB, to save some money.)
If you are only going to upgrade 16GB ram I would consider purchasing that direct from Apple. It is a $180 upgrade on the edu store or $200 normal. About $50-$70 difference then doing it your self. That is what I told myself anyways :)

I figure when and if I do go 32GB, OWC is offering a rebate of $70 for the Apple 8GBx2 sticks.