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Mac mini with Apple Silicon: Upgrading an SSD with a Soldering Iron

Mac mini with Apple Silicon: Upgrading an SSD with a Soldering Iron

Is it possible to miss more flash memory on a Mac mini with Apple Silicon, whose SSD is known to be soldered? Answer: Absolutely. However, this requires some soldering skills – and there is a risk that the project will backfire. Famous tech YouTuber Luke Miani, who already has some experience in the matter, recently showed how one must imagine such an unusual upgrade for Apple devices.

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One in collaboration with Apple enthusiasts Doswood 1 Recorded in just under 20 minutes, this video shows how to turn an M1 Mac mini with a 256GB SSD into a 1TB SSD computer. Even opening a Mac mini isn’t quite so easy: roughly a dozen screws, heatsinks, and various embedded parts must be removed before you can access the board. The two memory sticks are then separated, being careful not to damage any existing components.

Special tools are required to remove the memory modules from the board. Finally, the new SSD chips must be rebooted before they can be soldered back on. In general, manual skills are in high demand — no wonder such interventions are so rare on Macs. Official Apple authorized workshops don’t even offer “board level repairs”. Instead, entire circuit boards are replaced if defects occur.

After soldering in the new SSD chips, you must first configure the system. However, as Apple increasingly installs its own ARM systems, this is not easy. It turns out that the NAND modules from another Mac simply cannot be used – the tools necessary for “serialization”, to which the SSD and the board are attached, are only available internally from Apple. The solution was to use completely blank memory chips (“Blank NANDs”), which are available in China – so soldering and desoldering was done twice (as well as trying to change the order of the chips).

That was a restoration Apple component 2 Finally possible on a second Mac via DFU mode. Bottom line: For less than $100 (and a lot of sweat and tears), the upgrade was possible. Apple itself would have asked for just under $800 if a 2TB Mac mini was purchased.

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