Released on July 21, 2011. Core i5 or Core i7 Processor. Thunderbolt. This unit is also used to run the Mac Mini Server configuration.

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2011 Mac mini GPU failed (Radeon 6630M) - repair options?

Recently my mac mini failed critically while streaming videos. The screen started garbling, then went a weird pink colour. Now it wont fully boot, after showing the apple logo with the boot progress bar for a few seconds it flashes to a white screen with some faint vertical banding.

I managed to disabled the discrete GPU (Radeon 6630M) and now it boots to desktop but the graphics are pretty awful using the integrated GPU.

My options seem to be:

1. Try to 'reflow' the chip. However, it seems this would only be a temporary fix. Or can anyone recommend a high quality repair service that could fix it in a more permanent way? (reball the chip?)

2. Replace logic board. Second hand logic board $150 to $200 on ebay. Some risk that it would fail again.

3. Buy a new system (most expensive, $800ish for comparable specs).

Anyone else faced this? Any other options to consider?

If you reflow/reballed, how long did it last?

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Sadly you're between a rock and a hard place ;-{

Reflowing or reballing doesn't fix things. Replacing the GPU is your only option in saving your logic board. Not may people have the right gear to do this.

Replacing the logic board I think is a good option but it will also limit you! You see this series had two versions of the board one with AMD Radeon HD 6630M and the other with Intel HD Graphics 3000. I would recommend you stick with the Intel HD Graphics 3000 versions of the board. The graphics are not as good as the AMD Radeon HD 6630M but you'll less likely have a GPU issue.

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Thanks Dan! Are there any compatibility issues with replacing the Radeon graphics logic board with the Intel version? I mainly use it for media streaming so don't mind downgrading the GPU. Will the software need reinstalling with the new logic board? Thanks again


Straight drop in ;-}


Just an update for anyone else facing this problem: I successfully replaced the logic board with a 2nd hand one that I bought off ebay for about $150. The replacement board is the lower-spec intel HD graphics 3000 version, and its working perfectly. Manually replacing the logic board took a couple of hours, but wasn't too difficult with the right tools. Cheaper than dropping $800 on a new mac mini!


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I use L2 for all my reball needs. I just recommend reballing when placing an order. My experience when reballing is it can last to up to a year, and with reflow the results usually last about 30 days.

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@j0vian - The true failure is within the GPU its self. Reballing or reflowing doesn't fix the real issue it only buys you a little time. Not worth the effort


I agree, This is true.


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