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Parts & Tools

Introduction

Learn how to upgrade or replace the memory in your 2018 Mac mini with this RAM replacement guide. The mini can support up to 64 GB of RAM, using any combination of 8 GB, 16 GB, or 32 GB DDR4-2666 SODIMM RAM modules.

Video Overview

  1. Power off and unplug your Mac mini before you begin.
    • Power off and unplug your Mac mini before you begin.

    • Use an opening tool to pry the bottom cover up off of the Mac mini.

  2. Lift and remove the bottom cover. To reinstall the cover:
    • Lift and remove the bottom cover.

    • To reinstall the cover:

    • Align it carefully so that the words "Mac mini" can be read when the ports are facing you.

    • Then, press down on the cover to snap its three hidden clips into place.

    My antenna plate seems to have TR7 Torx security screws

    DougPA - Reply

    • Remove six TR6 Torx security screws securing the antenna plate, of the following lengths:

    • Three 4.1 mm screws

    • Three 1.8 mm screws

    • Throughout this repair, keep track of each screw and make sure it goes back exactly where it came from to avoid damaging your Mac.

    Does anybody know the bolt diameter and tread size of the TR6 screws? Eg M2.5 screws? Planning a mod for my MAC mini and will be great if someone knows the exact specs of the screws Apple uses :)

    Daniel Lee - Reply

    The screws are T6 “Tamperproof” requiring the T6 Torx driver with the hollowed tip, not the standard T6 Torx.

    Michael - Reply

    Stripped all of those screws instantly. Anyone know how to fix that so I can finish the upgrade?

    Preston Miller - Reply

    The RED screws are Torx T7H and the YELLOW are Torx T6H from their toolkit. fyi.

    Michael Kelly - Reply

    I used a TR6 (Torx security with the hollowed tip, as per the ifixit instructions) on both the “red” and “yellow screws”, Mini 2020 model.

    Also, the red ones had a small amount of blue stuff (thread compound?) around the threads, which made it slightly trickier to reinsert them straight. No big problem though

    Chris Thompson - Reply

  3. Do not completely remove the antenna plate; it is still connected to the Mac mini by an antenna cable. With the Mac mini's ports facing you, carefully lift the antenna plate and slide it about an inch to the right.
    • Do not completely remove the antenna plate; it is still connected to the Mac mini by an antenna cable.

    • With the Mac mini's ports facing you, carefully lift the antenna plate and slide it about an inch to the right.

  4. Use a T6 Torx driver to remove the 2.8 mm screw securing the antenna cable to the Mac mini's logic board. Use a T6 Torx driver to remove the 2.8 mm screw securing the antenna cable to the Mac mini's logic board.
    • Use a T6 Torx driver to remove the 2.8 mm screw securing the antenna cable to the Mac mini's logic board.

    Interestingly on my Mac mini there was no torx screw holding this on at all, it was just attached to the logic board. There isn’t actually a screw hole to screw it into on the logic board as it appears to be a river of some kind instead.

    Rick Curran - Reply

    interesting! mine definitely did - it should be noted that this screw is incredibly small and should be taken out and stored with care

    Anthony LaManna - Reply

    What can you do when you accidentally rip off the connector from the logic board? A piece has become un-soldered and now I have a brick. This was an EXTREMELY, EXTREMELY FRAGILE part. For future folks who are trying this, be extra careful and try to find info on exactly where you should be pulling from. Apparently I lodged my spudger underneath the entire socket where it soldered, rather than above it where its simply connected. It’s very easy to rip the so ket right off the logic board. Now I’m looking for micro-soldering repair places. Do I have other options?

    John Deligiannis - Reply

    If the 2.8 mm screw securing the antenna cable to the Mac mini's logic board “disappears” and cannot be located after the motherboard is extracted, the screw has propably settled in below the speaker. There is a neodymium magnet in the speaker and it will attract the screw. Loosen the speaker to collect the screw - do not try to push the screw out with a tool as you might do damage to the motherboard. The whole operation of retracting the screw is less than 2 minutes.

    Quartz - Reply

  5. The antenna cable connector and socket are fragile. Use the point of a spudger or fine tweezers to gently pry the antenna cable connector straight up off its socket on the logic board. To reconnect the cable, use tweezers to position it carefully over its socket on the logic board, and then press it straight down until it snaps into place.
    • The antenna cable connector and socket are fragile.

    • Use the point of a spudger or fine tweezers to gently pry the antenna cable connector straight up off its socket on the logic board.

    • To reconnect the cable, use tweezers to position it carefully over its socket on the logic board, and then press it straight down until it snaps into place.

    • If you need more slack in the cable, you can temporarily pry it from the clips securing it to the antenna plate.

    Pry the cable… not the whole socket off the board

    Ray Foss - Reply

    Sorry Ray… I didn’t follow your directions. When I took mine apart, the connector pulled clean off the motherboard. I looked at the icon on the back antenna cover, and it appeared to be a wifi symbol. Not a big deal for me since my Mini is always plugged in via ethernet. So I finish putting it back together… thankfully Mini boots as expected and new memory is registered.

    But… everything seems to work fine. Wifi… bluetooth… internal speaker… what antenna is this connector attaching?

    Brian Clement - Reply

    I had a similar experience. I finished the RAM install and as I was trying to reconnect the antenna I noticed I pulled the connector clean off the motherboard. I was able to boot the Mac mini and everything seems to be working fine, including Wifi and Bluetooth. I don’t know what the purpose of the antenna is for and I can’t find anything online. I have my Mac mini connected to Wifi and a dedicated ethernet cord just in case the Wifi acts up. It would be nice to know what I broke. I’m just thankful I don’t have a paperweight.

    Jake Webb -

    Re-connecting the antenna lead plug was by far the hardest part of the entire operation for me. I found it easiest to roughly position it and then screw the guide in loosely before trying to get plug properly back into the socket. When it goes in you will feel a very slight click. You can tell it is correctly located by comparing it with the two sockets beside it. If it looks like them, then you have it in correctly.

    Michael - Reply

    Put the screw into the retaining clip before reseating the antenna cable and screwing it down.

    Trying to guide that tiny screw into the right position after the antenna’s plugged back in without it spinning off into the depths of your Mini is an exercise in futility.

    Alex Librie - Reply

    Thumbs up on this comment. I had to thread the screw into the hole/slot on the clip, but it stayed seated and it was easy to guide the clip back to the hole that receives the screw.

    maltovich -

    The cable connector socket is ridiculously fragile. Be extremely careful to apply pressure exactly as shown in the Step 6 photo (zoom in for a better look) — which is to say, on the metal wire clamp away from the connector. I used a spudger, but must have caught the socket on the logic board, because the whole assembly snapped off. Have successfully done this sort of disconnection a number of times on previous Mini models, but it’s far more delicate on this model — access and visibility are limited, so be very careful.

    AlphaDog Support - Reply

    Totally agree with Michael above. Re-connecting the antenna was the most fiddly part of the entire operation. First connecting it and secondly lining up the small guide plate where the screw keeps everything in place.

    My tip would be that the connector isn’t particularly difficult as such. It’s just very small.

    It is at the top of the cable so line that up. When it is lined up some gentle pushing secures it in place. Definitely don’t try to force it as it looks easily damaged. Like everything, when it’s lined up it’ll be easy and you’ll know it’s all good hearing and feeling it gently fasten.

    The screw was easier by comparison. After a couple of attempts the hole was visible enough and it took the screw.

    Max MacLeod - Reply

  6. Remove the antenna plate from the Mac mini.
    • Remove the antenna plate from the Mac mini.

  7. Use a T6 Torx driver to remove the four 7.2 mm screws securing the fan: Two screws securing the fan to the logic board
    • Use a T6 Torx driver to remove the four 7.2 mm screws securing the fan:

    • Two screws securing the fan to the logic board

    • Two screws with rubber shoulders securing the fan to the exhaust vent

    • Rubber grommets secure these screws to the fan, so they may not come out completely. Just make sure they are fully loosened.

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  9. Don't try to remove the fan completely in this step—just lift it so you can access the cable underneath. Lift the fan from the flat edge where it meets the exhaust vent, being careful not to strain the fan cable underneath.
    • Don't try to remove the fan completely in this step—just lift it so you can access the cable underneath.

    • Lift the fan from the flat edge where it meets the exhaust vent, being careful not to strain the fan cable underneath.

    The only scary moment was removing fan from Vent. The two vertical 7.2 mm Torx T6 screws at the top of the fan are easy to remove, in fact almost all of the screws for me were easy to remove because I was careful to get a good lock fit on top of the screws and slowly, while pressing downward just enough to get traction and the screw would loosen. The angular 7.2 mm screws attached to the fan vent with grommets is hard to get a direct angle with original orientation, to get the best lock and traction and use more force as they are very tight. Started to use too much pressure when it wouldn’t move and without direct even tension, I slipped a few times and that always leads to stripping the screw head and your screw driver. Carefully see how they turned the case around, so you can get a better straight angle and once the top screws are off you can gently shift the fan around to loosen the screw grips with the rubber grommets and carefully unscrew .

    TuQuynh Nguyen - Reply

  10. Grasp the fan cable by all six wires and gently lift to unplug it from the logic board. If the cable won't disconnect, don't force it, or you may pull the socket off the board. Try holding the socket down with your thumb, then pinch the cable close to the socket with your index finger and gently lift.
    • Grasp the fan cable by all six wires and gently lift to unplug it from the logic board.

    • If the cable won't disconnect, don't force it, or you may pull the socket off the board. Try holding the socket down with your thumb, then pinch the cable close to the socket with your index finger and gently lift.

    Be super careful here, socket on board can easily break and end up coming-off with the fan’s cable.

    jimthing - Reply

    I damaged the socket and it is no longer attached to the board. What do I do now?

    neckersco - Reply

    Uh-Oh, me too… Really gently lifted off the fan connector and the socket came off the board.

    The six pins that hold the socket to the board are incredibly close, and if this happens to you I strongly recommend you take it to someone who’s been soldering since before they were born, and knows exactly what they’re doing, to fix the socket back to the board.

    It’s taken me two days (buying a decent soldering station etc.) and my ears hurt just as badly as the appendages between my legs, because the Mrs is extremely disappointed!

    Suggestion for iFixit: please show this step in more detail, and warn everybody just how easily the socket can come off the board (please and thank you). Good luck everybody.

    Mike Sims - Reply

    This use to happen to me when upgrading 2012 mac mini’s. Have to use a spludger or something to hold connector down while you pull it upwards, flipping lightly on back of cable. it clips in, so don’t try to”plug” or insert.

    TuQuynh Nguyen - Reply

  11. Remove the fan.
    • Remove the fan.

  12. Grasp the power supply cable and lift to disconnect it from the logic board, wiggling as needed to loosen it up.
    • Grasp the power supply cable and lift to disconnect it from the logic board, wiggling as needed to loosen it up.

    Loosen the side nearest outer case first

    dermoid777 - Reply

    Is that a standard 20 pin power connector?

    gotjoshua - Reply

    It appears there are curved metal tabs (1 on each side of the connector) that compress until they lock the connector in place or the connector is removed, but doing so evenly as to not break off the 2 gold knife blades on the logic board that slide into the plastic connector. Both the tabs & gold knife connectors are seen in the 2nd picture, in the first picture you can see how the tabs look when they are locked into the logic board connection.

    bbbb - Reply

  13. Carefully lift the connector for the LED indicator light straight up to disconnect it from its socket on the logic board. Take care not to pry under the socket, or you may break it off the board.
    • Carefully lift the connector for the LED indicator light straight up to disconnect it from its socket on the logic board.

    • Take care not to pry under the socket, or you may break it off the board.

    So I followed the picture above, but lifting straight up on it ended up breaking off the entire component from the board…

    Is there a way to fix this? It doesn’t look like the computer turns on without this connection made

    Kevin Moran - Reply

    @ksmoran Yes, it can be fixed. See Maarten’s comments on the RAM guide. That connector is only for the LED indicator light on the front, so your Mac mini should still turn on and work fine. If it’s not turning on, there’s some other problem.

    Jeff Suovanen -

    I have also broken the led connection off the logic board. Is there another way to reattach it, other than finding someone to solder it?

    Steve Kenyon - Reply

    The video at the top of the page (timestamp: 2:30) does a much better job showing how to do this. They didn’t use any tools. Simply use your fingers to pull the wires straight up from the connector. Don’t try touching the actual components, since they’re so fragile. The wires are the better bet.

    Philip Stancil - Reply

    I found it easy to get the corner of a plastic spudger underneath the wires as close to the plastic clip as you can get it, and gently prying up. Use the logic board as the base for prying. Didn’t take much force, and everything here is really delicate. I’d try a plastic spudger here first.

    Christopher Reynolds - Reply

    Ditto on the spudger- i couldn’t shift the connector with the angled forceps as shown in the photo

    Kier Darby - Reply

    I also used a plastic spudger.

    Radim Cernej - Reply

    I think I broke something here, too. I was able to disconnect it and reconnect it. But the LED does not light up anymore. I will not open the device again to fix this. It also works without the LED lighting up.

    Patrick Pulwey - Reply

    I’m a proud new owner of a perfectly functioning, 3 GHz 6-Core Intel Core i5, 512GB SSD, & 32GB RAM(came with 8GB RAM), 2020 Mac Mini with a broken LED connector. I thought I was being so careful lifting the LED wire off of the socket, but that little socket is fragile, very fragile. So, no, I’m not worried about the LED working. It’s entirely in stealth mode now, not drawing attention to the nearest passerby. I do wish I hadn’t broken it, but it’s so much better than “bricking” it!

    Thomas Robison - Reply

    It appears there are curved metal tabs (1 on each side of the connector) that compress until they lock the connector in place or the connector is removed, but doing so evenly as to not break off the 2 gold knife blades on the logic board that slide into the plastic connector. Both the tabs & gold knife connectors are seen in the 2nd picture, in the first picture you can see how the tabs look when they are locked into the logic board connection.

    Wizbang FL - Reply

  14. Use a T10 Torx driver to remove the two 7.5 mm screws securing the logic board. Use a T10 Torx driver to remove the two 7.5 mm screws securing the logic board.
    • Use a T10 Torx driver to remove the two 7.5 mm screws securing the logic board.

    These were very tight,

    plevin - Reply

    Yes - Had to use a pliers to turn the T10 Screwdriver to get the first turn loosened!

    dermoid777 - Reply

    Yeah, very tight. Make sure you put your strength into the twist and not the press. This made all the difference for me.

    koobsmooth - Reply

    The second screw just wouldn’t come out for me!

    Adam Urbina - Reply

    I used the ordinary, “heavy duty” driver for that job. It comes off pretty easily unless you use the precision tools intended for delicate work.

    Tomek - Reply

  15. In this step, you'll push the logic board free from the clips holding it to the frame. Push only where directed or you may damage the fragile cooling fins. Place a thumb at each end of the exhaust vent, over the fan screw holes. Push firmly in the direction of the ports until the logic board unclips and begins to slide out of the Mac mini.
    • In this step, you'll push the logic board free from the clips holding it to the frame. Push only where directed or you may damage the fragile cooling fins.

    • Place a thumb at each end of the exhaust vent, over the fan screw holes.

    • Push firmly in the direction of the ports until the logic board unclips and begins to slide out of the Mac mini.

    Okay - I used a lot of “might” to push on the ends of this heatsink to no avail. Literally, I was scared to break it - I could feel one side moving and the other not budging. I used a large flat-edge screwdriver vertically into the Mac Mini, prying lightly against the edge of the case hole and onto the back edge of one of the silver fan standoffs protruding from the motherboard. Very little leverage here caused the board to pop out past those tight clips. Phew!

    booster4075 - Reply

    Agreed needed a lot of force, but came out as described just tense moment. Almost ready to try the pry method and then it popped free. Phew is right.

    plevin - Reply

    It does take a lot of force. I found the best way to handle it is to put the two exhast screws back in and use two T6 screw drivers to push. Thats easier than using your big thumbs and keeps you from damaging the fins.

    Geoffrey McKee - Reply

    Wow, great. Thanks for the comments above, and mine is also very difficult to push. I screwed back to two T6 screws and is still no luck. At the end, I push the two screws with a T6 screwdriver and bang, much much easier. Just my two cents. Good luck guys.

    Tso Dart G - Reply

    Watch your fingers pushing this out! I just cut my thumb on the sides

    brian.brianb64 - Reply

    Got myself sliced on the right thumb. Don’t even know on what.

    Heath Ahnert -

    A few people have commented here about having to use a lot of force to get this out, but make sure that all of the black area at the back of the case are not being covered by your fingers as you try to push it out, it came out quite easily for me once I realised I had my fingers on it!

    Rick Curran - Reply

    This may sound really stupid, because I am :) but keep in mind that the logic board assembly is coming out the side. So as you push from the inside don’t be blocking that motion with your fingers on the outside of the case. Once I realized I was defeating my own pushing of the fan it came out very easy.

    Neal Culiner - Reply

  16. Slide the logic board out of the case. When reinstalling the logic board, make sure to hold the thin LED indicator light cable out of the way so it doesn't get damaged.
    • Slide the logic board out of the case.

    • When reinstalling the logic board, make sure to hold the thin LED indicator light cable out of the way so it doesn't get damaged.

    When sliding back INTO the case after you’ve replaced the RAM, be sure to keep an eye on the LED light indicator connector cable. It’s easy for the logic board to slide back in and cover up the cable, which risks breaking the plastic end piece.

    Philip Stancil - Reply

    Tape the LED light indicator to the case to keep it out of way until reassemble.

    dermoid777 - Reply

  17. Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the four 2.8 mm screws securing the RAM shield.
    • Use a T5 Torx driver to remove the four 2.8 mm screws securing the RAM shield.

    T5 worked for me. No TR5 was needed, thankfully.

    pauldhinze - Reply

    Just had to recognize that you should be careful with the screws on the left side, when you drop them accidentally, the little magnet of the speaker might catch them an they tend to stick below …

    Kim Jonas Seufert - Reply

  18. Lift the RAM shield and slide it off of the RAM assembly.
    • Lift the RAM shield and slide it off of the RAM assembly.

  19. Two clips secure each RAM module in place, one on each side. Using your fingers, spread the clips away from the RAM module. When released, the RAM modules will pop up at a slight angle.
    • Two clips secure each RAM module in place, one on each side. Using your fingers, spread the clips away from the RAM module.

    • When released, the RAM modules will pop up at a slight angle.

    While spreading the Clips with the Rubber away, the right one just popped off. To reattach it, I had to slide it on the metal clips from the top.

    Tobias Wolf - Reply

    Sliding the rubber guards off in a similar fashion to sliding off the metal guard exposes the retaining clips to make removal/installment easier. Rubber guards slide on the way they slide off.

    Dan - Reply

  20. Slide each RAM module straight out to remove it.
    • Slide each RAM module straight out to remove it.

    • When handling the RAM modules, touch only the outside edges. Take care not to touch the gold-colored contact points along the bottom edge.

    Note carefully the tiny clips that grip each side of the RAM module; I found I had to use quite a bit of force to seat the RAM properly.

    Michael - Reply

  21. To install new RAM modules: Make sure the module is oriented correctly and the notch on the bottom is aligned, and then slide it in at about the same angle as you took it out. Press evenly until the gold contacts are no longer visible. Repeat for the second module.
    • To install new RAM modules:

    • Make sure the module is oriented correctly and the notch on the bottom is aligned, and then slide it in at about the same angle as you took it out. Press evenly until the gold contacts are no longer visible.

    • Repeat for the second module.

    If the rubber covers come off they are a pain to put back on - you have to slide the rubber into space between the RAM module and the retainer clips - this video explains it perfectly -

    https://eshop.macsales.com/installvideos...

    dermoid777 - Reply

    Had the same issue with rubber guards. See my comment on Step 22.

    Also, found it quite challenging to avoid touching the gold connectors. Not so much on removing the old modules but tricky to avoid touching whilst inserting the new.

    Max MacLeod - Reply

  22. Finally, press the top edge of each RAM module to swing it down toward the logic board until the retaining clips on each side snap into place. If the rubber guards interfere with the clips, spread the rubber guards away from the RAM with one hand and use the other to angle the RAM modules into place. Then, release the guards. Check the clips and make sure both modules are fully seated and secure.
    • Finally, press the top edge of each RAM module to swing it down toward the logic board until the retaining clips on each side snap into place.

    • If the rubber guards interfere with the clips, spread the rubber guards away from the RAM with one hand and use the other to angle the RAM modules into place. Then, release the guards.

    • Check the clips and make sure both modules are fully seated and secure.

    I found I had to use quite a bit of force to seat the RAM properly.

    Michael - Reply

    I’m having trouble with either bad RAM slot or damaged SLOT. Does anyone know how the Slots in the GUI (1 and 2 ) match up with those on the board (A and B)? Link to picture of the GUI and Board for illustrative purposes.

    John Lloyd - Reply

    Back slot was a little tricky to put it make sure it’s all the way down

    Clint - Reply

    By this point, the rubber guards had completely fallen off and were proving troublesome to fasten back into place.

    Eventually, on careful inspection I realised my error. The rubber guards on the inside have thin needle like rubber inserts that actually fit inside the metal RAM clips. Inspect one of them carefully on the inside with a magnifying glass and you’ll see what I mean.

    So, to re-attach, angle them with the RAM and retaining clips. Next slide them down at that angle such that the thin rubber insert enters the top gap of each retaining clip.

    ps. just seen a similar comment on this and a video posted on the previous step by @dermoid777.

    Max MacLeod - Reply

Conclusion

To reassemble your device, follow the above steps in reverse order.

Take your e-waste to an R2 or e-Stewards certified recycler.

Repair didn’t go as planned? Check out our Answers community for troubleshooting help.

229 other people completed this guide.

Rod Bland

Member since: 03/25/2013

2,451 Reputation

1 Guide authored

108 Comments

Thank you so much! I’m curious about CPU. Is it possible to replace it?

cjoonh - Reply

No, the CPU is soldered to the logic board.

Jon Anscher -

Looks like the SSD is replaceable as well. Any idea on what kind of standard it follows?

QiF - Reply

looks like soldered to me. either way, with that T2 chip on board one shall not pass through…

Peter Marencik -

How many slots for ram rank have Mac mini? And the entry version (8Gb) how many rank have ? One of 8gb or two of4gb? Tank’s

tiffanycafenapoli - Reply

There are two RAM slots.

If you order the Mac Mini with 8GB RAM, it will contain 2 x 4GB RAM cards.

Douglas Bailey -

what about the CPU??? Please explore more!!!

Peter Marencik - Reply

Hi Peter,

the CPU is not socketed. Check out the teardown here.

Arthur Shi -

Can you put 2400Mhz RAM in the Mac Mini?

I ask because the MAC mini memory ram is rated for 2666mhz and I have ddr 4 2400mhz RAM laying around.

Nicholas Mohamed - Reply

I’m curious to this as well, because performance-wise there’s not any noticable difference but there is a price difference.

Mikael D -

I had a pair of G.Skill F4-2400C16S-16GRS laying around as well and both went in to an i5 mini no problem. About this Mac reported that the new memory speed was 2400 .

Ben Marco -

Is it possible to have :

1x 4Go DDR4 Apple 2666Mhz

with

1x 16Go DDR4 Crucial 2666Mhz ?

jean - Reply

Yes, you can mix and match the module sizes in just about any Mac, so you could even have 4GB +32GB

Rod Bland -

Rod, do you know if the performance is affected by different sized RAM? It may be too late for me now, but maybe I should have bought one 32GB module instead of two 16s.

Jon Anscher -

Although it is technically okay to mix ram sizes (if the mobo and BIOS allows it), there IS a performance penalty when not using matched pairs of memory. That is true for just about any computer (Windows PC or Mac); , it has to with interleaving and other factors. In some cases, even if both sticks are same RAM size but different makers or configurations, that can also cause a performance hit, hence why most recommend using matched pairs of SAME manufacturer / model. By configuration i mean a 4 GB chip may have a 4 x 1GB config., where as another 4GB chip from another maker may have a 2 x 2GB config or 8 x 512MB (or whatever, ) Macs have historically much tighter tolerances (ie. less forgiving) when it comes to memory vs say a garage mix and match PC build; I strongly suggest using matched pairs by same maker, and stick to reputable brands. there are a lot of gray market chips out there with very questionable tolerances; if the price SEEMS TOO GOOD, THERE IS A REASON.

Michael Chin -

The first video posted on Youtube said the mac didn’t recognize the replaced memory properly. He installed the DDR4 3000, but it just run at 2444. Do you guys tried other RAMs?

seawah.k - Reply

So, upgrading the ram won’t brick the Mac mini?

tran269 - Reply

No it will not brick the mac, worked like a charm with the Corsair 2x16GB from Amazon. Sorry IFIXIT.

Provided you take static precautions and use general care.

This tutorial is a great step by step. I used the IFIXIT TOOLKIT and the IFIXIT Magnetic Project Mat to complete the task. 30 minutes start to boot up. Save about 350 some odd dollars versus ordering it preconfigured from Apple, but to each their own.

Roger Alexander -

32GB RAM should meet my needs for a while, as it has for several years now. I read that the mini won’t be as fast with unbalanced RAM, so I ordered 2x16 instead of 1x32. That could have given me 36GB along with a 4GB from my 8GB mini order. 2x16Gb costs less than 1x32 so there’s a savings there, but I will ultimately have wasted money on the 16GB SODIMMs if I eventually need to upgrade to 64GB. Wasn’t an easy thing to decide on.

Lots of people will face this dilemma.

Johann Johannson - Reply

As I wrote the previous post on the 8GB mini, the security bits for installing the RAM arrived. With 8 programs and several background processes running—the LG 4K monitor Newegg had on sale last week for $259 has 30 icons on its menu bar—the mini is still comfortably below its 8GB limit. With paging occurring only infrequently and at blazing-fast speeds, I’m beginning to wonder if I’ll ever feel a need to install more than 32GB RAM.

Now to get to work and put those tools to use. Thanks for the tips!

Johann Johannson - Reply

Thanks so much for putting this guide together! Upgraded with 32GB of Crucial RAM. It works great, and I saved $240!

Jon Anscher - Reply

Bricked! Mini will not turn on. Any ideas?

For the avoidance of doubt. I presume I did something wrong. Anyway, put factory ram back in, still doesn’t start.

spamsea - Reply

Have you tried unplugging everything except a single monitor, keyboard, and mouse from the Mac Mini? I had some issues starting up the Mac Mini with a lot of peripherals plugged in. It seems to have resolved itself after it fully loads for the first time and all the updates hit. Although it does worry me a bit, long-term.

Jon Anscher -

That comment probably just saved Apple thousands of dollars lol. Hope you got it fixed, please keep us hesitants posted.

Radwan Kaloti -

I tried both removing all devices (headless) and just the basics. Is there anyway to tell if the power is plugged correctly to the logic board? I mean it looks right, just trying to think of things I could check. The only things I can think of are that the ram is somehow out of alignment in some micro way, (i tried new ram, old ram, wiggling in various directions etc) I didn’t put the power plug back on the logic board correctly or I somehow fried something..

spamsea -

One other thing you might try is powering it on in Recovery mode to confirm there is no software glitch. Have you posted this in the Answers community? There might be more technical folks there to try and help.

Jon Anscher -

Did you get it working spamsea?

Radwan Kaloti -

I had heard that it was necessary for Apple to run some sort of hardware test before new Apple products would be able to run ANY replacement parts. Could this be the reason it doesnt work? Now I’m nervous about trying to upgrade.

Ben DeJong -

Same-ish here. I swapped out the original ram for 32GB (2x16) from Crucial. Then the Mac mini won’t turn on again. I put the old ram back in and it turns on, but only recognizes one slot.

Jarrod -

Well, there is nothing for it, just gotta take it in to the Genius Bar. See if they can tell me what is wrong.

spamsea -

I’m bailing on the upgrade, it’s just not worth the potential hassle. And I thought about it, if ever I need to take it in to Apple for repairs during the apple care warranty, that’s opening and closing it 3 times, RAM in RAM out, might get away with it once, but opening it 3+ times ups the chances to break something.

Radwan Kaloti -

Fixed it.

Problem 1: The ram wasn’t seated properly. It clicks into place a few millimeters before it’s pushed down far enough. Push until the gold connectors are no longer visible at all. Mine seemed like it would break, but it didn’t.

Problem 2: This one was minor, but I had to hold the power button down for 5 or 10 seconds before it turned on. This isn’t usually the case, it’s only after replacing the ram.

Jarrod -

Way to go Jarrod! Thanks for the update. Please post another in a day or two as to how stable everything is. Thanks!

Mike Buettner -

Jarrod - are you still experiencing the power button long hold to start?

Mike Buettner -

Second mini. I followed the same steps, it all went fine. One difference is that on the second mini, I replaced the ram before turning it on for the first time.

spamsea -

This goes to my comment that Steps 19 - 22 and in Step 22 in the comment it says currently:

If the rubber guards interfere with the clips, spread the rubber guards away from the RAM with one hand and use the other to angle the RAM modules into place. Then, release the guards.

This should be replaced with - Remove the rubber grommets or RAM SHIELD FEET by sliding them in the same direction you slid the RAM SHIELD to remove it and then replace the ram normally. Replace the FEET and the Shield as described.

Roger Alexander -

Info: Mac Mini 2018 also works with DDR4 2400 Mhz

About this Mac: https://gyazo.com/b203d435cf809b2775abb7...

System Info: https://gyazo.com/21213acd745d5f2d6219c3...

Joerg Michael - Reply

Looks like we have a wait a little while more before we proceed to change those RAMs. The worst fear is bricking the whole system.

Let’s wait for more updates from those who can’t turn on their systems after changing their RAMs.

truecolours1971 - Reply

Plus, if the MM 2018 is able to run various task normally at 8GB of RAM, I don’t see myself upgrading the RAMs until the pricing are much lower. For now, 64GB is about $1,080 at OWC website which is ridiculously priced! Maybe when the MM is able to accept and run 128GB worth of RAM (day dreaming at the moment!), I will buy it! Will only purchase the 64GB RAM when it is less than $500 or less. My take for those who have not upgraded yet, use your MM for now and don’t think of upgrading your RAMs until much later. Upgrading to 32GB will see some improvement but why not wait a couple months and get the 64GB which will max out your system. MM 2018 is still relatively new and iFixit probably need to go through the whole system again to see and retest to make sure whatever we open, will not void out 1-3 years Apple Care Warranty plus brick the whole system.

truecolours1971 -

Yes, anxious to hear how upgraded Minis are working.

Mike Buettner - Reply

What, no antistatic mat and bracelet. If the RAM modules are sensitive to static charges, you should use static protection gear. You can zap a memory chip and never even know you did it until you cannot boot or you get system crashes or other oddnesses.

jferris1119 - Reply

Is there any chance to replace the SSD ?

wyattwong - Reply

Can you use only one slot, e.g. 1x16GB and add another one later (even better 1x32 when those are out)?

beczka - Reply

Thank you for your guide.Great work. I added 2x16GB Crucial and it’s working like a charm. One drawback … I killed the WLAN antenna socket. This one is very very fragile. While putting the cable back on the pin and pushing gently to lock it the whole socket came off. Good that I don’t need the WLAN module and maybe I’m able to buy a new socket somewhere sometimes and solder it back on place …

Markus Müller-Heidelberg - Reply

Hello. Is it possible to run the Mac Mini 2018 with only one RAM module (leaving the second one empty)? If it is possible, is there a penalty in its performance?

Thanks you.

Adrian Alvarado - Reply

This is the first ifixit repair guide I’ve ever followed. The 3 steps I was most worried about...Step 6: antenna cable connector removal. Step 10: fan cable removal. Step 13: LED indicator light cable removal...weren't an issue at all. In fact the only step I had an issue with was Step 15 (pushing the logic board free) and that's because I wasn't pushing hard enough. Overall, a little scary to crack open something brand new that's $1k but I was able to pull it off without issue. (thankfully). Now this Mac mini is running with 32GB + 3 monitors and should last me the next 4 years till Apple updates it again.

Craig Miller - Reply

My upgrade went pretty much okay. Easier than I thought. Antenna wire snapped right back on, motherboard slid out without much effort and memory modules were easy to remove and seat. Only problem I had was a stripped head on a fan Torx T6 screw on reassembly. I must not have had the driver seated into the screw correctly. Screw is tight so all okay for now. Booted up and shows the 32GB of RAM. Need to find a new screw and hope the old one comes out. I know I didn’t crank it down. Any idea where to find that screw?

Mike Buettner - Reply

Yes that angle of attack should probably be emphasized in detail in Step 8 - good point!

I was like WHAT? Thankfully I have my cheater glasses (old eyes) and I was able to see the angle of attack clearly under magnification.

Roger Alexander -

Step 8 - make it more clear the ‘rubber grommeted’ screws are ‘captive screws’ and they are specifically the yellow screws holing the front of the air box to the heat sink - not the red screws which are removed completely during this process.

Step 15 - for me it was necessary to use the blue pry tools employed in the opening of the bottom cover to assist in ‘freeing’ the main board from the housing - probably not everyone will encounter this but after some serious pushing on the heat sink without result, I fell back to this step. I pushed and the left side budged, but only slightly. So I started on that edge at the ‘case / port mounts of the mainboard seal’ with the blue pry tools and boom it popped free and I was able to complete the step as described to free the mainboard completely from the case…..

Roger Alexander - Reply

Step 19 - 22 I think it should be made clear that there are rubber grommets that serve at the ram shield ‘feet’ and they can be remove by sliding them in the same direction you slid the Ram shield to remove it. then you can replace the ram - replace the ‘rubber feet’ and then the Ram Shield. I preferred this method to ‘fumbling around that rubber to access the clips to free the ram. This step should definitely be included.

Great tutorial - easy to follow - thanks man!

Roger Alexander - Reply

Hi Rod,

On Step 3 it says to “Remove six TR6 Torx security screws…of the following lengths: Three 4.1 mm screws; Three 1.8 mm screws”

Is this a typo? How can it be that one TR6 screwdriver can remove two different sizes of screws/

Thank you for your help.

Ken Klippenstein - Reply

Ken,

It is not a typo the screws are different sizes but require the same T6 Torx to remove them. The Larger serve as the mount points for the rubber case bottom and are in fact what you used the pry tool in steps 1 and 2 to remove the bottom cover ‘from’.

Hope this helps.

Roger

Roger Alexander -

TR6 is the head size, which is shared by both screws. The millimeter measurements are the lengths of the screws from head to the bottom of the shaft, not across the width of the head.

Sam Goldheart -

This guide is excellent. I would have been stuck at removing the logic board without it! Sure glad I bought the iFixit toolkit on Black Friday. What I installed was Ballistix Sport DDR4-2666 (2x16GB). But Mac reports it is running at 2400MHz, not 2666. Otherwise it is working great. Has anyone been able to correct RAM speeds? On a PC I’d fiddle with BIOS settings and kick in the XMP profile, but is there anything I can do on a Mac?

chris - Reply

Unfortunately I &&^&@@ up on step 13.

I was afraid to pull on the LED wire and had no grip on the plug. The I tried to wedge with a knife from below and the whole socket including the plug came loose from the board.

I know now this was stupid! Probably I should have lifted on the wire itself, right?

Do you think the tiny connections from the socket can be soldered again by somebody more professional?

Maarten - Reply

@sikko Highly likely it can be fixed by somebody with the right skills and soldering rig. Fortunately I believe that socket is only for the little indicator LED on the front, so it’s likely not a mission-critical item. You can probably put it back together and ignore it. If I could pick one thing to break, that would be it ;)

Jeff Suovanen -

@sikko Highly likely it can be fixed by somebody with the right skills and soldering rig. Fortunately I believe that socket is only for the little indicator LED on the front, so it’s likely not a mission-critical item. You can probably put it back together and ignore it. If I could pick one thing to break, that would be it ;)

Jeff Suovanen - 2 hours ago

Yes Jeff, I put the mini together yesterday and found that everything was working okay (with 32 GB of RAM) except for the LED light. Today I went to an electronics repair guy, who soldered the socket back in place. That made me happy again. He was professional and really nice guy and did not even charge me anything for this soldering of the LED socket! So fortunately all is fine again.

I noticed now there is a warning at Step 13. Very good! I don’t know if that warning was there yesterday; at least yesterday I did not notice it.

Maarten - Reply

Excellent description! And with the tools from iFixit it was easy to upgrade my MacMini 2018 to 32GB RAM. Thanks a lot.

heiko.morgen - Reply

Completed upgrade this evening.  Great instructions!!!

John Clowes - Reply

Thanks for the great guide! Just did it in approx. 25 minutes and I'm now running 20GB memory. Everything is running smooth. I'll maybe update the other 4GB chip some time down the road when I have the extra $$.

Erik - Reply

Thank you Rod! Did a successful memory upgrade from 8Gb to 32Gb with this step-by-step guide!

Martijn Smulders - Reply

Thanks! I have 32gb now and saved a lot of $$$

Sergey - Reply

Excellent guide!

ironically I found the 2018 model much easier to breakdown than previous models.

Frank Phillips - Reply

One thing to think about regarding memory and the fixed internal storage. 8GB while sufficient for most light duty users still causes some swap activity to write back to the main storage. While SSD/Flash based storage life-cycle has proven to be extremely durable, continuous swap activity does consume some of the finite write cycles for the chips. With older/slower physical drives this was usually an after-thought.

Additionally, storage failure in any way now requires logic board replacement versus a separate drive swap. Lastly, if failure does occur, what mitigating factors does Apple (or any authorized service agency) take to ensure personal/private data is completely destroyed? Non-fixed drives don’t have this problem - replace the defective drive and load back up, assuming the consumer retains the original drive.

scdude - Reply

Hi all, does anyone know the details of the little two pin led connector? Whilst removing it during a RAM upgrade one of the wires pulled through the plastic housing of the connector. The board pins are ok just the housing of the connector and I’d like to replace it. Thanks.

Simon Smith - Reply

Thank you, Rod!

Excellent step by step tutorial, with very clear and detailed pictures. Also, great tips and warnings. I took it slowly and completed it successfully within the hour (including dropping the antenna screw in the mac mini - yes, it rolled away under some component).

Thank you so much!

Dennis - Reply

Thanks! A very precise and easy to follow guide. Some observations:

I had purchased two 16 GB Crucial RAM modules despite the latency number (CL19) which I suspect does not matter in practice. They fit very well - I had no trouble with the fit being too tight. However, like another comment noted, it seemed easier to just slide the rubber guards off and then back on after the new modules are in place.

The hardest part was plugging the antenna cable back in. It is simply hard to see when it is in the right place and you can safely push down.

Logic board screws were annoyingly tight.

The ifixit toolkit was extremely helpful.

J. Andreas Baerentzen - Reply

One general comment, when removing the Wifi antennae connector, be very careful when prying it up. Mine somehow became damaged upon removal and will not reinstall. Luckily, I am close enough to my router that it doesn’t affect performance. Signal strength is still 4 full bars and speedtest.net shows no loss in speed. Very lucky in my case.

Warren McBride - Reply

Success! This guide was great together with the ifixit pro kit. Thank you!

Nikolai van der Burg - Reply

Thank you iFixit for the kit, the Crucial memory modules, and the instructions.

My remarks, repeated in other comments:

- obviously be very very careful with the antenna and the led connector, they are really tiny.

- the board screws are really tight. Had to use some pliers with the torx piece because the iFixit plastic handle did not seem strong enough for the required force. Or better, I had no force to unscrew them using the kit.

- make sure the RAM is fully plugged in. If you can see the coper from the connectors, they’re not well plugged. The machine won’t start if they’re not plugged, not even turn the led on.

- even with the RAM well plugged, the trick to press power for five seconds is needed. Five despairing seconds waiting for the led to come on.

Works perfectly. The kit is perfect. The memories are great. The Mac mini process is quite easy and well designed. I’d say a low end of the moderate.

bruno.rodrigues - Reply

Hi. Can anyone confirm if this is true ? ( Published 2019.03.24 on the youtube video)The latest Mac mini 2018 builds are no longer user upgradeable – you need to take your Mac mini back to your local Apple Store to have them upgrade it for you. They've changed all the screws to stop you accessing the internals. They look like proprietary T3/4 security screws

Manuel N - Reply

Hi @manuelnv This guide proves that isn’t true, the device can be opened, it does require a T6 security screwdriver as well as T5 and T10, but those driver are not very uncommon. Apple wouldn’t call this computer user-serviceable, but read the comments here, many people have done this successfully =)

Sam Goldheart -

Just installed the 32GB memory kit on brand new Mac Mini. Worked no problem, the instructions were super clear! Thanks iFixit!!!

Cyrille Taillandier - Reply

Good guide! Can the ram be replaced using only one 32gb chip, then adding a second 32gb later?

Ian gilmartin - Reply

So I did break the LED indicator light off of the board. Any suggestions? Is that worth micro-soldering back on, or is it just that the light doesn’t work?

Todd Peperkorn - Reply

Just upgraded to 1 x Crucial CT2K16G4SFD8266 32GB (16GB x2) bought from Amazon.de for some 196€ (220$). Done within 15mins, thanks IFIXIT for a superb guide! The only tricky part was a first boot, I had to go via Recovery Mode (Command+R during startup), restart, Safe Mode (Shift during startup), another bounce and voilà, the system is up and running again reporting 32GB of memory :) So thanks IFIXIT for saving me almost 400$!

George Groats - Reply

Thanks a lot. Is it possible to change the ssd?

uwemoebus - Reply

Thank you - your guide worked like a charm - I unboxed and upgraded the memory before turning it on - from 8 to 32 GB.

I also read all the comments and found them most useful in identifying the risky/tricky steps in the process - the cable connections that required extra attention - correctly seating the memory - etc.

Bryan Palmer - Reply

Worked perfectly Rod. Thanks for being detailed.

Brian Kidd - Reply

Steps 19 - 22 should be revisited to include the proper removal/replacement of the RAM Shield FEET, rubber grommets, Reading the comments it seems the major issues - DOA issues all revolve around this issue.

Roger Alexander - Reply

be careful when screwing in the screw for securing the antenna cable, I managed to break the top off.

Mats Andreas Tønnesland - Reply

Pretty straight forward and save me a few hundred bucks! Thanks!

stevelamas - Reply

Worked a charm. Thanks so much for all the steps and hints. Thanks to the community for hints in comments of each step.

Katalin E Pusztavari - Reply

Replaced the memory on mac mini as instructed but the system won’t recognize the 32GB. It still recognizes as 8GB. Any additional step I must take with the OS? Any special reboot? I can’t seem to find this anywhere. Thanks!

Henrique Mendes Carneiro - Reply

If you loose a little screw inside, you may find it below the loudspeaker. It is magnetic, an can be removed easily loosening 2 screws.

Klaus Kamppeter - Reply

Tools listed to buy includes a TR6 Torx security screwdriver, but Step 17 says you need a TR5 if the security screws are used.

So which size is it?

My iFixit tool kit has all the torx drivers and the security ones do not start until size 6.

A quick search online does not find TR5 drivers.

mike - Reply

Someone insisted their mini had TR5 screws on the RAM cage, but I agree with you—I’ve never seen one on this (or any other) device. Restored Step 17 to specify standard T5 only for now. If more people chime in with woeful tales of security screws on their RAM, we’ll update accordingly.

Jeff Suovanen -

Thanks, this guide is perfect! Couldn’t have been easier. I was a bit worried about disconnecting and reconnecting the wifi antenna - I’ve built hackintosh'es in the past that involved putting a BMC wifi/bluetooth card in a PCIe slot and generally the antenna dongle from the broadcom card (which I always chose because the right chipset gets picked up as Airport with all the features) is a real ##&&% to get attached properly to the PCIe end… I’ve had to resort to hot glue in the past, heh! Nothing like that this time, I was careful and it popped on nicely.

Everything working great! Saved loads. Cheers.

John Newman - Reply

Would it be better to upgrade it with 1 32 GB Samsung RAM and leaving the default 4 GB in, totalling in 36 GB RAM, or should I buy 2 A-Tech 16 GB replacing both slots? Both RAM packages would cost me exactly the same on eBay. Thanks for your answers!

Matic Komel - Reply

Also, are you guys using magnetic or non-magnetic torx screwdrivers?

Matic Komel -

Hi how would I be able to fix a clip that bent and fell off when the Ram was being inserted ?

Danielle Johnson - Reply

Thank you for the guide. I fitted 32GB (2x16 kit) Crucial RAM in 25 minutes for £82, a considerable saving over Apple prices. If you have the Ifixit tool kit from a few years ago (like mine) check it thoroughly before you try this upgrade. The T5 Torx in my kit wasn’t a T5 it was a Star 1.2 and as it was the first time I’d ever used it, naturally I thought all would be well…. grrrr!

Graham - Reply

This description of replacing the memory in the 2018 Mac Mini is excellent - best one on the internet by far. If I could suggest you might make reference to the fact that to remove the six T-6 screws from the antenna plate requires a T-6 screwdriver with a hole at the end, because these screws have a tiny locating pin in the center of the star. I know you say the screw are “security screws”, meaning that this special screw driver is required, but making it a little more obvious might help.

Giles Becket - Reply

Merci,

Changement de la Ram en 20 ‘. Avec les outils préconisés , et en prenant son temps avec le tutoriel sous les yeux , sans aucun problème. Merci à l’auteur pour ce travail de qualité !

jm daumen France 2/02/2020

jm.daumen - Reply

Good guide, but it should also cover re-assembly. Reconnecting the delicate cables was by no means easy for me.

Radim Cernej - Reply

Thanks for the guide. I really thought about doing this from the initial buy, and thus only equipped the Mac mini with 8GB of RAM. Now after about a year of running it I finally decided to do it. I watched the video for about a million times and read through the comments to be aware of the critical steps (mostly loosing the delicate cables). Bought the components (RAM from crucial, iFix It Tools and Magnetic Mat) and waited for a Saturday with nothing else to do and no disturbance.

The whole procedure took me about an hour. With only one minor issue (see my comment above on step 19). After reassembly I was really nervous while turning on the Mac, I was glad to see the LED starting to glow. When it took about 10 sec (more or less) after the Boot screen appears. and here it is, my upgraded Mac mini with 32GB for about €160 (including RAM, Tools and Mat).

Tobias Wolf - Reply

I’m having trouble with either bad RAM slot or damaged SLOT. Does anyone know how the Slots in the GUI (1 and 2 ) match up with those on the board (A and B)? Link to picture of the GUI and Board for illustrative purposes.

John Lloyd - Reply

Great guide, went well for me. While I was worried about steps 6, 10, and 13 (the unplugging parts), the only point that gave me some frustration was putting one of the rubber feet back on. I still don’t think I got it back on quite right, but that doesn’t seem like the most consequential issue.

After some trying with tools, I think I might have ended up pulling everything up (gently!) by finger. They all came off fairly easily, straight up. I think the one that gave me most resistance was the LED wire. I certainly reattached them with my fingers after cursory attempts with tools. It felt good to me to get the biofeedback of feeling them snap firmly in place.

It wasn’t so hard pushing the motherboard out; the main thing seemed to be just positioning my fingers in back so that I wasn’t pushing forward with some fingers and back with others.

At the end, I went the screw-first route for putting the wifi antenna back. Just leave it loose enough to make a tiny adjustment to get the plug in position.

tmlittleton - Reply

Is this procedure exactly the same for the 2020 Mac Mini that was just released in March 2020?

Andrew Rivan - Reply

I have the same question. Been trying to find an answer to this on the internet for a while now with no success

Matt -

Yep, just did it on mine, see comment above.

tmlittleton -

I just used your Essential Toolkit to do this upgrade and it worked like a champ! I probably took 30 minutes but had watched the video prior and have lots of experience building computers. Still though, these connectors are so small and fragile that it made me very relieved when everything disconnected and then reconnected smoothly! The torx bits are priceless as is that spudger as my fingers are too big for these small connections! Lastly, great job on the video! I am now running with 32GB RAM!

Pete G - Reply

Successfully followed this guide with an upgrade from 8GB (2x4) to 16GB (1x16) on the updated Mini 2020 model.

Thanks ifixit.

Chris Thompson - Reply

Our MacMini is rocking 64GB, but after going through this I really wonder if Apple has a Department to make repairs and upgrades harder? Why not just have a removable base that allows easy access to the RAM without having to sweat about breaking very tiny fragile connectors and needing to pull the main board just to upgrade two DIMM boards? My advice is do it once and be done with it.

Plus my OG iFixit screwdriver set didn’t have a TR6 bit so I now have a new set to complement it. The old set did have one cool feature, driver has hole in handle to allow you to make it a T-nut driver which made easy work of T10 screws which are torqued pretty tight. Thanks iFixit.

BKNJ - Reply

Thank you for saving me a lot of money! Worked great on my May 2020 Mac Mini. I used this handy kit from Amazon (non affiliated link) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07D5J... and just needed a T5 screwdriver and tweezers to add. Read the comments in each step to learn from others so you don’t break something.

Neal Culiner - Reply

Thanks for the great guide! Just added 32GB to my new mini. Everything went smoothly, especially given the various iFixit tool sets I’ve built up over the years.

Erick - Reply

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