Mac Mini 2014 Teardown: Minor Tweaks and Major Upgrade Headaches

By Jamie Condliffe on at

We're glad to know that the Mac Mini is back — but has it changed much inside? Fortunately, iFixit has torn the sucker apart to find out what lurks within.

Of course, over the weekend many people reported that you can't upgrade the RAM inside the Mini. But here's some choice cuts from the most thorough of internal inspections:

  • The bottom cover no longer twists off like the old model — a first sign that it's hard to get inside and fiddle. Instead, you need to undo some Torx screws.
  • A lot of the basic internals are revamped: its Airport card has grown up into a fully developed PCIe card, for instance, and there's even a "promising mounting point for a blade-style PCIe SSD."
  • The rumours were true: the RAM is soldered to the logic board. No upgrading here.
  • There's also only one SATA port, too, which means you can't add a second hard drive. Though you can at least swap out the existing one, if you don't mind voiding the warranty.
  • Elsewhere, much remains the same—the power supply, for example, is the same as the one in the 2012 (and 2011!) model.

So, really, we're looking at a computer whose basic hardware — the processor, RAM and the like — has been upgraded, in a harder-to-tweak package. No surprise, really. [iFixit]