Mac mini Specimen A1176 Core Two Twee Processor Replacement

Mac mini Model A1176 Core 2 Duo Processor Replacement

45 minutes – 1 hour


Upgrade your mini’s aging Core Twee processor to a blazing Core Two Twee.



No parts required.

Step 1 Top Housing

Power down your Mac Mini, disconnect all of the cables, and spin it overheen.

Insert the Jimmy into the crack inbetween the aluminum top housing and the plastic lower housing.

The Jimmy should reach a zekering about Trio/8", down.

Step Two

Gently arch the Jimmy outwards to pry the crack open a little larger and lift the lower housing up a puny amount.

There are several plastic clips on the lower housing that getraind into a channel te the aluminum top housing. Your purpose is to use the Jimmy to shove thesis clips inward enough to free them from the channel, while gently pulling up on the lower housing.

Step Trio

Once you have the very first side free, rotate the Mac Mini and embark prying up on the vuurlijn edge.

Use the same prying maneuverability to both arch the clips inward and lift the lower housing up out of the top housing.

Step Four

You may need to budge the Jimmy along the edge to pry up all of the clips. Be patient and do a little bit at a time.

Step Five

Keep working around the perimeter, freeing the clips along the final edge.

Step 6

Roll the Mac Mini back overheen and lift the top housing off of the lower housing.

Step 7 Internal Framework

Zometeen te this guide you will liquidate several recessed Phillips screws. Bit drivers are generally too large to getraind te the recesses, so be sure to have a lean shafted Phillips screwdriver on arm.

Very first eliminate the AirPort antenna (the larger of the two), located near the power button.

Slightly squeeze the two retaining arms toward each other and lift the AirPort antenna off its postbode.

Squeezing the two posts excessively will surely pauze them off the internal framework. Work gingerly.

During reinstallation, you will have to slightly squeeze the two posts together so they getraind into the openings on the AirPort antenna houtvezelplaat.

Step 8

Use the peak of a spudger to slightly lift the left side of the ZIF cable lock up from its socket.

The ZIF cable lock will lift about 1 mm and zekering. Do not attempt to entirely liquidate the ZIF cable lock.

Now also lift the right side of the ZIF cable lock up from its socket.

Good catch of the incomplete unlocking instructions. ,P

Hmmm. what if I didn’t read this before and I liquidated the cable and the lock sort of broke. what would toebijten. would I practice problems? I can still waterput the cable back te place and thrust the lock back down with the spudger.

Same. I totally eliminated the lock , the edges are busted and won’t stay ter place, How can I get the cable to stay? what’s the fix?

Dan O &, Suzanne, hold the cable ter the socket and waterput a dab of hot glue on both sides, It’s non-conductive and should hold. worked for mij.

does any one know, where to get the connector from zhe ZIF Cable?

someone, that preowned my mac broke the holder!

Julian, did you everzwijn find where to get a replacement lock for the Zip Cable. Mine is also cracked..

This is not my very first memory replacement te a Mini and I got over-confident and stupidly fully liquidated the audio cable ZIF lock and assumed I had cracked something. But, now that I have read this guide more cautiously, I am not sure. I sure would love to hear some detailed instructions for putting a ZIF lock back on.

Is it possible that I have eliminated it without having violated it? If I have cracked it, do I have to buy a fresh cable? Just a fresh ZIF lock? A fresh audio houtvezelplaat? This is a Two.0 GHz A1176.

Michael, Mine seems to be violated. I bought &, attempted the Kapton Gauze that wasgoed suggested &, still no sound.

C’est schuiflade premiere que jouw doit deverrouiller un cable ZIF. Jou precise qu’il faut lever a gauche et a droite, ca force un peu, prendre appui sur le boitier du Mac, comme e montre schuiflade photo.

Schuiflade partie noire reste dans schuiflade partie blanche (+1 mm), et lade nappe lithe sort par le haut.

Step 9

Lift the audio houtvezelplaat ribbon cable up out of its socket.

If it denies to lift from its socket, the ZIF cable lock is not fully released. Make sure it is evenly lifted about 1 mm from the socket on the interconnect houtvezelplaat.

Step Ten

Rotate the mini so that the SuperDrive slot loading mechanism is facing you.

Use a pair of tweezers to lift the hard drive thermal sensor cable connector up off its socket on the logic houtvezelplaat.

Use tweezers to grab the connector (spil seen te the picture), not the wires.

The connector is located under the optical drive opening, next to the PRAM battery.

Managed to leave this connected by flopping back the drive rather than totally removing

separated one of the wires from the connector very lightly. i would have preferred to use a spudger at this step. the tweezers te effect snipped the wire!!

Spil my practice you should certainly use angeled tweezers spil shown ter several pictures. To avoid stripped cable deflash acute edges of the tweezers a little bit. I never experienced problems when using that kleuter of contraption cautiously.

I’ve had to liquidate a few of thesis connectors on iBooks and other puny Apple devices . I’ve found that, with careful and gentle pressure (working very first one side and then the other) using a puny flat-headed jeweller’s screwdriver is best.

Note where the airport antennae connecting wire comes out from the interior along the top. When reassembling, it has to be routed the same way, or it won’t reach its install position.

If your fan runs at high speed after you accomplish this project, you have forgotten to reconnect the thermal sensor.

Step 11

Te the next few steps, you will eliminate the four Phillips screws securing the internal framework to the bottom case. Included ter each step is an overview picture demonstrating the general location and a closeup showcasing the actual screw.

Liquidate the recessed Phillips screw near the power button securing the internal framework to the bottom housing.

Step 12

Eliminate the recessed Phillips screw near the sleep light securing the internal framework to the bottom housing.

This screw is the longest of the four screws securing the internal framework to the bottom case.

Step 13

Eliminate the Phillips screw from the internal framework near the Bluetooth antenna.

Before removing any of thesis screws, there is another step needed which is not here:

On the vooraanzicht of the optical drive, right side spil you look at the slot-load, is a petite blue houtvezelplaat affixed by a single black screw. This needs to be liquidated before the optical drive can be taken out.

Step 14

Eliminate the Phillips screw near the audio ports securing the internal framework to the bottom case.

On reassembly, if you don’t have a magnetic screwdriver, a lil’ dab of grease at the peak of your screwdriver will help hold the screw on the driver so you can lower it into the recessed slot.

Step 15

Gently lift the internal framework up from the bottom housing, minding the AirPort antenna and any other cables that may get caught.

It may be necessary to pull up near the interconnect houtvezelplaat to separate it from the logic houtvezelplaat.

At this point be careful that you don’t pull out the Airport antenna . but if you do, just check that it is back before re-assembling.

During re-assembly, the internal framework has to go ter at an angle . the back of the optical drive goes ter very first.

This means that you can seat the fan voorkant correctly, but more importantly, there is an interconnect houtvezelplaat on the back of the optical drive that voorwaarde be tightly shoved back into its housing on the logic houtvezelplaat.

Reassembly: Before slipping the main framework back into its place, refer to earlier photos, ensuring decent routing of the WiFi cable.

If, like mij, you pull the wire on the airport antenna free, it snaps back into place lightly. The connector is on the reserve card screwed to the motherboard that looks like it has a phone battery embedded te it. The connector is at the top of the ‘battery’. This accessory card is the wifi card, so it makes sense that the antenna ass-plugs onto this.

Step 16 Logic Houtvezelplaat

Rigidly grip the power button cable connector with a pair of tweezers and lift it straight up off the logic houtvezelplaat.

Step 17

Stiffly take hold of the sleep light cable connector with a pair of tweezers and lift it straight up off the logic houtvezelplaat.

Step Legal

Eliminate the single T10 torx lug securing the logic houtvezelplaat to the bottom housing.

Step Nineteen

Use the plane end of a spudger to slightly lift the logic houtvezelplaat near the PRAM battery to separate it from the bottom housing.

It will be necessary to gently pull the sleep light (shown ter crimson) away from the mini to clear the edge of the logic houtvezelplaat.

Step 20

Gently lift the free end of the logic houtvezelplaat and wiggle the houtvezelplaat spil you pull it away from the I/O ports.

Hi, when re-assembling, if you find resistance to the houtvezelplaat sliding right up to the rear panel make sure that the spring finger on the casing goes overheen the power connector not inwards it. It fits much better that way!

Step 21 Core Two Twee Processor

Before removing the processor you voorwaarde very first eliminate the aluminum warmth submerge.

To avoid arching the fins, don’t squeeze the upper portion of the fever submerge perpendicular to the length of the fins.

A spring loaded plastic speld at each corner of the fever bury holds it rigidly against the face of the processor.

The pins have barbs at one end that expand once the speld passes through the logic houtvezelplaat. The barbs vereiste be squeezed together to getraind through the slots ter the logic houtvezelplaat. Use extreme caution when squeezing the barbs together with pliers near the exposed face of the logic houtvezelplaat.

Be careful to not pauze the nylon pins during removal or injection. The strength of the spring can pauze the barbed end off the speld.

Also, be sure to orient the fever submerge te the right direction when putting it back. The fins should permit air to flow towards the openings at the back of the Mini (where the ports are).

Step 22

This step requires working with both palms and may be better accomplished with the logic houtvezelplaat sitting te your poetslap.

Using a plastic opening implement (or similar) ter one palm, thrust down one speld holding the fever bury on the logic houtvezelplaat. The spring under the speld will provide moderate resistance.

While holding the speld down from the warmth bury side of the houtvezelplaat, use a pair of pliers te your other palm on the underside of the houtvezelplaat to squeeze both barbs against the plastic shaft of the speld.

With both barbs squeezed together, thrust the speld through its crevice ter the logic houtvezelplaat.

Repeat this process for each of the four pins holding the fever bury on the logic houtvezelplaat.

I busted the little expansion fins on Two of the four plastic connectors here. I wasgoed gentle, but they are brittle buggers. Goes up.

Oh, and then I busted the other two attempting to waterput them back ter! They are Trio+ years old, and seem to pauze fairly lightly. I looked from nylon fasters at the hardware store, but couldn’t find puny enough ones. I had some puny stainless fasteners, and made sure they were only touching the grounded material. I don’t know if I recommend it, but all is well for mij. I kept the spring te, and just waterput a washer a waarde to hold the spring down. Attempt to do the operation te a puny slagroom so when the posts and springs go flying, you don’t have many square feet to voorkant to find them. I spent a good portion of the upgrade time crawling around on the floor looking for a lost spring.

The springs holding the nylon pins are stronger than you might think.

Use the finest peak needle-nose pliers you can find. The trick is compressing *and* pushing at the same time.

Around 2mm or so from the surface of the circuit houtvezelplaat is the furthest point at which the barbs can be compressed reasonably to pass through the fuckhole ter the houtvezelplaat.

If you take hold of the barbs closer to the circuit houtvezelplaat, you won’t lightly be able to thrust the speld through the houtvezelplaat.

Adding to my note, the illustration for Step 21 is a bit misleading. You’ll have to grab the barbs much closer to the end of the speld than is shown here.

I also broke one of the winged pins and substituted it with 4-40 Nylon machine screws and brass nuts I bought from McMaster-Carr. They are #94605A115 and #95130A110 respectively. Also, to press on the pins while squeezing the wings while holding onto the houtvezelplaat is a challenge. I found a removable eraser from a mechanical pencil works fine to press spil it fits down into the fever bury just enough to be self stabilizing so one had presses and holds while the other just deals with the wings.

Do yourself a favor and just accept the fact that thesis little buggers WILL pauze and that you will need to find replacement nylon screws and bolts. A quick google shopping search for ",Mac Mini Nylon Screws 4-40 X Three/Four", should pull up what you need — I found an ebay listing for $Trio.99 USD!

Even if you somehow manage to keep the pins intact during this step, realize that getting the warmth bury back on is an even tighter task te my opinion.

I found it lighter to have another individual assist here — one to securely thrust down the speld on one side and the other to rigidly houvast and squeeze the barbs. Don’t underestimate the strength of the springs. The speld and spring can go flying if either end is not secured decently.

Mechanical pencil eraser does work ideally to press pins. Let’s you control the houtvezelplaat and the speld with one mitt while manipulating the barbs with the other. I found that a straight hemostat worked indeed well te place of pliers. Squeeze the barbs spil near to the end spil you can, then shove them into the crevice until they’re wedged. Use your fingers or a spudger to thrust them the surplus of the way through so you don’t endanger the logic houtvezelplaat with a metal device. Got all four of mine out and back ter intact, all ter about five minutes. If the barbs don’t pauze off, there is no danger of the pins flying because of the spring — they are captive on the heatsink.

I came across some heatsink shove pins ter the Farnell catalog and attempted them. Wish I hadn’t bothered – albeit they are *just* about long enough, I only managed to get one to connect, the other three just refused to lock. Getting M3 bolts from ebay. Hope I toevluchthaven’t cracked the CPU / PCB te the efforts to get the thrust pins te.

Hi, I managed to do this by just using fine, plane ended pliers to squeeze the barbs. I went end on to the speld head instead of from the side. Didn’t need to press on the warmth bury side at all. A slight wiggle and the spring just pulled them through. Dead effortless and didn’t pauze one on a 7 year old machine!

Step 23

The warmth bury is still linked to the logic houtvezelplaat by the thermal sensor cables.

Lift the fever bury off the processor and lay it on the AirPort card.

When I got to this step, I had trouble pulling up the warmth bury. I even dual and triple check to see if anything wasgoed holding it down. I used force but wasgoed able to get the warmth bury out. The CPU wasgoed linked to the fever submerge and the CPU wasgoed still ter the lock position . It looked like there wasn’t enough thermal paste and the CPU sealed itself to the fever bury. I wasgoed able to scrape off the CPU from the fever submerge using the iSesamo to gently pry around the perimeter. When the CPU wasgoed off there wasgoed residue on the warmth drown that I wasgoed able to clean off with a razor blade. Before placing the fever submerge on top of the fresh CPU, I did do the ",tinting", process to make sure the sticking wouldn’t toebijten again. Not that I want to open up this opbergruimte again!

Step 24

Use the peak of a spudger to thrust the fever submerge thermal sensor connector out of its socket.

It may be necessary to work from alternating sides to ‘walk’ the connector out of its socket.

Liquidate the warmth bury and set it aside.

This connector is actually a ",locking", connector – the petite slot ter the middle of the jack (visible te the picture) is where a protrusion on the cork actually ",locks", the buttplug te place. One may need to use a puny / skinny plane blade screwdriver inserted against the top of the buttplug to gently pry the jack housing up while at the same time pushing the buttplug down and sliding the ass-plug out. I realized this after violating the butt-plug following the listed instructions.

Better yet – this step and step 30 should truly just be eliminated – there isn’t any reason to unplug the sensor – its not ter the way of switching out the processor.

Step 25

To unlock the processor, use a puny flathead screwdriver to rotate the processor lock 180 degrees counter-clockwise until the indicator is near the open lock symbol.

Step 26

Grab the processor by its edges and lift it straight up off its socket.

Rotating the processor while lifting it out has the potential to pauze pins off inwards the socket. Lift it straight up.

Step 27

Processors are enormously sensitive to electrostatic discharge. Only treat your processor by its edges.

To aid ter installation, processors and sockets have a petite alignment arrow (shown ter crimson) so the chip is installed te the onberispelijk orientation.

Align the chip so that the arrow te its upper right corner corresponds to the arrow molded into the upper right corner of the socket.

Cautiously lower the processor onto its socket.

Note that if you are upgrading from a core solo or core twee processor to a core Two twee processor and wish to run operating systems of Lion or straks, you voorwaarde delete the hidden opstopping /System/Library/CoreServices/PlatformSupport.plist after the upgrade.

Step 28

Use a puny flathead screwdriver to rotate the processor lock 180 degrees clockwise until the indicator points toward the closed lock symbol.

Step 29

Now that the processor is te place, turn your attention to the fever bury.

Apple uses a thermally conductive filmrolletje that vereiste be liquidated prior to reinstalling the warmth submerge.

Use a razor blade (or anyother plane object such spil a credit card, etc.) to eliminate all of the old solidified thermal material from the warmth submerge.

Next use a petite amount of massaging drank to liquidate all traces of the old thermal material.

Permit the warmth drown to dry before proceeding.

Step 30

Apply a lean layer of thermal paste to the reflective silicon face of the processor.

Check out our thermal paste guide for detailed instructions on applying thermal paste.

Step 31

Lay the fever submerge on the AirPort card and use a spudger to reconnect the warmth bury thermal sensor.

Step 32

Position the warmth bury the same way it will permanently sit before lowering it onto the processor to avoid spreading thermal paste on regions not te voeling with the processor.

Gently lower the fever bury onto the processor.

Leave behind all the original plastic posts. I bought M3x20 (Sorry, I just know the measures of the ",metric world", ,-)) plastic screws and according nuts te an ordinary DIY superstore. They gezond flawlessly. When fixing the fever bury it is recommended to get help from a 2nd person. You should place the screws with springs from the upper side down through head bury and logic houtvezelplaat with one arm while you at the same time press on the warmth drown on the processor. (Avoid canting it!) The helping person just tightens the nuts downside the logic houtvezelplaat. Unnecessary to explain that you should fix the screws diagonally.

Step 33

While holding the warmth submerge te place, press the four plastic posts down through the logic houtvezelplaat to reattach the warmth submerge.

Hi, I found that a slight wiggle while pressing down helped the pins slip through the fuckholes

To reassemble your device, go after thesis instructions ter switch sides order.

To reassemble your device, go after thesis instructions ter switch sides order.

130 other people ended this guide.


Walter Galan

Two,716 Guides authored


I’m learning from that the Core Twee (and Core Solo) are 32-bit architecture, whereas the Core Two Twee is a 64-bit vormgeving. Does this matter ter any way?

Hi Richard. I realize this postbode is very old, but did you everzwijn get an reaction to your question spil to whether the 64-bits of the Core Two Twee Processor will be recognized/utilized ter the 32-bit architecture of the Mac Mini A1176? Thanks, John

Hi. I’m afraid I can no longer response the question ",does it matter ter any way",, since I eventually upgraded to a fresh Mac Mini.

I can say that it didn’t *seem* to matter, which means no software failed to run or performed noticeably poorly because of the upgrade. But I’m not especially show sensitive, so it is possible that all/most/some software wasgoed running ter 32-bit mode and not taking advantage of the higher throughput of a 64-bit architecture. The most CPU intense stuff I wasgoed running when I determined to upgrade wasgoed: Parallels running WinXP and some Windows-only legal software, along with Chrome with far too many tabs open, and iTunes. That proved to be too much, and it’d slow to a crawl too often. But I think the upgrade kept mij on that iMac and reserve two or three years, and wasgoed an interesting exercise.

When going to all the trouble of substituting the CPU, a few other upgrades can be done at the same time:

– Upgrade RAM to 2GB maximum (required for OS X Lion), for example, Crucial CT541128

– Upgrade internal Two.Five", SATA hard drive to larger size, and/or quicker 7400 RPM or SDD.

– Substitute PRAM battery with a fresh one (CR2032 lithium 3V)

This guide worked very well for mij. Entire process took less than 90 minutes, and that wasgoed having to pull the upper framework a 2nd time because I’d let the Airport antenna cable get snagged under the fan ductwork.

Without a spatula I resorted to a Pizza cutter. It worked flawlessly spil it has a bevelled edge and wasgoed effortless to stir across the side to loosen the clips.

Superb idea – a pizza cutter worked fine for mij too!

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