Broken Mac Mini


Standard Member
Hello everyone,
I decided to upgrade my ageing late 2012 Mac mini by replacing the hard drive with an ssd drive. Got the drive out okay but I was having trouble positioning the two screws into the round slots on the bottom and screwing this on to the mesh grille that has the Bluetooth connection as it wasn’t seated properly.
So I ended up trying to remove the motherboard and I broke the IR cable off from the motherboard. On ifixit people suggested soldering it back on but its really small and I haven’t soldered anything before. Is my Mac ruined? I have attached 2 photos. Thanks in for any advice in advance.


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Active Member
Oof. Not nice. Sorry man.

Are you able to get a needle nose soldering iron? I'd try repair it or find something who has done some soldering before.

You could try running the system as is without the IR sensor installed but you might get some instability (depending on which connectors on the board run where).

I don't think it's ruined. I just think it needs some TLC.


Distinguished Member
Been there , replacing a hard drive in a mac mini of that vintage is tricky , if the hard drive is not seated correctly that grill doesnt go back on properly and blutooth doesnt work either , the grill forms part of the receiver circuit.

That connector is the type that needs to be resoldered using solder paste and a hot air solder gun.
You can try it with a fine point soldering iron , but most likely it will just burn the board.



Standard Member
Thank you for the reply, I think I will ask for a quote from the local pc repair shop. Im not skilled enough to solder myself. Good to hear it won’t be ruined though, my wife is getting a new kitchen so a new Mac is definitely out of the question for a couple of years!


Standard Member
Hello everyone, just an update on the Mac mini - I got the IR sensor soldered, the Mac booted up fine. When I tried to install a fresh copy of Catalina the ssd was not visible. Also I don’t think Bluetooth was working. I took the Mac back the person who soldered the cable, to see what the problem was. He said the cable connecting the ssd to the motherboard may be broken and the Bluetooth cable could be broken too -he would have a look. Went back today and he hadn’t been able to fix it. When the ssd is screwed to the grill on the bottom it disconnects the cable from the motherboard. Does anyone have any idea how I can stop this? Do I need to get a new cable?


Standard Member
Thanks for the reply. I managed to fix this myself by wedging a business card under the hard drive so i was able to secure the screws. The cable connecting the hard drive did not disconnect so it was working again 👍

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