How to Update Mac Studio Memory Without Paying Apple | Jobs Vox

Since the Mac mini and Mac Studio share the same footprint, the latter can take advantage of docks that add expanded memory and additional ports.

of Apple Mac Studio It’s an expensive enthusiast and professional-level desktop PC, but users can upgrade their device’s memory without paying upfront thanks to Satechi’s third-party dock. For years, Apple shipped computers with soldered-in storage chips, preventing buyers from expanding their memory. Surprisingly, the Mac Studio comes with a removable solid state drive (SSD), but that doesn’t mean it comes with expandable storage. All SSDs have a controller that makes it easy to read and write to the drive, but the Mac Studio’s controller is built into the M1 Max or M1 Ultra SoC, depending on the variant.

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Since Mac Studio’s storage controllers are housed in its SoC, replacing or adding SSDs isn’t as easy as it might seem. Tests have shown that even Apple’s original SSDs cannot be used to modify or expand the Mac Studio’s memory unless they are exactly the configurations expected by the M1 Max or Ultra. Even then, a full system restore is required for the drives to work properly. However, users can still add storage via external drives. The Satech stand and hub for the Mac mini, which adds an M.2 SSD slot and seven additional ports, is also compatible with the Mac Studio, as both Macs share the same desktop footprint.

Related: How Hot Is Mac Studio? This video shows its impressive cooling

The M.2 slot offers storage expansion

Satechi Stand & Hub for Mac mini (with SSD slot)

Satechi’s product page says the stand and hub are only compatible with Mac mini models released in 2018 or later, but the company’s official Amazon listing confirms that it works with the Mac Studio. The stand has an M.2 SATA slot on its underside and connects to the Mac Studio via a hard-wired USB-C cable. This allows users to add additional memory to Mac Studio for less than an internal upgrade at the time of purchase, while maintaining the Studio’s elegant form factor.

The base model Mac Studio comes with 512 GB of storage and has a starting price of $1,999. Upgrading the internal storage capacity to 1TB will set buyers back an additional $200, with memory upgrades getting more expensive as grades increase. But with Satechi’s stand and hub, users can add a full terabyte of Mac Studio for less than Apple’s initial upgrade fee.

The stand and hub have an MSRP of $99.99, but often drop below that number with discount codes and Amazon offers. Buyers can get a 1TB M.2 SSD compatible with the stand for under $100 – for example, Samsung’s popular 980 1TB SSD is priced at $89.99 on Amazon. Paired with the base model Mac Studio, users can have access to less than 1.5TB of storage for the 1TB Mac Studio, while still having an M.2 slot for future upgrades.

The Satech Stand and Hub solves two of the Mac Studio’s shortcomings—expensive memory upgrades and lack of expandable memory—with one accessory. For users who want to insert an M.2 SSD into the stand and connect it to the head Mac StudioThe stand and hub serve as a simple solution that manages to provide both form and function.

MORE: Does Mac Studio have HDMI 2.1? What you should know before buying

Source: Satech, Amazon 1, 2

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