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Model A1419 / EMC 2806 / Late 2014 or Mid 2015. 3.3 or 3.5 GHz Core i5 or 4.0 GHz Core i7 (ID iMac15,1); EMC 2834 late 2015 / 3.3 or 3.5 GHz Core i5 or 4.0 GHz Core i7 (iMac17,1) All with Retina 5K displays

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IR receiver USB internal mod

So… I’ve got this 2015 iMac after years with my 2011 and the screen is beautiful but this feels like a much more limited machine without an SSD (which I’ll upgrade so that’s for later) and one of the shortcomings is the lack of IR receiver.

I’ve successfully modded the IR receiver from a much older model and made it work over my USB but I’m ambitious and want to install it inside the computer.

There are A LOT of issues to deal with mostly regarding internal room (they covered the front Apple logo with the power plug - come on Apple!) but my issue at the moment would be: how to ‘tap’ into the USB connections on the logic board to power the receiver if it seems they’re all covered?

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BTW: what I want to know is described above what I don’t want to read is things like ‘buy a Bluetooth remote’ or ‘leave the receiver outside’ or ‘don’t do that to this expensive computer’ and the like.

I’m a enthusiast I like tinkering and I like Macs so what I want is help to achieve my goal don’t need any ‘nay sayer’ ok :)

Already managed to replace the glue tape with magnets to hold the screen - much like my old 2011 - and I might share here once I’m finished so useful tips would be deeply appreciated.

Thanks :D

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Well it does work!

First I had to fire up the multimeter and do a continuity test to figure it out which was what:

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Then it was just a matter of sourcing a microscope and do some soldering (more of a pain than one might realise):

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And it worked! :D

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Now I have to find out where to get the receiver to work inside the case…

The small Apple in the front - the one previously used for this - is blocked by the power plug so I'm thinking either the big Apple on the back (which can be a pain plus not get good reception) or the vents in the bottom of the case (will be my first option).


Got the IR sensor at the bottom, near the vents.

Tricky parts were:

1) get the cable out of the way of the speaker (one of the pictures is blurry but is inside the case and it's the best I could do)

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2) get the bloody thing facing down (this took AGES!)

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And it works! You might need to sort of ‘aim’ the remote a bit but it works! :D

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You'll need to find the schematics and board views to figure out where you can tap the power. You still need to have a means to connect the USB signals.

I really don't see this as that workable as much as you want a built-in IR receiver without doing significant physical damage to your system to fit things in. Don’t forget you still may need to get your system fixed or you will want to sell your system at some point. Most people won’t appreciate the mod’ing you’ve done so it won’t get top dollar it could.

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Hey Dan thanks for the reply.

The idea would be to ‘un-cap’ one of those USB ports and solder the receiver wires accordingly.

That’s the best bet I got but if ‘un-capping’ it would be 100% unfeasible I’ll just leave it alone. Getting a schematic might not be that hard but a board view with proper software will...

About the mods I’ve done this before: got 2 extra speakers inside my 2011 and the only drawback was a bit of a gap on the top.

Install a subwoofer inside iMac 27"

Seller was more than happy to pay about 50% more than what was going for around here so I’m ok with that.

Also got magnets to hold the display seamlessly on this 2015 (might get a thread eventually) and the IR receiver will seat properly inside or not at all. Already got plans but stuck in this USB issue and can’t move forward though...


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