13-inch

MacBook Pro 13

Teardowns of the new  13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro models reveal lots of shiny technology, but with the machines following the construction lead of the MacBook Air, it’s no surprise to see IFixIt giving both models low scores for repairability. The extreme difficulty in removing both battery and trackpad mean both models get even worse scores than the Air, at just 1 out of 10.

As with the Air, RAM is soldered directly to the logic board, so if you think you may need more in the future, take a deep breath and pay Apple’s price for the 16GB upgrade as there is no way to upgrade it later. IFixIt also draws particular attention to the difficulty of replacing the battery,

The lithium-polymer battery is glued rather than screwed into the case, which increases the chances that it’ll break during disassembly. The battery also covers the trackpad cable, which tremendously increases the chance that the user will shear the cable in the battery removal process.

More details and photos below the fold … 

As with earlier models, the display is also a sealed unit.

The display assembly is completely fused, and there’s no glass protecting it. If anything ever fails inside the display, you will need to replace the entire, extremely expensive assembly.

The company also notes that the much faster PCIe SSD is not a standard 2.5-inch drive, but believes that it may be possible to upgrade in future.

MBP 13: batteries, fan, logic board and SSD

MBP 15: heatsink, logic board, SSD, complete teardown

See the full teardowns over at iFixIt: 13-inch and 15-inch.

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19 Responses to “New Haswell MacBook Pro teardowns beautiful but prove almost non-repairable by mortals”

  1. If it’s anything like the MacBook Air, you just replace the entire Top Case rather than pry the battery loose. It’s $125 plus labor (flat rate at an Apple Store, independent shops may be more) for an Out Of Warranty repair. For that, it’s just cheaper and easier to pay someone else $39 to swap out the battery and literally get a brand-new keyboard, case, and trackpad. What is the complaint here again?

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    • Steve Saxon says:

      I managed to crack the screen on my MBP 15″ w/Retina. Cost me $800 to replace the entire display/case assembly, which was 2 months out of warranty. Probably would have been worth investing in AppleCare for the display alone…

      The good news was the new display doesn’t have the ghosting issues that were infuriating with the original (ordered they day they first announced it).

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  2. It’s the battery that really bothers me, and I say this owning one. Why did they need to glue it down.

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  3. While I won’t disagree that people might eventually repair there PC, one thing to note is how reliable these machines have gotten over the last decade. I think if Apple really wants to impress people, they should put there money were there mouth is and potentially offer 2 year warranty in all parts of the world. If anything the first 2-3 years is the time you may notice a fault.. Might put some of the bad rap around repair ability aside.

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  4. Paopao Wudi says:

    Apple should give 3 years apple care service for free, to show their confidence of their hardware, and give user confidence to use their hardware.

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  5. Chris Cicero says:

    who really repairs laptops themselves these days? Its like trying to repair your own late model car. only the die hards try…..what’s your time and effort worth? Pay someone else (the mfg) to do it…Apple will put a new battery in your laptop for like, what, $100-$120? BARGAIN.

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  6. The only moving thing in these is a fan. Battery life retains 80% of life after 1000 cycles. iFixit fears are largely unfounded. Companies don’t like long term warranties included in the price because it jacks the price of computers up. When you give someone a long warranty on a portable device you aren’t necessarily showing confidence in your product you are potentially allowing them to mistreat their computer

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  7. I’m looking around my house from where I am sitting: I see the refrigerator, the freezer, the stove, the air conditioner, the water heater, a printer and and two cars. I cannot repair or upgrade any of them. All I ask is that they run well, for as long as possible. The age of building, repairing or upgrading your computer is past. Can we just move on?

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    • Ben Lovejoy says:

      All of my home appliances are repairable, and my car and heating system have also both been upgraded. Your appliances and vehicles may vary. :-)

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    • KStyle Blue says:

      You and most everyone else here is failing to grasp the idea of “repair”:
      This mindset of buying something to throw away every 3-4 years is what is destroying our environment. One sturdy laptop that don’t pass the EPA’s standards is far better for the environment than 2 broken “environmentally friendly” laptops.
      Also, all of those things you mentioned are very repairable. Maybe not by you, but someone else can fix it. Not in the case of the new macbook, for most problems: not even Apple can fix it.

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      • I think perhaps it is you who are failing to grasp the point. Every item I listed can be repaired by a trained person with the right tools. Just not by me. That’s the whole point. I’m suggesting that it’s time for all of us to graduate from the mindset of working on our own devices to just letting the pros do it.

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