iFixit Teardown the New iMac

The new iMac is an interesting machine, with a 21.5-inch and a 27-inch model on offer, a 4K panel and sleek aesthetics and a hefty price tag that starts around $1500. Apple love building closed systems for their consumers, but that hasn’t stopped the folks at iFixit from ripping the new Mac to pieces to see how it works.

On the interior, we find that the 4K models display is made by LG, but for those hoping to crack it open and fix any faults, you’re straight out of luck as the glass and LCD are fused together, making screen replacements tricky and expensive. Several of the main components have been soldered to the motherboard too, which can help save space and building costs, but don’t expect to be able to upgrade your CPU or RAM anytime soon, or should I say ever, unless you want to buy a whole new system, ouch!

What’s quite surprising, however, is that despite the new 21.5-inch model being “new” and expensive, it still only features the 5th Gen Broadwell Core-i5’s, not the newer Skylake hardware found in the 27-inch model.

So how does the new system rank on the iFixit scale? 1 out of 10, meaning if something goes wrong, it’s time to buy a new one.

Latest iPhone 6 Fault Revealed

Update your list, iPhone 6 users: there’s a new fault to be concerned about. A number of online threads, originating from sources such as Reddit, MacRumors, and iFixit, have been flooded with user comments complaining about the front-facing camera suffering alignment issues. If you’re a fan of the selfie, you might find that the iPhone 6’s front camera isn’t capturing the whole of your face, with the right side of the lens becoming obscured by the handset’s case.

This is the latest in a long line of faults to be found by iPhone 6 users, previous issues being bending handsets, memory crashes, focus and stability problems with the rear-facing camera, and a screen that is easily scratched.

Source: BGR

Apple’s “Refreshed” iPod Touch Is Identical To Previous-Gen, Less Storage

Yesterday Apple unveiled its refreshed 16GB iPod Touch device. There has a been a lot of media hype about the “new” device but according to an iFixIt teardown the device is actually not new at all. It is of course worth mentioning Apple did not claim to be releasing anything new but the fact they have re-released the same product will most certainly mean people will pick up on it being new, the media and many retailers are already doing so. The device is part-for-part identical to the current iPod Touch with the only difference being storage has been halved from 32GB to 16GB. The fact the device is identical to the previous generation also means its repairability is equally as dismal:

“We delved inside Apple’s ‘refreshed’ device and found the same components we’d seen in Touches of yesteryear, but with 16 GB of on-board flash memory. So it’s not really that this 16 GB variant gains a camera — instead, it loses half of its 32 GB of storage. Unfortunately, the same construction means the same dismal repairability. All the issues from the previous generation are present, leading to its 3 out of 10 repairability score. It’s tough to pry open, the battery is soldered on, and most of the other components are linked together via interconnect cables. If one component fails, you’ll have to replace two or three functional components in addition to the broken one.” Notes iFixIt.

Now that we’ve established that it is just the same old stuff Apple are releasing to the market, will that stop people from buying it? Of course not, it is an Apple product after all….

Source: iFixIt

Image courtesy of iFixIt

Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 Turns Out To Be Far From Repair & Upgrade Friendly

 

iFixit, a site dedicated to tearing mobiles, tablets, notebooks and other bits of hardware to bits in order to provide users with repair guides has wasted no time in getting their hands on the latest Surface Pro 3 from Microsoft. During the teardown, or breakdown as the case may be, it has been discovered that under the shiny surface, Microsoft have not really taken repair and upgrading into account as part of the build process.

During the tear-down, iFixit stumbled across a number of issues including ultra-strong adhesives that hold the tablet together in a unarguably over-the-top fashion, along with a screen that cracks as soon as you try to pry it up from the main body and finally a battery that deforms like hell as you try to pry it away from its footings which includes more super-strong adhesive. Now considering Microsoft have built the Surface Pro 3 to be rugged, the strong adhesive in-between the ultra-thin components is understandable, but what this means for the end users is that if they want to upgrade or have parts of their tablet replaced, there is a strong chance that the cost of replacing the battery in a few years time will also incur the cost of a new display. That said though, if you do manage to get everything apart without breaking anything (a point at which you must celebrate your achievement) there is the option to upgrade the mSATA SSD, but let’s be honest, the chance of this involving just the cost of an SSD is unlikely so personally I wouldn’t even bother considering it if I owned one myself.

Topping off the fragile built are a numerous connectors that don’t follow any market trends, but these are a minor thing aside the mass of different adhesives which Microsoft have poured into the chassis. As iFixit clearly described in their tear-down, this tablet is very much like the previous models of the Surface Pro so even though it is a powerful bit of kit, it is certainly not for anyone who wants to get their fingers inside its outer skin.

Source & images courtesy: iFixit

iFixit Tear Down The 1984 128K Macintosh

It is crazy to think that the Apple Mac is now over 30 years old, sure it came out the year I was born, so I wasn’t exactly capable of enjoying it at the time, but its certainly amazing to see just how far computer technology has come along in my own lifetime. To celebrate the 30 years of the Mac, the team of at iFixit decided to strip one apart and see just how repairable the system would be by modern standards.

30 years ago the Macintosh 128K went on sale for $2,495, which in today’s world would be more than $5500! Just look at the computer you can buy these days for over $5500! A staggering example of just how far we have come in the last 30 years, that being said, I don’t think I’ve ever owned a system that costs that much, even my current one would likely max out around $2,000 for a system integrator.

iFixit score the repairability of the systems they take apart on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being an absolute nightmare to repair and 10 being the easiest. The Mac scored a healthy 7/10 after their tests. They did find it difficult to open, and the fact that the RAM is soldered to the logic board was also a big problem. Fortunately the rest of it is big chunky components that are by today’s standards quite easy to work with, although I doubt many of us will need to open one up to fix it, it’s still fun to have a peak for old times sake.

Equipped with an 8 MHz Motorola 68000 processor, 128KB DRAM, a 9″ black and white CRT @ 512 x 342 pixels and 72 dpi and 400 KB total storage via a single-sided 3.5″ floppy mean the system is far from high-spec, but at the time this was a powerful and innovative machine. They’re also worth a small fortune, so if you have one in the garage, I wouldn’t suggest you take it apart any time soon, perhaps putting it on eBay would be a better idea.

Thank you Geeky Gadgets for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of iFixit.

iFixit Opens Up the Xbox One To See What It’s Really Made Of

When you look inside the Xbox One, you cannot help but think that it is an all too familiar sight. We all know that the consoles coming out this month are using standard PC hardware to power them, but the stuff inside is even more standard that most people were expecting.

Normal looking hard drives, SATA II ports and a whopping big cooler make up the most obvious parts. In fact, if you’re brave enough to get inside this thing, avoiding any damage to the wireless module and the internal speaker, you could easily just plug in any 2.5″ hard drive of your own. But remember that you’ll be kissing your warranty goodbye, something you never want to do on a launch console unless you have a lot of spare cash lying around.

The huge fan takes up a quarter of the console, no doubt about it, this thing can shift some serious air! Not to mention keep things cool at low RPM inside the Xbox One, something that will help it stay nice and quiet.

The Blu-Ray drive looks pretty much off the shelve too, with a thick casing that you see in many desktop units and with the large fan, the chunky optical drive, SATA cables etc, you have to wonder that Microsoft could have easily stripped back a few things to make the console smaller. However, it is also likely that cost was an issue and as things become more profitable there is easily room to save space here, Xbox One Slim anyone?

iFixit awarded an 8 / 10 for repairability to the Xbox One, placing it on par with the PlayStation 4.

Thank you PocketLint for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of PocketLint.

HTC One Gets Worst Possible Repairability Score From iFixit

iFixit are a company that take modern consumer gadgets such as mobile phones and tablets, then attempt to disassemble them and put them back together. They are experts in their field and in doing these “fixability” tests they are able to determine how easily a consumer might be able to repair a broken or damaged consumer gadget. The latest device to receive the iFixit treatment is the new HTC One. However, it isn’t good news for HTC users as the One phone scored the lowest possible one out of ten.

The handset was difficult to repair right from the outset with even the job of opening the phone’s casing being nearly impossible without damaging it. Opening was possible in the end but resulted in permanent damage to the bezel surrounding the screen. The teardown found the battery buried beneath the motherboard and adhered to the midframe making the “simple” task of replacing the battery not-so-simple. Delicate copper shielding covering many components also makes accessing other components tricky and potentially damaging.

However, there is a silver lining to the whole story which is that iFixit said it was one of the most durable phones they have tested. Improved durability should mean less breakages and ultimately no need to actually take the device apart and repair it. Despite criticisms of repairability the HTC One is still regarded as one of the best Android handsets on the market, being the most advanced Android Smartphone up until Samsung recently released the Galaxy S4.

You can read the full iFixit teardown here.