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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:42 PM   #1
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Microsoft Surface Pro Earns Repairability Score of 1/10 from iFixit




The iFixit team today tore apart the Microsoft Surface Pro, which began showing up in stores last week, to reveal what's inside of the PC/tablet hybrid. Microsoft has touted the Surface Pro's power and compact design, which has come at the cost of easy consumer access to the device.

As it turns out, the Surface Pro is sealed with what iFixit termed "a metric duckload" of adhesive, which took more than an hour to overcome.
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We tried every method we could think of to free the display, including cutting the adhesive -- to no avail. This Pro required a pro method, and thankfully we had the required heat gun and guitar picks ready.

The black glue we found around the perimeter looks like tar, and is unbelievably close in function, appearance, and smell to its road-paving cousin.
Because of the adhesive, which holds both the battery and the display in place, and the more than 90 screws that hold the Surface Pro together, the tablet earned itself a repairability rating of 1/10. As TechCrunch notes, that is even less than Apple's iPad, which scored a 2/10 in repairability.

The battery is not soldered to the tablet so it is technically removable, but iFixit warns that removing the battery or upgrading the SSD might kill the tablet because of the proximity of several cables. Other highlights of the teardown include:
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The removable Micron RealSSD C400 we found inside is responsible for the 64 GB of storage capacity. The tiny 1.8? form factor SSD can read at 500MB/s and write at 95 MB/s. Digging a little deeper, we found that a Marvell 88SS9174 SSD processor keeps all those Micron flash ICs running smoothly.

This Surface Pro is all party in the front, business in the back -- cooling business that is. Two small fans help this Pro keep its cool.

Microsoft spared no expense when it came to keeping the Surface Pro going. They sourced the Cadillac of batteries from LG: an Escalade 42 Wh unit. The battery is rated for 7.4 V and 5676 mAh. Impressive specs? Note that the iPad 4 has a 43 Wh battery, albeit at 3.7 V. Even with all this battery juice, the reported battery life of the Surface Pro is less than 5 hours.
iFixit declared some of Microsoft's choices, like the glued-in battery "completely unnecessary." Apple's products have been similarly criticized by the site in the past, such as the 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro, which also received a repairability score of 1 out of 10.

Article Link: Microsoft Surface Pro Earns Repairability Score of 1/10 from iFixit
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:43 PM   #2
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"A metric duckload" is now my favorite phrase.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:46 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by camnchar View Post
"A metric duckload" is now my favorite phrase.
I thought you used "Imperial duckloads" in the USA?
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:50 PM   #4
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I thought you used "Imperial duckloads" in the USA?
This is a misconception. We use standard duckloads, which is based on how many ducks a duckmongerer in 1745 could fit in a hogshead, as opposed to imperial duckloads, which is based on how many ducks a duckmongerer could fit in a hogshead in 1817.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Kranchammer View Post
This is a misconception. We use standard duckloads, which is based on how many ducks a duckmongerer in 1745 could fit in a hogshead, as opposed to imperial duckloads, which is based on how many ducks a duckmongerer could fit in a hogshead in 1817.
More proof that all measurement tools are birthed from logic.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:56 PM   #6
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I thought you used "Imperial duckloads" in the USA?
Excuse me, we here in The Totally Egalitarian And Never Imperialistic United States Of American don't use "Imperial" anything. We are a Democracy, and even to imply that we would use that word that smacks of Colonialism (e.g. England) and is just not the American Way!!


(And if you believe any of the crap above, I have a Bridge in Brooklyn I would like to sell to you.)

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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:00 PM   #7
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Wow, they could sublet some of that unused PCB real estate.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 02:50 PM   #8
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"a metric duckload" is now my favorite phrase.
rotflol :d
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:44 PM   #9
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And you thought Apple products were hard to repair.....
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:53 PM   #10
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And you thought Apple products were hard to repair.....
Will be waiting to see if MS gets dinged the same way Apple has in the past. Will Kyle Wiens pen a letter to Panos Panay whining about him not following Dieter Rams 10 principles for good design like he did with Jony Ive?
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 12:57 PM   #11
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Will be waiting to see if MS gets dinged the same way Apple has in the past. Will Kyle Wiens pen a letter to Panos Panay whining about him not following Dieter Rams 10 principles for good design like he did with Jony Ive?
Of course they wont. Everyone will be going to this 'non-upgradable' design but only Apple will get the negative press about it.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:00 PM   #12
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How sad....

The Microsoft Product Manager for the Surface Pro must be crying to see his one sale torn apart!
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 02:28 PM   #13
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The Microsoft Product Manager for the Surface Pro must be crying to see his one sale torn apart!
lolling
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:05 PM   #14
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One of the key points to remember about this story is the difference between "repairability" and "upgradeability."

Both the iPad and Surface tablets are difficult to repair on your own. However, you could argue the Surface should score higher because of it's IO ports: SD card slot, USB 3 port, and display port.

I don't care for the Surface, but there are times I wish I had an SD card slot in my iPad. (The SD 'photo' adapter doesn't count if I want to use actually storage like I would on a normal computer.)
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:25 PM   #15
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One of the key points to remember about this story is the difference between "repairability" and "upgradeability."

Both the iPad and Surface tablets are difficult to repair on your own. However, you could argue the Surface should score higher because of it's IO ports: SD card slot, USB 3 port, and display port.

I don't care for the Surface, but there are times I wish I had an SD card slot in my iPad. (The SD 'photo' adapter doesn't count if I want to use actually storage like I would on a normal computer.)
Not to mention that you can also slot a 256 GB mSATA in the Surface Pro.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 08:59 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Mac21ND View Post
One of the key points to remember about this story is the difference between "repairability" and "upgradeability."

Both the iPad and Surface tablets are difficult to repair on your own. However, you could argue the Surface should score higher because of it's IO ports: SD card slot, USB 3 port, and display port.

I don't care for the Surface, but there are times I wish I had an SD card slot in my iPad. (The SD 'photo' adapter doesn't count if I want to use actually storage like I would on a normal computer.)
Why would a device score higher in repairability based on tech specs? It's about how much glue and screws and time it takes to open them and repair them, nothing else.

The score for those would be in a overall iPad vs Surface review/comparison. Then those would come into play.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:27 PM   #17
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Looks unsurprisingly cramped. Waiting for 256gb SSD and 7 hours battery. Interesting to see if they can pull this off (even with Haswell).

And I've gotten over the fact you can crawl inside small devices and upgrade them yourself. It pissess me off off to no end but can't do anything about it other than pay the extortion fees on purchase.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:34 PM   #18
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I wondr if they used the excess glue from the new Imacs
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:35 PM   #19
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Yet another amazing discovery from the iFixit folks..
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 01:58 PM   #20
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Don't take a ton of stock in this article when the writer does not even know that the "black goo" is Room Temperature Vulcanizing (RTV) Sealant. It is a very commonly used sealant in micro-electronics.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 02:00 PM   #21
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I hate that every manufacturer glue everything these days. Keep glue away from my components. Theres nothing a good double sided tape or a few screws can't do.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 02:09 PM   #22
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 02:30 PM   #23
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Comparing an iPad teardown and this says a lot about the two companies. There is an elegance that permeates the iPad and apple products. The whole product is designed. MS have pulled together a bunch of parts and fitted it in the box.

Apple is open about what it does. A blind man can see what they do well. MS is completely oblivious to each aspect. The MS tablet looks like it was taken for a run through the mediocre forest and hit every tree on the way through.

Comparing to an Air - I have an Air. Excluding the factor of connecting to the Apple system. If I look at all the important factors the MS tablet would score very low. It doesn't do the job well.

Comparing to an iPad - my wife is about to buy our first tablet. She's looking at the iPad. Excluding the Apple system when we look at all the factors that are important to her this MS tablet again scores poorly.

Apple needs competition. Sadly I don't think MS is it or ever will be. They're just too ignorant of customer needs, too ignorant of where the competition are at and caught up in their own reality distortion field. They look like Detroit when the motor industry changed in front of their eyes.

When I look at this product I see PC production values of a decade ago.

Steve Jobs Quote - says it best.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOgOP_aqqtg

"The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste, they have absolutely no taste. And what that means is, I don't mean that in a small way, I mean that in a big way. In a sense, that they don't think of original ideas and they don't bring much culture into their products...


I guess I'm saddened not by Microsofts success. I have no problem with their success. They've earned their success, for the most part. I have a problem with the fact that they just make really 3rd grade products."
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 03:09 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Mystic386 View Post
Comparing an iPad teardown and this says a lot about the two companies. There is an elegance that permeates the iPad and apple products. The whole product is designed. MS have pulled together a bunch of parts and fitted it in the box.

Apple is open about what it does. A blind man can see what they do well. MS is completely oblivious to each aspect. The MS tablet looks like it was taken for a run through the mediocre forest and hit every tree on the way through.
Err... what?

The teardown of an iPad 4:




The teardown of a MacBook Air (Which is sort of a fair comparison since the Surface Pro sort of competes with it):



And this is significantly different from the Surface, and much more elegant... how? Because Apple's logic board is smaller?
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 05:06 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Mystic386 View Post
Comparing an iPad teardown and this says a lot about the two companies. There is an elegance that permeates the iPad and apple products. The whole product is designed. MS have pulled together a bunch of parts and fitted it in the box.

Apple is open about what it does. A blind man can see what they do well. MS is completely oblivious to each aspect. The MS tablet looks like it was taken for a run through the mediocre forest and hit every tree on the way through.

Comparing to an Air - I have an Air. Excluding the factor of connecting to the Apple system. If I look at all the important factors the MS tablet would score very low. It doesn't do the job well.

Comparing to an iPad - my wife is about to buy our first tablet. She's looking at the iPad. Excluding the Apple system when we look at all the factors that are important to her this MS tablet again scores poorly.

Apple needs competition. Sadly I don't think MS is it or ever will be. They're just too ignorant of customer needs, too ignorant of where the competition are at and caught up in their own reality distortion field. They look like Detroit when the motor industry changed in front of their eyes.

When I look at this product I see PC production values of a decade ago.

Steve Jobs Quote - says it best.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOgOP_aqqtg

"The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste, they have absolutely no taste. And what that means is, I don't mean that in a small way, I mean that in a big way. In a sense, that they don't think of original ideas and they don't bring much culture into their products...


I guess I'm saddened not by Microsofts success. I have no problem with their success. They've earned their success, for the most part. I have a problem with the fact that they just make really 3rd grade products."
Did you even look at the product or did you just assume based on it being MS the product was gonna suck. What they designed was a huge step above OEM pieces of plastic that traditionally define Wintel machines. If anything the OEM's are gonna break from commoditized hardware design to compete on the Win8 platform now. No more sticking Win8 on $300 laptops w/out touchscreens like they've been doing. And MS is not even a hardware company, while those OEM's and Apple are.

When I look at the Surface, I see a pretty bold effort to elevate the quality of software that's run off a mobile device - giving you access to the x86 ecosystem as well as the proper inputs in a convertable form factor. Apple would rather give you a $800 piece of hardware that runs cheap crap commoditized software with $1 pricepoints. They'd rather you lug around a Bluetooth keyboard and poke the screen a million times in order to use productivity software like iWork that recycle desktop UI's. And when people complain about not being able to do "real work" on an iPad, Apple's solution is to throw storage at them instead of giving them actual productivity solutions, as if a larger hard drive is what they really wanted.

You guys really got blinders on
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