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iFixit earlier this week posted a teaser of its MacBook Pro teardown, and now, the site is back with a full video that gives us a clear look at the components inside the new MacBook Pro models.


As iFixit mentioned in its first article, it's easier to get into a MacBook Pro than it was before because Apple is no longer gluing the batteries in place. Instead, there are adhesive pull tabs that make battery replacement more streamlined. Repairs aren't simple, though, because there's the speaker system to deal with near the battery, and the adhesive tabs for the two main battery cells can only be accessed by removing the trackpad.

The fans are bigger than the fans that were in the prior-generation machine, and there's more space for the speaker system due to the thicker chassis. There's a 99.6Wh battery in the 16-inch MacBook Pro, which is a bit smaller than the battery in the prior-generation model. With efficiency improvements introduced with the M1 Pro and Max chips, battery life is much improved.

There's an updated display cable design that gives them more slack when the display is opened and closed, which should prevent the "Flexgate" issues that have plagued older MacBook Pro models.

The three USB-C ports, the MagSafe port, and the headphone jack are modular for simple repairs, but the HDMI port and the SD card slot are soldered in place on the logic board. Memory and storage are integrated and not user replaceable.

All in all, iFixit gave the MacBook Pro a repair score of 4/10 because of the use of pentalobe screws, the difficulty removing the top cover, and issues with repairing features like the fingerprint sensor and the display, which lose functionality with component swaps.

iFixit also plans to do a full written teardown of the 14-inch MacBook Pro, which it says is very similar to the 16-inch machine. That teardown will be updated later.

Article Link: iFixit's Full 16-Inch MacBook Pro Video Teardown Highlights Internal Design Changes
 
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Haiku_Oezu

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Oct 31, 2016
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Some things have unsurprisingly not changed, but I see some progress there on trying to make these machines more sturdy
 
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@Brett

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Aug 25, 2016
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iFixit frustrate me sometimes. Clearly Apple has done a redesign inside for the better to some degree. And it’s easier to get into. But deducting points for pentolobe screws is plain dumb being Apple as used them for years now and it is a matter of switching a tool.
 

Haiku_Oezu

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Oct 31, 2016
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Some lessons learned ?.
I wonder how many engineers at Apple are now relieved that they can do things like not make battery housings with incredibly little tolerance because Jony Ive isn't there to tell them it needs to be thinner.

I honestly welcome this change, I like Ive's designs but I never cared about how ridiculously thin everything was and when it started interfering with reliability it got downright annoying.
 

CWallace

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Aug 17, 2007
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Some things have unsurprisingly not changed, but I see some progress there on trying to make these machines more sturdy

Apple do have a direct financial incentive to make these machines more repairable for at least their own techs, if not the general public, as these reparability improvements over the past few generations of Apple hardware are significantly reducing Apple's warranty repair charges as they can actually repair the things instead of tossing them in the shredder for recycling.
 

Haiku_Oezu

macrumors 6502
Oct 31, 2016
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iFixit frustrate me sometimes. Clearly Apple has done a redesign inside for the better to some degree. And it’s easier to get into. But deducting points for pentolobe screws is plain dumb being Apple as used them for years now and it is a matter of switching a tool.
Yeah but you have to remember the iFixit score is not some kind of accolade, it's just meant to indicate how feasible it is to service something either by yourself or by a third party repair shop so it makes sense to duck the score for trivial things like uncommon screws.
 

Mr.PT

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Nov 24, 2020
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I wonder how many engineers at Apple are now relieved that they can do things like not make battery housings with incredibly little tolerance because Jony Ive isn't there to tell them it needs to be thinner.

I honestly welcome this change, I like Ive's designs but I never cared about how ridiculously thin everything was and when it started interfering with reliability it got downright annoying.
I get your points. However I must admit Ive’s stubbornness and Insistence (which I perceived very similar and bonded to Steve’s uncompromising attitude) made things get pushed further out. So now we have this amazing power and capacity in such a tiny package…I also must add that after checking these new ones in person, I feel they are very very similar to first unibody 2008 MBP.
 
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BeefCake 15

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May 15, 2015
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Their 4/10 score is not of particular use to me because the likelihood that I would ever open up a MacBook and try to repair it myself is about 1/100,000. . .
Not sure why anyone would open it up...proprietary CPU/MB, plenty of standard RAM, maybe a new Battery but honestly mind as well let Apple do it and buy their quality ones anyway.
 

TheLinkster

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Jan 9, 2001
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Yeah but you have to remember the iFixit score is not some kind of accolade, it's just meant to indicate how feasible it is to service something either by yourself or by a third party repair shop so it makes sense to duck the score for trivial things like uncommon screws.
When ifixit, and plenty of other chinese manufacturers, make and sell pentalobe screwdrivers, it's disingenuous to dock points for a screw type. It's just another tool you have to buy, like a phillips or flathead. They should otherwise be docking points for needing a phillips when all you have is a flathead.
 

Haiku_Oezu

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Oct 31, 2016
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When ifixit, and plenty of other chinese manufacturers, make and sell pentalobe screwdrivers, it's disingenuous to dock points for a screw type. It's just another tool you have to buy, like a phillips or flathead. They should otherwise be docking points for needing a phillips when all you have is a flathead.
They're still harder to come by. You can get a flathead or Phillips screwdriver in any hardware store but you have to go out of your way to acquire a pentalobe.

When a manufacturer picks a common type of screw over another it's probably just because they get a better price on them or something, but when a manufacturer goes out of their way to source these particular kind of screws it's obvious they're trying to keep you out of the device, hence why the ducking.

Also I don't really see why it's disingenuous just because they sell them? If anything I would be suspicious if they went "by the way they use pantalone screws, with you can deal with by buying one of our FixIt kits". If anything the fact they duck points despite being one of the largest supplier of screw bits for uncommon types shows their integrity.
 

cult hero

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Jun 6, 2005
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This is an improvement. I really dislike the SSD being soldered on. That’s lame. (Memory is the reality of these SoCs it seems.) It’s especially lame because storage is so crucial in extending the life of a machine (hey Apple, let’s try actually being green).

However batteries get replaced. Of all the things that should not be glued in, it’s the battery.

Integration and miniaturization does make repair harder. There’s no reason to make it harder for any other reason though.
 

cult hero

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2005
1,162
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When ifixit, and plenty of other chinese manufacturers, make and sell pentalobe screwdrivers, it's disingenuous to dock points for a screw type. It's just another tool you have to buy, like a phillips or flathead. They should otherwise be docking points for needing a phillips when all you have is a flathead.

I dunno. Pentalobe and triwing are really just there just to be annoying. They offer no mechanical or longevity advantage over torx.

I can see choosing torx over Phillips because the latter strips so easily. But pentalobe is used pretty much entirely because most people don’t have them on hand. I have one and it was purely for opening Macs up. I’ve never used it for anything else. Torx, on the other hand, is all over the place.
 

827538

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Jul 3, 2013
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iFixit frustrate me sometimes. Clearly Apple has done a redesign inside for the better to some degree. And it’s easier to get into. But deducting points for pentolobe screws is plain dumb being Apple as used them for years now and it is a matter of switching a tool.
Yeh pentalob and Torx are pretty common these days. We are dealing with the bleeding edge of technology here, if you are making repairs here then you are going to have a $10 screw driver set with these bits.

My takeaways.

- Fairly easy to access
- Battery is user replaceable without too much difficulty
- The most important ports (USB-C) are modular and user replaceable
- Oversized fans are great, likely means they will run at lower RPM when the machine is at 100%
- Software locked TouchID and display are bad

Overall I think Apple has done a great job with this redesign. Providing I can replace the battery myself I'm happy.

Also coming from a 2016 MacBook this keyboard is perhaps the nicest keyboard I've ever used. Perfect amount of travel, feedback, and looks great. The anodized sunken black looks really good.

Having this next to a 2020 13" MacBook Pro my 14" MacBook Pro looks so much better.
 
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applesed

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2012
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I'm still wanting to know if there are any internal or temperature differences between the pro and max 16 incher.
 

Unregistered 4U

macrumors 604
Jul 22, 2002
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Want a Mac Mini Pro? Take this motherboard out, put it in a slim 3d printed case with ports for SD and HDMI, rewire the modular bits to have all the ports come out on the back end, and, there ya go! :) It’d be longer than a mini, but would likely be the most powerful computer of that size!
 
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