Teardown of Fourth-Generation iPad Reveals LG Display, A6X Chip, Lightning Connector

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Nov 1, 2012.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Close on the heels of its iPad mini teardown, iFixit has performed a similar procedure on the fourth-generation iPad. The new iPad is extremely similar to the previous model, with the main exceptions being the move to a more powerful A6X chip and a change to Apple's new Lightning connector.


    Of most significant interest is of course the A6X chip, which would be an enhanced version of the A6 chip that debuted in the iPhone 5, with improved graphics to help drive the iPad's large Retina display. A date code on the A6X reveals that it was manufactured in the 37th week of 2012, which corresponds to mid-September, but a more detailed analysis of the A6X will need to wait for chip teardown experts such as those at Chipworks to get their hands on the part.

    Other interesting discoveries include:

    - The display is manufactured by LG, as opposed to the Samsung display found in the third-generation iPad torn down by iFixit. Apple does, however, source many of its components from multiple vendors, so it is unclear whether Apple has excluded Samsung from display production on the fourth-generation iPad.

    - The logic board remains the same size as in the previous model, but Apple has tweaked the layout of some of the chips.

    - The new Lightning port is housed in a frame that is equal in size to that of the 30-pin dock connector in the previous generation, meaning that Apple has not saved any interior space with the move to the Lightning connector. Apple will, however, almost certainly take advantage of the reduction in space needed for the Lightning connector in a more significant redesign for a future generation.


    30-pin dock connector from third-generation iPad (top) and Lightning connector from fourth-generation iPad (bottom)

    - The improved front-facing camera is slightly thicker than in the previous model, but fits into the same space within the device's body.

    - The battery carries the same A1389 part number as in the third-generation iPad.

    - Just like in the third-generation iPad, the fourth-generation model contains 1 GB of RAM housed in two Elpida chips separate from the A6X package.

    Update: Chipworks has examined the A6X, finding that it is indeed a significant reworking of the A6 found in the iPhone 5, unsurprisingly focused on graphics capabilities.

    Article Link: Teardown of Fourth-Generation iPad Reveals LG Display, A6X Chip, Lightning Connector
  2. brock2621 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 8, 2007
    It's all a out that CPU and GPU speeds! Pumped to see games running on this thing!
  3. chriscrk macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2011
    Planet Earth (?)
    It reveals the lightning connector?! Never would have guessed!
  4. dweezle3 macrumors regular


    Jun 11, 2010
    So Apple relies only on it's main competitor for it's top quality retina display, yet decides to have a less competitive, not threatening company produce it's lesser displays? Where's the logic in that?
  5. ipedro macrumors 68040


    Nov 30, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    Doesn't look like they used the extra space in this revision.

    This reveals that the iPad 4 was only released to bring the Lightning connector to the entire iOS lineup and they might as well have added a faster chip.

    I'll wait for the iPad 5 or the iPad mini 2 with retina display.
  6. ichrisg30, Nov 1, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 25, 2013
  7. lordofthereef macrumors G5


    Nov 29, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Aside from maybe load times, you won't see a difference. Companies developenfornte lesser hardwares anyway. Such is the deal with smartphone gaming.
  8. gatearray macrumors 65816

    Apr 24, 2010
    Wow, that's some specious logic there!
  9. shurcooL macrumors 6502a

    Jan 24, 2011
    Really? I would've never known if not your post. Thanks for the heads up!
  10. monkor macrumors regular

    May 25, 2012
    Good thing they saved all that room in switching to a lightning connector to add cool new features
  11. SPEEDwithJJ macrumors 65816


    Nov 2, 2008
    Maybe the logic is that by buying from LG, Apple is able to acquire similar (or even slightly better, IMHO) quality displays from a "non-threatening" company at lower costs while at the same time reduce business dealings with its perceived No. 1 enemy (Samsung)? :confused:
  12. SeaFox macrumors 68030


    Jul 22, 2003
    Somewhere Else
    • LG Display
    • A6X Chip
    • Lightning Connector
    I seem to remember the device serial can tell you what panel is in it sometimes. Which means all of these points can be "revealed" by consulting it and reading Apple.com -- and not even turning on the device.
  13. chriscrk, Nov 1, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012

    chriscrk macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2011
    Planet Earth (?)
    You're welcome!

    But your comment doesn't even make sense, because you would have most likely seen what I said, on the actual news headline, before reading my comment.
  14. FactVsOpinion macrumors 6502

    Jul 27, 2012
    Actually no. LG is the company from which Apple is now getting their top quality retina display, whereas Samsung, from whom the display does not come, is their top competitor. The logic is right there!
  15. realeric, Nov 1, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012

    realeric macrumors 65816


    Jun 19, 2009
    United States
    LG Display is the world #1 company of LCD. (Market share & technology).

    Edit: Market share of large-size(9"~) LCD panel is LG 29%, Samsung 18.9%, CMI 17.6%, AUO 16.7%.
  16. HoopTrundler macrumors member

    Oct 7, 2011
    Not necessarily... That may have been part of the reason, but I also do think that they wanted to switch to a fall release schedule, and they wanted an iPad that was as fast or faster than the latest iPhone out by Christmas.
  17. attilahun macrumors newbie

    Jun 26, 2008
    Holy mackerel! You found a lightening connector?!
  18. komodrone macrumors 6502

    Apr 26, 2011
    sigh, where is Apple supposed to get displays then?

    they'll go to sharp
    and then you'll say the same thing.

    wtf man?
  19. DotCom2 macrumors 68040

    Feb 22, 2009
    I am curious to find out if the iPad 4 runs any cooler than the iPad 3. My 3 gets really hot sometimes. I have to stop what I am doing and let it cool down sometimes because I'm afraid it's going to blow up!:eek:
  20. Guezcoast macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2012
    Mayaguez puerto rico
    You think we'll see some ipad 3 vs ipad 4 gaming vids as soon as today? Also you have an idea of how good is the ipad 4 specs vs vita or ps3? Can't wait to play modern combat 4 on it!!!
  21. WestonHarvey1 macrumors 68020

    Jan 9, 2007
    Samsung's iPad 3 screens were terrible.
  22. LarryC macrumors 6502


    Jul 19, 2002
    North America
    I realize that this is probably a non-issue, but as inexpensive as RAM is these days, why only 1GB of RAM? I remember when they finally went from 512MB to 1GB in the iPhone, RAM is ridiculously cheap these days and Apple certainly charges enough for their products it seems as though 1GB is not enough.
  23. kfscoll macrumors 65816


    Nov 3, 2009
    Huh? There are some games that are a bit choppy when running on my iPad 3. The extra horsepower of the iPad 4's CPU and GPU will definitely help smooth things out.
  24. ellsworth macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2007
    How so? You must not own an iPad 3 :rolleyes:
  25. WestonHarvey1 macrumors 68020

    Jan 9, 2007
    I've owned 3 of them.

    All of them had inconsistent color gradients. Pink and green spots. Same issue is on many Samsung rMBP panels.

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