Rob Beschizza at 5:07 am Wed, Jun 13, 2012
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Apple's new MacBook Pro has a 220 dpi screen and an i7 CPU, yet is only .7" thick. iFixit took a look inside.
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MORE: Gadgets • teardowns
Ants and Stars: Bruce Sterling and Jasmina Tesanovic visit the Sardinia Radio Telescope in Italy
The Snowden Principle
Made to not be servicable and with power supply connector design churn. :-(
Every single part is replaceable. You just have do them all at the same time. :)
I agree. Updating their power connector after six years is obviously a cash grab. As compared to their competitors who can’t manage the same power brick for three models in a row.
What is then the point with the change? That other manufacturers are worse is no help.
My guess about Apple hardware design priorities are:
1. Manufacturing cost
3. Easy functioning during a limited lifetime. (best indication is the glued in accumulator, it removes design clutter and limits the life lenght. )
Those are wise priorities for making money with happy high end customers who has income to renew their equipment every year or two. Myself I like to keep a piece of gear running a lot longer and I especially like modularity like having several power supplies interchangeable for several computers. I buy a computer every two years but dont want to ditch the old ones since the fuctioning needed for surf and typewriting has plataued.
This leads to me who mostly am a free market advocate enjoying the Chinese dictatorships decision to standardize cell phone chargers and the EU follow thru with the same decision. I hope the same will be done for more power hungry gear then cellphones and small surfpads.
Fortunately there is a lot of choice in the laptop market. Personally l like the design. I haven’t messed around inside a machine in years and don’t miss it at all.
It’s thinner. Here’s how normal people will react to this news: 1. Express mild disappointment. 2. Buy the $10 adapter if they need it. There’s no step 3.
Made to be light and compact, but your pessimistic view is fine too.
More screws and less glue would probably cost about one percent in bulk and weight. Being able to fairly easily change fans, accumulator, keyboard, etc could easily double or tripple the life lenght. It would then be a more valuble device for me, other users have other priorities.
For our overall society would servicable computers mean less energy used and less waste per hour of device use. It would also give a smaller manufacturing economy and a larger service economie and Apple would have to shift its business model to empahsize spare parts, online services and software upgrades. Apple is large enough to do this on their own and shift how the computer business works, if they want to.
Looks like an awesome machine… but the fact you can’t replace anything yourself easily is unsettling. I don’t know why they even bother with internal “parts.” They might as well just stamp them out whole.
I love the nautilus inspired fans. Do not call me a fanboy either.
Where is the Blu-ray reader-burner? Looks like Apple wants you to buy only from their itunes movies that are lower quality than a blu-ray disc.
I have a new (until two days ago =( ) MacBook Pro with a superdrive. I’ve had it for the last seven months.
I have yet to use any sort of disc in it.
What if I have my data saved in a blu-ray disc, and want to migrate it to the new Macbook Pro?, Do I have to buy an external blu-ray reader compatible with an special software for it to be recognized by the Mac?
I think it’s ok they want to sell their itunes hd movies, but come on, If I have to buy their external “super” drive, I expect it to come with also a blu-ray reader for my movies and files, they are destroying the blu-ray alternative for the users.
If you already have your data saved to a blu-ray disc, wouldn’t you take that into consideration before buying a laptop worth thousands of dollars, knowing full well that it has no reader for that media on it *before* you get rid of your blu-ray burner which you already obviously must have access to?
Who stores data on discs anymore? Hard drives and thumb drives are cheap, and disc drives take up most of a laptop.
I don’t think this is about iTunes content, it’s about keeping up with the industry which is almost entirely download based (when was the last time you bought software one disc?).
If blu ray is that important to you then buy a laptop that has a blu ray player. But the other 99% of the world can probably do without one.
The deletion of an optical drive is one of the best design decisions on this machine; in fact, one of the few good ones. I can use more battery capacity every day; I can use an optical drive once a month.
My last three computers over a span of seven years have all had swappable optical drives, and I’ve found myself almost never inserting them – the drive bay is much better used for a second battery or hard drive.
I’m glad that they still offer the previous designed pro as I can’t justify buying the new mac book air retina “pro”. I was excited for the new machine but having soldered ram was a big disappointment.
I understand that some people won’t perform any upgrades in their laptop’s lifespan. In my experience they are more consumer oriented and there is nothing wrong with that but should we expect the same restrictions with a “pro” machine?
I have several macs in my home and my workplace has provided all of my design team with macs thoughout the years. Each mac has had some upgrade done by the IT department within the first 2 years, it is usually faster ram and a couple of the laptops needed battery replacements.
I have never considered myself an apple fanboy, I have not drank the coolaid, and I rarely participate on the fanboy sites but am I alone here in my disappointment? Should we expect more consumercentric design choices in future apple pro machines? I hope not but it seems like I have to come to terms with not being able to extend a machine’s lifespan.
I don’t like it, but admittedly I bought my MacBook 3 years ago with 4Gb of ram, and haven’t needed to upgrade – RAM hasn’t changed much in amount or technology for quite a few years – what needed 4gb 5 years ago needs 4gb now. Even with games it’s all about the graphics card and dedicated RAM.
Generally speaking youre unlikely to need to upgrade the RAM during the machines lifetime, assuming you don’t skimp on the RAM at the time of purchase. I can imagine this is where most upgrades come from.
Repairs/replacements is something else entirely – I wouldn’t like the idea of not being able to swap out the ram, but then I can’t swap out the ram on my phone or tablet, so the only reason it’s bother me on a computer is because it’s a change from what I could previously do. I’m unsure if it will have any real impact for 99.9% of computer users.
Hey just to add my experience, I bought my MBP almost three years ago (September 2009) too, with 4GB of ram. It was fine at first but shortly became not really be enough for me (granted I was running RAM-heavy GIS/mapping software inside a RAM-heavy Windows VM, as well as heavy scientific computation and Photoshop etc. work). At the time 4GB wasn’t skimping out, either.
I put up with it because I couldn’t actually afford the thing in the first place and wasn’t able to pay for upgrades, and then I finished grad school and wasn’t doing that much heavy stuff anymore anyway.
About a year ago I looked up RAM prices and it was going to cost about $35 to upgrade to 8 GB so I did it. Kind of a no-brainer and easy enough to do that anyone who is so inclined could do it.
Importantly, what prompted me to look it up is that web browsing was causing performance issues (Firefox was the actual culprit, and I had to finally give up using it after using it exclusively the past ten years or so because it made my computer unusable).
Assuming we’re talking about people like us who use their computers for longer than a year or two at a time, I think there is reason for “normal” users to need to upgrade the RAM specifically more so than any other component because the latest and greatest stuff on the internet requires more and more resources, and normal users allow tons of cruft to build up over time slowing down their machine (which, granted, is not a huge issue in OS X compared to Windows).
I think for users like us, assuming we could even afford this thing, we’d want to pay the extra $200 up front to get the maximum RAM (16 GB). Personally I would skimp out on the processor (it’s an extra $850(!) for the top of the line one) but not the RAM even if it seems overpriced – and given the context $200 isn’t really that bad.
The photographer in me is drooling over this computer. It’s an incredible machine and seeing the insides like this on the one hand does upset the part of me that likes to be able to fix and upgrade things myself, but also makes me be even more in awe of the design. They packed in as much as they could in a limited space and the compromises they made are all in the name of performance. It’s the basic compromise of Apple (performance and design above all else) taken to its extreme and I think it’s great.
I am curious how these will hold up over time, of course, which is a good thing – I’ll probably need to get another couple of years out of this three-year-old MBP before I can afford a new one anyway :)
The way everything is laid out like that makes it look like it’s angrily flipping me off. I don’t even own a MacBook, old or new, why so angry little apple machine? :’(
Complainers about soldered RAM; the computer comes with 8 gigs, if you want to upgrade to 16 gigs on purchase it will cost you a measly $200. Memory has never been so cheap. Apple changes with the technology, your standards are out of date. I would bet you never need that kind of power anyway.
The one thing I will never understand about Apple is why they bother with all the proprietary “security” screws. From what I’ve read about the people putting these computers together it’s insulting to me that they assume I am too incompetent to service something that semi-skilled, underpaid Chinese labor put together.
My little brother’s first gen Ipod touch had the home button go out. I used razor blades and some patience and took the whole thing apart in about in about an hour. Just to put a stupid little copper/plastic piece that the home button presses on, back in place because it had moved. It must have been glued improperly, I simply put some packing tape on it to keep it in place and the Ipod has been going strong for the last 6 months with no issues.
Apple has some elegant designs but their assumption that we are all morons so they must make it difficult to service hardware that we have purchased is insulting. Especially since you can always get around their “security” if you want to, it just takes patience and is an unnecessary hassle.
Fixed Ipod, broken warranty.
I believe I mentioned First Generation Ipod Touch and that I fixed it 6 months ago. unless I can’t read properly the warranty “broke” after a year. If Apple intends for their electronics to only last a year under “normal” “expected” use then all the assertions I’ve read about their quality products kind of go out the window don’t they? Though I suppose they do sell that extended warranty, however I fixed the Ipod with about $0.01 worth of material well below the cost of the extended warranty, even then the extended warranty would have expired. (1st gen Ipod Touch release: 2007)
This does show that the Ipod touch is a quality product, I am just annoyed that they go to lengths to make their products harder for consumers to service.
I don’t always buy a 2200 dollar computer, but when I do it will be a retina mbp with 16 gigs of ram.
I’ve occasionally worked on Apple machines bought by others, never considered buying anything from them, but the screen and dimensions/weight on this thing looked really sweet so I’m very, very tempted.
Things like the battery being glued to the chassis really are upsetting. Usually if you’re worried about fixed components (say, soldered RAM) you can just buy an extended warranty for a few years… but batteries are classed as consumable so that won’t save you.
Which begs the question: if the battery is consumable, and the battery is glued to the laptop, then doesn’t that make the whole laptop “consumable”? The distinction is now blurred to the point that a class action suit might force them to put in a few screws next time around, or make batteries covered by warranty.
Agreed, the battery glue and funky screws are ridiculous. I also think it couldn’t have killed them to figure out a way to make the RAM user replaceable.