iFixit: New Macbook Pro is Least Repairable Notebook to Date

T'was just the day before yesterday when Apple announced the launch of a brand new Retina Display MacBook Pro, but same-day availability means many people already have the new notebook sitting on their desks. Among those is the crew at iFixit. However, rather than use the computer for, you know, computing, our reliable friends have torn it apart. What did they find when they ventured inside? All the things they hate. Apparently, the MacBook Pro with Retina Display is a repairman's worst nightmare.

" [...] even though it packs lots of gee-whiz bells and whistles, we were thoroughly disappointed when we ventured inside," the site said in an emailed statement. "This is, to date, the least repairable laptop we've taken apart. Apple has packed all the things we hate into one beautiful little package."

With Pentalobe screws and its RAM soldered to the logic board, the new 15-inch MacBook Pro shares a few features with the MacBook Air. Considering the MacBook Pro is now nearly as thin as the MacBook Air, this makes a lot of sense, but the MBP also has some unique assembly features that we haven't seen before. Chief among them is the display assembly, which is is completely fused with no glass protecting it. If anything ever fails inside the display, you will need to replace the entire assembly. Yikes.

Leaving aside the fact that the laptop is literally glued together and the RAM and SSD aren't upgradable, iFixit found the following major chips inside: Nvidia's GeForce GT 650M GP, an Intel Core-i7 3720QM 2.6 GHz processor, what appears to be an Intel E208B284 Platform Controller Hub, Hynix H5TC2GB3CFR DDR3L SDRAM, and an Intel DSL3510L Thunderbolt controller.

Check out iFixit's full teardown for more pictures and a total rundown of how they came to score the new MacBook Pro a 1/10 on the repairability scale. Ouch.

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  • Anonymous
    Here's a good idea.. STOP BUYING THE STUFF. :)
    31
  • Branden
    me: "i want to upgrade my PC notebook from 4G to 8G"
    newegg: "that'll be $50"
    iSheep: "hello, i'd like to upgrade the RAM in my 15" macbook pro from 4G to 8G."
    "Genius": "that'll be $2300."
    iSheep (with vacant stare): "i will obey."
    8 year old chinese kids making macbooks: "why does this thing cost 5 years salary again?"
    Steve Jobs in grave: smirking.
    22
  • bustapr
    the biggest FU to people here is that the Drives are superduperglued to the chassis and the ram is frikin soldered to the board. why, oh why the hell would you solder ram to the board other than to say FU to people that wont buy an overpriced apple upgrade.
    17
  • Other Comments
  • kcorp2003
    i checked the price its about 2k-3k but thats why its the "pro". The only thing i like about it is the screen resolution! - 2880×1800. According to wire news they said "Retina Display Gives Apple 1-Year Lead on Ultrabooks" i'm crossing fingers for 1080p ultrabook before my fall semester starts.
    13
  • kryzzay
    Total build cost? $500 if that. These prices are a joke. Macbook Ripoff Pro.
    8
  • bigpoppastuke
    Keep in mind that the RAM is soldered in too. No upgrades in the future. If you want 16gb, you'd better buy it that way for an extra $200. Also, with only 1 year warranty and 90 days phone support, chances are you'll need that extended warranty. Tack on another $389.

    So in reality this computer is worth (apple's idea of worth) closer to $2818 - $3418.
    16