iFixit Disappointed with Apple Mac Studio Teardown. When it comes to DIYers and teardown enthusiasts of the world, one of the most interesting things about a product launch is getting to see the people at iFixit’s take it in to tear it down.
Well, this time around, the target of iFixit is the M1 Max Mac Studio as the company has decided to answer a recurring question: how difficult to repair is in possession of an apple made new product? It’s just like being in a time loop where one encounters nothing but glue and security screws multiple times.
iFixit Disappointed with Apple Mac Studio Teardown
The teardown that took place today came to us in form of a video, which you get to see below, though iFixit has also published a transcript for all those that would like to read along. In any case, this teardown was quite fast and breezy, probably owing to the fact that the Mac Studio is not that big in size. It became clear so fast that Apple has packed quite a lot into such a small Aluminum chassis, as taking out the bottom cover shows a power supply that is covered in black tape.
An Answer to the Burning Question Concerning the Storage
With the power supply taken out, iFixit can get to what is probably one of the biggest Mac Studio questions which are: can the storage be upgraded, Swapped, both, or neither? Sad news, it seems – while iFixit did come with some success un-swapping the modular SSDs between two Mac Studios, attempting to upgrade the storage using an entirely different type of Drive didn’t work.
So, if your SSD happens to run into some issues or dies, you can choose to swap in the same kind, but those that are looking to upgrade will be required to wait till Apple releases such functionality if it ever does that at all. Well, that is a shame, because without offering support for upgradeable storage it means there’s spare is a spare PCle Slot on the Mac Studio’s board that would go unused for a lot of people.
Moving deeper into the teardown reveals that it actually takes a lot of work to get straight into the M1 Max chip, which is behind what iFixit describes as a huge heat sink and two fans. Also, it shows detail concerning the RAM soldered in place, so it is not user-upgradable. This is something that we certainly would not like to see because, as iFixit points out, that means you are stuck with some amount of RAM that you select when you purchase the Mac Studio, and Apple certainly is not known for its inexpensive options there.
Mac Studio Unupgradeable Ram
At the end of it all, iFixit would be offering Mac Studio a repairability score of about 6/10, which balances the good of its many components with the bad of its difficult-to-access fans for easy cleaning and its non-upgradable RAM and storage. A much lower score when it comes to Apple hardware in the past, so a 6/10 is more of an improvement for Apple, but iFixit’s teardown shows that Apple might be doing much more to create hardware that is DIY-friendly.