The 2021 MacBook Pro 16 ” dismantled by iFixit

After a battery snapshot released earlier this week, iFixit is back this weekend with a complete teardown of the 2021 MacBook Pro 16.2 “and we can make some interesting discoveries there. In addition to the battery which can now be replaced much more easily thanks to the tabs on which you just have to pull, we can find fans larger than before, speakers much bigger too, and modular ports but not all: the HDMI connector and the SD card reader are soldered to the motherboard, making any repair impossible.

The screen cables are longer to avoid durability issues (Apple learned the lesson from flexgate), and assembly is simpler with fewer screws to remove and cables to disconnect. This does not mean that repairs by a third party are made easy: iFixit notes that replacing the screen results in the malfunction of the True Tone feature. The same goes for Touch ID: the button is quite modular, but you have to go through an official repair so as not to lose fingerprint recognition in the event of a home repair.

If iFixit notes multiple improvements in the design of the MacBook Pro, at least from the point of view of its repairability, the site regrets certain complexities in the disassembly, the impossibility of bypassing Apple’s after-sales service in the case of the screen and Touch ID, the use of pentalobe screws, and storage and RAM directly integrated into the Apple M1 Pro chip which prevents any repair or update. iFixit, which gives the repairability rating of 4/10 to this new MacBook Pro, admits, however, that its rating system has its limits, especially with regard to the Apple M1 Pro SoC: “If we learn that this level of performance is really impossible without these compromises, we will readjust our expectations”.

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