Items tagged with Teardown

This week, the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL are the hottest talk of the internet, as they are the new mid-range smartphones from Google. With a starting price of $399 for the Pixel 3a and $479 for the Pixel 3a XL, both phones offer a nice balance of features, camera image quality, battery life... and actually include a 3.5mm headphone jack. Not surprisingly, it didn't take the folks at iFixit to take a scalpel to both the Pixel 3a and the Pixel 3a XL, and thankfully, both have modular components that are more readily accessible for replacement in case of failure. Unlike most smartphone which feature bodies made out of a combination of aluminum and glass, the new Pixel devices feature plastic... Read more...
One of the things that tech fans love is to see the insides of gadgets to get an idea of if they can be fixed if something breaks, and to satisfy curiosity. One of the great purveyors of teardowns is iFixit, and not long ago it published a teardown of the controversial Galaxy Fold smartphone. The major issue with the Galaxy Fold is that several of the devices had screen failures in the hands of reviewers only a short time after being received. Samsung vowed to investigate the failures and delayed the launch of the smartphone. How Samsung could have missed such glaring issues with the screen during its testing is a mystery. Samsung doesn't want people getting a look at the inside of the Galaxy... Read more...
The Galaxy Fold has been the subject of some controversy arising out of its design and the shape that it shipped in, both to preorder customers and reviewers. Simply put, Samsung's folding phone has been breaking. In some cases, the wounds are self-inflicted, to an extent. But there does appear to be an actual design flaw, which a thorough teardown potentially sheds some light on. One of the issues with the Galaxy Fold is what some have mistaken to be a removable protective film on the display. Peeling it off does irreversible damage to the screen, as some reviewers found out the unfortunate way. However, that has not been the sole cause of frustration. In other cases, the phone is breaking early,... Read more...
If you've been following the gaming hardware scene, it's likely that you're somewhat familiar with Dell's incredibly slick Alienware Area-51m, which is an absolute beast desktop replacement gaming laptop. This machine was unveiled at CES 2019 and packs inside the sort of hardware that most desktop gamers would envy, nevermind a portable platform. Something that really sets the Alienware Area-51m apart from the laptop masses is how easily the components can be replaced for upgrades or repair. HotHardware has put together a video that shows a teardown of the Alienware notebook and gives you a look at what buyers can expect to find once the bottom lid is taken off the machine. One of the simple,... Read more...
I have never purchased a set of in-ear earphones with the expectation that if something inside those tiny earbuds fail, I'll be able to rip them open and fix the problem. They are just too small for that sort of thing. Nevertheless, in case anyone is wondering, Apple's new AirPods 2 earbuds are not designed in a way that fosters do-it-yourself (DIY) repair. Let's all feign surprise, shall we? In addition to being a set of earbuds, this is Apple we are talking about, so that is a double whammy against easy repair. I can't really throw too much shade at Apple on this one, though, because of the product category. It would be different if we were talking about big and bulky headphones, but we're... Read more...
We already know what makes the Galaxy S10+ tick—a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 or Samsung's own Exynos 9820 processor (depending on the region), 8GB or 12GB of RAM (depending on the model), and up to 512GB of onboard storage (also depending on the model). Despite already knowing the specs, it's always interesting to see a high-tech device torn down and gutted, and the Galaxy S10+ has already been given the DIY surgical treatment. The Galaxy S10+ is one of three new Galaxy S10 devices that are due out this month, the other two being the regular Galaxy S10 and a smaller Galaxy S10e. There is also the Galaxy S10 5G slated for the first half of 2019, and as its name implies, it boasts a 5G radio... Read more...
Apple recently refreshed its iPad Pro line with faster hardware and new features, and while many things are different, one thing remains the same—they are difficult to crack open and repair, should the need arise. That's par for course these days and not endemic to Apple, of course. The latest generation iPad Pro is just another example of how DIY repairs are not really feasible for the average consumer, as indicated by a teardown of the tablet. As they often do, the folks at iFixit got their hands on the new gadget and promptly stripped it naked, taking apart the tablet until the premium designed device was reduced to a pile of parts on a table. And as usual, they encountered plenty of... Read more...
Apple recently updated the Mac Mini, its entry-level desktop that had not seen a significant upgrade since 2014, and the refreshed box packs quite the punch on paper—it pairs up to an 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor with as much as 64GB of RAM, with storage options topping out at 2TB. The Mac Mini is also somewhat easy to service and upgrade, depending on the specific component, a teardown analysis reveals. The 2018 Mac Mini comes housed in the same chassis as the previous generation. Some people speculated that Apple might refresh the form factor as well, specifically by switching over to the same chassis as its Apple TV set-top box, but that is not the case (literally). The only... Read more...
After years of letting its popular MacBook Air languish without any meaningful updates, Apple finally updated the ultra-portable notebook late last month. While the overall wedge-shaped chassis is familiar, the new MacBook Air features a completely redesigned inner layout. Given that the new 2018 MacBook Air is now shipping to customers, it should come as no surprise that the teardown experts at iFixit have put the laptop on the operating table. What they found is that the MacBook Air is using Apple's third-generation butterfly key mechanism for the keyboard. While the keys have far less travel than what traditional MacBook Air users are familiar with, it does at... Read more...
Fancy yourself a new generation iPhone? From a cost standpoint, the iPhone XR is the most sensible of the new models, though it's still not exactly cheap—pricing starts at $749 (as opposed to $999 for the iPhone XS and $1,099 for the iPhone XS). As with any high dollar smartphone, the thought of cracking it open for delicate repairs may seem gut wrenching. In this case, however, a teardown analysis of the iPhone XR reveals that some types of DIY repairs are at least feasible. That depends on your skill level, of course, along with your willingness to take matters into your hands. These things aren't made of Legos, and so there is quite a bit more involved than just pulling pieces apart... Read more...
Google's Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL handsets are both solid options in the Android space, with overall strong performance and killer cameras for taking crisp photos. Anyone who buys one of Google's new phones will hopefully never have cause to crack it open for repairs, but should the need arise, how does it fare? A new teardown analysis answers that question in detail. Both phones are powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor and 4GB of RAM. Built-in storage checks in at 64GB or 128GB, with no microSD card slot to add more. As for the cameras, there is an 8-megapixel shooter on the front for selfies and a 12.2-megapixel lens on the back. On the XL model, which went under the knife in the latest... Read more...
Apple has begun shipping the first wave of iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max smartphones to customers, and the former has already been disassembled (complete with video footage). Right off the bat, getting inside the new iPhone XS is a bit harder compared to last year's iPhone X. If you recall, the iPhone X is IP67 rated for water/dust resistance, while the iPhone XS family bumps that up to IP68. As a result, the seals holding the display into place are stronger, making removing it more of a hassle (although not impossible).  The other thing of note is that the L-shaped battery from last year remains. However, while there were two separate cells on the iPhone X, the battery in the iPhone... Read more...
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 officially went on sale last week (read the HotHardware review here), and it brings an incredible wealth of features to the table, along with an enormous price tag ($999+). But for those that are hip to the idea of an S Pen-equipped flagship phone, there are deals to be had. With that being said, now that the Galaxy Note 9 is out in the wild, it means that the gadget repair gurus at iFixit have given the smartphone the teardown treatment. We're now privy to a plethora of high-resolution shots and a step-by-step process on how to disassemble this mobile beast. With a bit of heat and suction applied to the back glass panel (which is glued on), it pops... Read more...
The expectation when purchasing a pricey augmented reality headset (or any augmented, virtual, or mixed realty headset, really) is that you'll never need to take it apart to troubleshoot a faulty component. Nevertheless, it is nice to know you can, should the need or desire to arise for any reason. And that is the case with the Magic Leap One, as a new teardown analysis reveals. Magic Leap's AR goggles recently launched to developers with a $2,295 starting price. That's obviously way above what consumers expect to pay for an AR headset, but considering it's a developer release (more specifically, the Creator Edition), it's not out of line with the competition—the developer version of Microsoft's... Read more...
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