Are you a little short on cash but want the MacBook Pro with Retina Display? Maybe you’re thinking you could purchase the base model and then later on, when you have more money, upgrade the memory and the solid-state drive.
It would be a little hard seeing as it is an Apple product but it can be done, right? Well, the answer is no. Not by how Apple has made the new Retina Display MacBook Pro.
Repair firm iFixit has given the MacBook Pro the lowest “Repairability Score” of any MacBook Pro laptop – of any laptop, for that matter – it has ever done a teardown of. In iFixit’s conclusion to its teardown of Apple’s newest shiny device, it gave the Retina MBP a score of 1 out of 10. That’s like saying it’s the least repairable / upgradeable laptop yet from Apple or from any computer maker.
iFixit explains it in the following series of points:
1. Proprietary pentalobe screws prevent you from gaining access to anything inside.
This means you’ll have to purchase specialized tools to open it up.
2. As in the MacBook Air, the RAM is soldered to the logic board. Max out at 16GB now, or forever hold your peace—you can’t upgrade.
This means if you want to upgrade RAM, you’ll also have to buy the whole (expensive) logic board to go with it.
3. The proprietary SSD isn’t upgradeable either (yet), as it is similar but not identical to the one in the Air. It is a separate daughtercard, and we’re hopeful we can offer an upgrade in the near future.
This means no bigger SSD can be swapped for the smaller one yet.
4. The lithium-polymer battery is glued rather than screwed into the case, which increases the chances that it’ll break during disassembly. The battery also covers the trackpad cable, which tremendously increases the chance that the user will shear the cable in the battery removal process.
You may puncture the battery trying to un-stick it from the chassis of the MacBook Pro with Retina Display. A punctured battery may explode in your face. This also essentially means that trouble with the trackpad means you’ll likely spend more money than if the battery was just screwed onto the chassis.
5. The display assembly is completely fused, and there’s no glass protecting it. If anything ever fails inside the display, you will need to replace the entire extremely expensive assembly.
Apple doesn’t want people taking apart its Retina Display. Furthermore, any failure of any part of the display means you need to purchase the whole display assembly rather than just the defective part.
iFixit CEO Kyle Wiens, in a post on Wired, also raised a question as to how recyclable the MacBook Pro with Retina Display is. Seeing as the parts are essentially stuck together, recycling companies may have a very hard time taking them apart to recycle, if they are able to at all.
So this means if you’re planning to get the MacBook Pro with Retina Display, you might as well get the specs you want.
What are your thoughts about this? Tell us in the comments.