Apple's 13in MacBook Pro in online strip tease
Photos One item announced during Apple's keynote address at this week's Worldwide Developers Conference took most observers by surprise: the new 13-inch MacBook Pro. It didn't take long, however, for the teardown specialists at iFixIt to get their hands on one and take it apart.
They found the operation to be reassuringly easy, making upgrades of such items as RAM, hard drive, and battery a no-brainer for even the most ham-handed handyperson - and, yes, iFixit will be more than happy to sell you the items you need for an upgrade.
They'll also sell you the tools you'll need, with the exception of the odd-duck tri-wing screwdriver needed to remove the battery. However, since that tool is used to disassemble many a Nintendo product, you can readily find one online or, if you're a tool grinder, you can make your own.
For example, as far as ports are concerned, the MacBook Pro 13-incher giveth and the MacBook Pro 13-incher taketh away.
That's last October's "unibody" MacBook on top and the new MacBook Pro on the bottom
The new mini MacBook Pro adds two welcome items for connection to the outside world: a FireWire 800 port and an SD card slot. To make room for them, however, something had to go - and the digital audio-in port was the fall guy. The single audio port on the new model supports analog and digital audio-out, but only analog audio-in.
Don't try to force the SD card all the way in - it won't cooperate
Speaking of room...
Speaking of room, Apple apparently couldn't figure out a way for the SD card slot to fully accept an SD card, as do millions of digital cameras and other devices. When inserted as far as it will go, it sticks out a good half-inch.
If you have a wonky tri-wing screwdriver, removing the internal battery is easy
After removing the MacBook's bottom plate, removing the battery is a simple matter - as long as you have that aforementioned oddball tri-wing screwdriver. The battery, by the way, is rated at 60 watt-hours, compared to 45 in the "unibody" MacBook. Specs say seven hours compared with the older battery's five.
The stock drive is a mere 160GB, 5,400rpm deal - you'll want to upgrade
Removing the hard drive is straightforward as well - as long as you don't mind removing a butt-load of screws to get it loose. Upgrading RAM is also a simple matter. And if you've ever looked at Apple's RAM-upgrade pricing, you already know that you can find far, far better prices from any number of trusted online SO-DIMM sources.
Yes, all that crapola fits inside that slim aluminum case
There's a lot more to the full teardown, of course - iFixIt's efforts take 16 steps and are illustrated with 33 photos. If you're going to rip apart your new $1,199 purchase, we highly recommend that you follow their step-by-step instructions. ®