MacBook Air 11.6-inch teardown

Time for the guys at iFixit to show us what's inside the new 11.6-inch MacBook Air.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Time for the guys at iFixit to show us what's inside the new 11.6-inch MacBook Air.

For such a small package, there's an awful lot crammed inside Apple's latest creation. iFixit call the new device "an exercise of proprietary engineering." The RAM is proprietary, the Solid State Drive (SSD) is proprietary, even the screws on the bottom of the case are proprietary.

Here's one of the many proprietary screws (5-point Security Torx fasteners) that you need to tackle before you get inside the MacBook Air:


Then there's the proprietary SSD:


And the proprietary RAM:


Teardown highlights:

  • The flip-open port door is gone, along with the IR sensor and sleep LED. In their place is anj extra USB 2.0 port.
  • Proprietary 5-point security Torx screws are used to attach the lower case, while on the inside, the Air is held together with more normal 6-point T5 and T8 Torx screws.
  • The battery is comprised of six individual lithium-polymer cells, which combine to form a 35 Watt-hour battery.
  • Although in a different form factor, the new MacBook Air uses the same Broadcom BCM943224 Wi-Fi/Bluetooth chip as the current lineup of MacBook Pros.
  • The back of the trackpad has a Broadcom BCM5976A0K chip on it, likely responsible for the multi-touch capabilities of the the trackpad.

The biggest downside of the new MacBook Air is something plagues many of Apple's products - poor home repairability. When your MacBook Air goes wrong, you'll have to go back to Apple. iFixit gave the 11-inch MacBook Air a not-so-good repairability score of 4 out of 10, with 10 being easiest to repair. "A plethora of proprietary parts prevents people from painlessly fixing their machines," said iFixit's Miro Djuric .

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