Teardown reveals that the Mac Studio is kinda modular
But you probably won't be able to repair it yourself
Apple revealed the Mac Studio and Studio Display during its Peek Performance virtual event. During the main keynote, the company mentioned that the all-new Mac Studio has a modular design. This statement gave users the impression that the computer would be easily upgradeable. But — surprise, surprise! — a teardown reveals that the Mac Studio isn’t easily repairable, and storage upgrades aren’t technically doable at the time being. This doesn’t shock us at all, for Apple is notoriously known for making user upgrades as hard as possible.
The Mac Studio teardown shows how even to just unscrew the computer open, users have to rip off the foot ring. After taking off the bottom cover, you will find the power supply wrapped in black tape. On unscrewing that, you will finally get to access some of the modular parts included in this powerhouse.
Despite the SSD being technically user-accessible, replacing or upgrading it is not a simple process at all. As the iFixit teardown of the Mac Studio highlights, Apple blocks SSD upgrades. If a user switches the storage module, the system simply won’t boot because it’s not paired with the System Configurator. The pairing tool will likely remain an exclusive to authorized repair centers — unless Apple decides to unblock this restriction in a future software update. So if you’re buying a Mac Studio, make sure that you get a variant with enough storage for your needs.
iFixit’s Mac Studio teardown also reveals that the ports are indeed modular and easily accessible — relatively speaking. Unsurprisingly, the cooling system occupies plenty of space, as the M1 Max and M1 Ultra chips can heat up with intensive use. It is made up of two fans and is based on either aluminum or copper — depending on the M1 chip variant you go for.
Mac Studio aside, iFixit’s basic teardown of the Studio Display reveals that it also has a decent cooling system powered by two fans. Peaking at its internals also shows that the company is using the same camera included in the iPhone 11. With users reporting terrible photo and video qualities, it’ll be interesting to see if Apple will be able to resolve the camera quality issue with a mere software update.
Do you plan on buying the Mac Studio or Studio Display? Why or why not? Let us know in the comments section below.