Let’s take a peek inside the new 13 ″ MacBook Air equipped with USB 3.0 and MagSafe 2 power connector.
This article is not a guide to action! All responsibility for collecting and disassembling your device lies with you.
Many manufacturers do not have warranty obligations if the device was disassembled by the user. If you do not want to lose the warranty on your device, check the warranty conditions in the documentation or from the device manufacturer.
Apple recently unveiled an updated MacBook Air laptop at WWDC, Apple’s worldwide developer conference. Of course, we need to take it apart!
He is so light that he is about to take off from the table.
So, what did Apple manage to squeeze into this ultra-thin ultrabook this time?
- Intel Ivy Bridge Core-i5 Processor with Turbo Boost Acceleration
- Intel HD Graphics 4000
- 128 gb flash memory
- 4 GB 1600 MHz DDR3L RAM
- USB 3.0
- MagSafe 2 Power Connector
Even with such a thin body, Apple managed to provide the new Air with all sorts of useful connectors.
And although Air can not be called cumbersome, we were surprised that Apple did not make this model thinner than the previous one.
Next to the headphone jack, on the left side of the MacBook are the new MagSafe 2 power connector and one of two USB 3.0 ports.
On the opposite side, we see an SD card reader, a second USB 3.0 port and, of course, a joint brainchild of Apple and Intel: the Thunderbolt port.
It is so unlike Apple; just updating the MacBook Air a bit, they assigned the model a new number: A1466.
We are pleased with the new model numbering, in which it will be much easier for us to help people identify their laptops for maintenance.
The MagSafe 2 power connector is (for now) a luxury that only the new MacBook Air and MacBook Pro with Retina display have won.
As you can see, the new MagSafe 2 power connector (bottom) is much thinner and wider than its predecessor. And it matters because it seems that the thickness of Apple devices is determined only by the size of the ports.
Just imagine what a thin device they could release if all the communications and recharging were wireless.
Apple sells MagSafe 2 adapters for $ 10, so you don’t have to throw out the Thunderbolt 27-inch display. Phew!
Apple is constantly refining all sorts of details; he transferred the symbols for the connectors from their right side to the left. If you are urgently discerned between the MacBook Air versions of mid-2012 and mid-2011, just look at which side of the connectors are marked with symbols.
We tensed, faced with branded Apple five-leaf screws of an unknown size.
Fortunately, we have special tools. Our five-blade screwdriver quickly dealt with these terrible cunning screws.
So, we unscrewed the screws, now remove the bottom panel and look inside the laptop.
In order not to lose the screws twisted during disassembly, we use a special magnetic mat.
As with most mobile devices, most of the space is occupied by the battery.
Inside, the new Air configuration is very similar to last year, there are only small changes in the arrangement of parts.
To get to the Air power supply, we just need to disconnect the connector and unscrew a few screws using a T5 size screwdriver.
This is the battery of the same model as in the mid-2011 version of the MacBook Air, so it is not surprising that in the 13-inch model the battery provides the same 7 hours of operation.
Immediately answer the expected question: yes, the batteries of the 2011 and 2012 models are interchangeable! Although it is not very clear why you need to change them, because they are exactly the same.
Video: How to Disassemble a Macbook Air Display
At first glance, the 128 GB SSD is almost identical to the one installed last year.
But upon closer inspection, it turned out that the current flash memory module has a slightly different connector!
This SSD seems to have a completely new design. Apparently, the new device is based on the SandForce controller, only labeled Toshiba.
We can say that the Broadcom BCM 943224 wireless module looks almost identical to that installed in last year’s model, but we will not repeat it.
Let’s focus on the differences better. Apple flipped the “Made in China” sticker 90 на and the sticker with the internal code as much as 180˚!
If you thought that we were joking, remove the electromagnetic shields, and you will see the same microcircuits as in last year’s model:
- Broadcom BCM4322 Intensi-fi® Single-Chip Transceiver with 802.11n Wi-Fi Support (circled in red)
- Broadcom BCM20702 Bluetooth 4.0 Single Chip Processor with Bluetooth Low Energy Consumption (BLE) Technology (circled in orange)
- Murata Antenna Switch Module (circled in yellow)
It was the turn of the speakers.
The new Air is equipped with stereo speakers, so it’s quite possible to throw a party.
You may ask: “And what is this black stick with which the speakers were removed?” This is Spudger. a special plastic spatula. It is protected against static electricity and is made of heat resistant material. It is an essential tool for working with sensitive electronics.
A lone fan is mounted with several star-shaped screws.
We hoped to discover a new asymmetric fan, and were not disappointed!
The wide openings between the fan blades are 3.6 mm, and the narrower ones are about 2.8 mm.
As stated in the advertisement, the asymmetric design disperses the sound over a wider frequency range and makes the fan noise “barely audible”.
Next, we remove the I / O board on the left side, on which the MagSafe 2 power connector is located.
Next to the MagSafe 2 and USB 3.0 connectors, the standard 3.5mm headphone jack looks so plain and old-fashioned. When will Apple release a new connector?
With the new dictation feature in OSX Mountain Lion, you’ll probably need a brand new microphone.
“MacBook, send a message to my iPhone so I can talk to Siri.”
Boom! We remove the system board.
Bam! Remove the radiator.
Even with the new line of processors, the cooling system looks almost the same as in last year’s model. Such a small heatsink on a dual-core processor, which can accelerate to 2.8 GHz, truly indicates its effectiveness.
Here is what we found on the front of the motherboard:
- Interface Controller Intel E201B953 SLJ8B (circled in orange)
- Thunderbolt Intel DSL3510L Controller (circled in yellow)
- Texas Instruments TPS2561 2-channel power controller (circled in turquoise)
- Linear Technology LT3957 voltage converter (circled in blue)
On the reverse side of the motherboard are:
- USB SMSC USB25138 controller (circled in red)
- Hynix H5TC2GB3CFR DDR3L SDRAM (circled in orange)
- Microcontroller MAXIM 15120G (circled in yellow)
- Texas Instruments Stellaris LM4FS1AH microcontroller (circled in turquoise)
- Macronics MXIC MX25L6406E Serial Flash Chip (circled in blue)
- Texas Instruments TPS51980 Controller (circled in pink)
- Texas Instruments CD3210 Controller (circled in black)
Good news! If suddenly the trackpad stops functioning, it seems that replacing it will be as simple as usual.
On the trackpad, we found several notable chips:
- Silicon Storage Technology 25VF020 (circled in red)
- Microcontroller Cypress Semiconductor CY8C24794 (circled in orange)
- Broadcom BCM5976A0KU826 (circled in yellow)
The display module is screwed to the top panel with 6 T9 star screws.
Since the display module is one of the moving parts of the MacBook Air, these screws must be fairly durable.
For the sake of weight reduction, the MacBook Air lacks a protective glass for the LCD panel, unlike the MacBook Pro. This is another reason for having a body made of solid aluminum.
Ease of repairing a MacBook Air 13 ″ mid-2012 version: 4 out of 10 (10 points mean maximum simplicity).
- If you manage to remove the bottom panel, all components are pretty easy to replace.
- Branded screws securing the case require a special screwdriver.
- All components. including RAM and SSD. are specialized.
- It is difficult for us to recommend this laptop due to the impossibility of its modernization. RAM and SSD-drive cannot be replaced at present, although this issue may be resolved in the future with respect to drives. While Apple’s propensity to use branded wood screws is boosting iFixit sales, it’s not good for consumers.
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