Apple products are notoriously difficult to repair and replace. Try taking apart your iPhone, for example, and you’re going to run into a bunch of weird screws and ridiculously powerful glue.
One of the oldest jokes about Apple products is that once they break, they’re incredibly easy to fix: all you need to do is throw your old one out the window and buy a new one.
Jokes aside, Apple appears to have finally gotten the message about the poor upgrade and repair-ability of its products. With the 2013 Mac Pro, Apple has made its hardware device surprisingly easy to take apart and repair.
Sure, it’s no PC, but the Mac Pro comes with a number of cool features that can help you improve its performance without destroying your warranty.
On the Mac Pro, upgrading RAM has never been easier. Simply swap a new stick in and out. You can actually do the same thing with your CPU, which is good if you want to replace the Intel Xeon Ivy Bridge-E core.
Meanwhile, all other major components are modular, which means they can easily be swapped in an out simply by popping off the connector.
If you do plan on taking apart your Mac Pro, you’re going to need some special screwdrivers, including:
-T5, T7, T8, T9, and T10 Torx screwdrivers
You’ll need Torx screwdrivers to disassemble a lot of electronics made today, so that’s not a super big restriction. The only issue with taking apart the Mac Pro is its unique shape, which has been specially engineered to maximize heat transfer, space, etc. Don’t expect to squeeze another hard drive or part in there because there’s no room.
You should also be careful to remember the steps when you’re taking apart your Mac Pro. The unique form factor can make this a nightmare to put back together if you lose your way.
At the end of the day, we’re still dealing with an Apple product here, which means that you’re going to encounter proprietary connectors and other oddities.
Sorry gamers, but you can’t upgrade your graphics card on the Mac Pro, nor can you upgrade the SSD (unless, of course, you buy the more-expensive proprietary upgrade parts from Apple).
Yes, the parts are modular, but no, you can’t swap a new part in after taking the modular parts out.
Still, if the latest Mac Pro is any indication, we’re going to see more repairable devices from Apple in the future, which is good for users who don’t feel like dropping $3,000 every two years because they have a slow computer.
iFixIt disassembled a 2013 Mac Pro and you can learn more about the process here: http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/Mac+Pro+Late+2013+Teardown/20778