iFixit tears down Apple’s $550 AirPods Max headphones

As is a customized at this level, online repair kit and tool vendor iFixit tore down one of many newest Apple merchandise and assessed its repairability. On this case, the product is the ultra-expensive ($550) AirPods Max over-ear noise-canceling headphones.

Many of the inside elements are about what you’d count on in a high-end pair of wi-fi headphones, however the equipment is very intricate, and there are numerous, many screws.

iFixit discovered that the Lightning port is especially troublesome—although not inconceivable—to succeed in, which is unlucky, provided that this is likely one of the elements probably to fail. The half can be vital to the machine’s means to perform, since it is the charging port.

Curiously, iFixit additionally discovered that probably the most advanced and “over-engineered” a part of the AirPods Max is the joint in every ear cup that affixes the cups to the band and permits the cups to be versatile. It took appreciable cautious effort to disassemble this a part of the headphones, and iFixit speculates that this half is so advanced as a result of the habits and stability of those joints is vital to consolation when sporting the AirPods Max.

There’s additionally a chance that it is this difficult as a result of it truly facilitates swapping out the band simply similar to we swap out Apple Watch wristbands. Apple hasn’t introduced plans to assist this function, however early rumors concerning the product instructed that the corporate was not less than contemplating or engaged on it.

Wrapping up the teardown, iFixit wrote that “with all their intricate, precision-engineered elements, AirPods Max remind us extra of a mechanical watch than of any pair of headphones.”

Nonetheless, the headphones weren’t precisely straightforward to service. Whereas it is good that screws are normally used as an alternative of glue (in distinction to different AirPods merchandise), they’re pentalobe screws, and there may be nonetheless one place the place iFixit needed to work its method round glue contained in the earcups. The repairability roundup within the teardown additionally notes that there are an enormous variety of screws—extra so than in different related merchandise—and laments that “you will want an in depth toolkit, even by our requirements.”

All in all, iFixit known as servicing the AirPods Max “surprisingly painless, notably for an AirPods product.” The ear cushions connect magnetically, and the headscarf can simply be indifferent. iFixit gave the AirPods Max a six out of 10 repairability rating.

Itemizing picture by iFixit

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