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Released in November 2020, the 13" MacBook Pro features Apple's Arm-based M1 SoC with both an 8-core CPU and 8-core GPU. (Model A2338 / EMC 3578 with two Thunderbolt 3 ports)

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Is storage upgradable after purchase?

I see RAM and GPU are all built into the M1 chip, so you can’t upgrade after getting your original, expensive, Apple upgrade options. But what about the storage? Will the computer design allow it to be upgraded later by user when third parties start manufacturing the drives?

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Sorry there is no internal upgradability in any of the newer MacBook Air/Pro’s!

The last fully upgradable MacBook Pro was the 2012 unibody models, the 2012 through 2015 retina models only offered a serviceable SSD drive, RAM was soldered! The 2016 TouchBar and newer have no upgrades. Only the short run of the 2016 & 2017 13” Fn models offered a serviceable SSD but it was very different from the older models and no one offers a replacement.

What you buy is what you get! If the think you need more RAM or storage buy it now!

Storage can be added externally via the USB-C/Thunderbolt connection.

For reference here’s the M1 Mac Mini logic board which is very similar to the MacBook Air & MacBook Pro models

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I suspected that may be the case, but your answer went way beyond my question. I appreciate!


Is there any way to upgrade storage with a heat gun if the chips are available? Or is the flash linked to the security circuit in the M1 chip?


@manu68380 - That is just not possible! Look very carefully at the SOC and the RAM chips mounted on the MCM carrier.

The only way would be to get a replacement logic board and swapping the whole board out. But here's the rub that would cost about the same as just getting a second system with the RAM/Storage you really wanted.

Apple MacBook Pro systems since 2016 are not expandable RAM or storage!


According to this ( ) post, an engineer in China had successfully upgraded both the ram and storage, from 8GB RAM to 16GB RAM and from 256GB SSD to 1TB SSD. But unfortunately there are no instruction available yet.


@thebluekinglp - This is brain surgery! Are you a brain surgeon?? Without the proper gear and skills its not something I would recommend for 90% of us to attempt.

Now consider the costs and the risks, it's not worth the exercise. Its cheaper to sell your system to get some worth out of it to put into a system that meets your needs.


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It is upgradable if you find a decent 3rd party repairshop.
Basically upgrading M1 board is way easier than on T2 models. SSD chips are shared between M1 and iPhone 13+ models, so it is also not that hard to source (there are plenty of chips taken from the icloud locked boards / locked iphones on the market).

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James Webber will be eternally grateful.
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