How we rate devices:

A device with a perfect score will be relatively inexpensive to repair because it is easy to disassemble and has a service manual available. Points are docked based on the difficulty of opening the device, the types of fasteners found inside, and the complexity involved in replacing major components. Points are awarded for upgradability, use of non-proprietary tools for servicing, and component modularity.

Sort by: Release | Score

MacBook Pro 15" Touch Bar 2018
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are soldered to the logic board. Repairs and upgrades will be impractical at best.
  • The top case assembly, which includes the keyboard, battery, and speakers, is firmly glued in place—making all those components hard to replace separately.
  • The Touch ID sensor doubles as the power switch, and is paired with the T2 chip on the logic board. Fixing a broken power switch may require help from Apple, or a new logic board.

1

MacBook Pro 13" Touch Bar 2018
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are soldered to the logic board. Repairs and upgrades will be impractical at best.
  • The top case assembly, which includes the keyboard, battery, and speakers, is glued together—making all those components impractical to replace separately.
  • The Touch ID sensor doubles as the power switch, and is paired with the T2 chip on the logic board. Fixing a broken power switch may require help from Apple, or a new logic board.

1

HP EliteBook 840 G3
  • RAM, SSD, and battery are easily accessible and removable.
  • All moving parts, including keyboard, trackpad, and pointing stick are modular and can be quickly replaced.
  • The display is immediately replaceable, without any unnecessary disassembly.

10

Dell Latitude E5270
  • All commonly failing (battery, trackpad buttons, display, keyboard) and upgradable (RAM, SSD) parts are easy to access and replace.
  • Minimal adhesive is used throughout the unit's construction. All fasteners are standard Phillips screws.
  • Overall construction is slightly complicated, but the manufacturer offers clear repair and disassembly instructions.

10

LG Gram 15"
  • Most components are immediately accessible after removing the lower case cover.
  • RAM and SSD are user-replaceable and parts for upgrades are readily accessible.
  • Battery is also user-replaceable.

9

Samsung Notebook Series 9 15"
  • All screws are Phillips screws.
  • RAM, SSD, and battery are all easily replaced.
  • Relatively flat, modular design means that most components can be replaced quickly without having to remove other obstructions.

9

Acer Predator 17.3"
  • A single latch releases the optical drive—no tools required.
  • A single panel gives access to the SSD, HDD, and two RAM slots.
  • The keyboard is not readily serviceable.

8

Dell XPS 13 (9343/9350/9360)
  • Manufacturer provides free manuals online.
  • Once you manage to take off the bottom cover, all the parts are pretty easily replaceable.
  • Soldered RAM means you'll never be able to upgrade when things get slow.

7

Microsoft Surface Laptop
  • This laptop is not meant to be opened or repaired; you can’t get inside without inflicting a lot of damage.
  • The CPU, RAM, and onboard storage are soldered to the motherboard, making upgrades a no-go.
  • The headphone jack, while modular, can only be accessed by removing the heat sink, fan, display, and motherboard.

0

Retina MacBook 2017
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are still soldered to the logic board.
  • A large amount of strong adhesive holds the battery assembly to the lower case .
  • The Retina display is a fused unit with no separate, protective glass. If the display is damaged, it'll be arduous and expensive to repair.

1

MacBook Pro 13" Touch Bar 2017
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws continue to make working on the device unnecessarily difficult.
  • The battery assembly is entirely, and very solidly, glued into the case, thus complicating replacement.
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are soldered to the logic board.

1

MacBook Pro 15" Touch Bar Late 2016
  • Use of proprietary pentalobe screws makes servicing and repair unnecessarily difficult.
  • The entire battery assembly is strongly glued into the case, complicating replacement.
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are soldered to the logic board.

1

MacBook Pro 13" Touch Bar 2016
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws continue to make working on the device unnecessarily difficult.
  • The battery assembly is entirely, and very solidly, glued into the case, thus complicating replacement.
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are soldered to the logic board.

1

MacBook Pro 13" Function Keys Late 2016
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws continue to make opening the device unnecessarily difficult.
  • The battery assembly is entirely, and very solidly, glued into the case, thus complicating replacement.
  • The RAM is soldered to the logic board. Pay for the upgrade now, or be stuck with 8 GB forever. There is no chance of upgrade.

2

Retina MacBook 2016
  • The processor, RAM, and flash memory are still soldered to the logic board.
  • The battery assembly remains entirely, and very solidly, glued into the lower case.
  • The Retina display is still a fused unit with no separate, protective glass. If the display needs replacing, it'll cost a pretty penny.

1

Asus Chromebook C202
  • Intuitive, uncomplicated design makes disassembly straightforward and reversible.
  • Modular components means many repairs can be carried out by quickly swapping a failed part.
  • Only Phillips #1 and #00 screws are used.

9

Retina MacBook 2015
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws continue to make opening the device unnecessarily difficult, and new cable routing makes the procedure even trickier.
  • The USB-C port is secured by tri-wing screws, and buried under the display brackets, complicating replacement. Also, being the only port, it will experience more use and wear than a typical single-purpose port.
  • The battery assembly is entirely, and very solidly, glued into the lower case.

1

MacBook Pro 13" Retina Display Early 2015
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws continue to make opening the device unnecessarily difficult.
  • The battery assembly is entirely, and very solidly, glued into the case, thus complicating replacement. Additionally, the battery covers the screws holding the trackpad in place, meaning it's impossible to replace the trackpad without first removing the battery.
  • The Retina display is a fused unit with no separate, protective glass. If anything ever fails inside the display, the entire ($$$) assembly will need to be replaced.

1

MacBook Air 11" Early 2015
  • The outer case is held on with Apple's proprietary Pentalobe screws, so you'll need the right screwdriver to get inside.
  • Just like the screws, all the components—including the RAM and SSD—are proprietary, making replacement parts more difficult to source.
  • Once you get past the outer case, all the major components are fairly easy to access for replacement.

4

MacBook Air 13" Early 2015
  • Proprietary screws on the case require the right screwdriver.
  • All the components—including RAM and SSD—are proprietary.
  • Once you manage to take off the bottom cover, all the parts are pretty easily replaceable.

4

MacBook Pro 13" Retina Display Late 2013
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws continue to make opening the device unnecessarily difficult.
  • The battery assembly is now entirely, and very solidly, glued into the case, thus complicating replacement. Additionally, the battery now covers the screws and cable holding the trackpad in place. It is impossible to replace the trackpad without first removing the battery.
  • The Retina display is a fused unit with no protective glass. If anything ever fails inside the display, the entire ($$$) assembly will need to be replaced.

1

MacBook Pro 15" Retina Display Late 2013
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws prevent you from gaining access to anything inside.
  • As in the MacBook Air, the RAM is soldered to the logic board. Max out at 16GB now, or forever hold your peace—you can't upgrade.
  • The proprietary SSD has changed to a PCIe format, but still isn't a standard 2.5" drive. However, it is a separate daughtercard, and we’re hopeful we can offer an upgrade in the near future.

1

MacBook Air 11" Mid 2013
  • The outer case is held on with Apple's proprietary Pentalobe screws, so you'll need the right screwdriver to get inside.
  • Just like the screws, all the components—including the RAM and SSD—are proprietary, making replacement parts more difficult to source.
  • Once you get past the outer case, all the major components are fairly easy to access for replacement.

4

MacBook Air 13" Mid 2013
  • Proprietary screws on the case require the right screwdriver.
  • All the components—including RAM and SSD—are proprietary.
  • Once you manage to take off the bottom cover, all the parts are pretty easily replaceable.

4

Dell Inspiron Duo
  • Much of the internal hardware is not only user-replaceable, but is also easy purchased from Dell or a third party vendor.
  • Almost the entire computer can be taken apart with a plastic opening tool (or two) and a Phillips #0 screwdriver.
  • You have to remove the top case to access the battery, which is shameful for a Dell product.

7

MacBook Pro 13" Retina Display Late 2012
  • The battery is still glued into the laptop's top case, but it's slightly less difficult to remove compared to the 15" model.
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws prevent you from gaining access to anything inside.
  • The RAM is surface-mount soldered to the logic board, so no upgrade is possible. It will forever have 8 GB of RAM.

2

Asus Zenbook UX32VD
  • All the components are easy to access, with no proprietary screws inhibiting access.
  • The battery is not glued in place, and a person equipped with the right tools can replace it in a matter of minutes.
  • A lot of components were held in place with more adhesive than is necessary.

8

MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Mid 2012
  • Easily removable bottom panel and readily accessible battery, optical drive, hard drive, fans, and RAM.
  • Standard screws were used for all components, save for the battery.
  • Tri-wing screws on the battery require a specialty driver that an average user may not have.

7

MacBook Pro 15" Retina Display Mid 2012
  • Proprietary pentalobe screws prevent you from gaining access to anything inside.
  • As in the MacBook Air, the RAM is soldered to the logic board. Max out at 16GB now, or forever hold your peace—you can't upgrade.
  • The proprietary SSD isn't upgradeable either (yet), as it is similar but not identical to the one in the Air. It is a separate daughtercard, and we’re hopeful we can offer an upgrade in the near future.

1

MacBook Air 13" Mid 2012
  • Proprietary screws on the case require the right screwdriver.
  • All the components—including RAM and SSD—are proprietary.
  • Once you manage to take off the bottom cover, all the parts are pretty easily replaceable.

4

MacBook Air 13" Mid 2011
  • Opening the bottom cover is quite difficult if you don't have the right screwdriver. It's clear that Apple didn't want people to open their machine.
  • All the components -- including RAM and SSD -- are proprietary, meaning that no off-the-shelf parts will work in it without serious rigging.
  • Once you manage to take off the bottom cover, all the parts are pretty easily replaceable.

4

MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Early 2011
  • Easily removable bottom panel and readily accessible battery connector allow for easy repair of most components without touching the battery screws.
  • Unibody design allows for easy access of most components with minimal amounts of extra work needed to get to them.
  • Tri-wing screws limit the average person from replacing their own battery.

7

MacBook Air 11" Late 2010
  • Opening the bottom cover is quite difficult if you don't have the right screwdriver. It's clear that Apple didn't want people to open their machine.
  • All the components -- including RAM and hard drive -- are proprietary, meaning that no off-the-shelf parts will work in it without serious rigging.
  • Once you manage to take off the bottom cover, all the parts are pretty easily replaceable.

4

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