more MacBook infos

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dankephoto's picture
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A quick first look at MacBook infos reveals some interesting details.

dan k

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dankephoto's picture
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infos

First, for the first time in any Apple portable, the HD is replaceable without disassembling the unit. It's accessed from the battery bay - removing the RAM door (L-shaped - 3 (captured!) screws) inside the battery bay, then simply grab the HD sled's pulltab and slide it out. Very nice! The HD is mounted to a sled with 4 screws, the sled equipped with a connector board into which the HD plugs, and that board then plugging into a slot inside the far right-hand side of the 'Book.

For anyone rolling out labs of MacBooks (not to mention servicing them!), it could be very convenient to be able to prep stacks of drives and then pop them into individual machines. What would be supercool would be an adapter to plug a sledded drive directly externally to another machine - plug, clone, unplug, install - eazy-peazy!

Two RAM slots is a nice improvement over the iBooks' traditional one slot. The slots are accessable from the battery bay. 3 screws to remove the RAM door, then use the cute little levers to 'eject' the RAM SO-DIMMs.

The heatsink (a cool-looking little copper-colored radiator) looks a bit small to me, but I suppose it must be adequate. However, Apple continues to recommend huge globs of thermal grease be applied. :?

Replacing the optical drive requires only the topcase be removed, a relatively simple job.

The MacBook has 3 separate speakers, left, right and subwoofer(!)

LCDs shown include an LG Phillips LP133WXT and a CM (?) N133I1 L-01 (? hard to read). Looks like LCD replacement might be a little trickier and more time consuming than previous iBooks, topcase (among other things) is supposed to have to come off before LCD can come out. I can't find any references anywhere to these oddball-rez LCDs, so replacements (for now, anyway) will have to come from Apple (no pulls from generic PC laptops.) hmmmph

Built-in iSight camera looks to be a straightup USB device, as is the IR 'module'. Not sure what good it is to know, but for future hacks it might be useful.

No display latch of course, just a pair of magnets in the upper corners of the display. The (heat-staked) feet are non-removable and integral to the bottom case, and so perhaps non-replacable? 'hmmph' again!

That is all (for now.) ;D

dan k

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iantm's picture
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the new macbook

As an onsite service rep that supports a deployment of roughly two thousand iBooks and PowerBooks, the new MacBook appears to be great. As I went over the service manual from Apple last night, it appears that every single complaint about the outgoing iBook G4 has been addressed. Below are my observations - some echo danke's points.

- hard drive replacement goes from being a one hour job to being a five minute job
- ram is still easy to replace - no news here
- the keyboard can't be moved - no more poking and prodding from curious eyes and fingers
- the structure is now an exoskeleton, like the aluminum PowerBooks and MacBook Pro. The sandwich design with screws going in two different directions is gone - thank god
- the hinge is wider - by pushing the hinge points to the outer edges of the case, there is substantially less internal flexing
- magsafe - the dc-in board is simpler than previous incarnations and less likely to be damaged than the outgoing connector
- no more separate emi shields - less time spent working with insane amounts of screws holding down the emi shields to get to anything - saving technicians a few minutes and the hassle of all those screws

The 1.33 ghz iBook G4 12" was a step in the right direction, but the macbook proves that Apple is indeed listening to those of us out in the trenches. To that, I have to say thank you to the Apple engineers.

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iamdigitalman's picture
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what do you mean the surface

what do you mean the surface is an "exoskeleton"

and, yeah the kyboard not only is kid-proof, it looks sweet. the keys are nearly flat, instead of raised, and they wont pop off. and from the pics I have seen, is it true the the keys are all one piece? (like on a calculator, the keys are all one piece of rubber, and the under side has the surface that contacts the sensor on the main board.) is that right?

-digital Wink

iantm's picture
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exoskeleton vs endoskeleton

By exoskeleton, I mean that the frame is the shell of the unit. In the case of the iBook and iBook G4, the skeleton, or frame, is internal and the top and bottom case are reinforcements, but by no means provide any real structural integrity. The plastics flex rather easily, and when the internal frame cracks or breaks, you're in for big trouble, and thanks to the plastic shell, you'll never know until the computer stops working and you crack it open.

As for the keyboard, I don't really know for sure. Will know better when I see one in person. The keyboard is integrated into the top case, so that should be a help. If it is as sturdy as it looks, Apple has a winner on its hands that may rival the previous great consumer laptop - the clamshell iBook.

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moosemanmoo's picture
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The keyboard is individual ke

The keyboard is individual keys coming directly up from the top case, which makes for a much nicer keyboard, but you'll have to replace the entire top of the case to fix, say, a broken key.

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Service manual...

Can anyone point me in the direction of a service manual for these things?

TOM

dankephoto's picture
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re: Service manual...

I dunno 'bout any stinkin' macbook_13in.pdf manuals, but I do have lots of interesting infos on my server, see my sig. ;D

dan k

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Re: re: Service manual...

dankephoto wrote:

I dunno 'bout any stinkin' macbook_13in.pdf manuals, but I do have lots of interesting infos on my server, see my sig. ;D

dan k

Cool ;D

TOM