AirPods Pro, Restorations Gone Wrong, and Our Favorite Screw Heads — Repair Radio Episode 17

On this episode of Repair Radio, we discussed our Surface Pro X and AirPods Pro teardowns. We also chatted about the stuff we’ve been fixing this week and answer some frequently asked questions.

How to Listen

Hosts: Craig Lloyd, Kevin Purdy, and Whitson Gordon
Special Guest: Taylor Dixon
Music: Gypsy (@ArchaicsHipHop)

News Topics

  • Microsoft Surface Pro X Teardown: Less than a month after dropping the new Surface Pro 7, Microsoft is back with the even-newer Surface Pro X—a fresh design with hints of improved repairability. On any other Surface teardown, we’d be braced for some serious pain—but since ripping into the Surface Laptop 3, we’re cautiously optimistic here. Bring on the era of repairable tablets, Microsoft—we’re ready. Let’s see what you’ve got.
  • AirPods Pro Teardown: Apple further expands their collection of professional equipment, this time with a set of AirPods Pro. Apple’s line of wireless buds certainly has a fraught history on the teardown table—will its “pro” iteration be any different? We’re hoping Apple brought that repairability score up a little (it’s never too late to change), but only a teardown will tell.
  • The AirPods Pro Could Be Repairable, But Apple Doesn’t Care: We’re haunted by the memories of AirPods past. Some teardown engineers still wake up in a cold sweat dreaming about cutting open these tiny, glued-together earbuds. But Apple’s new AirPods Pro are here, so we soldiered on and tore them down—and no amount of noise cancellation, silicone ear tips, or fancy algorithms can wipe away our frustration with Apple’s wireless headphones and their egregious disposability.

Listener Questions

This week, we’re taking things old school and going back through our Reddit AMA that we recently hosted. We thought it would be a good idea to revisit it and answer some of the frequently-asked questions we get.

What is the most common issue you come across besides things like cracked screens and battery replacements?

Since charging ports see a lot of action over the years, they’re a common failure point. But increasingly we’ve been seeing charging ports soldered to the motherboard. So replacing a charging port requires replacing the entire motherboard, which isn’t ideal.

As an independent repair store owner, what can we do to help the right to repair movement?

Contact your representatives and tell them that you deserve your right to repair! Invite them to your repair shop and show them around. Giving them a first-hand look into the world of repair might motivate them to make a change.

iPhone screen replacements you have on stock, are these original apple displays? or very good quality 3rd party displays?

Our displays are third-party, but we’re very picky about our suppliers and work very closely with them so that the replacement displays we sell are the best third-party displays on the market.

What’s your favorite screw head?

We each have our favorites: Phillips, Torx, Hex, and JIS. Listen to the episode to find out why!

Have a Question You Want Answered on Repair Radio?

You can email your repair questions to repairradio@ifixit.com, or tag us on Twitter and include the hashtag #RepairRadio in your tweet. Your question can be anything repair-related, whether it’s how to fix something, tools you should buy, maintenance advice, or anything in between. We’ll pick some of our favorite questions and answer them on the podcast! And if you have general feedback about the podcast, we’d love to hear that as well!

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