The new AirPods Max headphones have plenty going for them. But “easy to take apart” apparently isn’t among their positive attributes.
Our friends over at iFixit have published the first installment of their AirPods Max teardown and — while it’s too early to know for certain whether these are going to any more repairable than the significantly tinier AirPods and AirPods Pro — the early signs show that they’re not particularly easy to gain access to.
As part of the teardown, iFixit X-rayed the new headphones. That revealed a few interesting insights, such as the fact that both battery cells are in the same ear cup, while the opposite ear cup just has empty space. (iFixit has yet to find the counterweight, although presumably there’s one there somewhere.)
Initial inspection of the headphones also showed “no obvious connectors,” which would make it easy to swap out batteries. However, these could be hidden. Replacing the batteries is no easy job, though. While there are “friendly screws” which suggest it can be opened, the disassembly process involves melting parts that have been glued in place.
The first AirPods Max teardown
iFixit promises to release more information about its AirPods Max teardown over the coming days. This, ultimately, will reveal whether these are e-waste-to-be or headphones that you’ll be able to repair if things go wrong. Given that these are pretty darn pricey at $549, you’d hope that repairing them is possible. But repairability hasn’t always been a strong point of Apple’s.
Have you gotten your hands (and ears) on a new pair of AirPods Max yet? Let us know in the comments below.