iFixit iPad mini Teardown: Stereo Speakers, Samsung Chips

Apple's brand new iPad mini doesn't hit store shelves until Friday, and yet iFixit has already managed to get ahold of one and strip it down to the frame. Inside they found stereo speakers, and video driver chips from Samsung.

iFixit strips down iPad mini before hit officially launchesiFixit strips down iPad mini before hit officially launches

The iPad mini was introduced during a media event in October, along with the fourth generation iPad, Retina Display 13.3-inch MacBook Pro, new iMacs, and new Mac minis. The iPad mini includes a 7.9-inch 1024x768 multitouch display, built-in WiFi and Bluetooth support, front and rear-facing digital cameras, Apple's new Lightning connector, and the teardown revealed stereo speakers, too.

Like other Apple products, the iPad mini isn't designed with user repairs in mind. iFixit needed to remove the glued-in glass face to get inside the tablet, and there are plenty of connectors and cables that can easily break during disassembly.

Once inside, the iFixit team found Samsung's W1235 S6TNMR1X01 display driver chip, and while the display itself doesn't reveal the manufacturer, there's a chance that in at least some iPad minis it's a Samsung part.

Other chips inside the iPad mini come from Hynix, Broadcom, Fairchild, and of course Apple. Like it's full size brother, most of the iPad mini's interior space is filled with batteries.

One bit of good news for repair shops is that the tablet's LCD and front glass aren't fused together. That means they can be replaced independently, which costs customers less. Unfortunately, the Lightning connector is soldered to the logic board, so be careful not to break your since replacing it will be expensive.

Like other Apple products, the iPad mini won't be easy to repair. Thanks to Apple's choice to avoid fusing the LCD to its glass cover, however, broken screens will be a much easier fix for repair shops.

The iPad mini is priced starting at US$329 and will be available in stores Friday morning.