When it comes to headphones — particularly those of the in-ear variety — DIY repairs are generally a no-go. If it’s a frayed wire shorting out, sure, grab your soldering iron and get to tinkering… but if it’s anything more complicated than that, you’re probably looking at buying a new pair.
It’s no surprise, then, that Apple’s itty-bitty wireless in-ear AirPods aren’t something that you’ll have any luck patching up yourself. Even if you get them apart, they’re never going back together the same way.
iFixit got their hands on a pair of AirPods and immediately started gutting them, as they do with just about every major gadget release. Even with a deep knowledge of how these things tend to fit together, they weren’t able to get the AirPods disassembled without a fight.
“The earbud is a hot mess of cables and adhesive,” they write in their teardown “and none of it seems particularly keen on coming out.”
Things got particularly iffy once iFixit started cracking away at the AirPod charging case, at which point they needed a Dremel and dental tools to get to the bottom of things. Fortunately, iFixit brought back a ton of awesome photos to sate your curiosity — including an xray shot of the charging case, showing off what it looks like inside sans destruction.
For anyone who might have gotten here by Googling “How to fix broken Apple Airpod” while standing over an AirPod and a pile of tools, let it be known: don’t do it. If you want to gut it for the sake of curiosity, go ahead — just know that it’s an autopsy, not a rescue mission.
iFixit’s final “repairability” score comes in at 0/10, a score they generally reserve for devices that fall in the “Don’t even try fixing it.” category.
Care more about how the headphones perform day-to-day as opposed to how they’ll do under the knife? Check out Matthew Panzarino’s review here.