PS4 gets the iFixit teardown treatment and a high repairability rating

While some people were buying the PlayStation 4 this morning and others were shooting it with .50 cal rifles, the iFixit website decided to rush out a teardown article on Sony's latest game console. Their ultimate verdict is that the PS4 is one that is fairly easy to take apart and, if necessary, repair.

The article gives the PS4 an 8 out of 10 for repairability. On the plus side, there are no adhesives in the console that keep things together and the hard drive can be removed and replaced without voiding the PS4's warranty. However, the console does have security screws that could keep ordinary users from taking apart and repairing their PS4 and the fan inside the console requires a lot of the device to be disassembled beforehand just to clean it.

One thing the article did mention is that a few early PS4 owners have reported issues with their console units, and some have centered on the HDMI port. It seems a piece of metal in the port had removed some of the connecting "teeth" in the included HDMI cable. iFixit says that if your PS4 is experiencing similar problems, it could be because the HDMI port has been bent or damaged.

Source: iFixit | Image via iFixit

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tell how easy it is to fix to all the people getting PS4 day one brick edition. if it is so easy to fix, how come nobody can? goes to show ifix it is nothing but scores that don't tie to reality. instead they should call their scores how easy is to tear something apart....fixing is another matter.

Not surprised, Sony took it apart themselves for everyone to see. Seemed not too difficult, if you can remember how to reassemble it.

dead.cell said,
Not surprised, Sony took it apart themselves for everyone to see. Seemed not too difficult, if you can remember how to reassemble it.

Always the challenge with their products. I remember struggling with PS2's and their daughterboard.

srbeen said,

Always the challenge with their products. I remember struggling with PS2's and their daughterboard.

I have shared your pain. On that note, the design team behind their optical drive assemblies should go back to producing pocket watches.

Spicoli said,
It's a lot easier now with digital cameras than the old days. We used to make sketches to remember how things went back together.

I have access to digital cameras, still make sketches instead

It is stupid giving stuff like this a repairability rating because 'most' people today never try and repair this stuff themselves. If it breaks take it to Sony and let the experts look after it. They may even give you a new one to replace the broken one.

derekaw said,
It is stupid giving stuff like this a repairability rating because 'most' people today never try and repair this stuff themselves. If it breaks take it to Sony and let the experts look after it. They may even give you a new one to replace the broken one.

I disagree, devices fail outside of warranty and members of the public seek out people to see if it can be repaired for a lower price than the official channels charge. This serves as a great initial resource for both people repairing the device and enthusiasts who want to know how to open the device in a controlled manner to potentially fix it themselves.

Sony is always good at making Hardware (except for the speakers, same low quality speakers they used in their laptops are now in their dualshock 4), their problem is the software and Network not hardware.

Strange. Now decent comments are getting deleted.

What I said was exact replication what is going on here and only stating the fact that it clearly doesn't suck when it comes to repairability (amongst other things)

The Xbone betterl get a 10/10 repair rating since it is so huge. It would seem that there was not a lot of engineering effort put into it.

neonspark said,
iFix it, most useless site on the web.

Absolutely nothing wrong with iFix it's content and methods, your statement holds no water.

Spicoli said,
I don't why they put those in there. Is it some lawyer thing? Like if they use normal screws someone could claim it was meant to user serviceable?

Pretty much, if it's not a philips head then it's generally considered to be authorised repair service only (Something that you can argue a lot in your favour with HP about on their NC business line of laptops).

After performing many console repairs in my lifetime, it's quite welcome to see devices of this price calibre being easier to take apart as necessary. Should help reduce the amount of waste through uneconomical repair also.
Current generation (PS3, Vaio) and previous generation (PS2, any vaio) Sony consumer electronics tear downs have always been like peeling an onion (including tears and chance for blood).

My 2010 Vaio is actually pretty easy to take apart, and the other ones I've had to repair have been too. Just a lot of standard Philips screws but nothing special besides that?

Ambroos said,
My 2010 Vaio is actually pretty easy to take apart, and the other ones I've had to repair have been too. Just a lot of standard Philips screws but nothing special besides that?

Could be Sony have been getting better at it as of late, last model I had to take apart was a 1st gen i7 Vaio - components were ok to get to (RAM, HDD) but it was definitely an onion for getting the HSF out of the device to replace the cremated silicone grease.

Should the repair ability be a concern for either boxes for consumers? Both boxes should be built for high MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure), so it doesn't (or shouldn't) matter to the consumer how difficult the console is to repair. I'm a Xbox fan and after watching the Sony teardown video i was very impressed with how Sony designed the box on the inside....but again I don't buy consoles based on how easy they are to repair so it shouldn't be a selling point for either consoles.

I suspect most people looking at reparability are really looking at moding. Even out of warranty, you can usually ship it back and get it repaired for less than buying the parts and doing it yourself.

Really? I remember spending $7 on a 360 DVD drive lens and $9 on a Wii lens shipped to my door. Just the out of pocket shipping to get the unit to their repair facility would exceed $20, even if they did the repair for free! PS3 wouldn't turn on, $0.46 transistor was the issue... 360 Red Ringing? just quite literally pop the console in the oven for a bit and it'll work again, for a bit. Electronic repair is NOT all too pricy, its finding the problem that is. Once you found the problem its very possible you don't got the gear to fix it. the transistor is only 46 cents but you need to buy them by the 1000's. The oven trick did get the 360 working again, but it'll break again, and just the gear to properly fix it (reball CPU/GPU) is $3000+

Generally the only things to go are things that physically move. switches, lenses, and motors (fan/disc eject/spindle) Any other problem and you will see the diminishing rate of return blindly chasing them.

I want to see how long the Xbox One and PS4 last compare to older consoles. I have a NES, PS3, PS2, PS1 that all work great still. There are alot of 35 yr old Magnavox Odysseys that still work today.

Spicoli said,
They have stone axes that are 10s of thousands of years old and still work.

Thats not really relevant to my comment, but ok. I was just saying that newer consoles arent lasting as long as older ones. The more things they add, the higher the percentage they may break down.

Lone Wanderer Chicken said,
I want to see how long the Xbox One and PS4 last compare to older consoles. I have a NES, PS3, PS2, PS1 that all work great still. There are alot of 35 yr old Magnavox Odysseys that still work today.

Lack of general cleanliness and smoking are the main reasons a console will die in my opinion.

I have a C64 manufactured the year of my birth that still allows Dizzy to load and a Mk1 SEGA Master System that still loads up into Snail race.

Lone Wanderer Chicken said,

Thats not really relevant to my comment, but ok. I was just saying that newer consoles arent lasting as long as older ones. The more things they add, the higher the percentage they may break down.

If you adjust the durability by the complexity, you'll find the new stuff lasts millions of times longer. Say you stacked enough Odysseys boxes to match the power of a new console and just one of those breaking took them all down?

Lone Wanderer Chicken said,
I want to see how long the Xbox One and PS4 last compare to older consoles. I have a NES, PS3, PS2, PS1 that all work great still. There are alot of 35 yr old Magnavox Odysseys that still work today.

HD will be gone within 20 years at most, newer technology = more heat and more tightly packed, so a 20 year old NES still works great and is using huge DIP components and the CPU die etc. is going to be relatively large compared to the x86 cores on here which are going to be much tightly packed, produce more heat so I doubt they'll last as long as a NES.

Lone Wanderer Chicken said,
I want to see how long the Xbox One and PS4 last compare to older consoles. I have a NES, PS3, PS2, PS1 that all work great still. There are alot of 35 yr old Magnavox Odysseys that still work today.

Consoles with optical drives, hard drives and hot running components will never last as long as the old consoles like the Odyssey or 2600 in my opinion. Optical drives are especially unreliable.

The ifixit repairability rating is compelte nonsense.
If ANYTHING on the main board goes (more likely than anything else going) you cannot fix it AT ALL so the true repairability rating like with most surface mounted electronics is a big fat ZERO.

n_K said,
The ifixit repairability rating is compelte nonsense.
If ANYTHING on the main board goes (more likely than anything else going) you cannot fix it AT ALL so the true repairability rating like with most surface mounted electronics is a big fat ZERO.

You mean YOU can't fix it. I am quite capable of replacing things like capacitors, or even tiny surface mount components.

DARKFiB3R said,

You mean YOU can't fix it. I am quite capable of replacing things like capacitors, or even tiny surface mount components.


No, I mean YOU can't fix it. I've got a few chips with a few hundred BGA pins on them, you'd feel fully comfortable removing them from boards, getting replacements (which you won't get unless you salvage a board) and reattaching them securely? No, precisely.
Passive components aren't the problem with electronics unless you're talking about 20+ years of use, it's chips.

n_K said,

No, I mean YOU can't fix it. I've got a few chips with a few hundred BGA pins on them, you'd feel fully comfortable removing them from boards, getting replacements (which you won't get unless you salvage a board) and reattaching them securely? No, precisely.
Passive components aren't the problem with electronics unless you're talking about 20+ years of use, it's chips.

BGA = Ball Grid Array, ergo, no pins. But yeah, I can manually do chip transplants with a hot air work station, or a decent iron, depending in the chip.

I disagree about component failure. Unless it a known issue, it's a good rule of thumb to check the caps first.

DARKFiB3R said,

BGA = Ball Grid Array, ergo, no pins. But yeah, I can manually do chip transplants with a hot air work station, or a decent iron, depending in the chip.

I disagree about component failure. Unless it a known issue, it's a good rule of thumb to check the caps first.


In that case, your setup costs more than an entire new PS4. Unless you got cheap equipment off ebay, in which case I wouldn't trust your ability to change components.

Normal capacitors are incredibly unlikely to fail within 20 years, electrolytic will generally fail once/twice/triple-fold within that time (which is years away) but it's down to how much the device is used, how it works, the temperature of the components, the quality of the components, etc. and I don't think sony's going to skrimp like a dodgy PSU manufacturer in getting the absolute cheapest knock-off electrolytic capacitors that fail quickly, like what happened in the 'great 2k capacitor fail' scandal a few years ago.
Obviously if some plumb has it running on carpet or in a poorly ventilated area then yes, they're likely to go, but such a person should be reminded why they're an idiot with a swift punch to the face.

Me too, it's my livelihood, I love it and wouldn't swap it for the world. Electronics are getting cheaper so that makes more work for us, keeps the food on the table