I’ve disassembled my prototype and I can tell you this:
Everything is soldered onto one motherboard except these things:
- Battery; but it’s glued to the body, so be careful when removing it. It’s really large and really thin so it can break (and explode) while trying to remove.
- SD/SIM tray; it’s held by just 3 small screws, easy to take out, so if you break your SD card tray you can replace it yourself.
- SSD; this one is really easy to replace, just remove that one screw holding it There seems to also be one extra M.2 slot so you should be able to install a second (much shorter) SSD. But there is no screw that holds it. And maybe it will be removed from further prototypes. Or maybe it’s kept for the LTE card?
- Cameras, speakers, microphones, keyboard connector, magnets, buttons and so on are all replaceable. The ports aren’t, however. Maybe only the right side USB port, haven’t checked that. And USB 3.0, type A as well as type-C, are a PITA to re-solder. You need a really tiny microscopic soldering iron for that
Anyway, all this is hidden under the screen. Which is glued. It’s quite hard to remove it without samaging it. I failed at it, but I can give you some advice to avoid doing the same mistakes:
- Take a hairdryer and set it to full power (hot air mode). Heat the bezels about equally, then heat the top area a bit more.
- Start from the top. The top is made of plastic, so if you decide to pry it, there’s less risk of cracking it.
- Continue running the fan, just heat up the area that you want to pry off until it comes off without too much force (with a suction cup).
- Work your way through it clockwise. The right bezel is glued more tightly, as the internal structure that the bezel is glued to is wider. In other places only the very edges of the screen are glued, but the right bezel is glued in its entirety. Like, the whole 1.5cm of bezel.
- Use a suction cup. Everywhere and always. Don’t use prying tools too much. When you heat up an area, pull it off with a suction cup (not too much - the display shouldn’t bend). Just don’t use much force. Try to be as gentle as possible. Then stuck an old credit card (or discount card) under the glass so that it doesn’t glue back in place.
Well, I guess that’s all. Some extra information:
The motherboard is held by 5 screws, but you will have to remove some plastic pieces around the bezels to lift it off. That adds another 14 screws. And then there’s a piece above the battery connector (sort of protection) so that makes 2 more. In total you have 21 screw. But there’s really nothing interesting under the motherboars, so only do this if you’re planning to replace the whole board. Really, nothing to see there.
SSD is held by one screw (like always) and SIM/SD tray has 3 screws holding it. Every piece around the bezels, including buttons piece, magnets and so on, is held by 3 screws (except the front camera with 2 screws) so that makes 26 screws around the bezels. Add 5 on the motherboard, 3 on the SD tray, 1 on the SSD, 2 on the battery connector, and you have a total of 37 screws in the whole device. Unless I missed something. That’s not too bad, given that Surfave Pro 4 had… 70?