If you're curious to see the nuts and bolts powering the Nintendo Switch, the folks at iFixit have you covered. The tech repair website gave its usual teardown treatment to Nintendo's new console, revealing the inner workings of the console, Joy-Con controllers and the Switch's surprisingly simplistic TV dock.
The big takeaway? The Switch is pretty easy to repair — if you're willing to void your warranty, that is.
The Switch's main tablet unit doesn't seem all that hard to pop open, with only a few screws keeping you from removing the rear panel and exposing the guts beneath. The first thing you'll probably notice is the console's 4,310-mAh battery, which is surprisingly huge considering it only eeked out about 3 hours of endurance in our testing.
Upon further surgery, the iFixit folks ripped out a dedicated component that houses the console's headphone jack and game card reader, as well as the main chipset that shows off the system's custom Nvidia Tegra processor and 4GB of RAM, the latter of which was expected but never confirmed by Nintendo.
We also get to see the inner workings of the Switch's Joy-Con controllers, which pack fairly large 525-mAh batteries and what appears to be an NFC reader for use with Nintendo's Amiibo toys. We're still not sure what exactly powers the controller's unique HD rumble capabilities, but it's definitely in there.
The Switch dock that lets you play Nintendo's console on your TV? It's mostly a big hunk of plastic with a small chipset for its power and HDMI ports. This isn't too surprising given that the dock's only job is to beam the Switch to your TV, but it's interesting to see so little hardware on a gadget that's key to the Switch experience — especially considering that extra Switch docks cost a whopping $90.
iFixit gave the Nintendo Switch a fairly strong repairability score of 8 out of 10, praising the system's easily removable screws and modular components and battery packs. However, the teardown does note that replacing or repairing the Switch's display could prove costly and complicated.
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Naturally, self-repairing your Switch will void Nintendo's warranty, which covers "manufacturing or workmanship defects" for the first 12 months after purchase. However, the warranty does not cover physical damage such as a cracked screen, so you should probably keep your Switch in a protective case.
In our full review, the Nintendo Switch's ability to seamlessly transform from a home console to a portable games machine was enough to turn Sherri L. Smith into a Nintendo fan again. However, the system has its fair share of flaws that Nintendo would be wise to address soon, with owners reporting such issues as dead pixels, Joy-Con syncing problems and scratched screens from using the dock.