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Macfixit Australia Blog

  • Apple Creates Webpage to Check Activation Lock Status on iOS Devices

    Posted on October 2, 2014 by admin

    The release of iOS7 has given iCloud users the ability to prevent anyone from erasing or activating their iDevices without entering their Apple ID and password first.

    This feature is designed to prevent mobile devices from being stolen and it has helped to reduce iPhone-related theft in Major cities. However it turned out to be an issue for the iPhone's second hand market. The feature must be disabled before a device is passed on or sold to another person. Failure to do so, renders the device unusable for the new owner.

    From now on you can very easily check online if the device is locked before your purchase it. Just enter the IMEI or Serial number on this page. If the lock is ON you'll need to make sure the current user disable it by going to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings. If the lock is OFF, you're good to go as the device can be erased by anyone.

    Activation Lock

    This post was posted in How To, Tips/Trick

  • iPhone 6 and 6 Plus teardown

    Posted on September 19, 2014 by admin

    Once again our good friends at iFixit have come all the way down to our office in North Melbourne to do their famous iPhone teardown.


    Thanks to the magic of time zones,  Australia is the first country to have the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus release worldwide.  This is why iFixit flew from California to get their hands on the new phones on the very first hour of release.

    You can follow their live teardown here.

    If you need a case to protect yours you can find some here for the iPhone 6 or here for the iPhone 6 Plus.

    This post was posted in How To, News

  • Apple Initiates iPhone 5 Battery Replacement Program

    Posted on August 27, 2014 by admin

    Apple has begun an iPhone 5 Battery Replacement Program to replace the batteries of a small percentage of iPhone 5 units that have a faulty battery resulting in a shorter battery life and longer, more frequent charging times.

    iPhone 5 devices exhibiting battery issues were sold between September of 2012 and January of 2013 and are eligible for a free battery replacement.

    "Apple has determined that a very small percentage of iPhone 5 devices may suddenly experience shorter battery life or need to be charged more frequently. The affected iPhone 5 devices were sold between September 2012 and January 2013 and fall within a limited serial number range.

    If your iPhone 5 is experiencing these symptoms and meets the eligibility requirements noted below, Apple will replace your iPhone 5 battery, free of charge."

    Apple says the issue affects only a "limited serial number range." iPhone 5 users can input their serial numbers on Apple's replacement site to find out whether their phones need a new battery. Those who do have a faulty battery can get a replacement through an Apple Authorized Service Provider, an Apple Retail Store, or through Apple Technical support.

    Users who already paid to replace their batteries will be eligible to receive a refund for the cost of the battery from Apple. Apple's support site says the program covers iPhone 5 batteries for two years after the first retail sale of the unit or until March 1, 2015, whichever provides longer coverage. Replacements will be available in Australia on August 29.

    In addition to the new Battery Replacement Program, Apple also has a replacement program for iPhone 5 units that have a faulty sleep/wake button, which also provides repairs at no cost. Some iPhone 5s units have also experienced faulty battery life but Apple opted to reach out individually to affected users rather than implementing a replacement program for those devices.

    Source : macrumors.com

    This post was posted in Uncategorized

  • What is the difference between SATA I, SATA II and SATA III?

    Posted on August 1, 2014 by admin

    This is a question that our customer service representatives get asked almost every week and there is a reason why. While most people know what SATA is, it get's quite confusing to differentiate between the different revisions of the interface, here is a quick explanation :

    SATA I (revision 1.x) interface, formally known as SATA 1.5Gb/s, is the first generation SATA interface running at 1.5 Gb/s. The bandwidth throughput, which is supported by the interface, is up to 150MB/s.

    SATA II (revision 2.x) interface, formally known as SATA 3Gb/s, is a second generation SATA interface running at 3.0 Gb/s. The bandwidth throughput, which is supported by the interface, is up to 300MB/s.

    SATA III (revision 3.x) interface, formally known as SATA 6Gb/s, is a third generation SATA interface running at 6.0Gb/s. The bandwidth throughput, which is supported by the interface, is up to 600MB/s. This interface is backwards compatible with SATA 3 Gb/s interface.

    SATA II specifications provide backward compatibility to function on SATA I ports. SATA III specifications provide backward compatibility to function on SATA I and SATA II ports. However, the maximum speed of the drive will be slower due to the lower speed limitations of the port.

    Special note for specific 2009 iMacs, 2008-2010 MacBooks & 2008-2009 MacBook Pros.

    We highly recommend the use of a SATA 2.0 (3Gb/s) SSD such as the OWC Mercury Electra 3G for the following Macs:

    • iMac10,1
    • iMac11,1
    • MacBook5,1
    • MacBook6,1
    • MacBook7,1
    • MacBookPro5,1
    • MacBookPro5,2
    • MacBookPro5,3
    • MacBookPro5,4
    • MacBookPro5,5

    While a 6G SSD does function, it will only do so at SATA Revision 1.0 (1.5Gb/s, 150MB/s) speeds rather that the SATA Revision 2.0 (3.0Gb/s 300MB/s) speed the computer can deliver.

    What about the future ?

    SATA III is starting to show some limits now with the latest generation of  Thunderbolt 2 (20Gb/s) is showing up everywhere. With the ongoing race against speed it seems that the next step for quicker storage will be towards PCI SSD that will allow us to get over the limitation of SATA connectors.

    This post was posted in OWC / Newer Technology, Product recommendation, Tips/Trick and was tagged with OWC / Newer Technology, SATA, I, II, III, PCI, SSD, Mercury Electra

  • [BREAKING] More iPhone 6 photos

    Posted on June 10, 2014 by admin

    This morning we've received some more photos of what should be the next iPhone (iPhone 6).

    We believe the photos to be genuine, they are from a reliable source in China that has previously sent us photos of products that have proven to be legitimate after official Apple product launches.

    In line with the previous shots, the Apple logo is cut out of the back cover.

    This is probably to be used for an antenna and avoid interferences from the metal case.

    The front side photos clearly show the Touch ID home button as well as what seems to be a relocated Power/Mute button. Moving it from the top to the edge make its accessibility easier as the device gets larger.







    This post was posted in News and was tagged with Rumours, Back, Parts, iPhone 6, Photos, Front

  • Glossary

    Posted on June 5, 2014 by admin

    Bit - A binary digit (either 0 or 1); it is the most basic unit of data that can be recognised and processed by a computer. 

    Byte - A group of adjacent binary digits that a computer processes as a unit to form a character such as the letter "C". A byte consists of eight bits.

    Cache - A small, but fast memory that transparently improves the performance of a larger, but slower memory or storage device.
    The bigger the cache, the faster the drive.

    Cookie - A small piece of information you may be asked to accept when connecting to certain servers via a web browser. It is used throughout your session as a means of identifying you. A cookie is specific to, and sent only to, the server that generated it.

    Digitiser - A device used to convert analog signals into digital signals. In the case of a mobile phones, this device would be the glass that covers the LCD.
    If the glass is shattered but the image underneath is still good then you just need to replace the Digitiser, not the LCD.

    HDD (Hard Drive Disk) - A data storage device used for storing and retrieving digital information using rapidly rotating disks (platters) coated with magnetic material.
    The most common form of storage out there. You can get inexpensive, large storage capacities using this technology.

    LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) - Refers to the flat panel display, electronic visual display, or video display that uses liquid crystals to display an image with the help of a backlight.
    The part that actually displays the image.

    LED (Light-Emitting Diode) Display - A flat panel display, which uses an array of light-emitting diodes as a video display. It can also be used as the source of light to backlight an LCD.
    The part behind the LCD that is needed to see the picture.

    OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) - Designates a replacement part made by the manufacturer of the original part.

    Refurbished - Refers to products that have been previously returned to a manufacturer or vendor for various reasons. Refurbished products are normally tested for functionality and defects before they are sold, and thus are the approximate equivalent of certified pre-owned cars. Synonymous with "used", "reconditioned", "remanufactured", "refreshed", "recycled", or "repaired”.

    • Cases and Bags: Usually returned to the distributor after a change of mind return. Checked and repacked; warranty may vary.
    • Computer, iPhone and iPad Replacement Parts: Usually the only parts we’re able to source. Either returned to factory, repaired and tested or removed from machines that have been deemed faulty for some other reason not related to the refurbished part. May have scratches and/or small dents.
    • External Storage: Usually returned to the distributor after a change of mind. Tested and repacked; warranty may vary.
    • Internal Hard Drive: Usually returned to the manufacturer after a fault, repaired and tested. Comes re-certified with a new warranty.

    RMA (Return Merchandise Authorisation)
    - Also called Return Goods Authorisation (RGA) is a part of the process of returning a product in order to receive a repair, replacement or refund during the product's warranty period. The purchaser of the product must contact the manufacturer (or distributor or retailer) to obtain authorisation to return the product. The resulting RMA or RGA number must be displayed on or included in the returned product's packaging; no returns are accepted without this number.

    RPM (Revolutions Per Minute) - A measure of the frequency of a rotation. It annotates the number of turns completed in one minute around a fixed axis.
    The higher the RPM, the faster the drive. Lower RPM will be more quiet and preserve power.

    SSD (Solid-State Drive) - A data storage device, sometimes called a solid-state disk or electronic disk, that uses integrated circuit assemblies as memory to store data persistently.
    Very fast drive that will speed up any new or old computer.

    Third Party - Designates a replacement part not made by the manufacturer of the original part.
    A cheaper option than the OEM parts yet almost impossible to see any difference once installed.

    This post was posted in Tips/Trick

  • [BREAKING] iPhone 6 Rear Cover Photo

    Posted on May 29, 2014 by admin

    We have just received from our contact in China a photo of what seems to be the back of an iPhone 6.

    We believe the picture to be genuine as we have previously received leaked product pics in the past from the same source that have also proven to be legitimate after official Apple product launches.

    iPhone 6-Back-Cover

    Rumours claims that the iPhone 6 (due to be release later this year) is going to come in a larger size of 4.7" which fits the proportions of this photo.

    As always Macfixit Australia will provide replacement parts and advices to help you fix your Apple device, so stick around people.

    This post was posted in News and was tagged with Rumours, Photo, Back, Parts, iPhone 6

  • Mercury Elite Pro Dual Now Available in 10TB capacity

    Posted on May 14, 2014 by admin

    Other World Computing recently added a new 10TB capacity for the Mercury Elite Pro line of external dual-bay high performance storage enclosures, in addition to OWC’s existing collection of Thunderbolt interface storage products.

    High Performance Two-Bay Design

    The drive is available in up to a 10TB total storage capacity, adding tremendous storage and throughput to any computer with a Thunderbolt. Applications such as A/V post-production, music, graphics, data management, and Time Machine backups are bolstered, with data boosted to sustained rates of 442MB/s to read and 424MB/s to write.

    Flexible To Your Needs

    The drive supports individual access for two previously installed drives. This provides hardware RAID and works nicely with RAID 0, RAID 1, Span and Independent Modes. You have the option of choosing the best combination of speed, storage room and performance to fulfill your needs.

    Convenient, Flexible RAID Settings

    The Mercury Elite Pro Dual comes equipped for Plug-and-Play use in RAID 0, allowing it to “stripe” information across the two drives to create the highest-speed backup possible. A selector switch allows you to move into three other modes; RAID 1(real-time writing of information for live activity redundancy); Span (combines both drives into a one convenient volume); and Independent Mode (manage booth drives individually).

    Compatible With Brand-New and Older Macs and PCs

    With a USB 3.0 port included with two Thunderbolt ports and high-quality cables, the drive is easy to install and ready to go for most older Macs, along with 2013 models, and a variety of PCs. Transfer speeds of up to 442MB/s are provided and can be moved to different systems. This takes advantage of both its supported interfaces and its interoperability, which provides maximum backup performance and flexibility.

    There are six Prosumer Models available with this product :

    There is also an "Add Your Own Drives"available.

    All Pro Dual models come ready for use with connecting cables, a disk utility software bundle and an industry-leading three-year warranty.

    This post was posted in OWC / Newer Technology and was tagged with Thunderbolt, apple mac, Computers, Storage

  • Throwing the Baby out with the Bathwater ? - Mini Stack Max

    Posted on May 14, 2014 by admin

    Both the Apple Mac and the Personal Computer blueprint are doing away with optical drives. Computers are beginning to look different, instead of all the integrated equipment that one usually associates with a computer, computers are becoming merely screens, keyboards, a charging ports and one Universal Serial Bus (or USB) port. Some users may believe that they need nothing more. However, as with most technological ‘advances’, you may lose much by discarding the old completely and rushing to embrace the new and may want to add a little something to your cutting edge computing technology.

    There is a way to enjoy using a computer, which combines the best of the old with some exciting new features. The Newer Tech Mini Stack MAX has an optical drive, which you can use as a Blu-ray DVD/CD drive. It also features an enclosure, housing a hard drive, with a huge capacity, a USB hub and an SD card reader. Those wanting storage, connectivity easy transfer for photos and video, simple plug and play, ability to quickly charge iPhones and other digital devices and the convenience of an optical drive will find it all in the Mini Stack MAX.

    Although originally designed to accompany Apple Mac mini, the Mini stack MAX also offers personal computer owners similar advantages. It is small and compact. Its chic design complements any PC or Mac. The Mini Stack MAX allows you to completely reboot and back up your data. The three USB ports allow you to power and charge external digital devices and the SD card reader gives you a quick and easy way to transfer photographs and video from digital cameras or smart phones.

    Owners of new computers, needing greater hard drive space, a DVD, CD, or Blu-ray computer connection or more ports would be advised to consider the Mini stack MAX. It provides the only four in one solution currently available. The Newer Tech Mini Stack MAX provides all the necessary technology in a compact, practical way. Personal computers and Macs continue to evolve and you can throw out the bathwater and keep the baby or in other words have the new technology along with the best of the old.

    This post was posted in OWC / Newer Technology, Product recommendation and was tagged with Blu-ray, Apple Macintosh, Computers, Storage

  • Comparison of 6 Thunderbolt Docks

    Posted on April 16, 2014 by admin

    It's a common problem. You want to be able to connect all your cool peripherals to your computer, but doing so is tedious and messy. What if there was a way to connect everything to a single point, and then just have the one thing to plug into your computer? It turns out that there is! That's exactly the functionality that Thunderbolt Docks provide. Below, you'll find a quick comparison of several different models that will help you pick the right dock for you.

    A quick overview for those who aren't sure what we're talking about. In terms of connectivity and data transfer, there are two standards to take note of. USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt. USB 3.0 is more universally applied, while Thunderbolt is Apple specific. On the other hand, Thunderbolt allows for data transfers roughly twice as fast as the best speeds you'll get out of USB 3.0, and Thunderbolt 2 technology will let you transfer at rates even faster than that, so if you've got a fairly up to date Mac Pro, there are few reasons to adopt the slower technology.

    And what are we connecting, exactly? Storage. Small storage devices like external hard drives or huge, vast amounts of storage in the form of DAS, which stands for “Direct Attached Storage.” In simplest terms, this is an enclosure that houses a number of high capacity disk drives you can attach to your computer. (Note here that there's also a thing called NAS, which is like DAS, but specifically geared for use in a network environment, whereas DAS is designed to be connected to, and used by a single computer). It is possible that you may have multiple enclosures (“towers”) of hard drives to store your data on. All can be attached to your computer using the Thunderbolt ports outlined below.

    See the whole table here.

    Notes on Review Methodology

    For each product, we'll examine and report on a number of statistics. These will include:

    • Number of Thunderbolt Ports
    • Number of USB 3.0 Ports
    • Number of eSATA Ports
    • Number of FireWire Ports
    • Number of Ethernet Ports
    • Number of HDMI Ports
    • Number of DVI Ports
    • Number of Audio Ports
    • Price

    From here, we'll examine the data in a number of different ways to see which device would best suit your needs.

    Let's get started:

    Akitio Thunder Dock
    Thunderbolt Ports: 2
    USB 3.0 Ports: 2
    eSATA Ports: 2
    FireWire Ports: 1
    Ethernet Ports: 0
    HDMI Ports: 0
    DVI Ports: 0
    Audio Ports: 0
    Price: $349.99

    Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock
    Thunderbolt Ports: 2
    USB 3.0 Ports: 3
    eSATA Ports: 0
    FireWire Ports: 1
    Ethernet Ports: 1
    HDMI Ports: 0
    DVI Ports: 0
    Audio Ports: 2
    Price: $299.99

    Caldigit Thunderbolt Station
    Thunderbolt Ports: 2
    USB 3.0 Ports: 3
    eSATA Ports: 0
    FireWire Ports: 0
    Ethernet Ports: 1
    HDMI Ports: 1
    DVI Ports: 0
    Audio Ports: 2
    Price: $349.99

    LaCie Thunderbolt eSATA Hub
    Thunderbolt Ports: 2
    USB 3.0 Ports: 0
    eSATA Ports: 2
    FireWire Ports: 0
    Ethernet Ports: 0
    HDMI Ports: 0
    DVI Ports: 0
    Audio Ports: 0
    Price: $179.99

    Matrox DS1/DVI
    Thunderbolt Ports: 1
    USB 3.0 Ports: 1
    eSATA Ports: 0
    FireWire Ports: 0
    Ethernet Ports: 1
    HDMI Ports: 0
    DVI Ports: 1
    Audio Ports: 2
    Price: $429.99

    Matrox DS1/HDMI
    Thunderbolt Ports: 1
    USB 3.0 Ports: 1
    eSATA Ports: 0
    FireWire Ports: 0
    Ethernet Ports: 1
    HDMI Ports: 1
    DVI Ports: 0
    Audio Ports: 2
    Price: $429.99

    Examining the data in various ways, we come up with these results:

    If price is your biggest concern, then the clear winner has got to be the LaCie Thunderbolt eSATA hub. It's two Thunderbolt ports will allow you to access copious amounts of storage, and the eSATA ports will surely come in handy as well (note that it is one of only two models that even has eSATA hubs), but with only four ports overall, this unit won't connect as many devices as the other options on this list.

    DVI/HDMI Connectivity:
    If you're looking for these connectivity features in particular, then your choice is simple, as there's only one dock with a DVI port, and two with an HDMI port. Note that devices with this type of connectivity tend to be on the upper end of the price range for the devices we're comparing. Keep in mind that you can also use a Mini displayport adapter on the second Thunderbolt port to add more video connectivity.

    Thunderbolt Ports:
    All of the docks listed here have two of these, save for the Matrox models, which have only one each. Having 2 Thunderbolt port is a huge plus as you can then daisy chain up to 6 devices together.

    USB 3.0 Ports:
    Here, the Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock and the Caldigit Thunderbolt Station are the ones you want to look at. The difference between the two (other than price) is that the Station trades a FireWire port for an HDMI port. Also note that the Belkin USB 3.0 ports are not powered so you may have to have an external power supply that you will need to use with the device connected to the port.

    eSATA Ports:
    If this is what you're looking for, you've got two choices: The Akitio Thunder Dock, and the LaCie eSATA Hub. Which one you pick ultimately comes down to what your second most important feature is.

    FireWire Ports:
    As above, you've got two choices: The Akitio Thunder Dock, and the Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock. Again, the choice you ultimately make here will largely be determined by your second most important feature.

    Ethernet Connectivity:
    Four of the six units compared have Ethernet connectivity, so you've got plenty of choices where this feature is concerned, and can let your decision be guided by your secondary and tertiary needs.

    Audio Connectivity:
    As with Ethernet connectivity, this is a fairly common feature, with four different docks sporting two ports each. Because of that, you've got plenty of options and your decision can be guided by what other sorts of connectivity you're ultimately looking to pair with the audio connections.

    Conclusion :
    It all comes down to what you're planing on connecting to the dock. If you have a MacBook Air or a MacBook Pro Retina, you might want to get an Ethernet port.  A FireWire 800 could be the much appreciated feature if you're planing to upgrade to a new iMac, you could have a look at switching to eSATA though as many FW800 enclosure will have booth.

    So what's the Macfixit recommended Thunderbolt Dock? We recommend the Akitio Thunder Dock or the Caldigit Thunderbolt Station as these offer the most common and flexible connections.

    This post was posted in Comparison and was tagged with Thunderbolt, Dock, Extension, Apple, Mac

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