Got an old iPod in a drawer? Do not toss it away! An complete sector has arisen devoted totally to bringing old iPods again from the lifeless. I have done the enhance myself, and even though it calls for no soldering, it does maintain a couple traps for the unwary – and that is why I have place together a walkthrough to get you through the full method.

Why revive an iPod?

But wait! What is the level in digging up some crusty, fat old fossil when you have Apple Audio, Spotify, a modern smartphone or an iPod contact? The remedy is beautifully simple – it’s all about storage capability. The iPod Classic turned an enduring icon mostly since it contained a compact, 1.8in 160GB HDD – that was one thing like two-and-a-fifty percent moments extra capacious than its closest competitor, and 10 moments the storage of an Iphone from the very same era. And it turns out that there’s people out there who will use that space – and lots extra who complain about it not being rather ample.

“You can now enhance that fusty old iPod with nearly anything up to a 1TB mSATA SSD.”

Sadly, the demand for 1.8in drives was limited-lived, and so 160GB turned the hard limit for an iPod Classic. Until finally now, that is. Enterprising souls have established 3rd-bash include-in boards which make it feasible to switch the spinning disks of yore with numerous forms of flash storage, and that indicates just one matter: you can now enhance that fusty old iPod with nearly anything up to a 1TB mSATA SSD. That’s ample storage to dwelling extra than three,000 hours of uncompressed 16-bit, 44.1kHz CD-high quality audio

Storage isn’t the only hurdle, of class. One particular problem is that the batteries of a nine-12 months-old iPod are most likely to be relatively underneath their ideal capability. The other is that the generations of iPod Classics able of these types of upgrades are designed from lumps of forged, stamped metallic. Opening these units is not for the faint of coronary heart.

Instruments of the trade

Receiving inside of just one of these items calls for some strange equipment. There are tack-welded springs down the inner sides of the again deal with. These either maintain on tenaciously or break with a momentum-inducing SPANG, ripping out the sensitive headphone-jack ribbon cables and flinging them to the far corner of your workroom. Applying a screwdriver indicates that your again deal with – which is of class already scratched and dented – bends out of form anywhere the screwdriver goes. The most effective way to utilize the required pressure is with a huge, flat, slim, springy but strong object – a wallpaper scraper.
You’ll have to have a couple other equipment, and of class the required enhance areas, but there’s no soldering required to entire the task, so long as your iPod is working (or suffers no bigger affliction than a defunct hard push).

Very first, here’s the buying checklist:

Substitute rear deal with: These are readily available on Amazon and eBay and fluctuate in selling price involving £5 and £25. Given the large forces required to get the old deal with off, and the similarly large likelihood that yours will be battle-scarred, I assume this is a peace-of-head buy just before you start off.

ZIF converter board: There’s a wealthy selection of these. Be aware, however, that some are missold on the big auction/buying sites, with sloppy seller descriptions created by people who have not actually tried the enhance them selves. You can decide for boards that use CompactFlash (CF) or mSATA storage formats: CF has the edge that most house consumers will have a card reader that will get the CF card straight away mSATA has the alternatively distinctive edge of likely up to a full terabyte of storage. Bear in head that you’ll have to have a modest pile of boards and areas to make the mSATA push usable from a Home windows Computer, so that the vital past stage of formatting the card to suit the iPod’s wants can be concluded. I selected a Tarkan Akdam mSATA board, which fitted our seventh-technology iPod, was wonderfully designed, and was suitable with all the mSATA SSDs I tried.

Substitute battery: This is an optional product I found that our authentic battery was in good form, especially offered the a great deal lessen present draw inherent to the SSD. On the other hand, though the again is not clipped on, this will most likely be your only likelihood to place in a new battery. The cause not to – which gained out in the conclusion for us – is that it’s extremely hard to gauge the high quality of 3rd-bash alternative iPod batteries.

A Computer: If you are a Mac-only person, then you’ll wrestle to entire this task, since just one of the vital techniques is to format your SSD as a FAT32 gadget. This isn’t a trouble for modest drives – but the full level of the exercise is to enhance the storage. To do this you have to either do a whole lot of pretty deep, pretty arcane investigate into the boundaries and down sides of FAT32 – or just get Tarkan’s assistance and use the general public area extended format utility he endorses – which operates only on a Computer. Of class you can get spherical that on a MacBook by managing Home windows in a virtual device, but that may possibly be extra problems than it’s value.

An SSD: Appears daft, but really do not forget about that Tarkan and his competition are advertising only the adapter hardware, not the genuine reliable-state push that goes in it. In my circumstance, I applied a relatively humble 64GB mSATA SSD. There’s a computer software limit in iTunes that can prevent you utilizing storage over 128GB with some iPods – but evidently, there are strategies about that also: Tarkan has movies of his 1TB fifth-technology iPod performing just fine.

A pretty modest screwdriver or pair of tweezers: This is for easing open up the pretty modest plastic clamps that secure the three ribbon cables you’ll have to have to detach – the push cable, the backplate cable (for headphones and lock change) and the battery cable.

Upgrading an iPod with an SSD: A stage-by-stage tutorial

1. Eliminate the again deal with.

This is most likely to be destructive, but only to the deal with – even if you pull it off with some pressure, the ribbon connector that backlinks it to the iPod motherboard will pull loose long just before it brings about any damage. The method required is to push a sharp blade involving the aspect joint of the entrance and again covers: glimpse very carefully at our finished circumstance to see how the metallic casting of the entrance is formed underneath the steel stamping of the again – this is the most effective put to push your blade. Do not try to carry on with the blade: you have to have a huge flat apply in there to lever the again away evenly. You can depend on destroying the again in the method, unless you are remarkably fortunate. Don’t forget that there’s a limited ribbon linking the again and entrance, and that there are two pretty loose parts (the battery and the hard push) that will be moving about as soon as the again is introduced.

two. Eliminate the battery

Ease up the brownish plastic clamp on the battery cable connector and detach the battery. Many people forget about that iPods are successfully driven on all the time: transforming the storage subsystem is one thing you really do not want to do though the iPod is active.

three. Eliminate the hard push

Ease the ribbon cable away on the ZIF socket at the foundation of the hard push. This slides parallel to the encounter of the iPod – really do not pull UP, but slide Alongside.

4. Structure the SSD

Structure your mSATA storage card as FAT32. More substantial units will have to have a identified-performing partition device, these types of as the AOMEI Partition Assistant utility proposed by some sellers – take note that this computer software is Computer-only.

5. Install the SSD

Insert the formatted mSATA push into the carrier board. Tarkan’s places the mSATA push on the outside the house and leaves the ribbon cable no cost of pressure: if you are locating that the ribbon’s not long ample, then you’ve been missold an inappropriate board. Mine had minimal horn-formed extensions on the PCB to supply a tunnel for the ribbon when everything’s set up.

six. Set anything again together

Smooth-assemble all the areas – reconnect the backplate cable, fold the mSATA board over and reconnect the battery. The iPod need to wake up and warn you straight away that it wants support: this consists of connecting it to iTunes, which may possibly get a couple of tries and an error message just before reloading the iPod’s OS succeeds. This also calls for the battery to be one hundred% charged just before you start off, because some of the functions on the SATA storage are a bit severe on the iPod’s electrical power usage. Coming in and out of iTunes a couple moments and replugging the USB lead to the iPod may possibly be vital.

7. Fill your iPod with music

Reload your music! Attempt playing a couple tracks just before you get the successfully irrevocable stage of closing up the again of the casing, so that you can be certain the headphone cable and port on your shiny new again are all practical.

And that is it!

You are now the operator of a gloriously retro iPod with a fantastically modern total of storage space. Now all that is remaining is to uncover three,000 hours value of lossless, large-high quality music to actually copy onto it.