Dealing with a truculent iPod

My second iPod has reached the point of battery senescence. I hadn’t noticed the problem before, primarily because I normally keep the iPod plugged into a charger while I am driving. However, as I tried to update the iPod with some Christmas music, I realized that the thing no longer holds enough charge to complete a sync.

The problem is worsened because of my temporary setup during the Project. I have the single FireWire port on my TiBook tied up by the external 300GB drive that holds my music (and must, therefore, remain attached during the sync). That means I have to connect the iPod to the FireWire port on the back of the external drive, which is, unfortunately, an unpowered port (something I missed when I selected the Venus enclosure). So the iPod has to rely on its flickering battery during the sync and ultimately it fails.

I figured out a workaround this morning—sort of. I ejected and powered down the drive, then reconnected it using the USB connection. I then plugged the iPod into the FireWire port on the back of the TiBook, where it happily charged away. And a good thing, too, because the TiBook only has USB 1.1, which is slow. I think I got about 150 songs onto the device in 45 minutes. But it will do, for now.

The ultimate solution? Well, for one thing, once the Project is done I will be accessing the music files over the network, so there won’t be that problem any more. In the meantime, I think I need to look into battery replacement for the iPod, which means I’ll be updating the iPod Autopsy page with pics from the innards of my 3rd G device. I have some other ideas as well, but will try the battery replacement first to see how it goes.

Update: There’s also an Apple support note on five things to try with an iPod before sending it in for battery replacement. We’ll see.