Found In the Woods

September 29, 2006

New Life

Filed under: Projects,Tech — bsullivan @ 10:28 am

My iPod has what so many iPod owners have had, a senile battery. I purchased this 15GB iPod back in March of 2004. it's a 3rd Generation model, with the four buttons above the scroll wheel. The only series built with this configuration. The next generation used the single click/scroll wheel; a design they still use today.

So this thing gets an awful lot of use. I installed an interface in my VW so that I could take it on the road. I've since stopped listening to CDs and the radio. I got a set of Etymotic Research ER6i headphones so I could listen at night and not disturb my wife. I plug it in when i get to work in the morning and remove it when I leave. Every day. I use it for listening to music, calendar, address book and for transferring files. It's a tool I use every single day and I love it.

So, a few weeks ago when it started misbehaving, I knew it needed a new battery. The strange, recurring behavior that really pushed me over the edge would happen nearly each night as I was listening to the iPod going to bed. When I turn it on, the battery level looked fine and the unit behaved fine. When I would select a song, it would begin playing and then the iPod would suddenly reset itself. On one occasion it reset itself and then started playing with the volume turned all the way up. This is particularly nasty with the in-ear headphones. Ouch. This reset behavior would happen 3-5 times before the unit would finally play a song. Then the battery indicator would read "empty" and would begin to go up. Occasionally after a song or two, the unit would reset itself again. This even happened a few times in my car while plugged into a charger adapter. I'd had enough.

iPod on the operating table

So after considering the Apple $66 iPod Battery Replacement rip-off I decided to go with a tried and true source, Other World Computing. My friend Paul reminded me of their iPod replacement batteries which sell for $30 shipped! And, they come with a set of nylon DIY tools. There's even videos on their site to show how to do it (and just how EASY it is). I HIGHLY recommend this for anyone who's iPod battery is on the fritz and is willing to crack it open and have a try. The install only took me about 5 minutes and was incredibly simple thanks to OWC's instructions and tools. It's also fun to see the guts of the iPod.

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