Ipod classic 6.5th gen(120GB) :: improved drive + battery.

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    I was asked by a colleague to help with their Ipod classic which had started to misbehave. The unit had been dropped a couple times over a period of 7 years. The issue now was all the music was being identified by the ipod as Other and not Audio under About. That meant no music was visible anymore.
    First thing was to try putting the ipod in disk mode, in-order to perform a chkdsk in windows but that would stall out causing issues, the drive would un-mount, becoming invisible. Second option was more destructive, it would mean formatting the drive then doing a recovery on it. Ipod drives are usually formatted in a FAT32 partition. In windows 10, formatting the ipod to fat32 was not possible. I decided to search around a bit, I found AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, which works well considering it is also free.
    For recovery, Runtime Software has GetDataBack for FAT. Recovery took a while to scan then I would proceed to copy the files to another drive in the same pc. Never restore data to the same hard drive you’re trying to recover. Now I had the music back, attempting to use Itunes to copy files back would still stall. Drive was dying, a replacement was needed if this ipod was to ever function properly again.

============================= Next part of the adventure =============================

First things first, head over to ifixit, pull a guide on how to repair an ipod. Here is the [link]
I used a few tools that were a bit rudimentary see the pictures below. I would attack the seems from the left then work my way up to the top then right and head towards the bottom of the ipod.
You may open images in a new tab for even larger versions.

============================= Next part of the adventure =============================

    The following items were acquired for the upgrade.
1.) SanDisk X300 mSATA 128GB SATA III — possible issues:: [Link]
2.) 2000mAh battery replacement — issues encountered. — [Link]
3.) iFlash SATA adapter [Link]
4.) StarTech SAT32MSAT257 mSATA SSD to 2.5in SATA Adapter [Link]

    I will start with the issues that I faced while attempting this upgrade. First issue was with the Sandisk X300 msata drive. Newegg and SanDisk disclosed no information about power draw anywhere on the pictures of the product. The old Toshiba drive drew around 500mA @ 3.3V but since the Sandisk drive lacked any information I had to buy it just to find that it too was 3.3V but @ 2A. Images attached below.
    The other issue was with the battery replacement, the battery used too much room for the back cover to fully seal properly. The problem was if you used the iFlash sata in conjunction with the 2000mAh then it meant you could not seal the back cover. The larger battery is meant to be used with the original toshiba drive, the dilemma! So I had to revert to the old original battery in-order for iflash sata, the msata(128gb) to fit in the chassis. Also the battery cable was short, leading me to macgyver it into the port. The other option? Get a thicker back cover. *** Will update with info later ***

============================= Final thoughts =============================

     The startech adapter was used for formatting the msata to FAT32. Itunes can then be used to restore the ipod to factory settings, it took maybe two tries for it work. The rest was done by just drag/drop all the recovered music towards ITunes Device->Music. It ran hot while syncing, which is normal for about 4400 songs. 🙂 This is using the stock battery, I was able to get this many hours non-stop.
*** After 12hrs of playback(35% battery left), the temperature is around 27C or less ***
     As far as the extended battery and the back case? I’m in communication with the seller for just a thicker back case. Will update this later with more information. -Dated Jan 22/23 2016

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