Introduction

Upgrade your storage with a new hard drive.

Before opening your iPod, ensure that the hold switch is in the locked position.  The orange bar should be visible, indicating hold is active.
  • Before opening your iPod, ensure that the hold switch is in the locked position. The orange bar should be visible, indicating hold is active.

Insert an opening pick as far as possible into the seam between the plastic front and the metal rear panel, on the right edge of the iPod. You may need to rock the pick back and forth to slide it in farther. Use the opening pick to pry up against the plastic front panel and release five retaining tabs (seen in the third photo).
  • Insert an opening pick as far as possible into the seam between the plastic front and the metal rear panel, on the right edge of the iPod.

    • You may need to rock the pick back and forth to slide it in farther.

  • Use the opening pick to pry up against the plastic front panel and release five retaining tabs (seen in the third photo).

  • Slide the pick along the edge of the iPod and continue prying to release the rest of the retaining tabs.

  • After all five tabs along the right side are free, the case should open easily.

The iPod case is now open, but don't separate the two halves just yet. There is still an orange ribbon cable connecting the headphone jack to the logic board.
  • The iPod case is now open, but don't separate the two halves just yet. There is still an orange ribbon cable connecting the headphone jack to the logic board.

  • Open the case like a book with the dock connector at the top, and lay the rear panel next to the front half of the iPod.

Remember to fold the backplate up the correct direction, otherwise you might break this cable.

iTronics Repair - Reply

Use a plastic tool or your fingernails to carefully disconnect the orange headphone jack cable. Be sure to pull  straight up on the connector, not the cable itself. The headphone jack connector is unusually tall. When prying, be careful to not separate the lower, plastic part of the connector from the ribbon cable. Pry between the connector and the socket, not between the two halves of the connector.
  • Use a plastic tool or your fingernails to carefully disconnect the orange headphone jack cable. Be sure to pull straight up on the connector, not the cable itself.

  • The headphone jack connector is unusually tall. When prying, be careful to not separate the lower, plastic part of the connector from the ribbon cable. Pry between the connector and the socket, not between the two halves of the connector.

Be more than careful with the headphone jack, because I thought I was until I broke mine (I still don't figure how I did this). Those are hard to find after and if you do, it may cost you something around 20-30$

Tristan Gauvreau - Reply

Yeah, I just did the same. Oops.

Alex Robinson -

Yikes - yes, be SUPER careful - just damaged mine too (snapped some of the soldered connections between ribbon and plug). I only use my iPod with a dock in my car, so hoping I will get away with this.

Russell Coleridge - Reply

Arrgh...I should have paid closer attention the red warnings above. I ended up pushing up on the ribbon part rather than the actual socket. Thereby completing separating the connector from the ribbon cable. I got way too excited when I finally got the case loose after an hour of trying that I rushed through this part. Now I have to see if I can replace this part.

Eric Schenkel - Reply

Blech - despite these thoughtful warnings I snapped that plug right off the ribbon! So please, be careful. I found a replacement headphone jack (used) on eBay for 20 bucks. What a not-fun way to spend 20 bucks!

Matt Michael - Reply

Yep - did the same. Bugger. Is it possible to carefully fix? Solder or glue or are there replacement parts? I do actually have another iPod but I was hoping to end up with two working versions rather than one just for parts.

Greg J Mason - Reply

New Battery = Faster iPhone
Fix Kits starting at $16.99
Lift up the hard drive with one hand and carefully disconnect the hard drive ribbon from the logic board.
  • Lift up the hard drive with one hand and carefully disconnect the hard drive ribbon from the logic board.

  • Lift the hard drive out of the iPod.

Peel back the metallic tape connecting the hard drive ribbon to the blue mounting bracket.
  • Peel back the metallic tape connecting the hard drive ribbon to the blue mounting bracket.

Also, when reassembling ensure the metallic tab/tape connecting the hard drive ribbon to the blue mounting bracket. As seen in step 9 is still on top of the mounting bracket.

When I reassembled mine the tab became folded down and was touching pins connecting the drive. As a result the iPod worked as a player but had difficulty charging, would not connect to iTunes or show as a mounted drive. After waiting along time it would be detected but would not work with iTunes. iTunes would report the iPod as corrupted or in recovery mode. Removing the tab/tape from the pins restored function.

Dan - Reply

where can replacement hard drive be purchased or other options like a flash card.

JD - Reply

Use a spudger to carefully disconnect the orange ribbon cable from the hard drive.
  • Use a spudger to carefully disconnect the orange ribbon cable from the hard drive.

  • If the cable doesn't come free easily, it may be helpful to gently wiggle the cable from side to side.

Lift the hard drive mounting bracket and cable off the hard drive.
  • Lift the hard drive mounting bracket and cable off the hard drive.

Lift the blue and white mounting bracket off the other side of the hard drive.
  • Lift the blue and white mounting bracket off the other side of the hard drive.

Hard drive remains.
  • Hard drive remains.

Would a Compact Flash card work directly plugged in to the ribbon cable? Like in the iPod mini?

Macuser24 - Reply

The pins are the same, correct.

Cole Feldt -

Conclusion

To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order.

24 other people completed this guide.

iRobot

Member since: 09/24/2009

1 Reputation

732 Guides authored

Works with iPod 3rd Generation 10GB also.

Xavier Delapree - Reply

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