Backstage: Yes, the new iPod photo -is- different | iLounge Backstage


Backstage: Yes, the new iPod photo -is- different

Up until today, we had no reason to believe that there were differences (other than price) between the 60GB iPod photo units Apple shipped in 2004 and the ones they released in early 2005. But it appears that there is at least one difference, and possibly more.

We noticed in testing Griffin’s AirClick that our first-generation iPod photo units weren’t getting anywhere near the wireless RF reception of our other iPods - under ten feet versus 40-50 - and had problems working through walls. Now we’ve found that some change has quietly been made to currently shipping - darewecall them Second-Generation - black-boxed iPod photos, remedying this problem. Did Apple modify the iPod photo to eliminate noise or interference in the headphone jack area? Something else? We’re not entirely sure. But there is a difference. We’ve tested with multiple AirClicks and multiple iPods. And so has Griffin: the problem’s in their first-generation iPod photo unit, too, but not in their new one.

Will this be a case of early adopters getting screwed over with glitchy hardware? Hopefully not. Will Apple offer some way for affected iPod photo owners to get fully compatible hardware? Hopefully so. If you have related experiences or insights to share, we’d love to hear them.

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Nice to know that when I bought an iPod Photo 40GB late last year it would become obsolete so fast and fewer vendors (and fewer in the future) would support it due to fairly limited sales (when compared with other models).

Good comments and review.

Posted by glockster in U.S. on April 1, 2005 at 7:20 AM (CST)


I’m a little confused as to why this would not be posted on the main page. I thought the backstage was designed for non ipod related content and the more abstract editorials. Is it simply because this is first hand knowledge and negative that it does not make the front page? If this had been reported elsewhere and you could link to it would it then have made the front page, having effectively distanced the editorial staff from a negative article on the ipod? I think so. Though perhaps not for the motive i have suggested.
So if you could, explain why this would probably have made the main page had it been from some other source but is instead relegated to the “Backstage” because it is your own content.

(please note this sounds more aggressive an accusation then I mean it to. I really am interested in how you decide if content should go in this space or the main site and if this article, as i would think it would have been, made for a difficult decision)

Posted by Secular on April 2, 2005 at 2:41 AM (CST)


There is very much a difference between the older and newer photo models.
The bone of contention is the random pausing that happens using L shaped headphone jacks (check out the forums here and on Apple support) the jacks are not being pulled out, merely rotating, autosensing on the unit kicks in and the bloody thing pauses. A great many of us are experiencing this with Apple taking them in and either sending back replacements which exhibit the same problem, or as in my case sending the original unit back stating it is working within specification. Guess what? It still pauses if the jack ever so slightly rotates.
The older models fully accesorised (why no Firewire cable? The current 20 and U2 have them) worked. If anybody can buy the older models at a discount do it, for those in the UK gives the old 60GB if you are quick.

Posted by Robert Todd in Newcastle upon Tyne UK on April 2, 2005 at 3:33 AM (CST)


I haven’t had any problems with my early-adopter Photo, but the AirClick reception thing is of interest to me.

Someone answering my question on the AirClick review page said that RemoteRemote 2 does NOT suffer from the same problem.

That gives me hope! I do like AirClick if I can use one remote for my iPod AND my Mac.

Posted by Nagromme on April 4, 2005 at 8:49 AM (CDT)


“Did Apple modify the iPod photo to eliminate noise or interference in the headphone jack area?”

I want to know about this so~ much…..

Posted by narjisse in NY on April 5, 2005 at 5:33 PM (CDT)


Also, what were the production date range for the new, improved, iPod photos?
In other words, can you tell us first 5 digit of the new iPod photo’s serial numbers?

Posted by narjisse in NY on April 6, 2005 at 5:08 AM (CDT)


I’m thinking about buying a 60gb ipod photo. I was wondering is there a way to see on the box when the ipod was made (2004 or 2005)??

Posted by krzy6cpina on April 30, 2005 at 4:02 PM (CDT)


I’m thinking about buying a first generation 60gb iPod photo to replace my regular 4G 20GB iPod.  Does anyone know if the 1st Gen 60GB iPod photo will fit in the Altec Lansing inMotion portable speakers I have?  I know there is a slight difference in dimensions between the 4G 40GB music only iPod (which the inMotion says will fit) and the 60GB iPod photo.  I’d hate to buy the 60GB iPod photo and find I can’t even use my speakers with it anymore.  Thanks!

Posted by WirelessG on May 2, 2005 at 1:47 AM (CDT)


I started a RF problem thread in the photo iPod forum so we could move this to there…

As best I can tell:
60g photo gen 1 - model #M9586 comes w/ accessories, but can’t be direct connected to camera (via camera connector accessory not included) until you update the firmware. Has some RF problems.

60g photo gen 2 (current)- model #M9830 comes without most accessories, firmware updated so direct connect ready. No RF issues.

one or both have “autopause” issues when using some headphones, and both (some units anyway) have sound quality problems at some settings/ with some songs.

Missing anything? please post here or in iPod photo forum - I’m considering buying one or the other (both are currently available for about the same price). Thanks!

Posted by dhansen on May 3, 2005 at 3:36 PM (CDT)


I’m so confused. I’m about to make a decision on buying a 1st gen 60G (with full accessories) or 2nd gen 60G as the are the same price ? Please kindly help.

Posted by Uni on May 6, 2005 at 2:26 PM (CDT)


I have an orignal 40Gb iPod Photo.

I recently bought a Griffin AirClick and can confirm that they do not work at all well with the original iPod Photo. I get at best 3 meters (10 feet) as opposed to the 20 meters (60 feet).

Hadn’t seen this site before my purchase, but have since done lots of reading about the issue. Other than this site there is no information.

Contacted Apple and explained my situation. When I bought the iPod Photo the Apple Store had a few original 40Gb iPod Photos left and they said that the only difference between original and “2nd” was bundled accessories. They basically said that they had no comment on any changes and that I should contact Griffin as they advertised their product to work with the iPod Photo.

I’m still chasing leads at the moment but I’m not gonnna hold my breath!

Posted by Bomber42 on June 2, 2005 at 2:03 AM (CDT)


i’ve just bought ipod photo (60GB). from what i’ve read, i found out that there are many problems associated with this particular device. my problem is as follows. when i connected the ipod photo for the first time, i had some problems in the formatting i guess ( the icone changed from formatting to waiting for ipod) i disconected the ipod as my pc gone nuts.
    the main problem is that when i open the available memory on the ipod ( empty with no data at all) i read this:
capacity : 55.7 GB
available: 55.5 GB

i asked some people with an ipod photo 30 GB they told me that they had 29GB from the 30GB.i got worried, i contacted the local service provider but they didn’t offer any help & i failed contacting the main apple help center ( i didn’t know how to get their e-mail).

i would appreciate alot any help & good luck to everyone who has an ipod photo 60 GB.

Posted by Blue on July 17, 2005 at 7:34 PM (CDT)


Blue: The reason your 60 gig ipod only has 55 gigs is that Apple blatantly lies about the size of the harddrives in their products.  This is due to a power-of-10 to a power-of-2 conversion, or vs/va.  A gigabyte is not 1 billion bytes.  It is 1024 megabytes.  A megabyte is not 1 million bytes, it is 1024 kilobytes.  A kilobyte is not 1000 bytes, it is 1024 bytes.  Voila.

Using 1000s, 60 gigs is 60,000,000,000 bytes.
Using 1024s, 60 gigs is 64,424,509,440 bytes.
Notice that the difference is about 4.5 gigs, the exact discrepancy you observe when you see that your harddrive is actually 55.5 gigs, give or take.

In other words, Apple advertises harddrive sizes using pow-2 math but the harddrive manufacturers obviously advertise their harddrives to Apple using pow-10 math.  While is it the harddrive manufacturers who are using “incorrect” math (from a computer point of view), is it Apple who intentionally misuses pow-2 math to inflate the perceived siize of their harddrives.  They aren’t victims because they could always be honest about stating the size of the harddrives they use.  They choose not to.  There is no excuse.  It’s false advertising.  I wish someone would sue them over it and put the whole issue to death once and for all.

Posted by Keith Wiley on July 18, 2005 at 12:32 PM (CDT)



Actually, my initial analysis is probably slightly incorrect.  I stated that the HD manufacturers advertise their products in pow-10 math and Apple inflates it to pow-2 math.  That probably isn’t correct.

The true situation is probably that HD manufactures advertise their products using pow-2 math to begin with.  So they lie right off the bat and Apple merely passes the lie on to the consumer without correctly deflating the size to pow-10 math.  That seems much more likely.

I still fault Apple just as much as I fault the HD manufacturers.  If Apple has a problem with the way HDs are advertised to them, they can complain about that.  We are Apple’s consumers, not the HD manufacturer’s consumers, therefore, we have the right to complain the Apple blithely passes the deception onto us without being honest about the true sizes of the HDs they use.

Other people may take the view that Apple doesn’t do anything wrong by merely passing on a deception that they didn’t originate, that’s a personal point of view.  Mine is that there is no excuse for knowingly intentionally perpetuating a lie to your consumers.

Technically, this is strange, since it means the HDs are actually constructed using pow-10 math and advertised using pow-2 math.  I find that very odd since the HD is an actual computerized mathematical device.  I would expect it to be truly pow-2 and for any discrepancy to be a pow-10 claim by a human marketer, since humans often think in 10s.

In other words, if HDs were constructed using pow-2 math and marketers used pow-10 math because it is easier to think in tens, then this “error/lie” would exist in the other direction: HDs would be bigger than they are advertised to be (e.g. a pow-2 HD would have 64.4 gigs but a marketer, thinking in 10s, would accidentally call it a 60 gig drive).

So I don’t get that at all.  That doesn’t make much sense to me.  Nevertheless, the discrepancy arises from this pow-10/pow-2 conversion and whatever the situation is, I wish the creators and marketers of these devices, whether the HD manufacturers or Apple, would simply tell the consumers the straight-up truth!

Posted by Keith Wiley on July 18, 2005 at 12:55 PM (CDT)


i have two problems related to my 2nd gen(M9830)60gb ipod photo:
1.i can’t get senuti v.0.23 to work on my mac. i’m running osx 10.2.8, fully upgraded. this 0.23 is supposed to be the latest version compatible with 10.2.8. however, when i open it, i get nothing. it won’t recognize files on my computer, it won’t recognize my ipod at all, and it’s completely unresponsive. furthemore, later versions are only compatible with osx 10.3 and beyond, and i can’t find any earlier versions on the net. what gives?

2.when connecting my ipod to my mac using usb, i have no issues(other than the senuti thing). when connecting using firewire(which, coincidentally was not packaged with this model), the ipod gets warm, at times very much so. this cannot be good for either the hard drive or battery. am i not supposed to connect this model with firewire? has anyone heard of this problem before? is firewire literally setting my ipod on fire?

Posted by michael m on August 10, 2005 at 2:33 AM (CDT)


Ok, am I the only person out there with scratches on the screen of my 60G Photo? I bought it a month ago and haven’t done anything outrageous to it. I know the nano’s been doing that. I was just wondering about the Photo.


Posted by Deb M on October 23, 2005 at 9:30 AM (CDT)

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