iPod mini autopsy photos | iLounge News


iPod mini autopsy photos

Update: Taking apart the iPod mini report and iPod mini autopsy photos posted.

iLounger Greg K., an industrial designer, has sent us photos of his iPod mini autopsy. Greg will also be describing how he took it apart with information regarding the parts that make up the mini. Stay tuned for his report.

Here’s what Greg had to say about taking apart the mini:

“I do have lots of close up pictures and can take more as the Pod mini looks like it’s not going back together. I am an industrial designer who is use to professionally disassembling things like this and I have never been unable to get something back together. I screwed up on the iPod mini though; big time… twice!  It’s really tightly packaged and very very delicate.”

Click photo for larger version

iPod mini autopsy. Clockwise from top - Hitachi 4GB Microdrive, Li-Ion battery pack, top plastic cap, two tiny screws, LCD display on circuit board (PortalPlayer chip under white label), anodized aluminum shell (Silver) and bottom plastic cap.

 View iPod mini autopsy photos

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can you, from your autopsy, tell if the remote control pins on the top connect anywhere to pins coming from the dock connector. i would like to find corresponding pins on the bottom for a custom install i am doing in my car (with the ice-link)
also - the re anodizing thing is really cool. the first thing i thought when i heard the name ipod mini is that i wish i could get it the same color as my mini cooper (blue with white roof meet blue ipod with white dial)

Posted by Andrew on February 23, 2004 at 8:55 PM (CST)



When the pictures were taken, the shell was not bare as there is a plastic window glued into place under the LCD hole. Since the autopsy (and since I ordered a new iPod) I explored ways to remove the window without destroying it. I figured out how to do it and am now thinking about how to offer an anodizing service.

The logistics of accepting people’s delicate $250 device, taking it apart, sending the parts out to be anodzed and then putting it all back together within a reasonable timeframe and at a reasonable expense are rather complicated. It is further complicated by the batch process nature of anodizing (it’s a minimum of $80 per color per batch) and the fact that I cannot get spare parts from Apple.

Email me and we can discuss the details.


Posted by Greg K on February 23, 2004 at 9:00 PM (CST)



The remote control pins sit on a tiny daughtercard off of the mainboard, so you can follow the pins for about 2mm before they get lost in the ether that is the board traces. There is no way I can follow them…



Posted by Greg K on February 23, 2004 at 9:04 PM (CST)


If only you could stuff the insides of a Dell DJ into it so you can use Napster with your AMD powered G5 case with the neon lights. Drool…

Posted by egarc on February 23, 2004 at 9:36 PM (CST)


I have formatted my mini IPOD drive just about every way possible (Fat, FAT32,different cluster sizes) .  Still doesn’t work in my Canon Digital Rebel.  However, it always works on my laptop.  I have ordered a Compact Flash to IDE Adapter.  I’m hoping Partition Magic 8.0 will show something hidden.

Posted by Kent Marshall on February 24, 2004 at 4:14 AM (CST)


So if it’s actually a CF drive, does that mean it won’t be susceptible to magnetic damage? I’m looking at in-car mounting solutions…

Posted by Chip Maxwell on February 24, 2004 at 5:00 AM (CST)


with seeing all this i would still recomend the original 3g ipod,and i didnt see much of a size difference,like the original ipod isnt that big that it wouldnt fir in your pocket.

Posted by sevag in canada on February 24, 2004 at 8:08 PM (CST)


i have a question .... i have always wanted to change the lighting on my ipod ..... is it possible to put the blue leds in there like when people mod their cell phones from the white to blue ?

if so i want to do it .... i think it would look hella cool with blue backlighting than with the white .... it would surely make it a talk piece !

Posted by leafer in canada on February 25, 2004 at 12:20 AM (CST)



If your talking about the light from the LCD display, it’s backlit with something called an EL (Electro Luminicent) panel. I believe that the color of the EL panel is already blue.

There are some people who tried replacing the EL panels in their Palms with red ones, but I heard that it never worked out very well.

Other then that, there are no LEDs or lights on the mPod.


Posted by GregK on February 25, 2004 at 1:56 AM (CST)


Is the digital rebel compatible with CF type II cards?  Even if it is, it may only recognize a certain maximum size.  I read somewhere that a camera (I don’t know which kind) recognized the drive, but it only showed 2 available gigs.  4 GB microdrives are pretty new aren’t they?  Maybe only the newest generation of high end digital cameras can recognize them (like the Nikon D2H, the Canon ID Mark II, etc.).

Posted by drewmcd24 on February 28, 2004 at 11:35 PM (CST)


Have a 20 MB iPod. Just bought a mini iPod. Wondering if there will be any conflict when I install the mini Ipod software. Mac OS X 10.3; iMac 1.25 gh, 768 meg RAM.
Anyone out there running two of these little ones on same machine?

Posted by Carol Hildreth on March 5, 2004 at 4:28 PM (CST)



yes. but i have them set up under different accounts. it seems to work fine. but it wants to sync whenever i have them connected regardless of which user account i have it connected to.

Posted by andrew on March 9, 2004 at 2:09 PM (CST)


you are a very brave man for taking your mPod apart like that. Thanks Greg for all the info though. I still have to get my Ipod and now that anodizing idea is starting to sound really attractive.

Posted by Jaime on March 17, 2004 at 5:18 PM (CST)


ipod mini sucks!! common…5.5 hours battery?? lol


Rio nitrus kicks minis a$$ all the way to macworld.

BTW, nitrus give 12 hours to me.

Posted by luckycharm on March 18, 2004 at 1:45 PM (CST)


good for you luckycharm, you want a cookie.  Keep in mind that your Rio Nitrus stores only 1.5gigs of information compared the iPod mini’s 4gigs.  Besides IIRC the Nitrus has slightly larger dimensions than the mini, but i could be wrong there.

Posted by Bob on March 18, 2004 at 3:56 PM (CST)


Wow.  This must be so interesting.  Have you lot ever seen the sun?  The big yellow thing outside?  That isn’t a bitmap?  No?

Didn’t think so.

iPod- WOW!

(Do you have any concept of sarcasm?)

Posted by YouAreABunchOfGays on March 22, 2004 at 5:50 AM (CST)


Bow Locks!.

Posted by Wal in walsworth on March 30, 2004 at 4:45 PM (CST)


Evening ladies and gentleman!! I’ve been over here in the US for a couple of months working (yawn!) and I plan to buy an ipod…probably around 20Gb. Now I have two main questions…. it’s a portable player so I assume it will work on my UK windows computer with the right installation cables/programs?


I checked and my computer doesn’t have firewire installed but definatley USB ports and it’s running on the most up to date windows package so what would I need to buy extra on top of the ipod?

Any help would be appreciated!!

Posted by FoxyUKlady on April 8, 2004 at 5:10 PM (CDT)


all you need to buy is the usb 2.0 cord, all apple stores should have it.  You need itunes as well, but thats not a problem…..

Posted by timwillis on April 8, 2004 at 10:47 PM (CDT)


I’m going to buy the iPod and want to know whether it can act as a removable hard drive and if you can download songs onto it using Windows media Player and then be able to play the songs on the iPod.

Posted by jay on April 12, 2004 at 3:44 AM (CDT)

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