Chargers for 3G iPods

Q: I have a 3rd generation iPod. I love it and use it every day, but unfortunately my old wall charger was stolen. Seems like all of the after-market chargers don’t work with my older iPod.

Can you suggest a replacement charger?

– Rex

A: Unfortunately, chargers that are compatible with the third-generation iPod models have become particularly scarce. The third-generation iPod charged using a Firewire-based power source, which connects to different pins in the iPod Dock Connector as compared to a USB charger, which is not supported by the third-generation iPod.

Although FireWire cables can still be found on the Apple Store, the actual Firewire AC adapter does not appear to be available directly from Apple.

If you have a powered Firewire port on your computer, or another power source with a Firewire port, then the standard Dock Connector to Firewire cable will suffice to charge your iPod using your computer or that particular charger.

Depending upon your computer, purchasing a FireWire adapter card might actually be a viable solution as well. FireWire PCI cards are available from many sources for around $20, and these do generally provide powered FireWire ports, and you would be able to both charge and sync the iPod this way.