Q: I own both an older 4th generation 20 GB iPod that came with a battery charger, and just recently purchased a new 160GB iPod classic, which did not come with a battery charger. I’ve heard that the new iPods won’t work with any of the older chargers. Will the charger from the 4G iPod work with the iPod classic?
A: While it is true that some older charging accessories will not work with the 2008 iPod models, this restriction only affects charging accessories that used FireWire-based charging and only affects the new fourth-generation iPod nano, second-generation iPod touch and the iPhone 3G. The 2008 120 GB iPod classic is not affected by this problem, nor are previous iPod classic models.
Most of the fourth-generation iPod models shipped with FireWire-based chargers, with the exception of the final set of 4G iPod color models, which was when Apple began packing in USB chargers instead. However, even though it’s likely that your 4G iPod charger is in fact FireWire-based, the iPod classic still supports FireWire charging, so you can use your 4G charger with your iPod classic.
Note that if you plan to buy a 4G iPod nano or 2G iPod touch at some point in the future and want an AC charger, you will need to buy a new one (although all of these iPod models will still charge from your computer’s powered USB port).