Transfer music from an old iPod

Q: If I get a new iPod, can I transfer music from my old one to the new one?

– Amanda

A: You can definitely transfer your music from one iPod to another, although this may be a bit more complicated if you have not been maintaining your library in iTunes on your computer already.

If you have your library in iTunes and are using automatic synchronization with your existing iPod, then transferring your music to the new iPod is literally as simple as plugging it in and going through a very brief setup wizard to select automatic synchronization.

The content of your iTunes library will be automatically transferred to the new iPod, and you can even use both iPods at the same time, with the same iTunes library.

On the other hand, if you have been managing your iPod content manually, and your music is therefore only on your iPod, the process may be slightly more complicated—basically you will first need to recover the content from your iPod back into your iTunes library, and then use that information to reload the content onto your new iPod.

With the exception of content purchased from the iTunes Store, iTunes itself does not provide any means for transferring content from an iPod back to your iTunes library. Fortunately, there are a number of third-party utilities that fill this void, and this process is discussed in much more detail in our tutorial Copying Content from your iPod to your Computer.