MY IPOD HAS GONE INSANE
March 16, 2011 10:34 AM   Subscribe

My iPod is asking me for a wall charger. But I don't have a wall-charger. I don't want to buy a wall-charger, either.

I did some Google research, and there were suggestions about going out to the car and using a cigarette-lighter power-converter, suggestions about only pushing the USB cable one-quater of the way inserted into the computer , and/or plugging the iPod into a PS2. JESUS CHRIST! What's with all this dangerous activity? I just want my iPod to work again. What should I do? If you think the obvious answer is "buy a wall charger", well, that is not the answer I am looking for.
posted by shipbreaker to Technology (17 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Call a friend who has a wall charger?
posted by special-k at 10:38 AM on March 16, 2011


You don't necessarily need the Apple wall charger; you can get one of the $1.99 ones and it should work just as well. I think you can also modify a USB cable so that D+ and D- are not connected (perhaps by putting a piece of tape over those connectors on the computer side of the cable), and then the iPod will think your computer is a wall outlet.
posted by jrockway at 10:42 AM on March 16, 2011


Your question isn't clear. Do you need to charge your ipod?

Use a usb cable and plug it into your computer.
posted by TheBones at 10:42 AM on March 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


What kind of iPod (model, generation) is it?

Also, man, I know you don't want to hear it but you can get a generic iDevice wall charger at WalMart for like $11 bucks, and that will work with new devices also.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:42 AM on March 16, 2011


shipbreaker: "ere were suggestions about going out to the car and using a cigarette-lighter power-converter, suggestions about only pushing the USB cable one-quater of the way inserted into the computer , and/or plugging the iPod into a PS2. JESUS CHRIST! What's with all this dangerous activity?"

None of these things will damage your iPod. Try them and check back with us.
posted by dunkadunc at 10:44 AM on March 16, 2011


Your question isn't clear. Do you need to charge your ipod?

If I'm not mistaken, some iPod firmware updates require the iPod to be plugged into the wall to complete their installation.
posted by Johnny Assay at 10:51 AM on March 16, 2011


Sounds like you're doing a system update of some sort. You're being told to use a wall charger because it provides more reliable power (the slightest power flicker during an update is bad news.) Try the aforementioned tricks. Also, any wall charger that you can plug a USB cable into will work, so if you have, say, a phone charger that takes a USB cable, that's good enough right there.
posted by azpenguin at 10:52 AM on March 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


What's with all this dangerous activity?

USB power isn't some random thing that may or may not kill your peripherals. USB promises five volts, one amp and data; your PS2 doesn't know how to talk data to your iPod, so it will just provide the power. In rare circumstances (USB 1.0, which is quite old, and some proprietary bullshit, which is reasonably rare) you'll get no voltage, but that can't hurt you to try. Just plug it into your PS2, you'll be no worse off than you are now and it may solve your problem.
posted by mhoye at 10:53 AM on March 16, 2011


Why do you think it is dangerous to use a car charger? If you have one or access to one, it won't hurt to try it for a few minutes.
posted by soelo at 10:54 AM on March 16, 2011


The dangerous thing is that if you lose power during an update you could have a half-updated firmware, and as I understand it "half-updated" means "it used to be an mp3 player but it is now a paperweight".

This is why they are asking you to use a wall charger instead of USB in the first place.

How real is this danger? I don't know, but it is probably better to be safe than sorry.
posted by idiopath at 11:41 AM on March 16, 2011


I bought a wall charger for iPod (not Apple-made, hence the cheap) for ONE CENT off Amazon. Seriously, you can get those things for ridiculously cheap if you must.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:13 PM on March 16, 2011


USB wall chargers are ubiquitous these days. Not all of them will necessarily work with your iPod, but you won't hurt anything by trying.

(To clarify, for those curious: for the iPhone, at least, it won't charge unless the data pins on the USB socket are shorted together. I discovered this after buying a super-cheapo USB car charger that only had +5V and GND connected to the appropriate pins...)
posted by neckro23 at 2:06 PM on March 16, 2011


Well, I was hoping for a sweet techsavvy answer something along the lines of:

The USB cable has GREY and PINK wires on the outer pins for +5V and GND, and the inner pins are White and Yellow DATA pins. To make the iPod think it's plugged into a wall charger, either (a) snip the White and Yellow wires completely, leaving only +5V and GND, or (b) tie the white and yellow DATA wires together.

Neither of those worked for me, by the way.

The only thing I'm scared to try is (c) attach the White and Yellow wires to GND as well.

== === ===

Or break down and buy a damn wall charger, grumble grumble.

They are $31 at Target and $31 at WalMart and $31 at Best Buy and I will not even go near an Apple Store... .... .....
posted by shipbreaker at 11:53 AM on March 17, 2011


I'm having this same problem, and we have a ton of (like, 8 different varieties) USB wall chargers laying around the house, and when I plug into any of them I get the same plug-into-a-wall-charger graphic.
posted by palegirl at 12:17 PM on March 17, 2011


The official Apple USB cable has Red wire = +5V, Black wire = GND.

White wire and Green wire are data pins.

I tried a variety of combos (all data lines completely detached, USB data wires tied together, iPod data wires tied together, all four data wires tied together) but nothing got rid of the plug-into-a-wall-charger graphic. Clearly I am more likely to hurt my iPod by trying all of these shenanigans. But $31 is a lot of money for something that will only be used once.
posted by shipbreaker at 12:22 PM on March 17, 2011


Walk into an Apple store and use one of theirs.
posted by turaho at 1:42 PM on March 17, 2011


HEAR YE HEAR YE

after a few episodes of walking into Target, Best Buy and Micro Center and angrily eyeballing their $30 chargers,

today at what we here call a "UNIQUE THRIFT STORE" I was able to find a generic Brand-Blecch Made-In-China iPod wall charger, for $3.99.

I bought it, I plugged in my iPod, it loaded its firmware, and it works fine now.

WWWWHHHHHHEEEEEWWWWWWW!!!!!

Sorry to bug you all so much, AskMeFi !
posted by shipbreaker at 6:58 PM on March 27, 2011


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