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Should I leave my iPod plugged in?
June 2, 2005 6:28 AM   Subscribe

Should I leave my iPod plugged in? I really like listening to my iPod's music through iTunes while at my computer. Will leaving it plugged in a majority of the time help or hurt the overall battery life?
posted by Yukon to Computers & Internet (9 answers total)
 
About iPod Batteries: "For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Be sure to go through at least one charge cycle per month."
posted by mcwetboy at 6:39 AM on June 2, 2005


it helps, since it charges automatically while connected to a computer, even if you're using it at the time.

I'm about to replace my battery, after almost 2 yrs--i'm down to about 3 hrs per recharge.
posted by amberglow at 6:55 AM on June 2, 2005


How to prolong lithium-based batteries. Executive summary: unlike NiCD and NiMH batteries that have "battery memory", Li-ion batteries prefer partial discharges. I keep my laptop plugged in all the time, unless absolutely necessary.

mcwetboy: "For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally."

If Apple just used a FIFO battery, monthly re-cycles wouldn't be necessary!
posted by Plutor at 9:30 AM on June 2, 2005


Wow, Amberglow. That looks like a great option. Have you heard anything about the installation?
posted by Corpus Callosum at 9:38 AM on June 2, 2005


Corpus Callosum: I really like listening to my iPod's music through iTunes while at my computer.

Errr.... you realize that you don't need to have your iPod plugged in to use iTunes, right?
posted by nathan_teske at 9:51 AM on June 2, 2005


You should allow a full battery discharge from time to time.

The thing tht concerns me about your question is the amount of disk usage your iPod will be subjected to. According to this page, "The Toshiba drive in the iPod has a stated 20,000 hour MTBF rating. Far shorter than desktop drives (on the order of 750,000 hours.)*"

Clearly, using the iPod as iTunes' music library would generally only be accessing the disk for read operations, which ought to have less impact on lifespan than writes, but I'd recommend copying the songs to your compter's disk. You might find Senuti useful.

* These numbers are debateable, of course, but the biggest enemy of your iPod is heat. If the disk is spinning continually within the sealed case, it's going to get hot fast, and the drive will fail sooner.
posted by ijoshua at 10:06 AM on June 2, 2005


I recently needed more space on my 12" powerbook and moved my iTunes library to a firewire drive at home figuring I could have the iTunes on my powerbook play the songs off of my ipod when I am at work or whenever else I don't have access to the firewire drive. I know it's lame but I haven't figured out how to do this. How are you managing to do this?
posted by snowjoe at 10:54 AM on June 2, 2005


Errr.... you realize that you don't need to have your iPod plugged in to use iTunes, right?

I'm pretty sure s/he's talking about listening to music that's only on the iPod, via iTunes. Maybe music that got picked up off a friend's computer, or via some other source, that for whatever reason is not on this person's hard drive. To do that, you do need it plugged in. (Or you can use this lifehack to get them onto the computer from the 'pod. (Via lifehacker.)
posted by salad spork at 12:46 PM on June 2, 2005


Yeah, I'm using my iPod at my office. I just prefer using the iTunes interface to scan through songs or make a playlist. This is compeletly motivated by aesthetics and ease-of-use...not some backwards way of overusing my iPod.

Thanks for the info ijoshua. I could always copy what's on the iPod to the machine but then you get into typical office/IT concerns. My question on your response is if I'm gonna use the iPod connected or unconnected for an equal amount of time, is there a concern? or is it being connected putting additional disk usage on the drive?
posted by Yukon at 2:12 PM on June 2, 2005


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