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iFixit tears apart the 5th Generation iPod nano...nicely

Josh Carr

The pioneers at iFixit are at it again, this time exploring the Loop's newest, coolest gadget -- the iPod nano. According to their measurements, this iPod is as thin as it could possibly be, and more densely packed than any previous Apple device. I work on iPods at my day job, but I'm afraid to start working on this one because there is very little wasted space and LOTS of glue.

Here are some facts worth highlighting:

  • The iPod nano uses flash memory manufactured by Toshiba.
  • Apple would not be able to put a larger camera into it without reducing the footprint of other components.
  • It uses the same style speaker as the iPod touch. The sound exits through the dock connector.
  • The display has 17.5% more real estate than the 4th Generation iPod nano.
Read on for the nitty gritty, "I want to tear it apart" information...

The clickwheel can actually be removed. It's a completely new design unlike the previous generations. All clickwheels in the last three years have been directly reliant on the logic board. If you are unfortunate enough to lose clickwheel functionality on one of these recent iPods, you're out the cost of a new logic board. With this new design, it appears that we could replace the clickwheel just like with the 4th Generation and earlier iPods.

The glass is VERY durable. iFixit says that they haven't seen issues with broken glass on the iPod nano -- I must be the exception. I've seen them break, but I have to agree that it takes an extreme amount of pressure to damage the glass.

The speaker itself is only about a millimeter thick. We're not talking about great quality audio here, but what can we really expect from a device this thin?

The camera is not integrated into the board and could theoretically be removed from the device if it fails. Getting to the point where you can actually remove it is a different story.

Final fun fact - the entire iPod nano is thinner than the iPhone camera assembly.

Thanks to iFixit for such a great take-apart as usual!

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