/>
X

Apple iPod Shuffle 4th Generation Teardown

Bill Detwiler cracks open the 4th generation Apple iPod Shuffle--released in 2010. See the hardware inside Apple's tiny music player.
bill-detwiler.png
By Bill Detwiler on
463944.jpg
1 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
In September 2010, Apple unveiled the 4th generation iPod Shuffle. The music player has the basic design of the 2nd generation iPod Shuffle, with the large control pad and postage stamp shape.
Unlike most of the computers, smartphones, and gadgets I disassemble, the iPod Shuffle isn't designed to be taken apart and put back together. And with a price of just $49 (US), most people will opt to simply replace a damaged Shuffle instead of repairing it. But, that doesn't mean it can't, or shouldn't be done.
If you do decide to disassemble the iPod Shuffle, you'll need a Phillips #00 or #000 screwdriver and a thin metal blade or plastic spudger.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463945.jpg
2 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
According to Apple, the 4th generation iPod Shuffle's packaging is 60 percent smaller and 53 percent lighter than the packaging using on previous models.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463946.jpg
3 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
As the packing indicates, this is a 2GB iPod Shuffle--the only size Apple offers.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463947.jpg
4 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
As of this writing, Apple offers the iPod Shuffle in five colors--silver, blue, green, orange, and pink.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463948.jpg
5 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
Below the iPod Shuffle are the product documentation, headphones, and USB cable.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463949.jpg
6 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463950.jpg
7 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The 4th generation iPod Shuffle is 1.14 inches tall, 1.24 inches wide, 0.34 inches deep, and weighs 0.44 ounces. The large control pad dominates the front of the device.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463951.jpg
8 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
Like the 2nd and 3rd generation iPod Shuffles, the 4th generation device has a clip on the back.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463952.jpg
9 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
Along the top of the 4th generation iPod Shuffle are the 3.5mm headphone jack, VoiceOver button, and play-order/power switch.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463953.jpg
10 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
There's nothing on the bottom of the 4th generation iPod Shuffle.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463954.jpg
11 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The 4th generation iPod Shuffle's case has two parts--a larger front enclosure and a rear panel. The clip is attached to the rear panel.
Holding the clip in the open position, you can see where the edges of the rear panel meet the front enclosure. The joint between the two case sections is extremely tight. To remove the rear panel, I pulled up on the open end of the clip until I formed a small gap between the two sections. I then inserted a thin metal blade and pried the panel free.
The rear panel is held in place with tabs that run along the left and right sides, as well as adhesive. You may bend the panel slightly during removal, but you should be able to pull it free without breaking it.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463955.jpg
12 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With one side of the panel free, you should be able to separate it from the front case enclosure. A very thin rubber gasket sits under the rear panel. Take care not to rip the gasket when removing the panel.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463956.jpg
13 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With the rear panel removed, we get our first look inside the 4th generation iPod Shuffle.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463957.jpg
14 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463958.jpg
15 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The iPod Shuffle's clip and hinge are attached to the rear panel with four screws.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463959.jpg
16 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
Taking up roughly half the space inside the 4th generation iPod Shuffle is the 3.7V, 0.19Whr Li-ion battery. The black, rubber gasket still covers the back of the logic board.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463960.jpg
17 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
You should be able to lift the gasket away from the iPod Shuffle without tearing it. With the gasket removed, we can see the underside of the logic board.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463961.jpg
18 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
Unfortunately, Apple soldered the iPod Shuffle's battery to the logic board. You won't be replacing this battery without getting out your soldering iron.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463962.jpg
19 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The iPod Shuffle's logic board is held in place with a single Phillips #00 screw. You'll also need to disconnect the small ribbon cable for the control pad.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463963.jpg
20 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
Removing the battery reveals a portion of the metal plate that serves as a backing for the control pad's internal contacts. One of the screws that holds this plate in place is also visible. You can remove the screw now or leave it in place and remove it later. I choose to remove it now.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463964.jpg
21 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
A small, plastic spacer holds the logic board against the top of the front case enclosure. You should be able to pop it free with a small pointed instrument, such as the metal blade shown here.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463965.jpg
22 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With the spacer removed, you can slide the logic board and attached headphone jack down past the top lip of the case.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463966.jpg
23 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
You should now be able to gently lift the logic board away from the case.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463967.jpg
24 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With the logic board and battery removed, we can see a metal plate, which serves as a base for the Control pad contacts. It's held in place with four Phillips #00 screws--one of which I removed earlier.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463968.jpg
25 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
We'll need to remove the three remaining screws before lifting the control pad contact plate away from the case.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463969.jpg
26 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
One of the screws is hidden behind this small cushion.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463970.jpg
27 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With all four screws removed, we can lift the control pad contact plate away from the case.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463971.jpg
28 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With the control pad contact plate removed, we can see the back of the control pad.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463972.jpg
29 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463973.jpg
30 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The actual contacts for the iPod Shuffle's control pad are attached to this metal plate.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463974.jpg
31 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The iPod Shuffle's control pad should pop free with a gentle push.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463975.jpg
32 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463976.jpg
33 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463977.jpg
34 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
At this point, there's nothing left in the iPod Suffle's case but the play-order/power switch.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463978.jpg
35 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463979.jpg
36 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463980.jpg
37 of 40 Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463981.jpg
38 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The large ship on the front of the logic board is covered with a sticker.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463982.jpg
39 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
The iPod Shuffle's main chip has the following markings:
339S0128
K9GA608U0E-BCB0 / FDEG21QV 1028
8443 ARM
N2N3XNP2 1031
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
463983.jpg
40 of 40 Bill Detwiler/ZDNet
With its hard-to-open case and soldered battery, the 4th generation iPod Shuffle wasn't really designed to be serviced--especially not by the average user. I wouldn't recommend cracking open your Shuffle unless you're prepared to possibly break the device.
Photo credit: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic

Related Galleries

Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6: Electric vehicle extravaganza
img-8825

Related Galleries

Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6: Electric vehicle extravaganza

26 Photos
A weekend with Google's Chrome OS Flex
img-9792-2

Related Galleries

A weekend with Google's Chrome OS Flex

22 Photos
Cybersecurity flaws, customer experiences, smartphone losses, and more: ZDNet's research roundup
shutterstock-1024665187.jpg

Related Galleries

Cybersecurity flaws, customer experiences, smartphone losses, and more: ZDNet's research roundup

8 Photos
Inside a fake $20 '16TB external M.2 SSD'
Full of promises!

Related Galleries

Inside a fake $20 '16TB external M.2 SSD'

8 Photos
Hybrid working, touchscreen MacBook hopes, cybersecurity concerns, and more: ZDNet's tech research roundup
Asian woman working at a desk in front of a computer and calculator

Related Galleries

Hybrid working, touchscreen MacBook hopes, cybersecurity concerns, and more: ZDNet's tech research roundup

8 Photos
Developer trends, zero-day risks, 5G speeds, and more: Tech research roundup
Person seated at a booth in a cafe looks at their phone and laptop.

Related Galleries

Developer trends, zero-day risks, 5G speeds, and more: Tech research roundup

10 Photos
Drive Electric Day: A dizzying array of EVs in sunny Florida
ca3b4019-26c5-4ce0-a844-5aac39e2c34b.jpg

Related Galleries

Drive Electric Day: A dizzying array of EVs in sunny Florida

16 Photos