In a teardown of the fifth-generation iPod nano, iFixit has offered a first-look at the inside of Apple's latest design marvel, which manages to pack in a pedometer, voice recorder, FM radio, speaker and video camera. The brand new device is available for $149 for the 8GB model and $179 for the 16GB capacity.
In its painstaking disassembling of the new iPod nano, iFixit found the hardware to be held together mostly by glue and adhesive — making it easy to put together, but difficult to take apart. The camera bezel had to be removed before the device could be taken apart.
"We wish Apple would a little effort into making iPods repairable, instead of forcing people tothrow them away when they break," the solutions provider said. "Recent iPods have become increasingly difficult to successfully repair. (One positive note is that unlike the iPhone, we haven't seen many issues with broken glass on the Nanos.)"
The device has a larger 2.2-inch display that offers 17.5 percent more screen than last year. That's four times the size of the original iPod nano.
Audio comes out of the bottom of the iPod in a fashion similar to the second-generation iPod touch. The speaker is only about a millimeter thick.
Among the discoveries inside by iFixit:
- The iPhone camera, with mount, is thicker than the entire new iPod nano. Clearly, the new iPod nano cannot support a camera like the iPhone.
- However, the iPod touch "could conceivably support" such a camera — "although it would certainly be an engineering challenge."
- The ARM processor is the largest thing on the internal circuit board.
- For the first time ever, the device carries the exact same form factor as last year's model. "The rear-mounted video camera is the only clear sign that we have a new device in our hands."
- "Unlike some earlier iPods, the hold switch isn't directly attached to the logic board."
- The new iPod nano has a redesigned click wheel that is not permanently affixed to the case. "We were able to rotate and lift the click wheel."
- The internal camera is a separate module that is not a part of the board. The camera itself is less than 3mm thick, vs. 6mm for the iPhone 3G camera.
- The flash memory was manufactured in Taiwan in mid-July. It was bought from Toshiba for the 8GB model iFixit disassembled.
The full disassembly guide, complete with additional details and photos, is available at iFixit's website.