How to use the IPOD Classic and Mini?

I noticed some users need a refresher course on how to use the IPOD. Its very simple, you’ll be a pro in minutes. In this post, i’ll cover the basics of using an IPOD Classic. (I guess this will be similar to the mini too).

*I will not be covering the transferring of songs here, you can search for those instructions easily online. 1a

Step 1

On the right, you will see the Hold button and the earphone  jack. The earphone jack is where your 3.5mm earphone goes.

Mr. Hold button is our best friend, he will be helping us conserve battery power.

  • When the hold button is switched on, you will see a lock symbol appear on the screen.
  • When the hold button is on, this means that the buttons in the front of the iPod will not be accidentally pressed when its in your bag or pocket.
  • Thus conserving battery power

Step 2 2a

You can see in the picture the scroll wheel.

  • The scroll wheel helps you navigate up and down.
  • The menu button allows you to back up the menu, go backwards while you navigate
  • The forward and reverse is used to forward and back track the songs
  • The play and pause button is used to play a song, to pause it and also is the same button to shut down the iPod.
  • Holding the play/pause button for 2 seconds will turn it off. After you turn it off, remember to activate the hold button.

Step 3

I normally supply a third party cable for you to transfer and charge your IPod. If you have 3aan original cable, it will fit the best. They are the same 30-pin from your older iPhones and iPads.

Third party cables are usually too tight, so plug in slowly and it should get better over time.


How to tell if my IPOD battery is still good?

Is there something wrong with my battery life?

Sometimes, I get customers asking why the battery drain out so quickly? Well, here at Ray’s Customs, all batteries are checked to last a minimum of 7 hours continuous play before it gets sold.

So before you panic and ask why does it run out quickly? Here’s a few things in the checklist.

  • Did you always put your IPOD on hold while not in use, to prevent accidental playing?
  • Did you manage to charge the IPOD fully?

What happens to the IPOD when the battery is about to drain completely?

  • The set will either turn off automatically or starts to reboot.
  • It reboots when you are low on battery and pressing the forward/backward button switching songs. (Menu button too)

Here’s the various charging and charged symbols for the different IPODs.

4th Generation Photo or Color IPOD


5th Generation IPOD


6th Generation IPOD


IPOD Mini and 4th gen non-color IPODs


All of the IPODs when fully charged will say charged.

Simple test:

  1. Charge it till you see the above symbol
  2. Play it continuously (See how long it last and if you are comfortable with the time?) We use a benchmark of 7 hours.

Top Tip:

I do advise to get your battery changed if it last lesser then 7 hours continuous play.

How to identify the sought after Gen 5.5?

A lot of customers asked me and I also noticed some sellers passing off other generations as Gen 5.5 just to make more money.

So I hope this guide will help you identify the famous Gen 5.5 IPOD classic.


Gen 5 or 5.5 looks the same

From this picture, you should be able to tell that its Generation 5.0 or Generation 5.5. they look the same externally. they come in both white/black or U2 versions. (Yes, U2 have version 5.5 too!)

Serial and Order Numbers

The last 3 digit of the serial number will end with one of these ” V9K, V9P, V9M, V9R, V9L, V9N, V9Q, V9S, WU9, WUA, WUB, WUC, or X3N.” For the U2 it will be W9G.

You can check the Serial Number when you power on the IPOD and select Settings>About> S/N:

Serial and Order number on the same screen.


Turn it behind printed on the back will be the serial number below:


Sometimes, the back cover gets replaced during repair, so the serial number isn’t matching.

You can also check the order number on the same screen as the serial number, its located just below. See the same picture above Settings>About>.

Generation 5.5 (AKA 5th Gen Enhanced) Order numbers below.



Gen 5.5 only came in 30GBb and 80GB, I would advice you to pick up the 30GB if you have a choice as the crystal cases and pvc cases available these days fits only the 30gb.

If you are fine without a case and don’t mind the bulkiness, its fine too. After all the 5.5 is a rare find and buyers mainly buy it for the audio quality.

Search function

The Gen 5.5 also came with the search feature. Its found below, select “Music>”.

This is unreliable, as I saw dishonest sellers passing off the Gen 6th as the 5.5 (Gen 6th came with the search too)

Search feature

If you are still unsure, then please buy your IPODS from reputable sellers to at least have a piece of mind. Or take a picture and email me, I’ll love to hear from you.

How do I turn off my IPOD Classic or Mini?

Here’s what you can do to turn it off (By default the IPOD should always be on standby mode)3

  • Press and hold the “Play/Pause” button. Wait until the display disappears.
  • Toggle the Hold switch. This is located on the top of the iPod. Turning Hold on will keep your iPod from accidentally turning on if a button is pressed. Toggle the switch again to turn the iPod back on. (Thus always in standby mode)
  • Sometimes by pressing the “Play/Pause” button doesn’t turn off the display.
    • You can try toggling the hold switch  or
    • You can play a song or switch a few songs before holding the “Play/Pause” button again
  • If the above still doesn’t work, do a reset to the IPOD. (This could be found in the Tips and Tricks Category)

How to reset my IPOD Classic Or Mini?

Sometimes the IPOD hangs, could be due to the software maybe?

6Well, let me share on how to reset the IPOD by different Generations.

For Generation 4, 5 ,6 and Mini with the Click Wheel

  • Slide the Hold switch to the locked position and then slide it to unlocked again
  • Press and hold the Menu and Center (or Select) buttons together until you see the logo (about six to eight seconds). You might need to repeat this step

For Generation 3, 2 and 1

  •  You can hard reset by holding the menu and play/pause buttons together for a few seconds
  • Screen will go blank and you will be greeted by the logo
  • You will then be asked to select the language



IPOD Classic Brief History?

There are several models for the IPOD Classics and Mini, all of them uses the popular gen-1Wolfson DAC. The Wolfson Chip is very popular amongst music enthusiasts.

IPOD Classic Generation 1 (2001)

  • Comes in 5GB and 10GB
  • Uses Firewire Connection
  • Mechanical Scrollwheel
  • Model M8541
  • Wolfson Audio WM8721


IPOD Classic Generation 2 (2002)

  • Comes in 5GB, 10GB and 20GB
  • Uses Firewire Connection
  • Touch Sensitive Wheel
  • Firewire port has cover
  • Revised hold switch
  • Model A1019
  • Wolfson Audio WM8721

IPOD Classic Generation 3 (2003)ipod-3rd-gen

  • Comes in 10GB, 15GB, 20GB, 30GB and 40 GB
  • Uses Firewire for Charging and USB for syncing data
  • All touch interface
  • 4 lighted buttons (only ipod model with this feature)
  • Model A1040
  • Wolfson Audio WM8721

IPOD Classic Generation 4 (2004)

  • There’s 3 varia4thgentions of Gen 4, Non-Color, Photo, With Color
  • Non-Color (20GB and 40GB)
  • Photo (40GB, 60Gb and 30GB)
  • With Color (20GB)
  • Uses the Click Wheel from the IPOD Mini
  • Model A1059 and A1099
  • Wolfson Audio WM8975

Limited Edition includes the famous U2 version (My Fave!)

IPOD Classic Generation 5 (2005)fifthgenipodblack

  • There’s the 5th Generation and the Enhanced Version (AKA Gen 5.5)
  • 5th Gen and Gen 5.5 both came in Black or White colors
  • Both came in 30GB, 60GB or 80GB versions
  • Both uses Colored Screen and Wolfson Audio WM8758
  • Gen 5.5 came with an additional search feature (so does 6th Gen)
  • Gen 5.5 is the last model that uses an Wolfson DAC
  • Gen 5.5 is very collectible (even more for U2 5.5 version)
  • Model A1136

Limited Edition includes the famous U2 version (My Fave!)

IPOD Classic Generation 6 (2007)

  • Uses Cirrus Logic Audio Codec Chipb000jlkiha-7-lg
  • Comes in 80gb and 160gb (Thick)
  • Silver or black anodized aluminum front
  • Model A1238

IPOD Classic Generation 6 (2008)

  • Some collectors refer these as the Gen 7 or Gen 6.5
  • Comes in 120gb and 160gb (Thin)
  • Silver or black anodized aluminum front
  • Uses Cirrus Logic Audio Codec Chip
  • Model A1238