Upgrading iPod Hard Drives

A number of people have asked about upgrading iPod hard drives — what to buy, how to prepare, and how to perform the upgrade — so here are all the technical details. If you’ve never worked inside an iPod before, this is certainly an advanced tutorial, but don’t let that scare you. Working slowly and methodically, you too can upgrade your iPod and store even more music, photos, and videos.

What to Buy

Which hard drive to buy depends on your specific iPod model, so like any half-decent attempt at an upgrade, a little research will go a long way towards making a good purchase. The main factors that will affect your decision are the height, or thickness, of both the iPod and hard drive, and the connector style employed by both. Since day one of the iPod launch, Toshiba has produced all the hard drives employed in the full size iPod lineup. While they enjoyed a profitable OEM business arrangement with Apple, the drives are in no way exclusive to the iPod, and they can be found in many other products, including (not surprisingly) some Toshiba laptops and (perhaps more surprisingly) Microsoft’s Zune player. To allow for some flexibility in product lineups, Toshiba’s 1.8″ hard drives come in two thicknesses — the thinner has one physical storage platter inside, and the thicker has two. Doubling-up of the storage surfaces is why you’ll often see a given capacity drive, and the next step up of two times that capacity. As technology advances, the capacity of each surface increases while the dimensions remain fixed for easy interchange-ability. This is good news for iPod upgraders. The longer you wait, the more you can store in the same amount of space.

Apple’s iPods are fairly easy to find a matching replacement/upgrade hard drive for, as you can generally tell which thickness drive you need just by comparing it to the others of its family. If your iPod was the thicker of the series when you purchased it, it takes the thicker, two-platter hard drive (examples include the then-higher capacity models such as 40 GB iPod and 60 GB iPod photo). The thinner models (like the 15 GB iPod and 30 GB iPod photo) take the thinner hard drives.

The 5th generation iPods with video capability are a different beast, as the drive technology and space requirements have demanded smaller internals. With that in mind, Toshiba engineered a new connector on recent drives that is vastly smaller than the previous models. These new drives sport a Zero Insertion Force (ZIF) connector, which, unlike the older iPods, requires no pressure to connect the cable. Simply holding the hair-thin ribbon cable in place and folding down a clamp-like lock will secure all 40 pins in a staggeringly small, fragile connector. The connector on the 5G iPods’ logic boards is now no wider than your thumbnail, and it, too is quite delicate. Such is the way of ever-shrinking consumer electronics.

Tools of the Trade

Before you decide on a hard drive, you’ll also want to purchase a few tools to ensure the job gets done right. While you’re able to pry most iPods apart using a tool as simple as a butter knife, the professionals use the following to make entry, upgrade, and close-up as invisible as possible.

  • Apple’s “black stick”
    This nylon-based pry tool is key to almost any iPod upgrade, as it provides a strong lever to get into the edges of the case, while its plastic properties leave next to no marks or chewed-up looking spots along the edges. Best bought from Stanley Supply & Services.
  • IC puller or hemostats (both available at your local RadioShack)
    Either of these tools will work for undoing the iPod battery cable and handling some of the smaller pieces of the iPod. Not necessary, but highly recommended if you plan on doing more than one upgrade.
  • A straight razor blade (for 5G iPods)
    I was hesitant to include this, as it’s a recipe for injury if you’re not careful. In the interest of completeness, though, it’s here. The latest iPods are sealed very well, and more often than not they require a very thin and flexible bit of metal to make room for Apple’s Black Stick pry tool.
  • HD adapters from Addonics: 1.8″ to 2.5″ IDE and 2.5″ to 3.5″ IDE
    To do testing or erasing on iPod-size hard drives, these adapters will get your 4G-or-earlier drive hooked up to a desktop computer’s IDE bus. (For 5G iPods, see this post) Also not necessary, but again, these are recommended for advanced testing and erasure.

Picking a Hard Drive

Depending on your iPod thickness and model, you can choose from the hard drives in the table below. Note that some of these models are not used in iPods, but should work just fine (for example, the 20 GB ZIF drive, which will only connect to new iPods which start out at 60 GB from Apple — technically a downgrade, but listed for compatibility information).

Brand Model # Capacity Connector Thickness Supported iPods
Toshiba MK1011GAH 100 GB ZIF 8mm Thick 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK8007GAH 80 GB Pins 8mm Thick 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK8009GAH 80 GB ZIF 8mm Thick 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK6006GAH 60 GB Pins 8mm Thick 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK6008GAH 60 GB ZIF 8mm Thick 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK4006GAH 40 GB Pins 8mm Thick 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK4008GAH 40 GB ZIF 8mm Thick 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK4007GAL 40 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK4009GAL 40 GB ZIF 5mm Thin 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK3006GAL 30 GB Pins 5mm Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK3008GAL 30 GB ZIF 5mm Thin 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK2004GAL 20 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK2006GAL 20 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK2008GAL 20 GB ZIF 5mm Thin 5G, 5.5G
Toshiba MK1504GAL 15 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK1003GAL 10 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK5002MAL 5 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Toshiba MK5004MAL 5 GB Pins 5mm 1G, Thin 2G, 3G, 4G, photo
Seagate ST760211DE 60 GB ZIF 5mm Thin 5G, 5.5G

Update: It appears that the 4G may be firmware limited to no more than a 60 GB drive. Reports indicate that drives above 60 GB in capacity appear as 60 GB despite the additional storage that’s available.

You can find many of the above drives on eBay and online retailers, but the most prevalent ones will be models used in iPods that shipped in the past. I have used many non-Apple-branded Toshiba hard drives without issue, confirming that there is nothing particular about them, except an Apple logo on the sticker. Having a third party manufacturer such as Toshiba re-brand a product is nothing new to the computer industry — other big companies like Dell and IBM work deals like this for many components.

Hard Drive Preparation

Unlike my iPod Super hack, a replacement iPod hard drive does not require any special formatting or filesystem preparation. In fact, I’ve found that working with a completely empty/zeroed hard drive works best. If you decided to purchase the adapters listed above, you can connect them as detailed in my Really Testing iPod Hard Drives post, and completely erase the hard drive using the handy Darik’s Boot and Nuke utility. I’ve found that it works best to have a zeroed hard drive, but it can often be done without. (The iPod sometimes tries to find software on the hard drive, which may be incorrect for its generation or be corrupted).

Opening the iPod

To get at the old hard drive, you’ll need to open the iPod, which is usually the hardest part of the process. 1G through 4G iPods aren’t as tough as the 5G and later iPods, and can be popped open by pushing the metal backing one way while pulling the plastic front the opposite way. In doing so, you create a small gap where you can slide in the nylon pry tool and undo the five plastic clips along one of the two longer sides. The inside top and bottom edges of all iPods are not secured. Other World Computing has some detailed take-apart videos which should help give you a good idea of exactly how to get inside.

To open a 5G or later iPod, try the first technique above, and use a straight razor as a last resort. For the really tough ones, work the sharp edge of a new razor perpendicularly into the side seam where the front plastic and back metal meet. Once wedged between the two halves, tip the dull edge of blade towards the front (towards you), using the iPod’s plastic side as a fulcrum to open a small space to insert the nylon pry tool.

This is extremely dangerous!

Not only are you working with a super-sharp piece of metal, you’re flexing its brittle structure, which may cause it to shatter — so don’t push too hard. I’ve never gotten cut or had a razor shatter while doing this, but only because I took my time and didn’t get my fingers near the sharp edge. Moving slow and thinking smart (as smart as bending a razor can be) are keys to making this technique work. Once the nylon pry tool is in place and has a little room to work, carefully extract the razor and set it aside. Use the pry tool to work the rest of the side clips open. If you feel at all uneasy about this method, it’s probably best to leave it to the professionals — the 5G iPod is a giant leap forward in design and engineering, at the expense of a lot of end-user serviceability.

The Switch

After cracking the side of the iPod open, carefully disconnect any audio jack or battery ribbon cables attached to the back panel. Undoing these connectors often requires the use of the nylon pry tool again, or careful pulling with hemostats. Be sure to pull the connector straight away from the logic board, using only minor side-to-side wiggling as needed. Attempting to pry the connector out of its matching socket without keeping it straight can result in the connector separating from its cable!

With the halves unhooked, the panels can be separated, exposing the hard drive. 1G through 4G iPod hard drives can be unplugged by simply pulling the connector straight off the end of the drive, whereas the 5G and later iPods require you to flip up the narrow lever. It hinges lengthwise along the middle. The lever does not fold flat backwards when open, but simply stands upright, and should not separate from its other retaining half.

Install the new hard drive in the same direction as the old one, making sure all pins and plastic guides line up. 5G iPods are especially tricky due to the ZIF connector. Yet again, some tiny tools may come in handy — just be sure to work gently with its delicate ribbon cable. Move the metal back panel close to the iPod and reconnect all the cables you unhooked to get into the device, and snap the panel back onto the plastic clips.

Restoring in Disk Mode

Pressing any button will power on your iPod, and you should be able to hear the new drive spin up. Unless the drive is preloaded with precisely the correct software, you will get a “sad iPod” face. This is okay! Reset your iPod using the commands detailed here, and immediately hold the Disk Mode keys as soon as the screen blanks for the reboot. This may take a few tries, but as long as your iPod doesn’t have the correct data on the drive, you’ve got all the attempts in the world to get into Disk Mode. When done properly, you’ll see “Disk Mode” at the top of the iPod. You can now plug the freshly upgraded iPod into your computer and launch iTunes. After it’s detected, iTunes may complain about a corrupted iPod. Dismiss any dialogs and browse to the Summary tab for the iPod, and click Restore. iTunes will load the proper software onto your iPod, and it will be as good as new — with more capacity!

Update: I added the Seagate ST760211DE 60 GB 5mm drive following a painless drop-in replacement report from Jerry Wnorowski:

Well it finally arrived, and with just a little hesitation, after all this was entirely new ground for me, I installed the 60GB Seagate hard drive into my broken 30GB iPod Video 5.5 Gen. When I plugged it in to my laptop, iTunes said it needed to be restored. I restored it, and it booted and came up in iTunes! I loaded my music, and now I have the thinnest 60GB iPod Video in the world!

Update: A 240GB iPod modification is now available for those who want TONS of storage space in one portable device.

Upgrading iPod Hard Drives

346 thoughts on “Upgrading iPod Hard Drives

  1. Harrier says:

    ipodhacker & Piejesu. This first step & simplest method to get the 120G drive to work on your 5.5 Video iPod would to try to copy firmware from the Video iPod Classic hard drive to your new hard drive. This will certainly get the hard drive to work. Do you have access and ability to do this?

    If this does not work for you, the next step will be more complicated and difficult to perform. The next step make also require experimentation and patience on your part.

    May I have Dan send you my e-mail address?

    Piejesu, if you are not able to copy firmware, I will try to send you the next instructions in Japanese because they are technical.

    ipodhacker & Piejesu how do you write English so well?


  2. Piejesu says:

    Thanks for your suggestion.
    My comment No.202 was written without your No.201, so something not meet. (^^;

    At this moment, I am sorry to say I have no idea to get iPod Classic firmware and copy it to.
    I am very pleased if you send me the next instructions. Maybe English is OK.

    >ipodhacker & Piejesu how do you write English so well?
    Thank you. But I always have to take a lot of time to read/write English, with my dictionary.


  3. ipodhacker says:

    Harrier, yes, Dan can send you my e-mail.
    The problem is that with the original firmware i cant format and copy things to the new 120gb drive, so any firmware upgrade must be done with the old 30gb drive, and then install the 120gb drive and check if we can format it there.
    so. ipod video with 30gb drive=>upgrade to classic firmware=>replace drive to 120gb=> try restore/format/etc.
    but will the classic firmware work on the video ipod?, or is it a modified classic firmware to fit on the video?


  4. KillerBee230 says:

    Hi.. You could also try transfering the built in hdd firmware from the 8mm 120GB drive to the the slim drive. I dont know if these drives are similar enough though.

    I dont think it would work if you copy the classic firmware to the drive – the hardware in the 5g & 5.5 / 6g ipods are too different.

    Btw. Did any of you try the HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool to format your harddrives? http://files.extremeoverclocking.com/file.php?f=197


  5. Piejesu says:

    ipodhacker, I have the same question you have.
    The problem is that there is no way to format or read/write at this moment.


    I read this thread, and know the HDD inside iPod classic can be install into iPod 5.5G, if there is formatted at once.
    So, now I am planning to buy a iPod classic (junk or second-handed) in order to format my MK1231GAL. After that, it may become to be recognized by my iPod 5.5G.

    How about this idea, Harrier & ipodhacker?


  6. Piejesu says:

    Thank you KillerBee
    I have tried the HP tool which you told now.
    The tool could recognize MK1231GAL in the USB HDD case, but when I pushed the “Start” button, the error message “Device media is write-protected” came out and failed formatting.

    I guess now this drive is protected to format only by iPod classic or Zune, not by iPod 5.5G.
    I also think the firmwares are much different between 5.5G and 6G, but I guess that the disk becomes to be able to be written/read after it is formatted by iPod classic and we can overwrite the firmware from 6G to 5.5G. (I hope it, rather than I guess)

    By the way, I ordered a Junk iPod classic at an auction site in Japan, which is like eBay,
    and am waiting the arrival of it. As soon as I get it, I will try and report the result to you.


  7. Piejesu says:

    I received the ordered Junk iPod classic, and then I tried.
    As a result, I could not make MK1231GAL working in iPod 5.5G. (ToT)

    At first, I installed MK1231GAL into iPod classic and restored it successfully.
    So, at this moment I could format this HDD.
    Then, I take out the HDD from iPod Classic, and installed it into iPod 5.5G.
    When I connect iPod 5.5G with my Mac, iTunes started and the message came out which tells me that I need to restore it.
    So, I push the button on iTunes to restore it, but for a while, the error message came out which tell the same 1416 error.

    After that, I connect it with Windows PC and tried to use HP tool which KillerBee told, but the error message “Device media is write-protected” came out again and failed formatting.

    So, I think the time to give up for me is comming near by….


  8. Adam says:

    Hey guys, was wondering if ya’ll could help me with a question. I’ve got a 80GB 6G Classic that needs a new HDD. It came with a Samsung HS081HA Drive and I was wondering since it has got to be replaced is there any reason I can’t upgrade to a 120GB or 160GB replacement drive. Are there different power requirements for the larger drives? would I need to upgrade the battery as well? Are the drives the same size? Can you think of any reason why a larger drive would not just “slip in”?



  9. Harrier says:

    Piejesu if you transferred the firmware from the classic HD to the 5.5 Gen properly and it still doesn’t work, than Apple has done more to prevent that from working. I will ask more questions from my friend at my end tomorrow. The firmware would be the simplest method to making it work an if it doesn’t, it needs to be investigated

    The hard drive you have is 5.0 mm thick. For your device, a 120 Hard drive can fit and work in your device, but because the 160 G is thicker at 8.0mm, you will not be able to use that hard drive unless you get a back plate to accommodate the additional space


  10. Piejesu says:

    Thank you for your investigation.
    I have read at iPodWizard site that the firmware of iPod classic is encrypted and it is very hard to extract it from iPod itself. If it is, it is very hard way, isn’t it?


  11. Harrier says:

    Werner, the drive that Apple uses is a Samsung MFG SKU HS161JQ. The drive is an 8mm and will not fit with you 80G or 120GB back panel. The 160GB I listed is less expensive than the Toshiba. In order to make it work you will need a thinker back panel to handle the additional room. If you are doing that, you will also be able to install a stronger battery that lasts longer.
    Piejesu, Ipod Hacker KillerBee230, please e-mail me at a junk e-mail harrier.1@live.com I don’t know if my solution will work an have a friend who believes he can do it, but looks like it will take some time. I tried asking Dan to help e-mail Piejesu and Ipod hacker with some instructions and my e-mail address. Evidently with the holidays or his policy, it was not sent.


  12. Werner says:

    Harrier, thanks for the information but unfortunately I asked something different.
    I have an iPOD classic 6G with a 160 GB HD and want to exchange it for a MK2431GAH (which has 240 GB). I am not interested in connecting another 160 GB as replacement.


  13. Adam says:

    Harrier, Thanks for the help. What about the battery, would there be any reason to need to upgrade it with a 120GB? what about with the 160GB?


  14. Harrier says:

    Sorry Adam, I’m putting in a lot of hours at work. The MK2431GAH 240 8MM ZIF thick should certainly fit into the 160G classic and your battery will have no problems. If you recall, Apple for the 5.5G Video iPod and all other models, does everything it can try to build obsolescence by putting limits on the the hard drive memory it can handle. It does not appear to be related to the firmware, but possibly the control cards as Dan indicated above. Nobody has tried the 240G, but hardware wise it should work, but if Apple has put a hard drive limit on it highest end models (you are aware Apples largest video iPod is 160 and that is no longer being sold because quality complaints it is too slow and loud). The 240G is a double platter just as your 160G. The 240G is actually faster than the 160G-It’s a gamble I don’t think can work, but I can call rapid repair if you like and ask them


  15. […] Upgrading iPod Hard Drives que discos puedes cambiar en el ipod para aumentar la capacidad Publicado por Jose Carballada en Opinion y en Blogs navegación por fecha: «anterior | Bose® QuietComfort® 3 con la misma categoría en Opinion, Blogs: «anterior | Blogs 09/01 uno cualquiera, a suerte: ¡Salta! otros artículos posiblemente relacionados […]


  16. Casey says:

    I replaced the bad hard drive of an Ipod photo 30GB with the same hard drive that was in it(Toshiba MK3006GAL 30 GB). Now it reads a capacity of 16GB. What can I do to get all the space?


  17. Subtropical_305 says:

    THANK YOU THANK YOU for blogging how to do this. I was able to switch my 5G hard drive this morning. It was hard but I think I did it.

    A quick note, I found the explanation of the zif connector on the hard drive is a little confusing. I didn’t understand where the bar is and ended up just pulling the ribbon cable out. Miracle I didn’t break it.

    There is a little bar (black on the toshiba drives) on the drive’s connector, where the pins are. This clamps the pins down. If you flip this up 90 degrees the ribbon cable should slide out w/ a very gentle pull. When putting it back, make sure the bar is up, and slide it back in gently. Then clamp the bar back down to secure the pin connection. If you’re using forceps or an IC tool be careful where on the ribbon you clamp, so that you don’t damage the electrical traces on the cable.


  18. Oliver says:

    Can’t wait to try this out!!!
    Does anyone know how you would go about plugging an external hard drive into an iPod and playing stuff off there. I was thinking, rather than upgrade the iPod HD to another 1.8″ one, you could maybe use a larger HD around 500GB and create a way to plug this external hd into the iPod.
    Any help with this idea and I would be truly greatful!


  19. David says:


    I need to reflect a question above, to which I might have misse dthe answer. I have a MK8009GAH that came with no ZIF connector. How do I use the one in my IPOD? I’m going to have to disconnect it from the drive, and connect it to my drive, rather than flipping up that black thing on the IPOD and removing the connector. I’m looking online like a madman, and all tutorials rely on my new drive’s having its own ZIF. That doesn’t seem to be the case with mine. Did I miss the answer and/or does anyone know a link to a photo, if not a video, showing this?

    Thanks to anyone!


  20. maseClassic says:

    im new to this sit.i’ve ipod 80G classic. a month ago it fail and freezed but was still playing songs without next,prev,.. workin,that when i reset it with Menu+select.unusualy the reset took about 15-20 min and when it finshed there were no music,no photo,no nothing and when i pluged it to pc itune told me i should restor it,then i did restored it but now there is othere error thats says “iPod can’t synced error (-48)”,i cant even copy single 80MB file to the HDD in the middel of copying is says cant copy (to deep,perimeter is incorrect).im gusing sadly the HDD is damaged,if its is it fixable?if not were can i get the right HDD(Classic) And chip..i saw some price about $179 and thats not fair i saw on one sit that apple buy the 80G HDD from Thosiba with $79.insted of buying a HDD with $179, i better buy the new ipod classic 120G with $249.


  21. Dannynicla says:


    Has anybody found out how to access the added memory yet? I upgraded my 4G 20Gig to a 30Gig, but it only shows up as the original 16 or so Gig I had with my 20. There were a few other postings with this problem. Please let me know if you find out!



  22. Ben says:


    So I have a 30GB 5th Gen Video, now that can only mean I have one hard drive

    Toshiba MK3008GAL

    OK, thats fine, but then that means there is NO possible upgrade for my model, as bigger hard drive are the 8mm kind..

    Am I correct???

    I need help, my current 30GB hard drive is faulty and need new one, just thought might as well get more space?!?!

    Please any comments



  23. Ben says:


    After more research I have found out that I could use a Seagate ST760211DE in my 5th Gen 30GB, OR

    I could get a thicker 8mm HDD and upgrade back plate and internal parts.

    Just want to know if this is correct, I know it seems like a noob question but swapping HDD in such a small machine is obviously not an easy job, just dont want to make it harder.

    Seeing as i dont want to mess about with back plates suppose i got either replace HDD or get Seagate ST760211DE.

    Has anyone else done a Seagate ST760211DE and can confirm success?



  24. Don Roberts says:

    Not an iPod…I have a Smartdisk 1.8″ external USB harddrive. It uses the Toshibal MK2006GAL 20 GB hard drive. I would like to replace it with something MUCH larger. Can you tell me what P/N options I have ? Your help will be greatly appreciated.


  25. Ben says:


    so no where sells Seagate ST760211DE

    so options for 30GB 5th Gen Video is to just replace HDD or upgrade back plates and parts.

    Found 30GB HDD for under £30 on ebay



  26. Ben says:

    WOW Tabias that is a well good steal mate, good finding.

    A 5mm 80GB HDD, that means no messing just straight swap with a Toshiba MK3008GAL 5th Gen Video.

    IF you get a successful swap I will deff go for that to.

    £150 works out just over £100, worth it for 80GB.

    Will the battery in a 30GB 5G handle such a drive?



  27. MiPODrepair says:


    I have successfully installed the Seagate Lyrion 60gb drive in a 5G Video. It works great and requires no thick back as the drive is 5mm like the 30gb it is replacing. Unfortunately, the market for buying/finding the 60gb Lyrion is tough and the batch I received for upgrades were of poor quality. I had one out of four fail. I am considering doing the HS081HA for my 5G Video customer upgrades. This drive is solid. Good luck and enjoy.

    Ben wrote: OK

    After more research I have found out that I could use a Seagate ST760211DE in my 5th Gen 30GB, OR

    I could get a thicker 8mm HDD and upgrade back plate and internal parts.

    Just want to know if this is correct, I know it seems like a noob question but swapping HDD in such a small machine is obviously not an easy job, just dont want to make it harder.

    Seeing as i dont want to mess about with back plates suppose i got either replace HDD or get Seagate ST760211DE.

    Has anyone else done a Seagate ST760211DE and can confirm success?



  28. Johannes says:

    Hi again,

    You could also use this 80GB hdd for your ipod video, i am going to buy that one http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/NEW-Samsung-HS081HA-80GB-Hard-Drive-iPod-Classic-Zune_W0QQitemZ350157223634QQcmdZViewItemQQptZUK_AudioTVElectronics_PortableAudio_MP3Players?hash=item350157223634&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1683|66%3A2|65%3A12|39%3A1|240%3A1318

    It should be guaranteed to work without any problems. I dont think it is neccesary to change the battery, but you could buy a replacement at the same seller


  29. Johannes says:

    Edit: I compared the two drives, and it looks like the one Tobias links to, is faster – Faster rotation speed 3600 VS 4200 and more cache 2mb VS 8mb. If the MK8025 works, i would definately buy that instead.


  30. Harrier says:

    For the 5th and 5.5 gen Video iPod that are 30G model there is a Samsung Drive 120G hard drive that will work Model HS120JB/JM1. It’s a spin point N2 but will require a larger back panel for it. It will fit perfectly into the 60G and 80G.

    For all models Video ipod a 100G Toshiba MK1011GAH hard drive will work-its 5mm

    For Warner with the 6G Classic the 240GB Toshiba MK2431GAH drive with not work with the Classic, but will work with 5th and 5.5 Gen. It’s 8mm and will will only work with the 30G model if you add the larger back panel

    Since I prefer the 5mm, I don’t care about the thicker drive but thought I would pass that on to those that do.


  31. Ben says:


    Thanks for reporting success on the 60GB, but like you said hard to find, so gone of that idea ATM.

    I was looking at my friends new 80GB 6th Gen, and saw that its the same 5mm design as my 30GB 5th Gen. Therefore might go for that HDD. Some people say on the internet that this is NOT possible because 6th Gen HDD are only used for 6th Gen.

    BUT surely you can put this drive….


    ….into a 5th Gen Video. Best of all only around $120



  32. Piejesu says:


    I think Toshiba MK1011GAH is not 5mm. It is 8mm.
    Perhaps, The last letter “H” of “MKXXXXGAH” means High, that is 8mm.
    On the other hand, “L” means Low, that is 5mm.
    The largest model which can be installed into iPod 5.5G is MK8025GAL (and MK8022GAA) at this moment.
    MK8022GAA has a firmware specialized to iPod only, but MK8025GAL can be used not only iPod but also PC or other machine, I suppose.

    By the way, after I gave up installing MK1231GAL (120GB, 5mm) into my iPod 5.5G, I ordered MK2341GAL (240GB, 8mm) and back panel from Rapid Repair and waiting for shipping now.


  33. Johannes says:


    Aww im sad to hear that.. i hoped you would get it to work in the end..

    On ebay, the MK8022GAA seems to be incompatible with the ipod video “Is compatible with 6th Gen Ipod Video Classic only. These drives are proprietary to Gen6 and will not function in any other product. They will not replace MK3008GAL or MK6008GAH. They only replace MK8022GAA” Where did you read, that it is compatible?

    The MK8025GAL is a lot more expensive than the Samsung HS081HA 80GB. Do you think you can feel the difference in the speed? After all we are working with ipod with a small amount of RAM, so the hardware might limit the very fast harddrive to a speed similar to the HS081HA.

    Please write back, when you find out if/how the MK2341GAL works.



  34. MiPODrepair says:

    This weekend I installed the Samsung 80gb drive HS081HA
    into a 5G Video. It replaced a 30gb drive as an upgrade.
    The install went without a hitch – I gave the drive a FAT32 format, installed it, iTunes recognized the iPOD as in recovery mode, restored, and tested by adding 1000 songs and cycling through them. The great news about this drive is that it does not require a thick back as it is a 5mm drive thickness.


  35. Harrier says:

    Piejesu /Ben, I’ve been working 74 hour weeks to help land business to help land sales in my company-sorry for not responding. This is my first weekend off this year and I’m celebrating it by sleeping most of the day. To answer your question, you are correct MK1011GAH, sorry. Also rapid repair has updated it’s website to help answer basic hard drive questions through their own trial and error. http://www.rapidrepair.com/shop/index.html


  36. Eric says:

    Why doesn’t the MK3006GAL work with 1g iPods?

    Do we know that the MK4007GAL works on 1g iPods, or does it just fit?

    I’m basically trying to figure out what the largest drive I can fit into a 1st gen 5gb and still have it function as well. Please help if possible…


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