neat iPod battery gauge trick

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by jxyama, Apr 14, 2004.

  1. macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #1
    read this on /.

    for 3rd gen. iPod (that's all i've tested on...), make an empty file called "_show_voltage" (no quotes) in a directory called iPod_Control/Device/ within iPod.

    (i mounted my iPod as a FWHD and used terminal to make the file.)

    this will change the battery gauge into a three digit number. (presumably the battery voltage.) 500 (=5.00 volts) is full and 200 (=2.00 volts) is nearly empty. it's a bit more precise and "absolute" than the bar style battery gauge.

    i presume you can simply erase the file to get the old gauge back...
     
  2. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2004
    Location:
    In a nice place..
    #2
    Yea, you can remove the file, and it goes back to bars.

    Samuel L Bronkowitz
     
  3. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2003
    Location:
    NJ
    #3
    neat little trick, works fine on my iPod i'll have to test it a little to see if it's better than the gauge, i would image it won't be though since voltage will be rather high for most of the time and then abruptly die
    where did you find this trick?

     
  4. thread starter macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #4
    the number conveys the same info as the graphic gauge - so it won't drop abruptly. it's just more "precise" than the graphic one, but still the same info. (rather, iPod software takes this voltage info and converts to the graphic form to display.)

    i saw it on /. post about the potential design flaw of iPod Mini a few days ago.
     
  5. Wes
    macrumors 68020

    Wes

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #5
    I don't want to sound condescending towards thehuncamunca, but /. is http://www.slashdot.org .
     
  6. macrumors 68000

    musicpyrite

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Cape Cod
    #6
    This "trick" has been around for at least a month at ipodloung.com
     
  7. thread starter macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #7
    sure... but this is MR... ;)
     
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Vector

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2002
    #8
    Someone mentioned this last fall. I tried it but didn't find it that useful. I just run my ipod until my batteries are dead and charge it whenever i can so i don't realy pay attention to the gauge.
     
  9. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Boston
    #9
    Instructions for a novice?


    THIS SOUNDS REAL COOL.. but I tried reading your instructions over/over, and can't really understand it.
    2 weeks ago, I got my first ever Mac (iMac 20") along with the Mini Ipod...
    Whenever you have time, or see this next, can you walk me (any maybe others?, I hope) in making this directory?
    Thanks in advance!
     
  10. thread starter macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #10
    k, a quick and dirty way...

    1) mount your iPod as FWHD. (use iTunes/Preferences to turn this on)
    2) open a terminal (note: type stuff in bold, replace italics with relevant names)
    3) type cd /Volumes/name of your iPod/iPod_Control/Device/
    4) type pico _show_voltage
    5) in the text editor that comes up, press control-o
    6) confirm the name of the file by pressing return
    7) exit by pressing control-x
    8) close the terminal window
    9) eject the iPod

    to remove the file, follow steps 1 through 3, then type rm _show_voltage
     
  11. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Boston
    #11
    THANKS!

    I'm going to check this out once I get home. Thanks again!
    -Chris
     
  12. macrumors 65816

    haiggy

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #12
    I still prefer the graphic as to the numbers... I don't really care how charged it is... if its low, I charge it, if not I let it sleep. The battery is more visually appealing.
     
  13. macrumors 65816

    tomf87

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    #13
    Or to consolidate steps 3-7:

    touch /Volumes/name of your iPod/iPod_Control/Device/_show_voltage

    and to remove:

    rm /Volumes/name of your iPod/iPod_Control/Device/_show_voltage

    Also, I don't think the number represents volts, but an arbitrary number representing battery life remaining. The volts for the battery would be the same throughout the charge, otherwise the system would die soon after the volts fell below the required amount.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #14
    nice. wasn't familiar with that command.

    also, yeah, it's not the voltage... it must be amp-hour or something.
     
  15. macrumors 65816

    tomf87

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    #15
    Just editing my post, but yeah, I agree with you on the number.
     
  16. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Boston
    #16
    While on the topic...

    I heard that it's not good to overchange the mini iPod. I use this mainly at work and keep it plugged into the wall outlet via FWire... I don't feel it getting any warmer. Can I get some acquiescence that this won't harm the Mini? (basically, use the mini while plugged into the wall outlet.. It's normally plugged in for a good 8 hours a day, while playing...)
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    tomf87

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    #17
    It's not good to overcharge any battery that I know of. I would use it until the battery gets low then charge it.
     
  18. Wes
    macrumors 68020

    Wes

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #18
    This is probably just the placebo effect, but my battery seems to be lasting longer after adding the volt (amp) meter. Before it would last 2 days for me with my amount of usage, with the same amount it has now gone all week. I'll have to perform more test to tell. (At the end of the week, it still has 250 left)
     
  19. Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #19
    Tested it on my iPod mini and it works fine, showing 525 when fully charged...

     
  20. macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #20
    I use my iPod 15GB plugged in at work 9-10 hours a day. I run it off battery and drain it once a week. Been doing this for 8 months now. Battery fully charged lasts a little over 7.5 hours.
     
  21. macrumors regular

    Misplaced Mage

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Somewhere outside the spacetime continuum…
    #21
    Most portable electronic devices today use voltage regulators to supply a constant voltage to the logic circuits because battery voltage isn't actually constant as the battery discharges. For example, many cell phones today have a lithium-ion battery similar to the iPod's: the battery voltage ranges between 4.2V when fully charged and 3.0V when "dead", and drops in a very well-characterized curve as the battery discharges. The voltage regulators in the cell phone drop the battery voltage to a constant 1.8V or 2.8V (exact voltage(s) dependent on the chipset). Below the battery's "dead" voltage, it simply can't supply enough current (and hence, power) to the circuits driven by the regulators for them to operate. The voltage of the battery during discharge is thus a reasonably accurate way of gauging how much of a charge remains.

    That's a long way of saying, yes, that number is quite likely the actual voltage of the battery. :D
     

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