Charge iPod Nano 3g using powered USB Hub

Discussion in 'iPod' started by lyallp, Mar 16, 2008.

  1. lyallp macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2008
    Hi, I recently purchased a Nano and am wondering about charging.
    I have a powered USB hub on my computer but it appears that the Nano will only charge whilst the computer is turned on.
    Is this expected?
    Is there a way to convince the Nano to charge even though the hub is powered but the computer is not?
    Otherwise, I may have to investigate a dedicated charger.

  2. yashrg macrumors regular


    Feb 21, 2008
    I want to do the same thing for my iPod touch 2g too. Any ideas?
  3. John.B macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2008
    Holocene Epoch
    I think the issue is that many computers not made by Apple shutdown the USB port when the computer goes to sleep; IIRC they all do this when the computer is powered off. The powered hubs still get their cue from what they are attached to.

    I don't know of any powered USB hubs that continue to provide power to charge a device when attached to a computer that's powered off. (And if someone else knows about one, I'd appreciate if you would share that info with me and everyone else. :D)

    About a year ago I bought a separate AC charger and an :apple: dock specifically sized for my 2nd gen nano to charge it at work (Apple doesn't make one of these for the 3rd or 4th gen nano, for those you'd have to spring for the universal dock). At home I have powered speakers with a built-in iPod dock that does charge the iPod when the power is turned off, but of course that's not connected to my MacBook (if you look around some of these will do that, most of the JBL On Stage devices have the 30 pin connector so you can to sync to your Mac or PC).

    For the money I spent on the dock and the AC charger, I could've bought a decent powered speaker unit with an iPod dock that would also charge my iPod and can support a variety of iPods with the dock adapter inserts. Maybe even including syncing to iTunes on your Mac or PC. That's what I'd recommend if you can't get the USB sleep issue solved. As always, YMMV.
  4. yashrg macrumors regular


    Feb 21, 2008
    well, this Cnet article claims that belkin ones (or atleast this particular one) can do it.

    I guess other's don't do this to protect themselves. Like if someone were to plug the usb cable of the usb hub into the port on the usb hub itself, there could be some short circuit etc.

    Just saying because my little brother just went, I wonder what happens if I plug the hub into itself, and inserted the USB male end of the hub into the female on the HUB. LOL luckily, mine is a Dynex and nothing happened.
  5. John.B macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2008
    Holocene Epoch
    Thanks. The question is, if I plug that USB hub into my computer and shut the computer off, does the powered hub power down the USB ports? The powered UBS hubs I have all annoying do exactly that (to be fair, it might be in the USB spec?)...
  6. Tazy macrumors newbie

    Dec 18, 2007
    an experiment prove above theory wrong... still no solution

    Hi all,

    I too have a powered USB hub (a cheapo one from IO-Gear) attached to my iMac. I have powered it using an external power source (DC wall adapter).
    Following devices charge just fine using this hub (even when my iMac is powered off):
    - original shuffle
    - Nano (2nd gen)
    - Motorolla bluetooth handsfree device

    BUT, my wife's 3rd gen Nano refuses to charge (the battery icon does not change). But the LCD light does turn on to show that something was attached to the USB port. The same is true for 2nd Gen ipod touch :-(

    Any thoughts?
  7. yashrg macrumors regular


    Feb 21, 2008
    Hi Tazy, thanks that was really helpful. I have a 2nd gen ipod touch too. And I guess the new devices are smarter than the others.
  8. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Depends on the hub. Most hubs sleep when computer is sleeping / off.

    Some hubs will stay on. That would be advertised as a feature.
  9. dXTC macrumors 68020


    Oct 30, 2006
    Up, up in my studio, studio
    I picked up a display model of one of those 2nd gen nano docks at CompUSA when they went out of business; found it in a "miscellaneous" parts bin for $2. Works like a charm. Now I just need to find a cheap AC-to-USB adapter.

    (Did Apple ever fix the problem with that super-small USB/AC adapter? That would be perfect.)

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