The effects of magnets on ipods

Written by scott danielson
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The effects of magnets on ipods
Hard drives, cassette tapes and floppy disks are all examples of media that can be destroyed by magnets. (hard drive image by BigDog from Fotolia.com)

Magnets have long been hailed as destroyers of technology, wreaking havoc on anyone who is careless enough to let one near their computer. They've been known to corrupt or delete hard drive data and temporarily or permanently destroy the visual element to old CRT monitors. However, technology has come a long way, and it could be safe to assume that this flux-related threat has perhaps dissipated, or at least lessened, right? Specifically, do magnets have any effect on iPods? If the iPod's drive still has magnetic platters and moving parts, then bringing a magnet in close proximity to these platters can reset the position of those switches, effectively corrupting the data. However, much of the newest technology is not affected by magnets.

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iPod Classic

The iPod Classic is Apple's original iPod, and the iPod available today that has the most storage space available for music. The reason for this is that the iPod Classic is still built with a mechanical hard disk drive. The drive inside the iPod classic still has magnetic platters and moving parts. Data is still stored on these platters in the positions of millions of tiny switches, and bringing a magnet in close proximity to these platters can reset the position of those switches, effectively corrupting the data. The iPod Classic is most definitely still vulnerable to the age-old threat of magnetic flux.

iPod Touch, Nano, Shuffle

The iPod Classic is currently the only Apple iPod product that still contains a mechanical hard drive. The iPod Touch, iPod Nano, and iPod Shuffle all contain what is called an SSD, or a Solid State Drive. This is commonly referred to as flash memory, and these storage devices have no moving parts or magnetic platters. Solid State Memory is more expensive, but the data it stores is safer, and is (in most cases) impervious to magnetic threat.

Better Safe Than Sorry

While Solid State Memory iPods are supposedly "immune" to the threats imposed by a field of magnetic flux, there is no apparent reason why anyone would need to bring a magnet into close proximity of their iPod. If your iPod has come in brief contact with a magnet, you'll probably be fine. However, the best practice is that it's always better to be safe than sorry.

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