iPod Classic 3rd Generation (2003) – Full information

Compared to the earlier models, the iPod classic Third Generation was completely redesigned. It had a lighter, slimmer and more rounded case. The improvements also include a dock connector for connection to a computer (replacing the Fire Wire port) and audio out for connection to speakers. The four buttons are now backlit and they are located in a row above the touch wheel (the previous models had buttons placed around the wheel). Among software improvements we can mention games, alarm clock, possibility to record voice and updated customization options. On the other hand, battery life has estimated eight hours, two hours less than the iPod classic 1st and the iPod classic 2nd generations.

iPod Classic 3rd Generation (2003)

  • Introduced on April 29, 2003.
  • Upgraded on September 8, 2003.


  • Processor Speed: 90 MHz (x2).
  • Processor Type: PP5002.
  • Onboard RAM: 32 MB.
  • Storage capacity: 10 GB (2000 songs in 160-Kbps MP3 format), 15, 20, 30 and 40 GB. The 15 GB model replaced by a 20 GB model and the 30 GB model upgraded to 40 GB on September 8, 2003.
  • Mac support: Mac10.1.
  • OS: Operating system for mobile devices based on Pixo OS 2.1. Possibility to work with Windows 2000. Musicmatch support was changed for iTunes 4.1 for Windows.
  • Audio: A high output amplifier (60-mW). The third generation iPods had a 4-pin jack adjacent to the headphone port.
  • Drive: 1.8” hard drive.
  • Dimensions: 4.02 x 2.43 x 0.78.
  • Average weight: .5 oz.
  • Navigation: Touch-sensitive scroll wheel which assured an easy one handed navigation. Four buttons located between the touch-wheel and the screen.
  • Format: MP3.
  • Battery Type: 1200 mAh lithium ion hours of music playback using an integrated 1200 mAh Lithium Polymer battery. Battery life (estimated): up to 8 hours. Full-charge time: 3 hours. Fast charge in 1 hour to 80% capacity.
  • Display: Black and white 2” (diagonal) monochrome (backlit) liquid-crystal display (LCD) screen. Display resolution: 160×128; 0.24-mm dot pitch.
  • Colors: White.

Apple Orders, Discontinuation, Price

Apple Order: M9244LL/A, M9460LL/A.

Apple Model No: A1040 (EMC 1961).

Discontinued : July 19, 2004.

Price: US $299 for the 10 GB model. US #399 for 15 GB model. US $499 for a 30 GB.

How to Set Up iPod to Play Music

To set up iPod, you charge the battery, install software from the iPod CD, and import songs from your music CD collection to your computer. Then you transfer the songs to iPod and start listening to music.

  • Step 1. Charge the Battery: Connect iPod to the iPod Power Adapter using the iPod Dock Connector to FireWire
    Cable. The built-in battery is 80-percent charged in about an hour, and fully charged in about four hours.
  • Step 2. Install the Software: Insert the iPod CD into your computer and install iTunes and the iPod software.
  • Step 3. Import music to your computer. Complete this step if you haven’t already transferred music to your computer. You can import music from your audio CDs, or if you have an Internet connection, you can buy music online and download it to your computer using the iTunes Music Store. You can browse hundreds of thousands of songs and listen to a 30-second preview of any song. The iTunes Music Store is available in some countries only.

To import music to your computer from an audio CD:

  1. Insert a CD into your computer. iTunes opens automatically and the CD is selected in the iTunes Source list.
  2. Uncheck songs you don’t want to transfer, then click Import.
  3. Repeat for any other CDs with songs you’d like to import.

To buy music online:

  1. Open iTunes and click Music Store in the Source list.
  2. Click the Account button and follow the onscreen instructions to set up an account or enter your existing Apple Account or America Online (AOL) account information.
  • Step 4. Connect iPod and Transfer Music: Connect iPod to your computer using the included iPod Dock Connector to FireWire Cable. You can also use the optional iPod Dock (see page 42). Be sure the connectors on both ends of the cable are oriented correctly. They can only be inserted one way. When you connect iPod to your computer, iTunes opens automatically and transfers the songs and playlists in your music library to iPod. When the transfer is complete, the main menu appears on the iPod screen.
  • Step 5. Play Music: When the song transfer is complete, disconnect iPod from your computer. Squeeze both sides of the Dock connector to disconnect the cable from iPod. Then use the Touch Wheel and Select button to browse for a song. Press the Play or Select button and enjoy!

iPod Remote

iPod Remote is included with some models. To use the iPod Remote, connect it to the iPod Remote port, then connect the Apple. Earphones (or another set of headphones) to the remote. Use the buttons on the remote just as you would use the iPod buttons. Use the remote’s Hold switch to disable the remote’s buttons. The iPod Hold switch and the iPod Remote Hold switch do not affect one another.


  • iPod classic 3rd generation was compatible with Mac and Windows out of the box. Windows users had to reformat the iPod before use on a PC
  • The battery life of iPod classic 3rd generation was estimated to up to 8 hours due to the use of a lithium-ion battery instead of a lithium polymer battery, used in the first two iPod versions.
  • Order M9244LL/A was discontinued on January 6, 2004. Order M9460LL/A was discontinued on July 19, 2004.


  • Don’t wait anymore. Sell your used iPod to iGotOffer for the best price online, for fast cash: Sell iPod online. Free instant quote, free and fully insured shipping, fast and secure payment.

Retro Unboxing: iPod 3rd Generation (2003). Video published by  Snazzy Labs  on January 26, 2010


This post currently has one response

  • The iPod’s operating system is stored on its dedicated storage medium. An additional NOR flash ROM chip (either 1 MB or 512 KB ) contains a bootloader program that tells the device to load its OS from the storage medium. Each iPod also has 32 MB of RAM, although the 60GB and 80GB fifth generation, and the sixth-generation models have 64 MB. A portion of the RAM is used to hold the iPod OS loaded from firmware, but the majority of it serves to cache songs from the storage medium. For example, an iPod could spin its hard disk up once and copy approximately 30 MB of upcoming songs into RAM, thus saving power by not requiring the drive to spin up for each song. Custom firmware has also been developed such as Rockbox (up to 6G – 6G requires emCORE) and iPodLinux (up to 5G) which offer open-source alternatives to the standard firmware and operating system.

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