iPOD and SDHC – SDXC cards

iPOD and SDHC – SDXC cards


For some time many people have wanted to use my iFlash iPod CF adapter with the new generation of large format SD memory cards. SDHC and SDXC are the new generation of SD cards which are cheaper and have capacities of upto 256Gb and growing.

SDXC 7g and 256Gb PNY

SDXC Installation

For many years you could buy SD-CF adapters but they would not work in the iPOD. Most of these convertors required a high working power supply current that the iPod was unable to provide, while others just did not provide the correct True IDE functions.

The Good News

Recently a user let me know he had succeeded in getting a 64Gb SDXC card working in my iFlash with an SD to CF adapter.
So after some investigation and spending a small fortune on various SD – CF adaptors I noted that there is a new generation of pcb design used in these adapters which seems to work well with the iFlash and the iPOD. Even better it works in all the iPod generations supported by my iFlash – 5g, 5.5g, 6g, 6.5g, and 7g.


7g 256Gb About Screen

7g and 256Gb PNY

Installation is simple, the iFlash is first installed – then install the SD card in to your SD-CF Adapter – finally insert the whole thing in to the iFlash, ready to restore the iPod.

SDHC and SDXC which cards to get

So far all the SDHC and SDXC cards I tested worked ok, so it is looking likely that majority of the SD cards out there will work ok.

In terms of card speed, one user has reported issues playing FLACS with a Class 4 card. I would suggest you want a minimum of a Class 6 card with Class 10 the prefered option.

So far… working and tested in 5g / 6g / 7g iPods

iPod 5g with 256Gb PNY

iPod 5g with 256Gb PNY

The current compatibility list has been moved to the iFlash-Bundle product page.



715 thoughts on “iPOD and SDHC – SDXC cards

  1. Tarkan Post author

    Hello everyone,

    I am looking for a few people who can do some testing. If you are interested please visit the form I have posted, it also lists the requirements of the program: –


    To keep it manageable for me, I only have a very small number of openings for testers. Please no comments or requests posted here about this.

  2. Michiel

    Can I still close the iPod after installing the SD card. It seems to stick out of the housing of the iPod.

  3. Tarkan Post author

    @Ryan – There is a difference between the 6g and 7g boards, but there is no difference between the 120Gb – 160Gb 7g/7.5g boards. The only way really is to power up the board and check model number, firmware version. The 7.5g boards have firmware version of 2.0.4 or 2.0.5.

  4. Tarkan Post author

    @Pete – On the 6g/7g iPods using EmCore you can ask it to format the data partition, I think that formats the entire drive back to FAT32 which may possible show up on a card reader as a normal Fat32 Partition. Have not tried it myself thou.

  5. Ryan

    I have undertaken a new project with the iFlash Bundle and I have a question. I am planning on building a 7th gen 256GB iPod completely from aftermarket parts. I have done several refurbish/mod jobs for existing used iPods and have replaced nearly every part, but have never replaced a logic board. I’m wondering how I figure out which 7th gen motherboards actually came from 7th Gen 160s and not from the other 7th gens? Is the difference the firmware version? (Many sellers list the firmware version with the logic board [2.0.4, 2.0.5, etc].) I can’t for the life of me tell the difference between the different logic boards I find for sale. I don’t want to buy one and then hook everything up to find out that the board will only recognize 128GBs of the card (which would completely defeat the purpose of my doing what I’m doing). Tarkan (or anyone else), do you know how I can tell which logic board is which?

  6. Pete

    So, anyway…basically nobody knows of a utility or such that would allow one to read and write directly to a drive that’s been formatted in a 5.5/6/7/7.5 generation ipod? Or knows whether such a thing would even be possible?

    (Becuase syncing the full 256gb with rockbox took nearly 20 hours!)

    I still don’t know why my modded ipods woudn’t sync reliably with original firmware. It might be a problem with my PC, that somehow it can’t cope with anything other than USB/MSC protocol (it seems to have trouble with MTP, and iTunes/OF I gather is akin to MTP rather than MSC mode). but I can’t figure out what it could be. On the other hand, the number of tracks is at about the OF limit any way.

  7. Tarkan Post author

    @Pete – sorry did not realise you was using Rockbox – yes that is ultra slow on USB transfers. The transfer rates and times I quoted are using the original Apple OS on the iPod.

  8. Pete

    Oh, of course, it also may be down to rockbox’s USB handler.
    Funny thing is, that no longer falls over completely during sync the way it used to when I first started using rockbox – I think some rockbox update or other must have improved that. It will now sync large amounts without failure or disk corruption. So perhaps it just goes slow now instead?

  9. Pete


    Everything is between 128 to 320kb/s mp3 and its not supposed to be converting anything while transferring, though I’m new to Media Monkey, not sure quite what work it does during transfer.

    Of course, now its essentially done, it doesn’t matter so much, till I next need to do a complete refill for some reason.

    Also – again, I am confused by the new format of this site! Is there any way to set it to automatically show comments in the order of newest first, rather than always starting off with ones from several years ago?

  10. Pete

    Rockbox uses its own database, so that’s not an issue.

    Up till now I’ve had the drive almost full, and used robocopy to just occasionally copy new files/update re-ripped ones. I haven’t noticed the speed because it doesn’t take that long with just a small proportion of tracks changed, wasn’t an issue.

    In migrating everything from iTunes to mediamonkey I had to resync the whole lot (as the directory structure had changed) and that really took a long time, more than 12 hours, I think. Also have to use MM rather than just robocopy because the library has now grown so that I have to be selective about what to copy.

    I suppose it could be Media Monkey that’s slowing it down somehow, but I’m not sure it was any faster doing a simple robocopy, just that most of the time before it wasn’t copying that much at one go.

  11. Tarkan Post author

    @Derek – you have iTunes converting tracks while syncing it will take a long time, depending on the speed of your computer the conversion process can be slow.

  12. Tarkan Post author

    @Pete – on a 7g to fill the 256Gb SDXC should not take more than 4 – 5 hours max. Have you got iTunes converting your tracks? if you enable disk use and run a disk benchmark against the iPod the 7g you should get at least 20Mb/s transfer rate.

    The 5g/5.5g are much slower probably half the transfer rate of the 7g.

  13. Derek

    @Pete – I have a 5.5G with the 256 gb SDXC. Took me 4 days to transfer the library from iTunes, because my CD’s are ripped at Lossless or AIFF, and I’m compressing to 256 kbps for the iPod. Could this be your case too?

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