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I've owned two iPods over the past couple of years and here's what I've learned about maximizing battery life:

- keep your MP3 files below 9 megs per track (not always easy when your MP3s include behemoths like Jethro Tull's "Thick as a Brick," and Godspeed You Black Emperor's "Rockets fall on rocket falls.") Big files force the iPod to spin the unit's HD more often and that puts a big drain on the juice. The AAC format is especially useful in squishing down the filesize of long tracks without compromising audio quality (well, not by much);
- whenever possible, try using the wall plug to conduct your recharges (puts far less wear on the battery and the HD because it's not being synced while charging);
- try to keep your syncs to a minimum (draws a lot of power);
- say bye-bye to the backlight;
- disable the Equalizer (and make sure that this is also done to each individual MP3 in iTunes);
- don't use the alarm...ever;
- avoid at all cost leaving your iPod in a cold car...cool temperatures will drain your battery in no time flat. And cold temperatures can damage the HD;
- track shuffling and repeatedly hitting the back and forth buttons are also significant factors behind accelerated battery drainage...same reason as above: the more often your HD spins, the faster your juice will be depleted;
- use the lock switch to ensure that the iPod doesn't accidentally get started up when it's in its cozy Marware case.

Hope this is helpful...
 
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