First Look: iFlash-Sata

First Look: iFlash-Sata

Just a brief look at my new product in my iFlash series.

While the iFlash enables the iPod to work with Compact Flash and SDXC cards, the new iFlash-Sata opens up all Sata based storage devices – mSata and externally powered Sata Hard drives and SSD drives.

The iFlash-Sata will work in the Video iPod (5g, 5.5g) and the newer Classics (6g, 6.5g, 7g).

Be warned the current crop of mSata drives are power hungry, so runtimes are not great compared to CF/SDXC – but still worth while if you must have a 1Tb iPod!

Here is some pictures of the mSata configuration.

iFlash-Sata Front

iFlash-Sata Front

iFlash-Sata side mSata

iFlash-Sata side mSata

iFlash-Sata Angled Shot

iFlash-Sata Angled Shot


240 thoughts on “First Look: iFlash-Sata

  1. David

    Just bought the adapter, and see a sale on the Evo 850 500GB, to drop into my 5.5 gen 80gb video. Wondering where to pick up a customer back case with the new 500gb spec. any ideas?? maybe I just get a spare 80 gb thick case if I can’t locate. Does the drive fit as it, or does it need modifying??


    1. Tarkan

      It will fit as is.

      I did not realise the 850EVO mSata drives were on sale yet, I thought they were to start appearing in April.

  2. rubeN

    Don’t see why they wouldn’t work. If the 840’s work, then so does this one. I would love to update to Terapod but don’t have a lot of music to fill it.

  3. Tarkan

    Just been looking at the specs of the new Samsung 850EVO mSata drives, and the power consumption figures look amazing.

    Sequential write is meant to draw around 2.5Watts on the 1Tb version, considering I measure my 840EVO 1Tb sequential write consumption at around 4 Watts – that is a serious reduction.

    The power savings even continues down to the 500Gb and 250Gb versions as well.

    Retail prices also look cheaper than the previous 840EVO’s, if these drives work in the iPod these maybe the goto mSata drives going forward.

  4. Tarkan

    Yes sorry, I didn’t connect the product code with the model no. – but yes the X110 has been reported as ok.

    I had a quick search on – the Kingfast is very cheap £68.

    1. Carlos Marti

      That’s great news, hopefully it work with the iPods… I been itching to upgrade my Classic from 512GB to 1TB for sometime.

  5. Shane

    There’s been one person on this thread that mentioned they used that SSD and it apparent worked. That SSD is £80, I may be missing something but I’m not seeing the others you mentioned cheaper (on Amazon at least).

    1. Tarkan

      I don’t think anyone has tried that card – it is quite expensive compared to the others like the Samsung 840EVO, Crucial M500 or even the very cheap Kingfast F8.

  6. KageSennin

    Sorry for the long post but I have a weird problem. I got the iFlash-mSata adapter and installed it in my classic 7g 160gb slim no problem but now when I plug it into my computer iTunes prefers to not recognize it. My computer sees it and lists the ipod in My Computer after 15-20 seconds, but iTunes won’t bring the drive up, and I need to restart the computer to give iTunes another shot at seeing it. I was able to restore it fine first shot, but after that I was able to sync 3 separate times after restarting more than 10 times. iTunes correctly read the size of the SSD as 476GB and the iPod itself says Connected do not disconnect, so I’m not sure what could be the issue here. Also, I’ve used USB2.0 and 3.0 with an older generation 30-pin apple cable and a newer one. The drive I put in it is a Samsung PM851 Series MZMTE512HMHP MZ-MTE5120 512 GB. Maybe the drive is causing issues? Any insight would be appreciated. Cool adapter, though 😉

    1. Carlos Marti

      That’s so weird, I am using that exact same card (MZMTE512HMHP) on my 7th gen iPod and it works wonderfully. No issues or hiccups

    2. Tarkan

      @KageSennin – that cards works ok I have tried and Carlos above has confirmed as well.

      You need make sure your battery is fully charged before starting, also check your iPod drivers are ok – easy way is to uninstall iTunes and then re-install, when the iPod is connected to the computer – check your Device Manager and confirm the iPod appears with no error or warnings, then check the Disk Management that the iPod has also been issued a drive letter <- this will cause problems if it has not. Finally, with the iPod connected, close iTunes and run a disk benchmark against the iPod drive - check it works error free and data is copied & read back ok.

    3. KageSennin

      Good input. The drive checks out and benchmarked with no issues, but my ipod is pretty old, so maybe the battery is the issue. I’ve ordered a replacement battery and a firewire/usb combo setup so for posterity I will update this later with the results.

  7. Danny

    Tarkan, I’ve just ordered your iFlash-Sata Adapter. Judging from the comments above I think it’s safe to buy a “250 GB Samsung mSATA 840EVO”; but on pictures I see it’s not in a case. It should be no problem to fit it in? (in a 7th gen 160GB case, thin I suppose).

  8. rubeN

    I had my 160GB iPod Classic 7G dedicated to my Pioneer head unit. After doing this mod (adding 512GB) I now use that iPod at home and out and about. So got a used iPod Video to take it’s place, of course that iPod also got modded with an mSATA board as well.

  9. Scott

    Hello! I’ve just recently found out about this and am really excited at the potential of having my entire music collection in my car via ipod! A few questions first..

    This WILL work as far as indexing to a 3rd party ipod ready car head unit, right? I don’t have to worry about compatibility issues, right? That is done via the ipod and as long as the ipod works, so should the head unit, right? Can anyone comment on this?

    1. cmarti

      Scott, I personally have tested it with three different cars and two home receivers and it works magnificent.

  10. Peter Burkimsher

    To answer my own question: there are no SD-to-mSATA adaptors. ZYX advertises one on Alibaba, but it is actually an SD-to-mini PCIe adaptor. Mini PCIe and mSATA are mechanically identical, but electrically incompatible. The Chinese company selling them confirmed that their sales team had made a mistake.

    However, I’m still likely to buy an iFlash-SATA to try it in the OQO Model 2. Has anyone tried using a Tarkan adaptor in an OQO pocket computer?

    1. Tarkan

      My SD-Cf v7 adapter will fixc your 2.2Tb issues with the 256Gb SDXC card.

      The iFlash-Sata will work with any ZIF IDE device, but obviously the iFlash-Sata is slightly larger than an ZIF drive and the other thing is depending on the mSata drive you use the peak power required can be twice as much as a HDD, so your device might not be able to power up the mSata drive.

    2. Peter Burkimsher

      The OQO Model 2 can fit an 8mm hard drive.
      If I remember correctly, the iFlash-Sata is only 5 mm, so it should fit.

      The OQO Model 2 does not support a 240 GB MK2431GAH hard drive because of Toshiba’s 4KB logical block size (fascinating thread if you’re interested in PATA and hard drive technology).
      I believe that the iFlash-Sata should avoid this problem, because it’s an SSD. Confirmation would be nice though.

      As for peak power, I have no idea. I hope I can find someone in the south of Taiwan to help me borrow a Samsung 840 EVO MZ-MTE1T0BW 1TB SSD, so I can test it before spending $800 on the SSD.

      Any comments on shipping? My itinerary is Kaohsiung-Manchester-Bridlington-Lancaster-Liverpool-Geneva-Kaohsiung. It’s too late to ship it to Taiwan now, so I’m trying to decide whether to ship it to my grandmother’s address in the UK, my parents’ address in France, or wait until I’m back in Taiwan on the 28th. You say “free worldwide shipping”, but perhaps you have a preference :). Or if you live anywhere in those places, I’d happily treat you to lunch and reminisce about the iPodLinux project (I was a moderator on their forums).

    3. Tarkan

      iFlash-Sata is 5mm thick, but compared to a ZIF HDD it will be around 6mm longer and around 4mm wider.

      Shipping does not matter to me, of course UK address I can tell you exactly how long it will take to arrive, where as somewhere like Taiwan it can be anything from 1 to 4 weeks.

  11. Peter Burkimsher

    Does the iFlash-Sata work with an SD-to-mSata adaptor?

    I’m deciding whether to buy that, or the iFlash CF mkII + SD-CF v7 adaptor.

    I bought the original iFlash CF adaptor back in 2008, but it didn’t work with the SD-CF adaptor that I bought separately (it shows up as a 2.2TB iPod, and refuses to reformat). So I upgraded to a 240GB hard drive instead.

    Now I have a PQI Air Card (WiFi capable microSD to SD card adaptor, similar to the Eye-Fi, Toshiba FlashAir, or Transcend cards). The iPod can provide enough power to boot the card, but I’m still having formatting issues, so I need to buy your SD-CF v7 adaptor.

    I also bought an SD female to microSD male adaptor, so I can put other SD cards into the PQI Air Card and share the files over WiFi (e.g. photos from peoples’ cameras). But I need more space inside the iPod to fit both adaptors, and therefore I need the thinnest possible.

    Finally, I’m now working in Taiwan, but I’m visiting the UK next week during Chinese New Year. Would it be more efficient to have the adaptors delivered to the UK?

  12. Cristian

    Hello my name is Cristian i have ipod 5.5 80Gb white and I would like to know if you put to mSATA adapter and a MSSD of 480-500 GB, itunes recognizes him with original software in this capacity?

    1. cmarti

      @ Cristian, the 480GB card will work fine, the stop firmware will recognize it with no issues. I have done that exact same more and the iPod is very stable.

  13. Henry

    Hi Tarkan, I swapped the 5.5 gen iPod 30GB to the 80GB version and everything works perfectly with your iFlash SATA and Crucial M500 240GB. Photo, Video and music all looking good. I don’t know if or whether this played any role or not but I purchased the Apple dual USB/Firewire charger and used it to sync/charge my 150GB iTunes Library with no hiccups. Anyway, here is my question, I also have an iPod Photo 40GB 4th Gen. What are my upgrade options? SSD or Flash and what is the highest I could go in GB?

  14. Lee

    Thanks for the advice. The mSATA enclosure just arrived. I’m on a Mac, and I was able to use Disk Utility to erase the drive. I ejected the drive without shutting down and put it back in the iPod. The Mac recognized it, and I was able to restore it and am now starting to load music again.

    Thanks to Bana and Tarkan for your help. It’s probably time for the big battery.

  15. WildmaN

    @cmarti Okay thanks for getting back to me. I may need to get the 2000mah battery sometime. As the thinner battery on Rockbox with my 5.5 80gb iPod still is not very efficient.

  16. bana

    Lee, I have the same setup as yours and had your problem.
    It seems like when the battery goes low, the msata gets corrupted.

    1. Recharge the batt., and if you don’t have one get the 2000ma with the fat back.
    2. Get a msata to USB adapter.
    3. Get AOMEI, it’s free to reformat drive to FAT32.

    Good luck.

  17. Lee

    I have an iPod Video 80GB. I was using the iFlash-Sata with a Samsung 840EVO 500GB mSATA with no problem for the last few months. The only issue was that the battery gauge would go down very slowly compared to actual battery drain, and the iPod would actually be out of battery when the gauge showed half full. I got the Apple Sad Face and the Very Low Battery warning. The first time this happened, I was able to put the iPod into disk mode and start from scratch by reloading all my music.

    Unfortunately, it has now happened again. Sad Face screen and Very Low Battery, but this time I can’t put the iPod into disk mode or get to the diagnostics system. I put the original hard drive back in, and it boots up fine and shows full battery, so the issue seems like it has to be the iFlash Adapter or the EVO hard drive.

    Any thoughts on what I should do to troubleshoot further. I don’t have an adapter to link the mSATA to my computer.


    1. Tarkan

      @Lee – Are you using the Apple OS / iTunes? Very rare for that to happen in use!

      The mSata has been corrupted – first see if reading the HDSpecs in the iPod Diagnostics, clears it.

      As Bana has said you will need to connect the mSata to the computer and run AOMEI – you may be able to get away with running a surface scan, and if that does not work you will need to rebuild the MBR and recreate a new FAT32 Partition.

      It is important to shutdown the computer before removing the mSata drive.

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