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DVD recorder problems - any ideas?

Calaber

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I have a Sony DVD recorder with a 160gb HD which has gradually developed an unusual problem and I'd welcome ideas as to the possible cause.

Over the past two years, it has gradually refused to playback commerecially produced DVD's, yet it will replay those I have recorded on it. Originally, it played all discs without probs, then started to reject some, but play others. Over time, the problem has increased to where it now will only play discs recorded from the HD. It comes up with the old "Disc Error" message every time you try to replay a commercially produced disc.

Now, my knowledge about these devices is limited. I assume it contains one burner for recording and a separate reading laser for playback. If the laser can read its own recordings, then I assume the laser and the playback circuitry is ok. I have a suspicion that for some reason, the programming for Region 4 DVD's is at fault, and that the machine has somehow reprogrammed itself to read another Region and won't read discs manufactured for Australia and the Pacific. I don't have any discs from other Regions to test this theory, so I would be glad to see if anybody here has any sensible suggestions.
 

CSP

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Out of warranty, cheaper to buy a new one than get it repaired.

I'm curious though... What do people actually use a DVD recorder for? DVDs hold sweet FA these days compared with other devices.
 

Calaber

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Well, derrrr, I know it's out of warranty. I didn't ask about getting it fixed, did I? If the problem is serious, then it's junk, no doubt about that. I asked if anybody had any idea what might have caused the problem. Nothing more.

As to why anybody uses DVD's these days, well, speaking for myself, that's my business.
 

schrinky

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either firmware as nathanVS said or just give a DVD cleaning disc a shot, i know it wont play the commercial standard DVD's but something like that cant hurt, we had all sorts of issues with our pioneer, turned out to be a dirty laser, i now run the cleaner through every few months, cost 30bucks and will work in any DVD player...
 

Calaber

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I've done the disc clearner trick without any improvement. The idea that it might need the software addressed had occurred to me but I can't think of any way to do that other than to take it to a repairer. As CSP indicated, the cost of repair probably far exceeds the value of the unit.

Some time ago, I was provided with the codes to "de-regionalise" an LG DVD player so that it played discs from any Region. Does anybody know of the codes that would enable me to try this trick with this unit?

Alternately, can anybody suggest how one goes about updating firmware/software on a DVD player, other than taking it to the repairer? I've checked Google and located a site which claims to have a service manual but the firmware seems to be u/a.
 
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crazyspoon05

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Just wondering if there is an option in one of the menus to restore factory default settings for the device as this might be all it needs

As for updating firmware it's just a case of downloading the right firmware for your brand/model to your PC then burning it over to a CD or DVD

Once it's in the player and it recognises it will do the rest of the work
 

Calaber

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I'll give those ideas a go. The Factory Reset option is covered in the manual so that's option 1. After searching the net, I'm doubtful that firmware is easily obtained. The DVD is a 2005 model so it's ancient in the sense of its technology.
 

Calaber

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Bingo! We have a winner. Thanks again to everybody who offered useful advice, brickbats to those who just had to comment meaninglessly. Crazyspoon's idea of going through the Factory Reset option did the trick. Rep sent mate.
 
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