One thing that was not mentioned is the manufacturer of the blank MD disc. I have had issues with aging Maxell MD's plus I have heard of other manufacturers' MD's have had problems except for Sony and TDK blank MD's. Also if the blank MD was recorded with a portable Net MD unit at any time, the disc may have to be "initialized" to properly erase all remnants from the Net MD unit so the MDS-JA555ES deck will recognize the MD disc properly. I would not turn the unit off with a disc in it because the disc could jam and cause a circuit board problem (I had this happen once and had to send the unit to Sony Service to repair). If you look in the operations manual it warns you about making sure the MD is removed before turning the unit off.
Nicholas Leipzig replied to Hudson's topic in MinidiscIf money no object the best MD unit by far is the Sony MDS-JA555ES. I also have the MDS-JA333ES unit and although it also sounds great, it has a slight "hashiness" compared to the MDS-JA555ES. I also have the Sony MDS-JA50ES ("the tank" as most people called it) and I wish the MDS-JA555ES was as indestructible, but you can tell the huge difference in the MDS-JA555ES blowing it away. I also owned the MDA-JA20ES and the MDS-JA50ES unit was far superior to it. I believe Sony tried to sell more MDS-JA333ES units by making it cheaper than the MDS-JA555ES so of course it is lighter and I believe a lot of parts are cheaper than the MDS-JA555ES. Plus the MDLP is a waste of time as it sounds aweful, not to mention it probably cost more money to put MDLP into the unit which then sacrificed any sound improvement. Now the only problem is trying to find one for sale. Before I was able to get the MDS-JA555ES and the MDS-JA333ES units, I was using the MDS-JE480 unit that for $140, was half way decent sounding and has the more updated TYPE-S and 24 bit electronics. You can still find someone selling this unit used often, plus most people have not had it for very long before MP3 and iPods started to take over the industry almost at the same time it was released.