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Posts posted by sfbp

  1. I plugged it into my PC, and used the sonicstage software that came with it



    Also, i have tried several other minidiscs, and have tried the most up-to-date sonicstage software, but i still get double-speed jittery recordings. Nothing has changed since i last used the players, i have the same software, the same minidiscs, and as far as i know the players are not broken, so i don't understand why the recording doesn't work all of a sudden.

    Are you sure you're not using a new or updated version of Windows? Eg, Vista, XP Service Pack 3? I have my suspicions about the latter.

  2. No matter what installation order or port I am using, the NH600 always gets the 033 driver only, and the RH1 always gets the 052 driver only. But, as long as the 033 driver is installed on my system, the RH1 works in the "50 minutes per disc" mode. Then, as soon as I remove the 033 driver, even without removing any other drivers or restarting my computer, the RH1 is back to the 10x mode again (I only have to reconnect it).

    Hmm.. interesting. I definitely got a setup with both hooked up and working. It may be a function of exactly when you restart (even the device map with the nonpresent devices doesn't appear to reflect everything that's going on!!!!!). Even switching from NetMD to HiMD and back with two devices present may be triggering the mixup. We really should try to think of a way of preventing it.

    Manually replacing the 033 driver with a properly renamed copy of the 052 one and restarting the computer seems to prevent the "50 minutes per disc" effect from occuring, but I won't recommend this option, since, well, it's a SONY.

    By having a "fake" driver for the NH600 you have avoided it loading the right one. The only question now is, will the NH600 actually perform correctly without it? If so, we may have even stumbled upon a way to get uploads, though from what you said about firmwares, and the fact that this stuff is so finicky, I sort of doubt it. This is the sort of kludge I referred to when talking about "renaming" things. HOWEVER, fixing the .inf file may work too. Maybe you have some thoughts on this?

    An analysis of the *difference* between the two drivers (argh that WinDDK kit!!!), assuming I have understood you correctly, should give us some information about what the deal on uploading really is.


  3. Still no luck! I've tried all four USB ports on my notebook. Plugging the NH600 into any of them slows down the RH1 upload. Despite the fact that I also have a set of Intel® 82801EB USB controllers.

    OK, i messed around some more. I assume you have 2 players with an SP disk in each. If you don't it never installs the NetMD driver at all.

    Try this:

    1. install the NH600 onto a clean device map. You get (only) NETMD033.SYS.

    2. install the RH1 onto a second cable. What happens is really interesting. You get the 052 driver added to the NH600's USB controller driver list, and the 052 driver as the sole occupant of the RH1's driver list.

    Of course, if you do it the other way around, the NH600 gets (only) 033 and the RH1 gets both, which is what you were observing.

    So it seems to me that the device driver loader is somehow adding in the new driver to any NetMD device that was already there when you plugged in the new one.

    Obviously the solution is to have a way of suppressing this behaviour. For that we need a WinDDK USB driver expert. I'm not sure I'm willing to become one, but I have a WinDDK somewhere, I suspect.


  4. The unit had an SP disc inside before I connected it.

    Not 100% sure if this counts the same as having the machine default to SP with no disc. I suppose I am imagining writing a driver - and one has to start from certainty. Otherwise users would see different results starting with different discs... states are multiplied by 2.

    Another possibility is that the 4 ports on the back of your machine are physically connected to another controller than the 2 on the front.

    I agree. That was actually my intention. But I don't see them on the device list.

  5. Try going back to the way I did it. Rename all the drivers and only put their right names when the installer pops up asking for file name. Don't try out the upload until the driver list (for each NetMD device) looks clean.

    Another thought, have you set the RH1 in SP mode default on record before connecting it? This means that when there is no disc it defaults to NetMD operation. Maybe if it's defaulted to HiMD operation then it goes ahead and dumb-ly loads > 1 driver?

    Sorry, I thought this might be simple. I have 4 ports on the back of the machine (on the motherboard) and 2 more on the front. Could it be something about the way Windows manages them?

  6. Just tried this (plugging the NH600 into another USB port). No luck. The RH1 SP upload still slows down. I think this may depend on hardware configurations.

    Yes, I deliberately took one cable to the front of the PC, and one to the back. Judging from the list of devices on this particular machine which has always listed no less than 4 USB controllers, I think I managed to get one cable connected to each of two different controllers.


    Hint: USB controllers always seem to come in pairs. So if you take the socket closest (horizontal or vertical) to the one you are using, it's possible it may not work.

    Good luck!

  7. I always plug in all my HiMD devices (in any mode) to the same USB port.

    But if you plug the RH1 into one port, and the NH600 into another, you should find (as I did) that they are independent of each other, and that the RH1 NetMD device never "picks up" the 033 driver. No need to uninstall anything once you got it set up right. The older units will never cause the 052 driver to be loaded (you can see why from the .inf file).

    And ne'er the twain shall meet. Worse case, delete a device when it goes wrong. I plan on labelling the two cables "RH1" and "the rest"

  8. I just had a bright idea, what if we could convince the USB devices to hang off two different device chains. Then I would use one connector for the RH1 and another cable entirely for the rest.


    If you check, there are now 2 NetMD devices in the Device Manager List (and two NetMD's listed in SonicStage, wonders will never cease!). One of them is the RH1 and runs at full speed and has only 052 driver. The other has both 052 and 033 (not exactly sure why, someone will probably explain this) and can run the NH600 (with LP2 disk in it) quite fine.

    If you're not sure, please don't hesitate to ask questions. I feel like saying "Eureka!". I had all sorts of ideas about lying to the software about drivers, etc etc, but this seems to solve it.


  9. Just updated the initial post. You do need to restart your computer in Step 1.

    Just did a little bit of fiddling. I tried to use only two devices, RH1, and NE410, essentially the newest and the oldest (at least as far as my own ownership goes, maybe not historical) devices.

    Since you mention the 052 driver is for the RH1, I left it in place. But I renamed all the other three drivers in every place they could be found on my HD (a. windows\system32 b. c:\program files\sony\personal audio driver), namely


    NETMD031.SYS (etc

    NETMD033.SYS (etc

    And now I hooked up the NE410. Windows now asked for NETMDUSB.SYS

    So I gave it (just that one driver, by naming it back). Of course that worked (for the download to the 410).

    As soon as I switched back to the RH1, now we are back to x1 uploading.

    So now I disconnected RH1, did the trick of looking at the hidden nonpresent devices, and deleted (ONLY) BOTH NetMD devices under USB. I didn't delete anything else at all. Obviously I could simply uninstall the one whose driver is shown (by looking under properties) as NETMDUSB.SYS, leaving the NETMD052.SYS installed.

    Plugging the RH1 in now got a device installed (because I just deleted both devices), only one NetMD device now, the one whose driver is NETMD052.SYS.

    I'm not sure what the 031 and 033 are, possibly something for one of the other devices. No data yet. But it seemed the whole problem arises from the conflict of NETMDUSB.SYS and NETMD052.SYS.


    Note added: i looked inside the various .INF files and you can too, sure enough the 033 is required when I put an SP disk into my NH600; it looks like the 031 driver is only required for NE810 and AM-NX9. All the other HiMD units require 033.

    Then I confirmed that the 033 driver ALSO causes the 052 driver to go slow; In the driver file list for the RH1 there is now 033 as well as 052, and now it doesn't behave correctly any more. The only way to correct this is to delete the MD device and let Windows rebuild it again.


    Maybe I'll just set up a second computer for NETMD uploads with the RH1.

  10. i have a great idea! we need someone to make the whole process automates of removing the slower drivers with the push of a button! then we could just push the button and the driver could be removed and the pc could reboot itself. then you could do your sp upload then not have to worry if you pugged in an old device for downloads only. this could be done anytime it was needed

    Maybe simply renaming the driver files with a batch file (it hardly needs a program to be written) would work nicely?


    Avrin said:
    Looks like any of the "old" drivers can cause this. All my older devices are first and second generation HiMD units, which are using the NETMD033.SYS driver, which does cause this problem. And fsw actually plugged in the MDS-JE780 deck, which uses an older driver, which also caused this problem.


    If you don't want to wear out your RH1, you may use older units to download music. Just remove their drivers when you need to upload SP.

    Perhaps would it work to do some renaming, if some newer drivers will actually work the old units?


    Just a thought.

    (added years later): there is NOW a set of driver files in our downloads section which solves the problem for ever, and it is possible to use the 052 driver for ALL units with the updated .INF file. This was totally avoided for 64-bit because the ONLY driver we ever had for 64 bits had to be adapted to work with all the earlier units. Going back and doing the same mods to let the 052 driver install for all units meant that the problem raised by this thread no longer happens to begin with whenever a non-RH1 unit is plugged in.

    Note that the modified driver set is not signed by Sony (nothing we can do about that) and so each time the driver installs it will be necessary to override the warnings from Microsoft about unsigned drivers. In recent versions of Windows that warning has become more and more difficult to get around but it is still possible. Once the driver has been installed, you don't need to leave the machine in a state which accepts unsigned drivers - i.e. it is necessary to perform this decrease in security only temporarily. Note that the driver ITSELF is unchanged from Sony's version, hence the requirement to have the lowered security at install time only.

  12. Recently, several members of the Russian http://www.player.ru/talk/ forum (including myself) discovered that their RH1s take ages to upload SP. A full SP disc took 50-100 minutes to upload. Yesterday, a member named fsw discovered that this occurs after plugging in an older NetMD unit to the computer you are using for RH1 uploads, and found out that removing all NetMD drivers and plugging the RH1 in again solves the problem. I'll expand on this a bit more.

    The problem seems to be caused by some conflict between the driver for the "fast" RH1 (NETMD052.sys), and drivers for older "slow" models (NETMDUSB.sys, NETMD031.sys, and NETMD033.sys), which are designed for NetMD downloading only. If you plug in an older unit, it installs its driver, which then doesn't allow the RH1 to upload at full speed.

    The complete solution is the first five steps of the solution to the "Walkman device detection issue", which I posted before. I'll repeat the five steps here:

    1. Disconnect any ATRAC devices from your PC and close SonicStage.
    2. Go to Control Panel->System->Advanced->Environment Variables.
    3. Under the "User variables for [your username]" field, press the New... button, and create the variable (exactly as shown, without quotation marks): "devmgr_show_details", set it equal to 1, press OK, press the New... button again, then create the "devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices" variable, and also set it equal to 1 and press OK. Press OK again to save the variables and exit the window.
    4. Go to Device Manager, and enable the View->Show hidden devices option.
    5. Find and remove all "phantom" (semi-transparent) instances of "Net MD", "Sony USB Device" (in Universal Serial Bus controllers), "SONY Hi-MD WALKMAN USB Device" (in Disk drives), and "Generic volume" (in Storage volumes). Do not remove any Generic volumes which are not semi-transparent - these are your hard drives!!!
    Then plug in your RH1 with an SP disc inside, it will install its driver, and upload at full speed again. And avoid plugging in older units to the same computer again.

    Totally amazing! Well done indeed.

    I have (as I hinted in some other post) for years gone through and attempted to clean up the Windows device map when things got horrible, by hand, using REGEDIT. Whatamess! This finally gives a way to do it properly. as well as solving the bizarre problem of the uploader (RH1) that wouldn't upload per specifications (on speed, that is).

    A tip for the less-experienced at all this sort of stuff:

    Make sure you reboot AFTER deleting whatever devices you decide to zap. The registry isn't really flushed properly until you do so. It's the act of shutting down that makes things really permanent,

    Well I just did an upload at about x10, very impressive.

    Then I went and put in a HiMD disk to the same unit, and uploaded something from it. No problems. Finally I switched back to NetMD mode and uploaded something just to make sure the fix hadn't gone away.

    All worked perfectly.

    What I should like very much to know, is can someone come up with a cute way to allow the other devices to work without this problem. I have several different portables, and I don't really want to wear out my RH1 just to put music on to them. Can you perhaps give specifics of which drivers cause this stuff to happen?

    Thank you very much!!!!

  13. Quick comment: I would start with removing all traces of any earlier versions. You may even have to go to the extent of installing an old version on some machine you don't care about, then seeing what changed in the registry, in the windows directory and in the windows\system32 directory. Worst case, do it on a virtual machine so you can throw the whole experiment away (you don't need to activate a Vm copy of Windows, because you will throw it away).

    I'd be surprised if this didn't allow me to isolate the problem. Unfortunately I have no desire to run Vista any time soon.

    Bottom line: uninstall everything you can find to do with Sony/SonicStage, and also PXEngine.

    It's very probable you should deinstall the burning programs too, in the first instance. I don't like the sound of having to diddle with the registry to get CD or DVD burners going. Once you do that you are in deep doo-doo. Another thing is to try and clean up the device map. There are probably all sorts of CD and also USB devices that just lurk, waiting for you to reinstall something. Probably you have to get rid of all traces of them from the registry. This is a job for an expert, certainly I have only been able to do it using other people's tools that clean up the registry. There's an excellent utility from Microsoft called (argh, cannot remember) that diagnoses the WMI subsystem. Google it and you'll see - may will find some inconsistencies in your setup as a result of messing the registry.

  14. this is not to discount GuitarFxr's post at all. You sound like you are getting 1 group per file instead of one track per file. Most people use the RH1 in the mode where it starts a new group every time you press Record.

    I don't have a Mac, so I have no idea about the software you have. But it makes me wonder if there is a configuration item to control this.

    Good luck!

    Added later:

    I have been thinking about this. If the software only sends one group at a time, it's a simple matter to put every track (that you already recorded) into its own group. You just need one thing: a PC!!!!!! Hook up the RH1 to the PC via the USB cable and use SonicStage to perform the manipulation. Not very intuitive (perhaps someone else can give clear instructions?) but I am pretty sure I could do the whole job in 5 minutes. I wonder if Guitarfxr was joking about sending him the disk.

    Once you have the tracks rearranged one per group, you can reconnect to the Mac and repeat whatever you did (the folder thingy sounds like a group icon). Sorry but you may have to copy (use cut and paste in Windows, get a PC-ophile to show you) the names of the tracks to the names of the groups if the software is stubborn.

    Another possibility is to look on page 56 of the manual and read how to move a given track to another group using the buttons on the RH1 itself.

    Another possibility is to do all the rearrangement from the Mac before the transfer (upload). I really don't know the limitations of the Mac software.

    Tedious and annoying but surely better than sending off and waiting 2 weeks.

    If there is an ongoing problem at the Mac end, you might want to reconfigure the RH1 NOT to start a new group every time. If that's a pain, forget the idea of pressing pause between takes, just start a new recording (leave the group auto-creation ON after all) by pressing the record button every single time you do and the STOP button whenever you finish a track. This new mode has two advantages to you:

    1. When you stop recording, everything IS flushed to the disk, whereas I think with Pause, it is not.

    2. Each track is automatically in its own group (assuming you still have group autocreation turned on on the recorder)

    Maybe you can use the Mac to label groups and/or tracks after creation, so forget what I said about PC - it's just that I know I could do that and it would work - so if you don't have a PC you can borrow (sigh means installing Sonic Stage!) you might do it with what you have right now, after recording but before upload.

    Good luck!

  15. Although this seems to be the end of this thread I'd still like to add an important point to consider: It's all nice to have a bazillion units nicely working in five or ten years' time - however if you want to upload your recordings via USB you're totally dependent on Sonicstage and proper drivers for your device. Both have to be adapted for each operating system anew. Windows 7 will come out in 1 1/2 years. If that should be the moment Sony decides it's time for us to buy new devices, we face the decision whether we want to keep an ageing OS or an ageing recording device.

    Sure enough there is always the Good Old Way To Do It, TOS-link or whatever, but once that happens you really know it's over...

    Sorry I couldn't resist having the last word... again.... because it's post #42 which as you know means the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything.

    To me the USB is a mere convenience. That's one reason not to trust even PCM under HiMD until there is a deck (or someone manages to hack one trivially) that plays back HiMD with optical out that can be "transferred out" to something that cannot be restricted by Sony or anyone else.

    The basic SP format is still very very good. Sending it to a computer via Toslink is (to me) not the last resort, but absolutely the best and only way because I know that nothing has been done to it.

    Just thought I'd get this one comment in..... since the thread is about Hi-MD reliability, I guess you are exactly right.

  16. I know perfectly well that Sony MD recorders can't accomodate XLR/48 V mics out of the box. If I was going to purchase one, I would be prepared to use an external mic preamp when I wanted to use those mics. DUH!

    I really think that language and behaviour like this are not to be tolerated. You're the newbie here, and you come in and start insulting someone. On top of that, you're not taking any notice of any advice anyone gives, so I suggest we don't need to give you any more.

    FWIW, I think the paragraph by A440 about how complicated it is to do all this stuff is overblown. For someone with an ounce of technical skill these manipulations are trivial.

    Have a Nice Day (and I mean that in the Great American Way).

  17. There's some encryption algorithm in all of these --I tried taking Hex dumps of the files and doing a Bit for Bit copy. Note the Bit for Bit copy is File system independent so Windows or whatever didn't get in the way. This didn't work (the copy worked and the target disk compared 100% bit for bit / sector for sector with the original but the target disk wouldn't play) so there is also something in the hardware driver that sets some bit or updates something that enables "Playability" on the disc that a normal data reading program won't see or can't access.


    That's why I suggest comparing the transactions actually being transmitted over USB with what ends on the disk. Not sure how to do it (yet).

  18. I would echo that, and summarize my "judgements" (no facts here):

    1. SP is as good as you will ever get, the compression is essentially broadcast quality

    2. MD is for sure better than tape of any kind (no hiss, wow/flutter) and same or better freq response, as long as you don't use LP-anything. So Hi-MD 256K is a fine format.

    3. For quality and reliability, choose SP and do it in 80-minute chunks. Forget about the RH1, realtime out from a Deck's optical to computer optical in is as good as any CD. With the RH1 you only get realtime uploads of SP anyway (though i have seen claims of faster).

    4. For length of recording and ease of upload, use Hi-MD 256K, and save as WAV files (automated option on SonicStage).

    5. If you want to use expensive XLR Mics, the HHB portathingy is really your only pro option. There's no pro HiMD deck, and the consumer HiMD deck (Onkyo) has no optical out, so now you have to use something else to get the data into your 'puter.

    Good luck!

  19. Right!

    But the main problem with the NetMD mode is that a unit in this mode is not seen as a drive by Windows. It is recognized as an abstract USB device, and the only way to communicate with it is via the respective driver. On the other hand, a unit in Hi-MD mode is seen as a drive, and does not actually require any drivers.

    So there are two possibilities:

    1. there's a code embedded in the device. In which case either a service manual or a firmware update (if such exists) ought to allow us to figure it out; or

    2. the USB traffic will show the special stuff going to the NetMD/HiMD. Hacking the driver is a secondary issue, because the first thing to do is to identify what is being sent just by looking at it. I have no idea about USB sniffers, but I bet they exist. Isn't that where to attack it?

  20. No way, Sir. No way. Don't try to ask me how I made my Windows 2000 treat one of my RH1's as a burner, but even in this case (bit-to-bit copying from one disc to another) - NO WAY. Ask me why? The answer is OpenMG.

    No way, Sir. No way. I' ve tried to [heh...] make a NetMD unit recognized as an external drive by hacking the respective drivers. NO WAY. Ask me why? The answer is OpenMG.

    Never tried this (don't have an ATRAC CD player). But am sure that there's NO WAY. Ask me why? The answer is OpenMG.

    Good to see you back.

    Verrrry interesting!!!! (yup I tried the simple experiment now)

    So it follows that when SS copies files to the MD directory it does so using some special undocumented call. Maybe even some encryption keys, but something has to be able to decode those, and the resultant disk is playable anywhere, right?

    So: either the driver needs a magic password, or every SS-created disk has something in it that every single MD firmware ever created must know about.



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