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Everything posted by BJ

  1. BJ

    Hi-MD, Bye-MD?

    Wow. Thanks for emailing me, Kurisu--I've been out of touch for a while. I can completely see Sony abandoning the MD format for the same reason reality shows are still on TV and the iPod dominates the DAP market: people love to be told what to love, and on the whole, we're stupid. I include me as 'people', so no flame wars, folks (though I have never and will never watch reality TV). The masses want something they're used to seeing or are told by the media is cool (an iPod). They want something easy to use so they get instant gratification. MD has always had a learning curve, and Hi-MD even more so. I had an RH10 for a whole month before I sold it to pay some bills, and I don't miss it because I wasn't that impressed with it. I still have my Sharp DR7 and Sony R900, as well as some older machines that I just like to hold. I still use my MD machines for recording because the quality and ease of use can't be beat. If Sharp ever comes out with a Hi-MD machine, I'll buy it. But. For playback, I've moved on to the Rio Karma 20GB HDD player (also now defunct with the dissolution of Rio--Sony discontinuing MD is the second part of my recent one-two punch). Did my homework; the Karma is easy to use, sounds the best and features phenomenal format support and gapless playback. The thing had two independent processors for MP3 decoding, which made it an absolute demon. But two things: the Karma had a reputation for breaking (bad Hitachi HDD firmware) that eclipsed the rave reviews, and Rio didn't advertise--the same road Sony took with MD. Great product; no support. About petitioning Sony, a number of Rio engineers frequented the Karma forum, and Rio as a company did listen to users and implemented many user requested features in firmware updates, but they still went down. I doubt a petition will change Sony's stance. I'm still going to use MD. Even with the Karma in my backpack, I find myself grabbing my DR7 just as often for playback and recording (which the Karma can't do). And I agree with a few folks here--by the time my MD gear finally all dies, there will probably be a comparable "new" technology I can pick up. As much as I love the MD format, I'm not surprised at this news (or speculation). My girlfriend got home from work as I typed that--she just shook her head and said "It figures." Eh--I have more to say, but I'm too long-winded. Sony may stop MD development, they may stop production altogether, or they might tweak it. It's not dead when all of us still use it.
  2. It's like the Supreme Court has collectively pushed us off our bicycle and ridden off with it, laughing at us. This makes me feel kind of sick to my stomach. Not so much the desision, but the steady slide into a dictatorship and the American public's willingness to go along with it so they can ignore the government, watch reality programming and eat fast food. We are so freaking sedentary. It didn't start with the Bush regime, but Junior and the War Machine are the first administration who really don't care how obvious they are about their shady dealings. What also burns my butt is that I first heard this report on Fox News, the right wing mouthpiece. They mentioned it in passing as breaking news (not even a "Fox News Alert"), then immediately went on to report about Oprah being turned away from a French boutique and yet another pretty white Christian girl who's gone missing. For the rest of the hour that I could stand to watch, Fox never brought it up again. And I don't have big money, so I can't do a single thing about it. Sorry about the bile. I'll clean up before I leave.
  3. Got bills. Haven't had a chance to really delve into the Hi-MD world, so my 1 1/2 month old RH10 goes away. The auction is here: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...AMESE%3AIT&rd=1 Buy It Now is $220, which includes free shipping in the US. Otherwise, there's no reserve set.
  4. I'd check for you, but I'm just about to go to bed (yawn). Go here: http://www.minidisc.org/part_Manuals.html And scroll down a bit until you reach the "Minidisc Service Manuals" area. There's a service manual for the MT77 you can download--it may point out the "door closed" switch somewhere. I've got a DR7 too, and I'd love to find out how to TOC clone on that machine (no service manual, though). Good luck!
  5. Hm. Mine is a MS702H(GR)2--the GR for "green", I'd assume--and while it doesn't have any Japanese writing on it, it does sport English, French and Spanish variations on the information printed on the back of the machine. Does this support the theory that it's a European model? I never had the literature for it, so I'm no help there. Okay, maybe I'll just be quiet now.
  6. Okay, just to keep the ideas flowing, since this thread is captivating solely on the "this close to making it work" merit... Timex watches with that funky Inidglo backlight are pretty thin, and the light would have to run off very little power. Why not strip down a Timex and figure out how to power the watch's light source on your MD battery? Even a goofy, anemic hack job would work in a dark venue. And how cool would it be to install a tiny LED inside the unit for when you swap discs, or behind the mic jack so you can find it at night? C'mon, if high schoolers can pimp out thier 4-cylinder subcompacts with neon, why can't we add light effects to our MD recorders? I draw the line at excessive pinstriping, though.
  7. The only machine (ONLY) I've had that would never repeat shuffled tracks is my N10. Even on poweroff, it remembers what it's played and won't repeat. Built-in battery, maybe? I've also noticed on my Sony deck at home that if I have, say, three Splashdown songs on a 40-song mix disc, the deck will play all three--randomly--back to back. Without fail. Next mix disc, all four U2 songs back to back, even if the four tracks are scattered across the disc. It's bizarre. I don't know if it's incompetent programming so much as lazy (or money-saving) programming.
  8. BJ

    Sharp Auvi Vs Hi-md

    For the record, I'm listening to my Sharp DR-7 right now on standard 'phones (Koss Pro25)--great sound. I haven't had any trouble plugging the DR-7 into any set of phones or my car stereo. I'm sure it would sound better with the four pole plug, but I don't have the option. It also has plenty of volume for noisy situations. At the moment, the DR-7 also makes the best recordings in the house (clearest sound & few artifacts). Personally, I don't think I can wait, but I'll agree with Kurisu: see what Sharp has in store for Hi-MD, as it's only a matter of time. You may find your dream unit, and it should work just fine with your favorite set of 'phones.
  9. You guys may have heard me slap my forehead over this one (the "slap heard around the world"). I'm rapidly running out of my stash of Neato labels and sitting on a stack of original MD labels that have been accumulating over the years. The tape/paper idea is so simple, I'm very depressed I never thought of it. Now I can finally use all the labels I've got lying around! And to add a bit of information, check your local office supply store for Avery label paper. You can get adhesive printer paper in 8.5x11" sheets and run off a bunch of MD labels at once. They also don't agree with extreme climate changes--the paper wrinkles when it sits out in the elements (like my car for five winter months).
  10. Well, good thing I waited for the 2nd generation Hi-MDs. It would be nice to have all the recording options (as well as that MP3 playback), even if I wouldn't use them all the time. Of course I'll go for the RH10! Is it too early to find out any of the quirks? It's picky, but it would be nice to know if the RH10 remembers what you've played when you're in "Shuffle" mode. Right now, the only machine I have that doesn't reset with a poweroff is my N10, and I love it to death for that. Tell me the RH10 does as well, and I'm in for sure. And you know what would also be pretty cool (maybe in the future)? Direct MP3 ENcoding.
  11. Hiya! I haven't had a chance to work with the new SS release, but I understand it's more stable than its precursors and a little easier to figure out all around. Transferring music to the player does require conversion to ATRAC, and it takes a noticable (but not excruciating) amount of time. If you don't mind starting the transfer process and wandering off to cook dinner for a while, you won't have any problems. Another way to transfer music is through the SimpleBurner application--a little sleeker than SS, but requiring a few more hoops to jump through. Check elsewhere on the forum (sorry, I can't find it right now or I'd give you a link) for the SimpleBurner/Nero method of transferring music. It involves burning a CD image from your MP3 files, then mounting it as a drive and using SimpleBurner to transfer the music. Hope that helps!
  12. BJ

    MZ-N10 Question

    Sorry, you're stuck with the 80min discs. You can always record in LP2 mode for 2 1/2 hours per disc, but there are no higher capacity discs for MD unless you switch to Hi-MD and use 1-gig discs.
  13. Yeah....sure am kind of depressed right now. However, Sen. Clinton did announce she will run in four years. I'd vote for her solely to have Bill as "First Husband". Hee hee hee.... I'd like to see him redecorate the White House and host tea parties. It'd be even funnier if, in the mean time, she kicked his butt out and got herself a new "First Husband". :rasp:
  14. Interesting thread. Of course I have to add a couple cents... I enjoy how the Bush administration keeps repeating that John Kerry has no plan for how to handle Iraq. The implication is that the Bushites DO have a plan. I find this amusing. The Bush administration has no clue what to do over there. If they did, "Mission accomplished" would have meant exactly that. I also like the slant on the weapons article: the very first line mentions that the stolen explosives could be used to detonate nuclear warheads. This fact is repeated throughout the article, giving the impression that this is their primary use, and that nuclear armageddon is upon us. More likely, the explosives will be (have been) divided up and sold to the highest bidders for smaller scale attacks--probably not even close to American soil. The alarmist angle always makes me laugh--I find Fox News more hysterically funny than Comedy Central. All these hot buttons--abortion, gay marriage--are designed to be the ONLY thing that sways people to vote for one candidate or the other. And these issues are presented with no context or allowance for grey areas. Personally, I am pro-life AND pro-choice. I'd rather abortions didn't happen, but they do, and someone else's business is not mine. I will not meddle. Also, the fundamentalists seem to forget that church-sanctioned marriage was adapted from pagan binding rituals so the Christian church could buddy up to the pagans under the "See how similar our religions are" umbrella. And most pagan religions have no problems at all with same-sex marriages. Great--so you can't get married in a Catholic church, but what right does the government have to deny you marriage at all? To base your vote solely on a candidate's stance on one of these inflamitory issues is dangerous. I read a breakdown on CNN.com (sorry, lost the link) of each candidate's stance on most topics from abortion to welfare and so on, and found myself agreeing with a number of Bush's beliefs. However, I sided with Kerry more often on issues I find more important. Okay, that's enough. I'm shaking I'm so scared--I really do think Bush will be re-elected, because I have very little faith in the intelligence and level-headedness of my fellow Americans. If they wouldn't keep proving to me how childish they are (present company excluded, of course), I'd have a little more faith. Speaking of faith (and then I'll shut up), it's impossible to keep church and state separate. Once again, the human factor messes up the machine. People are very devoted to their church, usually more so than to their religion. It's so ingrained that they sometimes have nothing else to fall back on. When they go to the polls, they're thinking about what their chruch friends have been saying during the campaign. People need to question the goings-on around them. Faith tends to muddy up the need to pursue knowledge, replacing it with a kind of passive comfort. Why try to understand the world/universe/whatever when we can take comfort in the belief that some omnipotent being already knows it all and will take care of us? I'd like to have an argument someday with a Christian that doesn't use the Bible as an objective reference book. There is so much in the universe that we will never understand, comprehend, or even perceive. Attributing it all to a mythical being takes the wonder out of it. Gonna hold my atheistic tongue now, before I rant for hours. Good discussion, folks.
  15. Depending on the MD machine you were using (or what you may be able to get your hands on), you could try TOC cloning. There are a few sets of instructions on the MD Community Page under "Hacking" (just search for "cloning" on that page), depending on which machine you use. The instructions for the Sharp 701 are a good overview, though. I managed to rescue one of my brother's concerts after he accidentally wiped the MD during an edit. Basically, your recordings still exist, but you have to get your machine to copy a "clean" TOC onto the disc so it knows there's something recorded on it. The first disc should have the recording up until you lost power. The second disc will likely have your second (20 minute) recording attempt followed by what's left of the first recording--it sounds like you've overwritten the first attempt on that disc. But you can still recover most of the music. Follow the links I gave above, and see if it's something you'd like to attempt. As for why the power cut out, who knows? You could've bumped the battery door, or there may be a loose connection inside the unit, or you could have a flaky battery or messed up power management... See if you can recreate that recording environment and monitor its behavior.
  16. I don't make much, but what I do is usually blown on bills and gadgets. Sad, since most of my stuff is purchased once it becomes obsolete. My main computer is 4 years old, and was cobbled together from free parts to begin with. My laptop is an old Sony Vaio SR17 that was refurbished, given to my brother, and then given to me. It's been around the world a few times. I'm using 15-year-old speakers and a second-hand amp I got six years ago. And I still eat Ramen, Mac & Cheese and strange concoctions based on whatever happens to be in the cupboard. My clothing comes from clearance racks and Goodwill. But boy, do I have fun with my MD equipment! Actually, you know what's tasty? Get a cheap bag of potatoes, an onion and a can of cream of mushroom soup. Slice a few potatoes and the onion pretty thin, then fry them in a tablespoon of butter until they get kinda mushy. Add the soup and a little bit of water and stir 'em up until the soup kinda holds the potatoes and onions together. Its a thick glop, but good and pretty filling. And it reheats well, too! That's it, my cold is making me delerious. Time for bed.
  17. There's also a product on the market called CD 2000 that buffs scratches out of plastic. It's not as abrasive as toothpaste, so it may work for lighter scratches. We used this gunk at the CD shop I worked at with some nice results. It smelled pretty cool, too--nice and petrolium-y.
  18. BJ

    Who're you?

    Neat topic! - My life changed in 1984 when I realized I could purchase the music I wanted instead of waiting for the radio to play it. Unfortunately, I was 11, with no steady source of income. - I listen to everything except country and rap - I'm a sucker for a really cool gadget (my Clie NR70 may be obsolete, but it's so COOL) - currently live in the middle of nowhere with my girlfriend, cat, frog, python and no hot water - draw sometimes - write sometimes - I'm one of the 27 people worldwide who actually enjoyed Titan A.E. - favorite movie is "The Frighteners" director's cut - I hate driving, unless I'm on my motorcycle. - the sewing machine in the house actually belongs to me--and I use it, too - MD is still my ideal method for recording/storing/playing music.
  19. If you listen to the radio a lot, I'd say go for the 800. I'm not sure if you can buy its remote separately, and that seems to be the key. Otherwise, you can always pick up a dinky radio somewhere and hook it up to the 900 to record your programming, but that's kinda fiddly. I'm also finding that, due to my scatterbrained nature, it's handy to have gadgets that run on AAs. I can't trust myself to keep them charged all the time, and I've spent many commutes sitting in silence. I could reach into the glove box and dust off a few cassettes, but when all you have is a Dead or Alive remix cassette and an Icehouse compilation, the drive tends to get very long. :rasp:
  20. Kurisu, help me out. Isn't there some goofy limitation on this, like it'll only allow you to burn ATRAC CDs once you've uploaded to a PC? I also opted out of the Hi-MD scene for now, so I'm not sure.
  21. BJ

    Headphone repair

    If you must repair them and you don't mind hacking them apart (and possible ruining them forever), give this a go... The biggest flex points for the thin, frail little wire is just after the flex shield on the stereo plug (that thing that looks like a backbone), and right where the wires lead into each headphone speaker. You could clip the wires just before those points, then strip them and resolder them properly to the headphone speakers and stereo jack (you may need to pick up a new jack from a parts store, just to make it easier). All you're doing is removing possibly broken wires from the high-stress areas. You could also go to a dollar store and pick up a cheapo pair of headphones, cut off the speakers and solder those ends to the speakers in the mdr-808s. Then you'll have your old headphones with a brand new cord and plug, and will also save yourself a soldering step. If you're a big purist, though, the dollar store wire might be kinda cheap. Good luck!
  22. I'm not familiar with that battery, but I'm pretty sure there's a drycell case out there for the R35 that attaches to the side. You could try to dig it up. Otherwise, fiddle with that switch. Try charging it in both positions (red or not) and see what works. Also, I think you have to hit a button (maybe the Stop button) to trigger the charge state if you haven't tried yet. If nothing else: http://www.digital-camera-battery.net/sony...ries/lip-12.htm ...there are more sites selling replacement LIP-12 batteries--just type "lip 12 battery" into Google. It's possible with the age of this machine (and the number of times the battery has been charged/discharged) that the battery just won't hold a charge any more.
  23. I used to have the Aiwa AM-F70 with its gloriously backlit screen. I never use remotes, so this was a godsend. Of course, I was stupid and sold it. The backlight never interfered with recordings, and the battery life was just fine. I also liked that you could press one button and it would display the time (I don't wear a watch). And, since I'm talking about it, you can enter Record-Pause mode through the remote. Neat! I'd LOVE if my Sharp DR-7 was backlit. That, and it would be nice if, in Random Play mode, it would remember what has already played so it doesn't repeat them after a power down (Sony's N10 remembers, which floored me). Okay, blah blah blah. Backlight on the main unit. Come on, Sharp, Sony, Panasonic, & folks! Let's do it! ...and Kurisu, that's great. I find that the MDs themselves usually call more attention than the MD player. People can't tell an MD player from an MP3 player, but seeing that media gets them curious.
  24. Yeesh. I'd say if you want to send it back against the warranty, don't try to make it die any faster. The tech guys could likely spot any abuse. Is there a way you could spend a few hours with it trying to recreate some of its glitches? Find a disc that it won't play almost every time. Write down how many times you have to try before it says NODISC, and give them the disc with the 505 so they can try. Basically, act like Consumer Reports and test the thing to death. That way when you take it in, you can tell the guy, "This is what it does--it doesn't crap out every time, but it's enough to be useless at the end of the day." Encourage them to test the thing instead of trying it once. Something else you could do is just tell them that it doesn't act up all the time, but since it's still under warranty, could you just swap it for a different 505? Tough, since the 505 was discontinued, but they don't need to know you know that. Basically, act all clueless, helpless and frustrated--but polite and understanding. Maybe you can sucker them into giving you a break. I don't know if you can talk to them in person--it would be a big help if you could. But I wouldn't recommend breaking the machine any further if you still mean to use that warranty.
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