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Everything posted by cochra1

  1. Sorry people, problem now solved; think I was being a bit thick. I just needed to turn off my web accelerator (and I also disabled my firewall for SS), then the restore tool worked fine! Got my library back!
  2. Aaaaargh! I had a serious PC upgrade a few weeks ago (new motherboard and processor), and now my SonicStage won't work. I had v4.2, so I uninstalled it, and installed v4.3. Same problem occurs. If I double-click the SonicStage shortcut, I get the following message: The selected music file cannot be played back because the system information has changed. Click OK to automatically close SonicStage and open the SonicStage System Information Restore Tool. (Error code 00004e2e) So, I click OK. Then I get small window telling me 'Step 1. Database authentication. SonicStage will authenticate your database on the internet'. Quite what constitutes 'authentic' I have no idea. After all, SonicStage is freely available; it's not something you would steal or 'crack'. It's just something you get supplied on a CD with your player, and can update to the latest version on the net (which is what I did). Anyway, fine, so I click the 'Next' tab as instructed. Then for less than one second, the word 'Authenticating...' is displayed, until suddenly another even smaller window opens, with the words 'SonicStage System Restore Tool' along the top bar, no writing in it, just a yellow triangle with an exclamation mark in it, and an OK tab. So I click OK, and nothing happens. I'm just left with the original little 'Database authentication' window and the Next tab. And so it goes on. I can't open it, I can't authenticate it. Reinstalling hasn't helped. The Sony site (as most of you know by now) is useless when it comes to customer support. Any ideas?
  3. Surely using headphones to get a line signal would be deafening would it not? Why would you want to plug headphones into a line out socket ( or a socket configured for line)? If it's an issue with the AVLS on European models, this can be overridden easily enough on most players (I did this for my NH600. And my RH1's AVLS is just turned off via a menu option).
  4. Russia? Tubes are available all over the world, they're used in the music industry in millions of products from guitar amps, to condenser microphones, to audiophile amplification and many other things. They're not hard to find by any means. What is hard to find is advice on the net about which tubes are best for what, and what sound they have. I've decided to wait till my new mic arrives before I invest in a new tube. I've just ordered a Rode NT2-A. Can't wait to get it!
  5. I would say that MD/Hi-MD is definitely the last medium you should use for long-term storage. MD Walkmans only have a finite lifespan. Inevitably they all break down in the end, through no fault of the user, and as we all know, the format has now been discontinued so replacement players will be extremely hard to find in the future. Then you might have no way of reading the data on the MDs. Your idea to put a Walkman in the deposit box with the discs would minimise this danger. But is it really worth all this?! There's loads of cheaper, more convenient, faster alternatives out there for data storage. You can get free data backup over the internet (or pay to have bigger capacity) for example. As long as you back up your data at least once (or twice for mega safety - on your chosen medium) you'd have to be extremely unlucky to lose your data.
  6. Would highly recommend investing in an external hard drive for your backups. They're a zillion times faster than minidiscs, and far cheaper in terms of memory for your buck.
  7. I'm sorry, but reading how Sony selectively disable certain features on some MD units to justify selling them cheaper just reinforces my belief in what a horribly cynical sh!tty company Sony is. I love minidisc and Hi-MD - it is (was) a fabulous product. But it was completely mismanaged by that bunch of tossers known as Sony. Sorry guys, just letting off steam! Best of luck in enabling those hidden features.
  8. I must be missing something important here. You're listening to music in LP2 format (ugh!) but, hey, the discs look nice.
  9. Thanks for that - I am familiar with that site, but always assumed they specialised more in guitar amp tubes. But I'm assuming you're suggesting some of these tubes would be fine for vocal preamps also.
  10. Unfortunately nothing's built to last anymore. Sony know as well as any other company that it makes good business sense to make something that will ultimately fail within a fairly short time, forcing the customer to buy the next available product or to pay for the failed product to be serviced. MY RH1 is still working fine about a year after I bought it. But I don't predict it will last more than another couple of years, given the heavy usage it gets. The remote failed after about 6 months and after exhaustive enquiries on the sony website, I was eventually offered a replacement for £109. Forget that, I'm not that big a mug! Such is the contempt that Sony has for its customers. My NH600's jogwheel finally gave up the ghost after about 2 years of regular use. Happily I found a replacement remote (RM-MC60) for 20 quid on the net, and the sound quality through it tells me it is thankfully a genuine Sony, not a counterfeit. The charging capacity issue is just another symptom of the deliberate lack of durability of electronic products today.
  11. Yeah - the AKG C1000S that I use is not the warmest of mics either - but I used it for a while before acquiring my preamp, and there is definitely an added harshness that was not there before. I've actually gone back to just using the mic inputs on my mixing desk, which is a characterless cold sound, but clean. I'll try one of those tubes you suggested.
  12. Thanks for that Sparky. Yeah, I was thinking of keeping my RH1 and NH600 for recording, and getting a hard disc unit for more convenience in listening to pre-recorded stuff - but a line-in would have been a nice bonus! But since the newer models apparently do not support ATRAC (I'm gutted!) and they play back with gaps, it seems I'm just going to stick with my HiMDs for now. I'm starting to think now that Sony are just plain stupid. You absolutely sure ATRAC is not supported now? Only, it is mentioned in the product information on Amazon.co.uk...
  13. Thanks. As far as I'm aware (and I have the box here at my home in Sheffield, although the unit is in London where my band is based) it's just called TubePre. Yeah, you're right, it uses a single 12AX7. It's so hard trying to find info on the net - there are a few places selling tubes, but they all assume the buyer is an expert! Can't find anywhere that says 'this is good for warm vocals, this is good for whatever, etc etc'. I find the unit sounds too harsh as it currently is. It was very cheap though (about £65 if I remember right). I'll do some googling for 12AU7 tubes now. Thanks for the tip. If you have any more advice based on the unit I have, I'd be happy to hear. Arigatou!
  14. Nice link, thanks! The effort that goes into those babies. I'm actually on the lookout for a replacement tube for my cheapo Presonus preamp, which despite being apparently 'award winning' has always been disappointing to me. As a musician yourself, do you have any suggestions for nice tubes? It's primarily for vocals, rather than instruments...
  15. I'd have bitten the seller's hand off if they were HiMD discs, but a quid for a second-hand standard 74 or 80 is just not worth it, IMO.
  16. I never found HiMD units' bass to be lacking (and I started out with just a standard MD unit), as long as using reasonably decent earphones or headphones. Try some in-canal earphones (e.g. Sennheiser CX300 or similar). Compared to the other small earphones on the market, this design seems to reproduce the bass the best in my experience, and means you don't need to apply any EQ or bass boost on your machine. Both my RH1 and my NH600 are also capable of driving my lovely Sennheiser HD650 headphones - which are obviously better when driven by a dedicated amp - but still, I get a perfectly acceptable and enjoyable sound direct from my HiMD units if I'm listening in bed away from my amp. But that's enough about my poor sex life. Incidently, I have posted some questions in another thread about the new Sony MP3 players, if anyone has any answers.
  17. I've been reading a few reviews for the new Sony mp3 players, and am concerned about a few suspicions I have of these machines, but cannot find anywhere that definitively answers my questions. So, does anyone out there know? 1. I know it can handle ATRAC files (despite reading some user reviews stating Sony have abandoned the format). But can it handle the higher bit rates (i.e. 256, 320 and 352 kbps)? And can I simply drag-and-drop my 352kbps ATRAC3 files that I created in SonicStage into the machine? (I know the machine has the drag-and-drop facility; I'm referring solely to the ATRAC3 files I already have). 2. I have read that one problem is that it plays back segued (joined) tracks with a tiny little gap between them (as the iPod does apparently). I like to listen to a few concept albums that have many segued tracks (e.g. Sgt Pepper, The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, etc.) as well as live albums. Do these little gaps appear between ATRAC recordings, or just other formats? 3. Does it have a line input to record from an external source (like minidisc can), or can it only store recordings drag-and-dropped from a computer through the USB? (I suspect the latter...) 4. When playing back optimum quality tracks, does it sound as good as the best HiMD Walkmans?
  18. Disgusting. This thread should be deleted, and high morals returned to this once-clean forum. Erm... where can I get one?
  19. Er... yes, quite so. I was using it as an analogy. You said in response to the point about the jog wheel having a poor life to use the remote instead. I was basically saying no point in having a jog wheel at all if you're just going to use the remote (ie. like no point in having one MD player just to use another one to save wear and tear on the first without actually using it). Just an analogy.
  20. That's not the point though - that's like saying "to avoid wear and tear on your minidisc player, use a different one!"
  21. Except that colour is not a function.
  22. Love the leather cigarillo case thing you have going there. That's tougher (and way cooler) than anything you could get supplied by Sony! As for storing/carrying it badly (losing a rubber foot) - I've always treated it with a good deal of care, but admittedly never invested in a tough case (like you wisely did!) and it always slips in my inside coat pocket in it's soft pouch. Maybe the missing foot got dislodged as I slid the Walkman either in or out of my pocket. Not a big deal though, I won't be losing any sleep! I also have a deep rooted hate-hate relationship with Sony - there's such a lack of customer support, with an eagerness to rip us off (selling Walkman replacement remotes for £109), and their products are frequently built to break down or fall apart within a year or so (this is not unique to Sony, I know), so I look upon my Sony Walkman with mixed emotions! I need therapy. Oh yeah, thanks for the tip about the screen protector - good advice.
  23. Not a bad little unit that. Great value, sounds good (not quite as good as a more expensive one like an RH1 of course, but still very good), and best of all (for me) runs off a single AA battery, so runs for ages between charges. the machine itself is not chargable - you'll need a separate battery charger, which always suited me - I could listen to it whilst charging other batteries in my charger. One prob with this: the jog wheel is weak as a kitten. It may stop working after a year or so, or depending on usage. This may not be unique to this model though. Still recommended.
  24. It might be gorgeous, but it is by no means the 'perfect' Hi-MD Walkman. The navigation - in particular that 'half-wheel' thing that can be nudged up or down to skip tracks and menu options or pressed in to play or pause or select options, is very fiddly - too easy to nudge up or down when all you want to do is press it in. And why must the record switch bit stick out like that? It also feels a bit on the fragile side. I know it's metal, but it's very thin metal with a large slab of transparent plastic at the front (which becomes scratched over time). I'd hate to drop this machine on a hard floor. I also don't get why the rubber feet on the underside. Just checked mine and one of the feet has come off! I know they wanted to almost replicate a mini hifi separate - but I think this idea was taken too far IMO. The main reason I bought it was I'd read what a good sound it had, including MP3 compatibility which is fantastic (unlike earlier models that were designed to make MP3 sound rubbish). I was also impressed by how beautiful it looked in photos on the net. The sound really is the best I have ever heard from a portable music player, so I'm glad I bought it. But I recognise its faults too, and do think on reflection that £200 or more is too much for this machine. I reckon £120 would be more reasonable. Especially as the format has now been killed off. Hope this doesn't offend any RH1 devotees! I still love Hi-MD for the superior sound (namely ATRAC3). I just wish that since they decided to kill it, they had replaced it with something as good or better. No evidence of that yet.
  25. I've been reading various customer reviews of various media players as I'm considering buying something new. But I've been spoilt by the fine quality of Hi-MD/ATRAC. And the reviews just fill me with despair. Such comments as 'this machine will store 6000 songs at 64 kbps so is fantastic!' Or 'I converted all my [insert random file type] songs into [insert another file type] so this player would recognise them, and it's great!!!' (forgetting that any conversion degrades the sound). The internet is just full of comments from thousands of people that are listening to tracks that have been converted between multiple formats multiple times, and at crappy low bit rates. And they don't hear anything wrong with it! Is everyone deaf - or are they maybe listening to modern crappily mastered compressed songs that sound bad even in SACD? Who knows, but it's sad. It's sad because manufacturers respond to customers needs. And most customers seem to be saying "I need something that will store a million songs on a 256mb memory stick!" rather than saying "I need something that retains the integrity of the original CD and sounds beautiful". I was considering getting a Sony NWZA818 - but even the positive reviews have convinced me it's a step backwards in terms of sound, from Hi-MD.
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