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  1. Hi, something weird happened to me lately with a MDS-JA555ES: By some strange coincidence, not one, but two minty 555s showed up on German eBay two weeks ago, on two different ends of Germany, and one of it in my very hometown! I took this as an unbelievably happy coincidence, so I just had to get this thing. And so I did. When I went to that place to pick it up I noticed that that guy had no more than 5 (five!) self-recorded MDs (he had set his MDs, most of them still unwrapped, in another auction, which I hadn't noticed). So the tale of this machine only having 10 hours on it may well have been true. I insisted in having it plugged in and trying it, and so it was set up to record from a small portable CDP I had brought with me, connected to the analog input. Of course I had also brought the correct cables, but the stupid part in me had packed headphones with the wrong plug, so I couldn't listen. When I put in the blank CD (an obscure used one I had got from somewhere, sometime), a strange thing happened. The display showed that the deck recorded, but the display was stuck at 0:00. The drive buttons wouldn't respond to stop, eject or anything. The deck wouldn't even go into standby anymore. It wasn't until we pulled the wall plug and plugged it back in, that the deck would act normally again. It wasn't very helpful that the vendor couldn't remember (or pretended to) how to operate the deck at all. After that incident, I ejected the failed disk, inserted another one, erased it, and started all over again. This time, everything went fine. I had been ready to cancel the deal, but decided to go for the chance that this would have been a singular incident. After all, I had already had a disc that (while playing) got stuck on 0:00 before (although it hadn't taken the whole deck's operations down), on a deck that ever since has been working 100% reliably. And when would such a lucky chance (no parcel service to throw around the deck on transit) come along ever again? So I decided to carry through. Since I had lugged that thing home (it is heavy!), I haven't had any time to play with it yet. But today, I had this weird MD in my hands, when I wanted to make some test recordings in another place, and I decided to use it, and see whether it would fail again. Then I noticed that the "0:00" recording was completely intact. It seems that the deck's firmware had somehow crashed, but the deck had still recorded fine. (And when had the deck updated the TOC? I hadn't noticed that at all.) So WHAT ON EARTH WAS THAT? BTW: The seller told me that one bidder had sent him instructions on how to go into service mode an read out the hours played/recorded (he even showed me a printout of the instructions). And he'd gone there and done that. Maybe this has something to do with the phenomenon. Any way to reset the deck to factory state? Regards, Alex
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