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  #1  
12-23-2011, 03:06 PM
rongm rongm is offline
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I have this unit for about 6 years. Several weeks ago it stopped recognizing DVD's. It will still play audio CD's. I have seen other statements that separate LED's are used for CD and DVD. I went through the lens cleaning procedure given on this web site, and only see one lens, unless both LED's use the same lens. Didn't help.

I went to the JVC "store" online and found a 'DVD drive kit' for this unit for $150. I knew that the model drive I had was discontinued, but I ordered it anyway, hoping it wouldn't be too difficult to swap it out. My mistake. The kit consisted of a DVD drive, new mounting bracket, and numerous other capacitors, cables, etc. No info on how to install any of it. I contacted JVC parts department (customer service), and was told I needed the service manual. I found one online for this unit, but it does not include any upgrade/replacement info.

If anyone has anything that might help me, I would sure appreciate it, or else I'll have to try to return the kit. I really would like to get this fixed without sending it in to JVC service. This unit has been very versatile and reliable up to now. I can't find anything else that can do all this can for a reasonable price.

Thanks for any help I can get,

Ron
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  #2  
12-28-2011, 04:35 AM
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Hi Ron, welcome to the site.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rongm View Post
Several weeks ago it stopped recognizing DVD's.
Which DVD disc formats will it no longer read, specifically?
  • DVD-ROM (store-bought pressed discs)
  • DVD-R and DVD+R
  • DVD-RW and DVD+RW
  • DVD-RAM
Quote:
It will still play audio CD's.
Which CD disc formats will it still read, specifically?
  • CD-ROM (store-bought pressed discs)
  • CD-R
  • CD-RW
The reason I ask all of this is because drive failures happen in a specific order. The least optically reflective media is first to go (RW, RAM). Next comes all other recordable media (R). And finally, when the laser lens is totally shot, even pressed discs will fail (99% reflective media). If your issues are out of order, then the drive itself is generally a less-likely root cause of the problems. The failure of CD and DVD formats should also differ.

Also very important: Are you using high quality blank DVDs and CDs?
Compare what you're using against the media on this guide: Blank DVD Media Quality Review

Quote:
I have seen other statements that separate LED's are used for CD and DVD. I went through the lens cleaning procedure given on this web site, and only see one lens, unless both LED's use the same lens. Didn't help.
Yes, separate lenses (not LEDs) are used for CD and DVD. The wavelengths of light are different for CD and DVD.

Quote:
I went to the JVC "store" online and found a 'DVD drive kit' for this unit for $150. I knew that the model drive I had was discontinued, but I ordered it anyway, hoping it wouldn't be too difficult to swap it out. My mistake. The kit consisted of a DVD drive, new mounting bracket, and numerous other capacitors, cables, etc. No info on how to install any of it. I contacted JVC parts department (customer service), and was told I needed the service manual. I found one online for this unit, but it does not include any upgrade/replacement info.
That was probably a costly fix, and you likely received a lot of unnecessary parts in the kit. Go ahead and keep them, as they may be useful for future maintenance. The DVD drives inside of DVD recorders are not really any different from the DVD burners found in computers. The only difference is visual, as a computer burner is in a neat little metal sheath box, with a plastic front bezel. A DVD recorder's burner is "guts only" (no case, no fascia). If you opened a computer DVD burner, it would look the same, minus the mounting parts from on the DVD recorder (which can be removed and re-used). Several off-the-shelf consumer DVD burners are known to work in this DVD recorder, although these LG drives are harder to find now, given how the models are 5 years old.

Quote:
If anyone has anything that might help me, I would sure appreciate it, or else I'll have to try to return the kit. I really would like to get this fixed without sending it in to JVC service. This unit has been very versatile and reliable up to now. I can't find anything else that can do all this can for a reasonable price.
Open the unit, and just replace the drive. Forget about the wires, caps, etc -- that's just extra parts. Focus on replacing the drive itself.

Let me know how it turns out. I'm quite interested.

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  #3  
12-28-2011, 09:07 AM
rongm rongm is offline
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Thanks for your reply. Here is what I found out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpmedia View Post
Hi Ron, welcome to the site.

Which DVD disc formats will it no longer read, specifically?
  • DVD-ROM (store-bought pressed discs)
  • DVD-R and DVD+R
  • DVD-RW and DVD+RW
  • DVD-RAM
It does not read any of the formats. Usually reports" Insert Disc" or "Disc not readable"
Quote:

Which CD disc formats will it still read, specifically?
  • CD-ROM (store-bought pressed discs)
  • CD-R
  • CD-RW
It will play both store-bought and CD-R's, don't have or use any CD-RW's.
Quote:

The reason I ask all of this is because drive failures happen in a specific order. The least optically reflective media is first to go (RW, RAM). Next comes all other recordable media (R). And finally, when the laser lens is totally shot, even pressed discs will fail (99% reflective media). If your issues are out of order, then the drive itself is generally a less-likely root cause of the problems. The failure of CD and DVD formats should also differ.

Also very important: Are you using high quality blank DVDs and CDs?
Compare what you're using against the media on this guide: Blank DVD Media Quality Review

Yes, separate lenses (not LEDs) are used for CD and DVD. The wavelengths of light are different for CD and DVD.

That was probably a costly fix, and you likely received a lot of unnecessary parts in the kit. Go ahead and keep them, as they may be useful for future maintenance. The DVD drives inside of DVD recorders are not really any different from the DVD burners found in computers. The only difference is visual, as a computer burner is in a neat little metal sheath box, with a plastic front bezel. A DVD recorder's burner is "guts only" (no case, no fascia). If you opened a computer DVD burner, it would look the same, minus the mounting parts from on the DVD recorder (which can be removed and re-used). Several off-the-shelf consumer DVD burners are known to work in this DVD recorder, although these LG drives are harder to find now, given how the models are 5 years old.

Open the unit, and just replace the drive. Forget about the wires, caps, etc -- that's just extra parts. Focus on replacing the drive itself.

Let me know how it turns out. I'm quite interested.
I found a DVD drive in an old DELL computer I have, an NEC ND-2500A, same form factor, fits perfectly. I pulled it out and installed it in the JVC. When I plugged it back in, I got the infamous blue light flashing "LOADING" message.

I fear there is a firmware change needed to use a different drive, and if so, I am out of luck as I don't think I can make any changes to it.

Again, thanks for the help, I still have a few days before I have to get an RMA to return the kit.

Ron
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  #4  
12-28-2011, 09:15 AM
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The drive will need to match. I don't believe the JVC DVD recorders used NEC drives. I could be wrong, however, as it's been years since I had to dismantle one down to the drive assembly. Have you tried to install the DVD drive from the repair kit? It sounds like you received all the right parts (drive) plus other stuff in a "kit" that wasn't really necessary, though it could come in useful for later maintenance.

"LOADING" is a generic error message. It likely did not understand the drive's firmware, as you've guessed.

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  #5  
12-28-2011, 09:37 AM
rongm rongm is offline
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The drive in the kit is a bare-bones unit, no metal case, does not have the usual power connector or I/O bus connector. Instead there are what looks like micro-connectors of some kind. Must be what the cables included are for. I would probably be better off to just return the kit if I can instead of trying to install it and screw it up.The model number on the replacement drive is PMD-0123A-C.
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  #6  
12-28-2011, 10:01 AM
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Then there's a chance JVC sent the wrong kit.

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  #7  
12-28-2011, 10:09 AM
rongm rongm is offline
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Maybe, but I doubt it. You said "Several off-the-shelf consumer DVD burners are known to work in this DVD recorder".

You happen to know which ones?
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12-28-2011, 10:22 AM
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Not from memory, no. It's been posted on the forum, however, by various members of the site.

There's a stuck thread dealing with the JVC issues here: http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/home...g-jvc-dvd.html

Inside, you'll notice links to a number of threads on this site and another one. In there, I'm pretty sure some drive models have been discussed. There's also some links to a few other dead-traffic sites; you won't get any help there (nobody will ever reply), but you'll be able to read past posts. I don't remember the .com names of those sites off-hand, either. I'd be doing the same as I'm suggesting for you: look at past posts on this site, and see what you can learn from there.

If and when you do find the models that are supported, definitely come back here and post them. It's folks like yourself that help build this site into an "FAQ" of information. As much as I'd like to take the credit, it's not just Site Staff that help build this place.

Keep in touch, as I'd like to know how this works out.

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