Please help fixing Pioneer PDR-555RW - diyAudio
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Old 19th August 2003, 02:03 AM   #1
OliverD is offline OliverD  Germany
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Default Please help fixing Pioneer PDR-555RW

I got this unit for free, but it doesn't work... I already changed a semiconductor fuse on the PS board, as the analog +12V rail was missing. But this didn't cure the following two problems:

- Something is wrong with the drawer control. It looks like the controller doesn't realize the drawer is in its end position, because the drawer opens and closes all the time without pressing a button. The switch on the drawer is ok, though - I checked it. To make the player try to read a disc, you have to switch the unit off and on again in the moment the drawer is closed.

- When initializing, the pickup moves back towards the center of the disc and the focus servo seems to work. I held a disc above the lens and carefully moved it up and down - the lens followed. However, the spindle motor starts spinning like mad - no disc is recognized.

There are no pots in the unit except for playback power, CD-R record power and CD-RW record power.

Can anyone experienced fixing CD players help me with this one?

Thanks
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Old 20th August 2003, 03:28 PM   #2
OliverD is offline OliverD  Germany
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Default Update

After having a closer look, I realized a defective 5V/1F "gold cap" and some corroded PCB tracks in this area. After removing it and thorough cleaning (there were no interruptions in the tracks or vias), the player now recognizes a disc and plays it.

However, when pressing the "record" button, the disc spins for a while, then stops. A blinking "check" message is displayed.

Also the drawer problem still persists, although I could trace the signal from the switch to a chip "PD4956B". The signal is 0V when the disc is clamped, 2.5V as long as the drawer is in transit, and 5V when the drawer is open. This signal is obviously ignored.

Any hope for the recorder?
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Old 10th October 2003, 05:03 AM   #3
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The flashing "check" message indicates a software error which is common to the PDR-555RW and Fostex models made by Pioneer on this board. I've seen several like this.

Unfortunately this is an issue that requires an expensive main PCB replacement. It will cost between $250.00-$350.00 to have Pioneer or Fostex replace the board. That's well in excess of the current market value of this unit.

The PDR-509 and PDR-609 have a different processor and do not have this problem.

I have never seen the CD drawer problem you describe, but it could be that buggy motherboard.

John
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Old 10th October 2003, 03:52 PM   #4
OliverD is offline OliverD  Germany
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Thank you for your help.

A main board exchange is really not economic, even if I could get one for cheap I'd still have to adjust the laser powers for REC and PB which requires a laser power meter.

On the other hand, how can a software error occur when the unit was functioning correctly before?
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Old 10th October 2003, 07:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Öhow can a software error occur when the unit was functioning correctly before?
Iíve asked Pioneer support about the specific nature of the problem, but they wonít go into details at the board level. They donít replace components on the board, but rather replace the whole board. The tech I spoke with used the terms software and system error interchangeably.

Iíve seen a few of these units with this problem. The customer complains that the unit began ďskippingĒ during the recording process a few months before it fails. Suddenly one day they press record and get the blinking ďCheckĒ message. The unit continues to play CDs fine, but no record function at all.

I have one in my shop that the customer didnít want back. I am planning to do a complete tear down and examination, but havenít had the time yet. I will post the results to this thread.

My guess is there is a component that breaks down over time, possibly from an under spec operating temp range. It may be a relatively simple failure that causes a domino effect on other components, and ultimately the main processor.

The service manual uses the term ďSystem errorĒ in relation to electrostatic problems. The manual states the following in the troubleshooting section:

DISPLAY: Blinks Check
CAUSE: A system error occurred, perhaps due to noise or static electricity.
TREATMENT: Unplug the power cord and plug it in again. If the same message is displayed again, please contact a Pioneer authorized service center.

If you got one of these for free I would hang on to it in case we solve the mystery, but I donít recommend anyone go shopping for one of these on the used market unless they want a ďproject.Ē
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Old 17th October 2003, 11:14 PM   #6
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These PDR-555RW models are a pain in the

If I don't get mine sold, I may try to fix it again. It hardly likes any brand of CD and skips on record. I haven't got a good copy on it yet. I've cleaned it with a CD cleaner disk, so I know it's not a simple fix.

Any body figured this out yet short of the $300.00 fix by Pioneer?

Dave
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Old 26th October 2003, 05:52 AM   #7
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FIX FOR THE PIONEER PDR-555 CD RECORDER

Problem: Display blinks ďCheckĒ message when pressing the record button.

After hours of checking the main PC board I realized I was barking up the wrong tree. I finally narrowed it down to the function PCB, which is located behind the front panel. I did several things here and Iím not sure which one solved the problem. But it is working like new.

Upon removing the function PCB I examined it with a magnifying lamp and noticed the foil side was covered with a sticky film. I believe this was a substance applied to the board during production to prevent corrosion. It could have been residue from a drink spilled in the unit, but Iím not sure. Iíve heard of coatings like these becoming conductive with age.

I removed the sticky substance with a spray solvent. You can use an electric components solvent, such as Bonafied made by Drummond America, or similar. I used a can of Birchwood-Casey Gun Scrubber, used for cleaning firearms because thatís all I had on hand.

After spraying both sides I noticed a light brown reside that had run off unto the paper beneath it. I then cleaned around the main IC with a fine brass brush (also a gun cleaning item made by Hoppes) an old toothbrush might do as well. After that I sprayed it down again and let it dry in front of a fan.

The next step was to replace four electrolytic capacitors (the only ones on the board). There are two 16v 100uf, and two 16v 47uf.

What fixed it? Iím not sure. I donít have a capacitor checker, so I donít know that these caps were bad. In the process of removing the board I disconnected a few ribbon cables. It is possible that breaking these connections alone resolved a static issue. I tend to think it was the sticky coating. Some Yamaha products from the mid-80ís, such as the SPX90 had this coating problem. However it could have been a spilled drink. The way the bonnet fits to the panel would allow the fluid to flow right onto the function PCB.

Anyway, it works great and I hope you have the same good outcome.
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Old 9th August 2005, 06:55 AM   #8
CoolCat is offline CoolCat  United States
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Default Pioneer 555RW

this is wild...an old thread...

but my CDR just went out.

first skipping CDR's...

then the drawer started openning and closing by itself.

then add the Check Disc...or CHECK....

then drawer would be totally lost close is open etc...

i tried the mentioned inputs nothing worked.

its FUBAR..... just had to add this as it was so strange the exact thing mentioned in #5 happened to this unit.

oh well...hell 11yrs?? not bad, can't complain....other than it sucks not having my standalone CDR!
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Old 10th January 2007, 03:36 PM   #9
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Default Haley1

Found this on another board:

Post #7
FIX FOR THE PIONEER PDR-555 CD RECORDER

Problem: Display blinks ďCheckĒ message when pressing the record button.

After hours of checking the main PC board I realized I was barking up the wrong tree. I finally narrowed it down to the function PCB, which is located behind the front panel. I did several things here and Iím not sure which one solved the problem. But it is working like new.

Upon removing the function PCB I examined it with a magnifying lamp and noticed the foil side was covered with a sticky film. I believe this was a substance applied to the board during production to prevent corrosion. It could have been residue from a drink spilled in the unit, but Iím not sure. Iíve heard of coatings like these becoming conductive with age.

I removed the sticky substance with a spray solvent. You can use an electric components solvent, such as Bonafied made by Drummond America, or similar. I used a can of Birchwood-Casey Gun Scrubber, used for cleaning firearms because thatís all I had on hand.

After spraying both sides I noticed a light brown reside that had run off unto the paper beneath it. I then cleaned around the main IC with a fine brass brush (also a gun cleaning item made by Hoppes) an old toothbrush might do as well. After that I sprayed it down again and let it dry in front of a fan.

The next step was to replace four electrolytic capacitors (the only ones on the board). There are two 16v 100uf, and two 16v 47uf.

What fixed it? Iím not sure. I donít have a capacitor checker, so I donít know that these caps were bad. In the process of removing the board I disconnected a few ribbon cables. It is possible that breaking these connections alone resolved a static issue. I tend to think it was the sticky coating. Some Yamaha products from the mid-80ís, such as the SPX90 had this coating problem. However it could have been a spilled drink. The way the bonnet fits to the panel would allow the fluid to flow right onto the function PCB.

Anyway, it works great and I hope you have the same good outcome.
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Old 31st May 2008, 05:52 PM   #10
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Hello , thx to this forum My Pioneer PDR 555 is again in first order . I had same problem , open close,open close , check disc , no recording , i found the last thread number 7 and it is correct !! solved my problems , washed the complete board with degreazsing alcohol , took of a black duoblesided sticker , replaced all the caps with same new 100 UF SMD caps 16 volt types and my player is again first class functioning .

so I really don't know was it the caps , they are apparently on the suply voltage and since I have soldered in the best quality available , or was it the sticker , I don't know , I know only that my recorder is back like new , I had it about 11 years now and recorded only maybe 100 discs with it it's still like new , clean and shiny , and it was a pitty not to try and repair it . i donated 5 USD for the site thank you very much for the help !!
Benjamin in Belgium .
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