DMR-ES46V U61 error & Self Check Failed message - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 02-19-2012, 03:06 PM - Thread Starter
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I became a member today because I have a problem with my Panasonic DMR-ES46V that has worked great for years.
I have spent hours reading most of the post about the U61 error, most of which are dated back in 2008 & 09. It is now 2012; is there any definitive answer to this U61 error?
This is what happened: I was burning my 4th DVD when it exceeded the two hour limit on the disc and couldn't finish recording. As I was about to remove the disc, company walked in and my grandson (in a rush to see who just came over) closed the cabinet door and the DVD tray hit the cabinet door stopping it from opening all the way. I didn't want to mess with it then, so I just shut the unit off. After company left I turned the unit on and got the U61 error and a half minute later the Self Check Failed message appears. I figured the DVD tray was messed up or out of sync with the player. I opened the unit up and noticed that the left side of the DVD cover had a metal guide that was out of wack when compared to the right side. I took it apart and fixed the metal guide on the cover, and could not find any broken parts. Still getting the U61 error & Self Check Failed message. I then reset the DVD tray thinking it was out of sync. I used the photo's (I had to join to see the photos) on the forum to make sure I had the tray seated properly. The DVD tray moves in and out smoothly and can be opened and closed with the button. I have no leaky caps that I can see.
Are there any new clues to this problem other than replacing the DVD unit and the circuit board?
Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 10 Old 02-20-2012, 06:45 AM
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From the Operating Instructions
U61: There was a power failure or the AC plug was disconnected while the unit was on. The unit is carrying out its recovery process. This process restores the unit to normal operation. The unit is not broken. Wait until the message disappears.

If waiting doesn't clear the message you could try a reset.
While the unit is off, press and hold [STOP] and [CH UP] buttons on the main unit at the same time for about 5 seconds.
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post #3 of 10 Old 02-20-2012, 09:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Ken.F

Thanks for the reply. The reset didn't work. The U61 error always clears within 30 seconds, but the on screen "SELF CHECK FAILED" messages never goes away.
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post #4 of 10 Old 02-20-2012, 09:54 AM
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I don't know what it's testing for during the self check but it might be trying to read a disc. Have you tried starting it with a disc loaded?
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post #5 of 10 Old 02-20-2012, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken.F View Post

From the Operating Instructions
U61: There was a power failure or the AC plug was disconnected while the unit was on. The unit is carrying out its recovery process. This process restores the unit to normal operation. The unit is not broken. Wait until the message disappears.

If waiting doesn't clear the message you could try a reset.
While the unit is off, press and hold [STOP] and [CH UP] buttons on the main unit at the same time for about 5 seconds.

The U61 error description in the Operating Instructions is misleading. The Service Manual gives a somewhat better description so, "The unit detected an error while recording or playing with no disc in the disc tray." Then the Service Manual goes on to mention the "recovery process" and suggests that one "wait until the message disappears." What the Service Manual doesn't say is that this "recovery process" might never return the machine to functionality.

Yes, there are a few instances when Panasonic recorders have recovered from the U61 error and the somewhat similar U88 error. But for every one recovery from these dreaded errors there are (perhaps) two hundred that do not recover.

In my experience I've yet to observe a U61 error clear itself.

Another more general error is the U99. This error sometimes clears with resetting but often indicates a more serious problem that does not clear.

For several years these U61, U88 and U99 errors have been addressed in these pages. Here is a brief summery from 2009:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post17163187

Another is found here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post16856463

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #6 of 10 Old 02-21-2012, 11:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken.F View Post

I don't know what it's testing for during the self check but it might be trying to read a disc. Have you tried starting it with a disc loaded?

Ken.F
I did try the disc that it never finish finalizing, a blank disc and a movie disc, none worked.
Any recommendations for a replacement unit? This one belonged to my neighbor and I need to replace it soon.
I was looking at the following;
Toshiba DVR620
Magnavox RZV427MG9
Panasonic DMR-EZ48VK

Thank You for your time and assistance.
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post #7 of 10 Old 02-21-2012, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DigaDo View Post

The U61 error description in the Operating Instructions is misleading. The Service Manual gives a somewhat better description so, "The unit detected an error while recording or playing with no disc in the disc tray." Then the Service Manual goes on to mention the "recovery process" and suggests that one "wait until the message disappears." What the Service Manual doesn't say is that this "recovery process" might never return the machine to functionality.

Yes, there are a few instances when Panasonic recorders have recovered from the U61 error and the somewhat similar U88 error. But for every one recovery from these dreaded errors there are (perhaps) two hundred that do not recover.

In my experience I've yet to observe a U61 error clear itself.

Another more general error is the U99. This error sometimes clears with resetting but often indicates a more serious problem that does not clear.

For several years these U61, U88 and U99 errors have been addressed in these pages. Here is a brief summery from 2009:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post17163187

Another is found here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post16856463

DigaDo,

I am going to look for a replacement unit.
Any recommendations.

Thank you for your time and assistance.
BBJay
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post #8 of 10 Old 02-21-2012, 12:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBJay View Post

Ken.F
I did try the disc that it never finish finalizing, a blank disc and a movie disc, none worked.
Any recommendations for a replacement unit? This one belonged to my neighbor and I need to replace it soon.
I was looking at the following;
Toshiba DVR620
Magnavox RZV427MG9
Panasonic DMR-EZ48VK

Thank You for your time and assistance.

I don't know about the other models you listed but I'd avoid the EZ48. I went through three different EZ48s before I got a good one. One was dead out of the box, one had frequent freeze-ups and errors and the third one is still working.
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post #9 of 10 Old 02-21-2012, 12:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBJay View Post

...Any recommendations for a replacement unit? This one belonged to my neighbor and I need to replace it soon.
I was looking at the following;
Toshiba DVR620
Magnavox RZV427MG9
Panasonic DMR-EZ48VK

The Toshiba and Magnavox are both tunerless models built by Funai. These would be satisfactory for line in use with a cable company converter box, satellite receiver, or ATSC converter box. The fragile VHS mechanism is satisfactory for light use but heavy use leads to early failure.

The tuner-equipped Panasonic is full of bugs and design flaws, most of which are part the operating system. There are some workarounds to make scheduled recording more reliable but freeze ups and clear QAM tuner performance are common problems. While the Panasonic VHS mechanism is of robust design, dubbing videotaped material from the VHS mechanism directly to DVD produces crude results, a new title at VHS index marks, occasional abrupt scene changes or commercials.

If dubbing videotaped material to DVD will be a primary use of the DVD Recorder better results will be had by connecting a VCR to a DVD Recorder input and recording from that input while the VCR plays the videotape. This basic tunerless DVD Recorder would be satisfactory for such use:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Magnavox-Z...rding/17337718

The "refurbished" earlier version of that model is bargain priced:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Magnavox-ZC320MW8/17281655

The best common wisdom is to use a VCR connected to an input of a HDD/DVD Recorder, record the material to the internal hard drive, edit/divide the material (if desired) and high-speed dub the material to DVD(s). There are still a few Magnavox HDD/DVD recorders to be found in the marketplace:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Magnavox-M...order/14291489

The top of the line model is currently sold out:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Magnavox-M...tlyViewedItems

The first post in Wajo's sticky thread is the gateway to a wealth of information concerning these outstanding Magnavox HDD/DVD Recorders:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...6#post12244086

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #10 of 10 Old 02-24-2012, 07:06 PM
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Refurbished Magnavox HDD/DVD Recorders have just come back into stock at J&R:

http://www.jr.com/brand/magnavox/

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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