Originally Posted by LeandrodaFL
The HDD was nearly full, I was in fact doing backups when things stared to malfunction. I noticed remaining recording time was diminishing after erasing titles, and by simply changing names of titles, very weird.
Unfortunately, this is the worst case scenario of recorder HDD failure. There's a reason the machine constantly warns you not to let the HDD fill up: because this may happen. Odds are it won't, Pioneers are actually pretty good at maintaining their HDD structure, but if you're unlucky enough to suffer a catastrophic glitch while the HDD is near full the unit may not be able to recover itself. With enough free space, the automatic "Repairing HDD" function is usually able to stabilize things. But if it encounters a particularly rotten sector while running with limited free space, it will just hang indefinitely.
Is there a magical fix?
How do I stop this repair message?
You can't: the unit is stuck in a loop akin to the Windows BSOD.
How much time should I leave the recorder unlugged, so battery runs out and I get a factory reset?
No reset is possible: the unit always goes into HDD self-check when it starts up, so will launch straight back into it's "Repairing Disk..." loop. There's no way to interrupt the loop short of removing the HDD. (In some cases it is possible to interrupt it using the Service Remote, but it requires parsing the inscrutable service screens that aren't explained very well in the service manual. Also, interrupting it in Service Mode to run a diagnostic won't necessarily stop it from looping again once you return to User Mode.)
If I take the HDD out, connect to PC, can I get the recordings? I once read something about being possible, altough very time consuming.
Its possible but known to be difficult. Someone wrote a page about it here
Can I replace the HDD and have a fresh start?
Yes, its fairly easy and not very expensive. I have posted the necessary steps in several AVS threads, most recently here
May I have a recommendation of a recorder to buy?
DVD/HDD recorders are extinct. Nothing is available new anymore aside from a couple of malingering Magnavox units, which are now priced insanely given the degraded build quality and feature crippling compared to their nicer earlier models.
Sooner or later, we must all accept that recordable DVD utterly failed as a VCR replacement. Pick up one of the several Chinese devices on Amazon that record to USB hard drives, then connect the hard drive to your PC when you need to back something up or make a DVD. The Homeworx
type of unit is very cheap and reasonably effective. More clumsy than an integrated Pioneer DVD/HDD, on the other hand these new cheap units include modern digital ATSC tuners and can record in true HDTV quality.