My 5504 is sick - here are the symptoms - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 01-30-2013, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Hello AVS. Been coming here for years to keep my three 5504's up and running. Until now, most of my issues have been fixed by replacing the hard drives. However, one of my units (still rockin the original hard drive from 2003) is having some erratic behavior.

It first started with a fan lock detected message and then no signal detected. A reboot here and there would restore functionality. A few weeks later, the reboots did not change the condition so I decided to replace the hard drive with another original Maxtor drive (from another unit that I had pulled for a bigger hard drive years ago). This extra drive has been a good test drive for the other units so I am pretty sure it works. Well the new hard drive helped the unit run properly for a day, but then the same problems returned with some new symptoms.

Here is what happens in order with either the original or replacement drive installed. Video input is via basic coax cable and video out is via composite RCA to TV.

Plugging in unit - hard drive will spin, no fan spin. Nothing on screen, not even 'please wait'.

Next, I hold down power button for 20 seconds to reboot - after doing this one or more times I will finally get video output of 'please wait'. Sometimes the video output at this point is distorted as if the plug is not inserted all the way. The plug and TV are fine. Another reboot or two usually fixes this.

Once I get clear output of 'please wait', then the unit finally boots up and the fan runs as normal. At this point, I may or may not be able to tune in a channel. If I can, it only lasts for a second or two. If I let the unit run a while, the fan might stop but not always with the fan lock detected message.

Even when the unit cannot tune a channel, I can still view (with no issues) recordings on that hard drive (recorded on the day it worked). I can also view these recordings across my network on other replay units. And I can view recordings from other units across the network with no issue. This makes me think the hard drive is fine.

At this point I am suspecting it is the power supply. It is interesting how it takes a long time and many reboots to get started – maybe it needs to warm up. But it also could be the motherboard. I have read mikeyboys recommendations for testing the power supply. I have tightened all the screws and inspected the power supply for busted caps and burnt pins on the cable to the motherboard but found none. My voltage tester probes are too big to fit inside the plastic housing to check the voltages so I can’t do a complete test. So I need some advice on where to look next.

I suppose at this point I need to find a unit for sale to use for parts or a replacement unit to put my hard drive in. Any thoughts?
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post #2 of 8 Old 01-30-2013, 11:39 AM
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Sounds like what our original 54xx unit was doing. I have 3 Spare replays up in the attic so I popped the EEPROM and hard drive from the faulty unit and stuck them in the replacement unit- it booted up like nothing ever happened.

Like you said- could be MB or PSU- only way to find out is to swap out both one at a time. PSU is easiest, start there.

"If we ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space."
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post #3 of 8 Old 01-30-2013, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info. I don't have any spare units. Is the best place to get them ebay? Any others besides looking in this forum from time to time?
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post #4 of 8 Old 01-30-2013, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by thefish View Post

Thanks for the info. I don't have any spare units. Is the best place to get them ebay? Any others besides looking in this forum from time to time?
Best place is probably here, most members are very honest and helpful (unlike Ebay) and you'll have a better chance of getting a good working unit...

"If we ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space."
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post #5 of 8 Old 01-30-2013, 06:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Best place is probably here, most members are very honest and helpful (unlike Ebay) and you'll have a better chance of getting a good working unit...
I assume that parts from 50XX or 55XX models would work, whereas parts from 4XXX or earlier models would not. I think I read that 5XXX models can see each other across the home network, but earlier models are not supported.
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post #6 of 8 Old 01-30-2013, 10:12 PM
 
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At this point I am suspecting it is the power supply. It is interesting how it takes a long time and many reboots to get started – maybe it needs to warm up. But it also could be the motherboard. I have read mikeyboys recommendations for testing the power supply. I have tightened all the screws and inspected the power supply for busted caps and burnt pins on the cable to the motherboard but found none. My voltage tester probes are too big to fit inside the plastic housing to check the voltages so I can’t do a complete test. So I need some advice on where to look next.

It sure sounds a lot like the power supply. If you want to fix it, you're either going to have to figure out a way to check the voltages or get another RTV power supply to test with. I suggest your using small paper clips or straight pins into the plastic housing to touch your voltage tester probes to.
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-31-2013, 07:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ReplayLurker View Post

It sure sounds a lot like the power supply. If you want to fix it, you're either going to have to figure out a way to check the voltages or get another RTV power supply to test with. I suggest your using small paper clips or straight pins into the plastic housing to touch your voltage tester probes to.
if it is the power supply, then replacement would be the only cure. That is a good suggestion to use a paper clip or pin for the voltage test. I expect the benefit of that test is to confirm the issue is with the power supply. Seems like I need to find another unit to use for parts irregardless if the power supply is confirmed or not.
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-31-2013, 11:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ReplayLurker View Post

It sure sounds a lot like the power supply. If you want to fix it, you're either going to have to figure out a way to check the voltages or get another RTV power supply to test with. I suggest your using small paper clips or straight pins into the plastic housing to touch your voltage tester probes to.
if it is the power supply, then replacement would be the only cure. That is a good suggestion to use a paper clip or pin for the voltage test. I expect the benefit of that test is to confirm the issue is with the power supply. Seems like I need to find another unit to use for parts irregardless if the power supply is confirmed or not.

It would be good to know what you need to fix it. There are power supplies for sell separately, but with the current price for RTVs, you probably should just get a spare. Either way, it would be best if you knew what it would take to fix it. Otherwise, you might as well just get another RTV to replace it and be done with it.
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