Originally Posted by reillymp
Thanks for all your timely & helpful replies. I forgot to go back & read all your posts on this topic. To update, I re-flashed the firmware to 1.4 & 1.6 with the loader with the same results; no HDDVD's would load or play. I am fairly sure the loader was an AK97 as I purchased it from the link you provided. The drives (my old drive & Yahir's) were physically identical & I believe I looked at the parts numbers. Is there a thread on cleaning/lubing the AK97. Thought I might try this as my old drive is out & I have nothing to lose.
It needs to be the AK97-02013A and there are many similar Samsung part numbers. The main system board in the 5K and p1400 only differ by an inverted set of numbers and can be very confusing. Fortunately the loader numbers are vastly different.
Not really. But there is now. Just pop the top of your unit, pull or at least move the front out of the way. Don't try to do this with the front panel in the way (though I have been know to do it a time or two). It's ok to keep the loader mounted and connected while you do this, but I would suggest unplugging the main power plug to avoid it coming on while cleaning and lubing. Pop the top of the loader (5 screws if I remember right). Pull the top carefully up and toward the back. Before you start you might want to plug in the unit, turn it on and observe the laser firing test (not too close unless you want to go blind). Both lasers will fire. Both should have a blue sequence and one of them (I think the top nearest the back) will also fire red. If one seems dim or dark, that may be your problem, but I have found that there are other electronics and alignment problems that can happen that I have not figured out yet. I still haven't learned which laser and color preforms which function. I suspect that the blue only is for BD and the blue/red everything else, but I could be wrong there. Use some freon tape head cleaner or 100% pure alcohol (or as close as you can get) on preferably a foam swab or a high quality Q-tip if you can't find the foam ones. I think Radio Shack may sell this stuff, but maybe not. I have a pretty good size container of freon TF cleaner from the 80s when I was a computer operator that I have been milking all these years. I usually also very carefully blow them off with some canned air to remove the dust, before the brute force clean (be super careful doing that and don't get the air stream too close to the lasers and just give it a tiny spray, even your breath on that mechanism will deflect it. To lube the rails, use some white lithium grease that you can get at any auto parts or hardware store. Take a Q-tip and put a small amount on it and slab it on the top and bottom of both rails. You have to move the laser mechanism up and down to get at the rails on both sides front and back. Be careful not to push it by the laser head, but find somewhere else you can push on (I can't recall at this moment, it has been a few days since I've been in one ;-) The spindle might be a good place to grab as long as you don't get grease on the rubber. The left side as you are looking at the front of the loader is easier to get at. The right takes some patients and you won't be able to get to all of it. Just put a little extra grease, but not too much, and as the mechanism goes up and down it will get spread. You will notice an instant reduction in loader noise after this and discs may or may not load faster after this treatment. I have no idea if this process prolongs or lessens the life of the loader, but buy doing one or both of these things a few folks have been able to resolve problems. I suspect however that if your original loader will not load BDs, then I doubt that you will be able to recover it. It does not hurt to also remove your loader and check it for any loose cables, connections etc. or obvious signs of blown ICs, caps etc. And you have already swapped a loader, so you know how fragile the data cable for the loader is. I meant to order a spare for my project machine when cheep ones were on Amazon, but now they are gone and I will have to pay $12-15 for one through a parts store. I need one on hand, since I know eventually mine will fail as I have probably swapped loaders in it at least a couple dozen times in the past. So be careful with that. Poke around at the cable that connects the laser mechanism to the main loader. You may find that tweaking the cable may restore your BD capability? I wish I knew more about the internals of these puppies. I have a giant box full of dead ones, most that won't play anything. I think I probably have 4-5 dead ones and at least a couple that won't play various discs. It's become a strange obsession to find and try to recover these and always a joy when I find one that fully works. If someone out there knows how to repair these and is interested, I would send you one or two for the cost of shipping alone. I know Samsung repairs these and I have toyed with the idea of sending them their way to either be repaired and sent back to me, or used for repair stock.
Have fun and let me know if you have any success.