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SanDisk User
Posts: 89
Registered: ‎11-09-2007

How I debricked my Sansa Express

[ Edited ]

Hi everyone,

 

Yesterday, I tried updating my Sansa Express's firmware to 01.01.05 and guess what happened...  Upon finishing the update, I tried turning the device on and all that happened was the SanDisk logo appeared for a moment and then the screen went blank.  Soft-resetting the device didn't help.

 

I reconnected the device to my computer and saw the two drives (for internal and external memory) after switching to MSC mode.  There was also a small blue object in the middle of the device's screen (like a 2D barcode).  I clicked on both drives, but Windows Explorer said "Please insert a disk in drive [X:]."  I tried formatting the drive for the internal memory, but it didn't work.  Oddly enough, the firmware update utility was still open, so I ran it again.  It said the device would need to be formatted, so I clicked the appropriate button to proceed, but then it came back with an error.

 

I was thinking I would have to send the device back to SanDisk, but then I tried soft-resetting it while it was connected to my computer<Edit>Actually, I did something else; see my next post.</Edit>  After doing this, a "Found new hardware" window appeared and my computer said it had found an STMP3600.  After selecting "Yes, this time only" and "Install the software automatically", my computer said it had installed a "Player Recovery Class".  I tried running the firmware update utility (which was still open) again.  It said it would have to format or erase the device, but this time it worked!

 

Now my device is operational and has the latest firmware.  Fortunately, I keep a copy of the device's Music folder on my PC, so copying back my music wasn't a problem.  (I don't have any music crippled by DRM.)

 

If your device is currently bricked, I hope this information helps you fix it.  If you have closed the firmware update utility, you may have trouble getting it to reopen.  In this case, I would suggest reading this thread and using the utility it refers to.  If you have the same problem as I did, you may have to skip steps 2-6, which appear to involve mounting the device in MSC mode.

 

Thomas

 

Message Edited by Thomas on 12-28-2007 09:06 AM

 

 

Note - November 18, 2008:  Those of you who just want to fix your device without reading through over 100 messages, please see this post.  It says where to obtain the latest firmware and describes what is probably the best procedure to follow.

Message Edited by Thomas on 11-18-2008 02:47 PM
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Newbie
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎12-28-2007

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

[ Edited ]
Thank you thank you thank you!! I fixed mine like this aswell. I was sure it's dead becouse no one on this forum sugested anything that worked for me. Anythingbutipod.com didn't know what to do also. I performed the steps you suggested.
2 things:
1.[quote]I was thinking I would have to send the device back to SanDisk, but then I tried soft-resetting it while it was connected to my computer.  After doing this, a "Found new hardware" window appeared and my computer said it had found an STMP3600.[/quote]
You didn't do this by soft reseteng. This is done by pluging the sansa to the comp while holding the (-)volume button. Maybe you've done this by accident..
2. The installation of the "Player Recovery Class" didn't work for me becouse it simply didn't install anything and I had no clue what player recovery device class means so I googled it. Then I figured that you had drivers on your comp that mine was missing (are you using Vista? Do you have other players software installed on your comp?).

 So I googled for more info on the STMP3600 chip and found that the problem is not only with the SE player but with many other players that use the same chip. Like this one http://forums.cnet.com/5208-6035_102-0.html?forumID=71&threadID=266906&messageID=2601264
from the posts in there I figured that i need to download a firmware update tool for a different player that uses that sigmatel chip.
So i downloaded from here http://www.maxfield.de/index.php?id=21&tx_maxproductslist_pi1[pro_uid]=127&L=1&no_cache=1
Installed it and I guess the Player recovery class was installed with it.
Now after pluging the player in STMP3600 mode I was able to install driver for it.
Then I oppened the Sansa updater using this download you suggested http://forums.sandisk.com/sansa/board/message?board.id=express&thread.id=1143
And now it worked. It was able to reformat the SE and installed the firmware on it.

So it works like a charm now. Thanks.

EDIT: I uploaded the latest firmware here http://www.megafileupload.com/en/file/32366/SE-rar.html so you don't have to use the old one when fixing the lil' monsta


Message Edited by Peyotero on 12-28-2007 05:51 AM
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SanDisk User
Posts: 89
Registered: ‎11-09-2007

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

I'm glad I helped you fix your device.  You were right about holding down the Volume Down (-) button while connecting the device to your computer.  I had wondered why I couldn't repeat the procedure by doing another soft-reset while connected.  After seeing your post, I tried holding down the Volume Down (-) button while connecting the device to my computer and I got it recognized as an STMP3600 again.
 
To get the "Player Recovery Class" driver, I let Windows XP's "Found New Hardware" wizard connect to the Internet and find the driver automatically.  Unless you are using an older version of Windows, you probably could have done the same thing.
 
To summarize, here is the revised debricking procedure:
(1)  While holding down the Volume Down (-) button, connect the device to your computer.
(2)  If a "Found New Hardware" window appears for an STMP3600, let Windows connect to the Internet to find the "Player Recovery Class" driver automatically.  If you can't do this, obtain the tool mentioned in Peyotero's post and repeat step (1).
(3)  Run the firmware update utility for the Sansa Express.
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Newbie
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-03-2008

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

I have just one thing to say to you guys. Thank you. Smiley Very Happy
 
I followed Thomas example above, actually I followed and tested it for several times. It worked out just fine. I have been reding almost every post on this forum and after about six or seven hours of manipulating the SE it finally worked.
 
I bought it for my mother for christmas so I felt obligated to fix it when it crashed. She was in the betatest-period of the player and it just stopped working.
I am certain that I must do this soon again. I've bookmarked this section.
 
Again, thank you.
 
(system: Vista 32)
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Newbie
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎11-10-2007

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

Peyotero wrote:
1. I was thinking I would have to send the device back to SanDisk, but then I tried soft-resetting it while it was connected to my computer.  After doing this, a "Found new hardware" window appeared and my computer said it had found an STMP3600.
You didn't do this by soft reseteng. This is done by pluging the sansa to the comp while holding the (-)volume button. Maybe you've done this by accident..
 
On my supervision: do not release the (-)volume button there will be no yet a message " Found New Hardware ".
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SanDisk User
Posts: 56
Registered: ‎08-20-2007

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

i got my express debricked, thanks Peyotero and thomas

i was so close to returning this piece of crap

guess how it bricked: the express wasnt building the mp3 database correctly (unknown artist/album) so i must have resetted 4 or 5 times to make it rebuild, then it bricked
Highlighted
Newbie
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-06-2008

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

Hello Guys,
 
I checked out the information. That is true, the root cause is the chipset. I was too able to recover via the tactics presented here.
It is sad that for such a known problem Sansa does not publish a precise and thourough application note.
Hope they read that the people struggle so much ( and find their own solutions anyway Smiley Happy )
 
To make it more clear for the followers, keep pressing (-) button of the player until the full action is completed (windows auto recognition and then firmware update process). Be aware it takes some time depending on your system and do not hurry. Once it is done, you will have your above average player working again.
 
Thanks for the feedback and have a nice year!,
 
Kadir Gokhan Simsek
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Newbie
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-09-2008

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

Smiley Sad

help
help
hey i have firmware 01.01.05p is it ok or do i need to download a new one
because i too had the same problem and have got it repaired twice from sansa service centre


Highlighted
SanDisk User
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎01-11-2008

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

Thank you very much for this recover information. The recovery mode may be in the manual, but it isn't very clear how it works. As for firmware, localization shouldn't matter, nor version. It will restore the current version, even if is the same as already on it, and format the device. On my player, I deleted all songs using windows explorer, then dumped a large folder of songs onto it. Seeing no obvious activity and being in a hurry, I closed the explorer window and unplugged my Express. It went through the "updating" thing, then shut off and wouldn't go back on. Note: I think that the method of plugging in a memory card would work too. My device powered up, but the "disk drive" of the internal memory was corrupted. It had to be reformatted. A memory card would give it a good memory device to work with, and let me pull that off. But I didn't have one, and not everyone will get one just to fix the player. Still, the method isn't obvious. Also, for anyone without high speed internet, the process is painful (I was away from home, trying to use my laptop to access it, and couldn't -- it might have worked, given a few hours to run).
Highlighted
Newbie
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-19-2008

Re: How I debricked my Sansa Express

Hi Thomas,

I just wanted to say thank you for taking the time to write this post. I used it to "de-brick" my Sansa Express when it did not turn on, and it saved me from the incompetent technical support that for some reason told me that this problem couldn't be solved except by returning the device to them. It's unlikely that I'll ever buy another Sandisk product because of this experience, but I did want to say that your efforts and post saved me time finding a replacement MP3 player, and I very much appreciate that.

Thanks again!