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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

I had posted this as a reply to a message about the clock radio, but now that I think of it I don't know what attention it will or won't get there, as the original post was not a question, just information about the clock radio.  So I'm putting it here as well with its own subject.  I'm really frustrated about this.  I'm tempted to just buy a new clock radio and a new Sansa as the simplest solution, and resolve to never do what I describe below again, but I am not made of money, unfortunately.....!
 
Sansa stopped responding to clock radio's remote and does not play through the clock radio's speakers.
 
This is the clock radio:
http://www.amazon.com/Clock-Radio-with-Sansa-Dock/dp/B00108UG6E/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=home-garden&qid=1241619172&sr=8-2
 
This happened after I downloaded three mp3's from Amazon to replace ripped tracks that were bad on the CD's I ripped. Also ripped a new CD and, in addition to putting its folder on the Sansa, copied one of its tracks into an anthology where that track was bad. All files were renamed to match the names of the ones I was replacing. They were not exactly the same size in any case. One at least was significantly larger than the one I was replacing. Don't know if this matters to the Sansa or not.  Also the only tracks that had been run through Windows Media Player were the tracks from the CD I ripped.

After the initial symptoms, I carefully connected to the computer, disconnected properly, and allowed the Sansa to resync, thinking this might be the source of the problem. After that it worked for a while but ceased to work again later. At one point I saw a message saying something about Rhapsody having to be re-enabled. I have never knowingly *had* Rhapsody enabled - I've never put anything on the Sansa, until yesterday, that I had not ripped myself.

I had thought Amazon's downloads were not copy-protected? (I don't even know that that's the source of the problem - it's just the only thing that's changed since the Sansa worked.)

I'm assuming (hoping) that I can fix this using some combination of resetting, reformatting, recopying songs (fortunately I have a backup of exactly what's on the Sansa), but I was hoping someone might be able to shed some light on *why* (????!!!!) and perhaps suggest a less drastic fix.

I don't know if it works with earbuds or not at this point - I have to locate them, as I use the Sansa almost entirely on the clock radio. (Edited to add that I found the earbuds and it does work with them.)

TIA!

Hmmmm.... Something else I've also never done is copy songs that hadn't been ripped with Windows Media Player - I just copied the three I downloaded directly to the Sansa without letting WMP recognize them. I don't think much about details like that, as before yesterday all I had on the Sansa was the CD tracks I'd ripped with WMP.

Any thoughts as to the source of the problem welcome - I'm pretty sure I can fix it OK, I'm just curious as to the source, and especially that fleeting message about Rhapsody.
 
OK, so far I take it back about being able to fix it.  I have tried a hard reset (holding power button 20 seconds).  I have tried reformatting and recopying the music over, *after* having WMP recognize it.  The only other thing I can think of is updating the firmware, but WHY?? (Since it worked fine with the current firmware until a couple of days ago.)
 
I even unplugged the clock and took out the backup batteries, in case it was on the clock side instead of the Sansa side.  No joy.
 
Argh.
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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

Adding that at one point it refused to connect to the computer as a regular USB device (lock + left arrow button, per tech support when I first bought the thing).  Would only connect in MTP mode.  I'm assuming that had something to do with the Rhapsody thing, which I'm in turn assuming had something to do with the mp3's from Amazon.  I vaguely remember setting up something about Rhapsody when I bought the thing, and that I didn't want anything to do with it.  And I could be all wet about everything.....  ;->

 

The hard reset fixed the above problem.  I just mention it in case it might shed some light on how to fix my main problem, that it no longer works with the clock radio.

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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

Adding that it is V2 and the firmware version is 11a.  I have gotten the 16a update, and I guess I'll try it, but it *did* work fine with the version it came with....!
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SanDisk Guru
Posts: 16,321
Registered: ‎04-17-2008

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

You really need to update that firmware, regardless of whether it helps with your problem or not. You still have the original firmware that came with the v2 models that didn't have the USB mode switch in the SETTINGS menu. You'll have to force MSC mode (as there's no way to select it on the player) in order to update.

 

Follow the MSC mode instructions for manually installing the f/w update in the firmware post here. By updating, you'll also get some nice enhancements and bug fixes.

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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

I'm going to, I guess.  I just hope it does not then stop working altogether.  My experience with changing anything on anything computer-controlled is that around one time out of four or five what you do to "fix" or "update" it breaks it or breaks it further.  I'm not pulling these numbers out of my hat - this is my actual experience.  To me, "changing anything on anything computer-related" translates to "be prepared for the possibility of subsequently spending massive amounts of time, money, or both."  So I try to leave things alone as much as possible.  Wish I'd left those bad tracks alone.....
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SanDisk Guru
Posts: 5,822
Registered: ‎12-26-2007

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

Just like Planck's Constant, the atomic mass of rubidium, and whether hot dog buns will ever be available in multiples of wiener counts, you can bet that firmware 03.01.16 is as stable as can be for the v2.

 

Oh, and the Timex dock was a feature update, at least in the v1 updates, and I'll bet this jar of Cheez Whiz on it, the v2 will benefit from the update.  Oh, and you'll get a handy new feature!  You'll have a selectable USB mode.  The '11' firmware didn't offer the option, being the original installed version.

 

Update that puppy!  You'll be glad you did.

 

Bob  Smiley Very Happy

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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

I did update it, no problems, the selectable USB mode is nice, it works fine standalone (never was broken standalone), and STILL will not play nicely with the clock radio.  Does not play through the speakers, does not respond to the remote.

 

Can anyone tell me how to completely take the thing back to square one?  I'm assuming that a) that would fix my problem and b) I have not yet accomplished this in spite of hard reset w/ power button, using the menu to reset, and reformatting and recopying the songs over.

 

Unless I *did* accomplish that, but it's still detecting the Amazon tracks as something it thinks I'm not supposed to have - I just realized I did not take them out of my backup.  (I'm working on the assumption it thinks they are not something I'm supposed to have based on that Rhapsody message that went by when I plugged it in the clock radio.  But why it should care when it's connected to the clock radio and not when it's stand-alone I do not know.  The whole episode is puzzling and annoying.  Especially since I cannot use my Sansa for the main purpose I bought it!)

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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

Well, well, perhaps I found some info:

http://forums.sandisk.com/sansa/board/message?board.id=shaker&thread.id=121





Thank you for contacting SanDisk Technical Support.

Please be informed that the player does not support purchased songs. You can only transfer regular mp3 files to the player. These Mp3 files are not licensed.

Should you have any other concern with our products, feel free to contact us again.

Best Regards,
 

Now, the above *was* with regard to iTunes.  I thought Amazon downloads were indistinguisaable from tracks I had ripped myself, but perhaps not....?  (Never thought I'd have to worry about the technical details of such....  :-( )

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SanDisk Fanatic
Posts: 221
Registered: ‎02-26-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

There are 2 ways of getting music from Amazon (and also Rhapsody). You can purchase MP3 music directly, or you can subscribe to their service(s) that provide slightly higher quality music files in a DRM crippled form.

 

To make use of the later (DRM'ed) files you would need to "sync" both the music and licenses with the player (which requires connecting in MTP mode). And, you also have to periodically update the licenses on the player in order to continue playing those specific music files. It sounds like you've done this at some point even if you may not have intended to.

 

MP3 files do not have any form of copy protection, so it you have MP3 files they should still continue to play (even if the other DRM'ed ones do not).

 

I'm not sure if/how this may have any effect on the player working when plugged into the Timex clock though.

 

If you really don't want to ever mess with DRM'ed music and/or subscriptions services, the best way to clean things up would then be to re-format the player and start over with putting only non-DRM crippled music files onto it. Even then, you may still run into problems when connecting to your computer for certain things and may also need to use whatever software that initated things to de-authorize the player so that everything forgets about it.

 

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SanDisk User
Posts: 57
Registered: ‎05-05-2009

Re: Sansa and Timex clock radio no longer play together nicely

It's not *supposed* to be copy protected - I simply bought three tracks from Amazon, copied them to the player in the appropriate places, and renamed them to match the bad tracks I bought them to replace.  I don't even *know* that's what caused the problem, but considering that things worked flawlessly until *just* after I put them on the player, and seeing that Rhapsody message go by, I have my suspicions.  I have *never* knowingly had Rhapsody enabled or had anything to do with it - until the current problem occurred, I had just picked stuff from what I had ripped from CD's myself and copied it over, occasionally adding new stuff that I had also ripped from CD's myself.

 

I'm going to take the purchased tracks off, do everything I know of to reset the Sansa (is there anything other than reset from the menu, hard reset with the power button, and reformat and recopy - WITHOUT those purchased files! - the music that I should do?), and try again this evening.

 

Thanks to everyone for the help - I *am* glad I updated the firmware.