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Exhaust Port
09-30-2003, 12:03 PM
The other day I was kicking back listening to a CD when it skipped. I'm about as anal as you can get when it comes to keeping CD's clean and scratch free so I didn't think it could be the disc. It didn't happen again so I paid it no mind. Here I am today listening to a couple more CD's when I realize that I have a real problem. Now at roughly the same minute mark on different discs they skip. Sometimes back, sometimes a little forward.

It seems to me that something is screwed internally. My CD player is about 11 years old so there's a good chance that time and entropy have caught up with it. Any advice? Is it time to write it off and purchase a new player?

Update: Ok, it might be screwed up more than I thought. Now it seems to be skipping a several different minute marks but not consistantly. Argh!

stillakid
09-30-2003, 12:51 PM
The other day I was kicking back listening to a CD when it skipped. I'm about as anal as you can get when it comes to keeping CD's clean and scratch free so I didn't think it could be the disc. It didn't happen again so I paid it no mind. Here I am today listening to a couple more CD's when I realize that I have a real problem. Now at roughly the same minute mark on different discs they skip. Sometimes back, sometimes a little forward.

It seems to me that something is screwed internally. My CD player is about 11 years old so there's a good chance that time and entropy have caught up with it. Any advice? Is it time to write it off and purchase a new player?

Update: Ok, it might be screwed up more than I thought. Now it seems to be skipping a several different minute marks but not consistantly. Argh!



You'll never want to go back. (http://www.ipod.com/ipod/)

Exhaust Port
09-30-2003, 01:21 PM
Your right, those iPods are just awesome and someday I plan on getting one. My dying/dead CD player is part of my home entertainment system so I need to replace it with something similar.

Do they even make CD players anymore or are they all DVD/CD players now?

stillakid
09-30-2003, 03:40 PM
Your right, those iPods are just awesome and someday I plan on getting one. My dying/dead CD player is part of my home entertainment system so I need to replace it with something similar.

Do they even make CD players anymore or are they all DVD/CD players now?


I'm not sure, but when I replaced my CD changer with a DVD/CD changer I found that the newer box would not play some of my homemade burned disks. Go figure.

In any case, when I get the time and a few spare bucks, I will devote an old laptop computer to the entertainment system so that REALONE will be plugged right in. Why have a CD changer when you can have a jukebox? :)

scruffziller
09-30-2003, 04:17 PM
Man I thought I was the hip young dude with my 301 CD changer and my MP3 player in my car in which I put about 150 songs on a disk.:( My car MP3 player which I bought in May 2001 was about $400 made by SOrNY:D.

plasticfetish
09-30-2003, 05:43 PM
Now it seems to be skipping a several different minute marks but not consistantly. Argh!
You could just have some loose debris (lint, dust, grease from inside the player) floating around that's causing the laser to skip on its track. A while back my little Sony mini-system (which I love but paid way too much money for because it was one of the first mini-systems that came out) was doing the same thing and I opened it up, cleaned it out and it ended up being just fine.

Right now, the DVD player on my computer is doing the same thing. I'll probably open it up and see if I can fix it just for the fun of it ... but, I'd almost rather skip it and buy a newer and better one.

You'd have to decide if it's worth the time and effort to clean it or have it serviced by someone else. Otherwise yeah, I'm sure you can find a replacement component somewhere.

bobafrett
09-30-2003, 05:48 PM
Well nothing can kill your C.D. player faster than when you get into a fight with your girlfriend and she goes into the bedroom and smashes your player into the wall. Yep, that's when I got my current player which is actually a boom box I think they called it. It started having problems while I still had a warranty on it. I got it fixed, and the only problem I've had since was when I played an INXS C.D. in it shortly after finding out Micheal Hutchinson (sp?) had killed himself. The disc played about halfway through the first song, then just slowed down then quit. I played another disc in it a week later , and it was fine.

plasticfetish
09-30-2003, 06:02 PM
That's kind of spooky. Do you think maybe the INXS CD was haunted?

bobafrett
09-30-2003, 06:04 PM
I hate to say it, but Yes! I haven't had a single problem since that time, with the C.D. Player.

Exhaust Port
09-30-2003, 06:38 PM
I opened it up, cleaned it out and it ended up being just fine.
Any advice on opening up a CD player to clean it? I'm pretty hesitant to take apart any electronics.

plasticfetish
09-30-2003, 07:46 PM
Well ... you might look into having someone service it for you. I've been opening things up and fiddling with them for most of my life ... I get lucky for the most part.

Here's a pic of what it looks like inside and you can kind of see how it works.

http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/cd2.htm

You can see the white nylon tracks, that's usually what gets dirtied up or the teeth can simply wear out. Also, the lens could have grease or dust on it.

BanthaPoodoo
10-01-2003, 12:31 PM
I work on computers for a living and instead of cleaning all the tracks & everything in the player, the more likely scenario is that there is some sort of dirt/dust/film on the laser.

You can take a Q-Tip & some rubbing alchohol and wipe it off then reassemble the drive. I have done that numerous times on PC drives & it straightens them right up.

Exhaust Port
10-01-2003, 03:23 PM
Thanks for the input guys. My girlfriend has taken a night job in a far away state and has resorted to renting movies. She'll soon be without a VCR or DVD player so I might use this opportunity to give her my DVD player if I replace my CD player with a DVD version. I guess if I do that I can still fix up the CD player to sell on eBay or something.

JediTricks
10-01-2003, 06:29 PM
Unless the alcohol is 100% alcohol (which virtually no rubbing alcohol is), this is going to cause more problems down the road because when it evaporates, it leaves a film of the gunk that comes from other stuff in the rubbing alcohol. Also, using a Q-tip is an intensely bad idea because the cotton head can end up snagging on the edge of the lens and misaligning it or scratching it up or even leaving cotton fibers in there to muck up the works.

Wal-mart sells CD lens cleaners for like ten bucks, I used one on my 14-year-old CD player and it fixed its skipping problems just fine. What it is is a CD with a specially-designed brush on the 3rd track - looks like fake eyelashes - and as the disc rotates on the 3rd track, the brush goes by and cleans off the lens without scratching or leaving deposits.

BanthaPoodoo
10-03-2003, 04:43 PM
Trust me it is not a bad idea. I have worked on well over 700 computers in these past years at the ISP I work at, I do have a little bit of intelligence when it comes to these things.

The Q-tip head has NEVER snagged on the side of the laser. It is a wet head, it doesnt snag. Just speaking from experience of which I have a ton of in this situation, building, working on, & maintaing computers, servers, and the like.

JediTricks
10-03-2003, 10:32 PM
Not trying to be rude, but I've had far too many techs claim they knew what they were doing was cool because they've done it a million times and it too often turns out that they're leaving a trail of mess-ups in their wake. Just because it seems like there's no problem immediately doesn't mean it's not causing them over time. I knew this one ISP who went through a ton of modems because their top tech - who was a really smart guy - simply had one little setting wrong that had them burn out faster. A scratch on the lens of a CD player doesn't even have to be visable to the naked eye to cause skipping, and you can't even see the leftover material from non-pure rubbing alcohol but it can cause major problems as it fogs up and even encourages dust to build up on top of it, further obscuring the lens.

Exhaust Port
10-04-2003, 08:24 AM
I agree JT, a Q-tip does seem to be a good idea. For the same reason they make special lense cloths for cameras, using a Q-tip on the laser lense IS going to scratch it and over time it will affect the performance. If I do gather the strength to open the case and try to trouble shoot the problem myself I'll have to make sure to get proper cleaning supplies and a camera store would be the best place to look.

JediTricks
10-05-2003, 05:22 PM
Here's another tip, one I really should have thought of earlier, be careful to use as little cleaning liquids as possible so as not to get them into the drive systems and other internal mechanisms. Belts, gears, and vital lubricants can be eaten away by alcohol and other cleaning solutions, leaving your rubber parts either tacky or falling apart, and your plastic parts pocked or microscopically cracking which can lead to eventual failure.

You don't need to go overboard with this stuff, just being careful and using less instead of more is all that it'll take. If the CD player is cheap or easily replaced, then go all willy nilly. ;)

BanthaPoodoo
10-06-2003, 12:26 PM
open it and clean it with a cotton swab and rubbing alchohol (or magnetic media cleaner)

CD cleaners...they can and sometimes do hit the lasers out of alignment.

Do what you want, but if it were me, I would rather listen to someone that has been in the trenches then an armchair computer tech.

And if you still doubt me, read some interesting posts here:

http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=how+to+clean+cd+laser

Goes to show that I DO know what I am talking about and am not just talking out of my butt like some others seem to do...

And speaking as a ISP tech:

"Simply had one little setting wrong that had them burn out faster."

Modems don't "burn out" with settings in software. You can use a modem for years on end with different settings. The only way a modem goes bad is if they are struck by lightning, static discharge, etc. Software settings cannot & will not effect the life of a modem.