Page 1 of 1

fixing common problems of CDI players

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 12:37 pm
by XCLTempesT
I think it could be helpful to add a topic with (links to) howto guides for fixing common problems with cdi players (I hope you agree :-).

I have some experience with cdi players, so the next few paragraphs would be my personal advise. If anyone has more simple solutions, or more information to add, please do. Also if you find that my English has errors, or something isn't clear in this guide, please contact me (personal message), and I'll try to fix it

In my experience there are 3 common problems with CDI players

-the loading belt of the CDI drive is made of rubber, and that decays overtime. This causes the loading tray to not close fully. You need to push the tray inside in order for the disc to be loaded. The solution is buying a new rubber belt. This costs someting like 1 euro at a shop that sells elektronic parts, or you pay $10,- on eBay with instructions (could be helpful, I don't know, I didn't buy it) .
Also a very common "problem" is that the CD tray makes squeaking noises when opening or closing. This is mostly caused when the grease under the front wheels of the loading system is becoming old. Removing the wheel and adding some grease solves the problem.
Here is a video of me fixing a CDI-210 player:

-Timekeeper battery becomes depleted (this affects most CDI players except for the Sony player, the Philips CDI-370, portable Goldstar and LG GDI 700 players). You can check this if the Time setting is remembered after powering down the player. Also check if the save game files aren't corrupted (weird characters in the descriptions, etc.).
When the battery isn't totally depleted, and save data becomes corrupted a lot of strange things can happen: crashing games, sound not working etc. etc. After a few weeks the battery is totally dead, and you can use the player "normally" again, but without any save game functionality.
the only way to fix the problem is to hack a new battery to the chip: ... epair.html
Replacing the Timekeeper module is not a good option for most people, because it requires more technical skills and tools.

-defective laser reading mechanism. this MOSTLY occurs on the CDI-220/60 , cdi-210/40 and FW380i players. These have a CDM 12.4 laser mechanism and that is known to have problems (reading errors, that cause ticks during AudioCD playback and crashes with movies and games) . The CDM 12.1 mechanism used in CDI-470, CDI-450 (and other models), also regularly have reading problems (but much, much less often than 12.4 mechanisms). The earliest CDI players with CDM-9 mechanisms appear to have the most reliable laser reading. (but because of their age, they have the timekeeper problem much more often)
The easiest way to solve the problem is to replace the laser mechanism.
A CDM9 replacement can be hard to find (hasn't been produced in some time). The replacement for the CDM 12.1 is the easiest to find. The later VAM1201 and VAM1202 drives should be backwards compatible, and should work just fine (Some of the last professional players by Philips also use these drives). Can be bought on eBay for something between 15 and 30 euro.

Error message

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 4:52 pm
by retromangia
Hey Tempest,

thanks for the great post. I have question for you... when I turn my 220 CD-i system on, i get the message "error" on the system display.

no picture or sound comes up on the TV.

what do you think the problem could be.

I also have the DV cartrdige installed.



Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 10:51 am
by XCLTempesT
I'm not a professional repair man, But I would remove the DVC and check if you still don't get any output on your TV.
If you still don't have any picture the problem is most likely on the mainboard. That isn't easy to diagnose, and requires the right (expensive ) tools, and a service manual for your model.
I think getting a new CD-I player would probably be the easiest/cheapest way to 'fix' it, if the problem is on the mainboard, but you should ask a professional for advise (and I'm not that).