FORUMS: list search recent posts

Sound Devices 552 glitch

COW Forums : Audio Professionals

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Ed Denton
Sound Devices 552 glitch
on Dec 18, 2010 at 8:23:31 am

I have recently come across problem whilst recording with my Sound Devices 552. I was recording 3 inputs on the internal recorder on my usual settings (48kHz, 24 BIT, WAV). I had been working without problem for a few hours then after I stopped recording a track, the yellow "loading" LED came on the recorder as usual. But instead of turning off after a few second it remained on a solid yellow. I tried to hit record again and a beeping sound started in my headphones. It stopped when I hit the stop button on the recorder but the yellow light remained on. I entered the setup menu and the SVEN voice which normally guides you through the setup options was absent. I exited the menu, turned the 552 off, waited then turned it on again. All the problems seemed to have gone and didn't happen again.

If anyone has any idea what could have caused this problem please let me know because it scared me a bit in the middle of a scene when it happened. I'd really like to fix whatever problem it was.

Cheers,

Ed

Macbook Pro 2.33 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
Final Cut Pro 6.0.5
Logic Pro 8
Photoshop CS1


Return to posts index

Eric Toline
Re: Sound Devices 552 glitch
on Dec 18, 2010 at 2:08:36 pm

Most obvious but best advice is to contact SD tech support.


Eric


Return to posts index

Ty Ford
Re: Sound Devices 552 glitch
on Dec 18, 2010 at 9:04:09 pm

+1

Please let us know what they say.

Regards,

Ty Ford

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide





Return to posts index


Alex Ramirez
Re: Sound Devices 552 glitch
on Jul 29, 2011 at 4:00:23 pm

I had a terrible experience with my brand new 552. First, I purchased a 'new' 552 from B&H photo in Manhattan about a week ago. The unit was obviously not brand new (refurbished) when I opened the box as there was already wear on the metal housing, but I figured it was a Sound Devices, these things last for ten years or more, and so long as it's passed factory refurb., I'm okay.

Half wrong. There was a spongey potentiometer (gain control knob) that felt absolutely awful, and after about three days of using the unit I had multiple very serious issues begin to creep up.

1.) The mixer is highly susceptible to radio frequency interference, so much so that the walkie talkie set my crew was using had to be turned off during each recording. Terrible loud pops and cracks and even outright electronic distortion that peaked at +20db and engaged the limiters was common with the walkie talkies 'ON'.
2.) My mixer twice failed to turn on. No way I pay ~$3,000 for a mixer and it should fail to turn on twice in the first week. That's when I began to get nervous...
3.) It didn't stop there. I then had the exact same problem that the first user of this post reported, and by that time I just thought, "Okay, I have a bum unit, it was obviously refurbished once before and it didn't fix the issues the other user was having." So I exchanged the unit for a brand new unit this time (really new, stickers for the pots and all).
4.) Forward to new unit, day two. First day everything was fine, but then on day two, same problems started. Mixer failed to power on. I call Sound Devices tech support at this point and they say its a battery issued. Go purchase brand new Duracell AA's to power it (was using Sanyo Eneloops).
5.) Day three was HORRIFYING. My mixer locked up during recording a take, so I call a cut for sound. Totally stuck in the record pending mode, orange light comes on, nothing happening, no buttons work now at all in any way. Power the mixer down to force re-start. Mixer powers back on and here's the kicker: THE REST OF THE NIGHT THE MIXER FUNCTIONED AS THOUGH IT WERE RECORDING, BUT RECORDED ONLY UNUSABLE, DAMAGED AUDIO FILES WITH NO AUDIO WHATSOEVER. They would not even copy to a computer. So I lost 4 hours of audio from a shoot. (I know, I know, I shouldn't have been using it as a primary recorder, but that is a harsh lesson learned and another post entirely, so please save the lectures guys/gals.)

So after all of this, I am livid. Furious beyond imagination really, but I decide to sleep on it, calm down and call Sound Devices in the morning. After all, you catch more flies with honey...

Sound Devices is a bit baffled, but very nice, and extremely easy to get hold of. I won't go through the technical process of how we determined what was wrong but here are the end results.

THE FIX
1.) NEVER EVER USE 'TRANSCEND' SD HC CARDS IN YOUR 552. TECH SUPPORT SAYS THEY HAVE PROBLEMS WITH THESE CARDS OFTEN.
2.) WHEN YOU PURCHASE YOUR 552, UPDATE YOUR FIRMWARE IMMEDIATELY TO THE LATEST VERSION FOUND ON THE SOUND DEVICES WEBSITE.
3.) IF, LIKE ME, YOUR FIRMWARE WAS SO BROKEN FROM THE FACTORY THAT YOU CANNOT EVEN LOAD THE NEW FIRMWARE ON YOUR UNIT, THERE IS A SHORTCUT TO FORCE THE FIRMWARE UPDATE: INSERT THE SD CARD WITH THE NEW FIRMWARE FILE IN THE ROOT OF THE CARD. LEAVE THE UNIT POWERED OFF. HOLD DOWN THE HEADPHONE VOLUME BUTTON (YES, PRESS IT DOWN, LIKE YOU'RE GOING INTO 'ZOOM' MODE) WHEN THE MIXER IS 'OFF'. WHILE CONTINUING TO HOLD DOWN THE VOLUME BUTTON, POWER THE MIXER ON. THIS WILL FORCE THE MIXER TO SEARCH FOR FIRMWARE AND WILL PROMPT SVEN TO UPDATE.

So far so good for me with the new firmware update and a brand new 8GB Sandisk SD HC card. These are the cards the guys in the tech support room use, so I bought what they were using. Working fine so far. So far, all issues have stopped. The unit powers on every time now and I haven't had any recording problems so far.

I'll say that I am still quite angry at Sound Devices for not making this information readily available to the public. There needs to be a sticker on the box that says, "UPDATE YOUR FIRMWARE IMMEDIATELY. AVOID THE FOLLOWING SD CARDS: XXXX, XXXX, XXXX"

I paid SO MUCH for this unit, and had such an awful experience, BUT, the technical support for the company was excellent, and they did in fact spend enough time to fix my issue, which is the end result we can all hope for when we are on set and fully reliant on our professional gear.

I took the time to write this detailed post because it is my sincere hope that every new Sound Devices 552 owner update their firmware immediately and use a non-'Transcend' SD HC card in their unit.

When this unit functions properly, it is amazing, but what good is even the most expensive unit if it doesn't work? It's a real shame that Sound Devices didn't do more research and firmware programming / fixing prior to releasing this unit.

Thanks for reading. Update your firmware.


Return to posts index

Ty Ford
Re: Sound Devices 552 glitch
on Jul 29, 2011 at 9:00:51 pm

Alex,

Thanks for the update. Sounds like you got a distressed unit from B&H. That's a red flag. And yes Sound Devices has a reputation for solid gear.

They are pretty open handed about updates and problems, but I'm not sure whether or not they send out update info. I think you'd have to register your unit with them.

Regards,

Ty Ford
(I am a 442 and 744T user. They have not been perfect, but very, very solid. And Sound Devices is quick to respond.)

Cow Audio Forum Leader
Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]