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  1. Member
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    Hi Guys i have a Sony RDR-HX725 which comes with a 160Gb Hard drive my machine is now 12 months old and therefore out of warranty. I would therefore like to replace the 160Gb Maxtor SATA drive with a segate Barracuda 320GB SATA

    What i'd like to know however is how do i format the new drive i've checked the manual and there's nothing in there, nor is there anything in the settings.

    Am I therefore right in presuming you need some sort of engineers disk or does it need to be hooked up to some sort of interface.

    If someone could point me in the right direction it would be appreciated, that is presuming it can be done of course
    Murphy was an Optomist
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  2. lol.did sound like you are talking about a PC. nothing about DVD recorder

    are you sure the the HD in your recorder is SATA?
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  3. Member
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    HI MJA

    this is a stand alone DVD player many thanks
    Murphy was an Optomist
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  4. Member
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    The method for formatting a hard drive on this machine is in the manual (near the back). If your manual does not have this in check out http://support.sony-europe.com/manuals/manuals.aspx?l=en&c= where the pdf does have this instruction.

    You hold down the HDD button for 10 seconds or until the FORMAT message appears on the LCD screen.

    I just tried replacing my drive with a larger capacity one since the old one appears to have died. Unfortunately it doesn't work and won't format. My guess is that the hardware is wired for a disk of a particular size/platters etc.

    If you get further please let me know since there may be a more serious problem with my machine.

    Good luck, Rob
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    Originally Posted by crirob
    The method for formatting a hard drive on this machine is in the manual (near the back). If your manual does not have this in check out http://support.sony-europe.com/manuals/manuals.aspx?l=en&c= where the pdf does have this instruction.

    You hold down the HDD button for 10 seconds or until the FORMAT message appears on the LCD screen.

    I just tried replacing my drive with a larger capacity one since the old one appears to have died. Unfortunately it doesn't work and won't format. My guess is that the hardware is wired for a disk of a particular size/platters etc.

    If you get further please let me know since there may be a more serious problem with my machine.

    Good luck, Rob
    You need to go into service mode: While pressing the Open/Close button
    and the PLAY button at the same time, connect the AC power cord to the power outlet.
    In the main menu goto 9 (hdd mode).
    You find there some test and a format options. I think you need to perform the operation "Write ID", then "Format" then Write Registration Code (for DiVX).

    The Information comes from the service manual that I've found in the web some weeks ago.

    Please let me know If it works, I got the same modell with HDD ERROR.
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    Originally Posted by trashman8800
    You need to go into service mode: While pressing the Open/Close button
    and the PLAY button at the same time, connect the AC power cord to the power outlet.
    In the main menu goto 9 (hdd mode).
    You find there some test and a format options. I think you need to perform the operation "Write ID", then "Format" then Write Registration Code (for DiVX).

    The Information comes from the service manual that I've found in the web some weeks ago.

    Please let me know If it works, I got the same modell with HDD ERROR.
    Can you post (or email) me where you found the service manual?
    Thanks

    Alessandro
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  7. Member
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    My Sony HX725's hard disk is in its final gasps, too.
    Q: Anybody successfully added a bigger HD?
    One user said that it seems not possible, but that was with Format Option 1 "Press HDD for 10 sec" - what if the second option mentioned is used "press buttons while connecting the power"? Might a bigger HD work, then?

    And by the way, looking at HDs in the online shop: Is '3,5" S-ATA II' the right format?

    Thanks, Tino
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  8. The Sony RDR-HX725 was developed in cooperation with Pioneer and is very similar in servicing to the Pioneer DVR-650. The difference is, Pioneers require a special service remote and service disc which are a pain to obtain and use, while Sony wisely chose to incorporate a service mode directly accessible in the unit itself.

    The service instructions posted by trashman8800 sound correct to me, I think I read something similar on another forum awhile back. I'm pretty sure that like the new Pioneers, the Sony will accept any standard 3.5" SATA drive within reason. Unlike the Pioneers, some Sonys apparently do not auto-recognize drive capacity larger than what they shipped with, so if you put a 320GB drive in a Sony that shipped with a 160GB drive, it might format the new drive to 160GB. That behavior is hardwired into the recorder and cannot be hacked. After you replace drives, follow trashman8800's instructions for formatting and resetting it. The most important step is telling it to transfer its EEPROM ID code to the new drive, otherwise the unit will display NG and HDD ERR. Note also, just like the Pioneer SATA units, often the SATA cable oxidizes its connectors or works itself loose after being improperly fitted at the factory: if your recorder suddenly goes wonky when trying to use its HDD, try removing and reconnecting the drives SATA cabling before spending money on a replacement drive you might not need.

    You might also take a look at this site and download the 12 page illustrated PDF file which explains how to service the similar RDR-HX525:

    osborneDOTwwwDOTidnetDOTcom/hx525%20repairDOTpdf

    (replace the DOTs with periods)
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  9. Member
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    As described, swapped the red SATA cable for a new one - first tests look promising. For instance a movie which before I couldn't transfer to DVD (several tries) was written without problems on the first try after the swap. Hope, other problems are also gone - time will tell....

    Cheers, Tino
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    Hi,
    I'm new on this. Sorry about my english, I'm form Spain. I would like t know if it's possible to replace a died HD to a new HD (don't care about the HD size) in this SONY DVD RECORDER RDR-HX725. Is there anywhere where I can find out how to d it? Do you know if the hard disk must be a SATA, SATA II, EIDE??
    Thank you
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  11. See my post above. You need to download the instructions from here. The instructions shown are for the model RDR-HX525, but the same procedure is used on your RDR-HX725: the machines are nearly identical, except yours came with a larger HDD. The instructions are in English: ask a bilingual friend to read them to you, so you can take notes in Spanish before doing anything.
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    Thanks orsetto. I'll take a look. Even my english it's not good, it's enough good to read and understand it. Thanks again.
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  13. Member Seeker47's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by orsetto
    The Sony RDR-HX725 was developed in cooperation with Pioneer and is very similar in servicing to the Pioneer DVR-650. The difference is, Pioneers require a special service remote and service disc which are a pain to obtain and use, while Sony wisely chose to incorporate a service mode directly accessible in the unit itself.
    So . . . this is a model we never saw in the U.S. market ?
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  14. Right, the Sony x25 DVD/HDD models were only marketed outside North America. They are the initial "fruit" from the Sony side of the Sony/Pioneer codevelopment agreement, they came out shortly after the Pio 640/650 but are not identical clones. The Sony x25 models are based on the Pio 640 but still used the Sony operating system and onboard service modes. They were replaced by the current Sony x80 lineup, one of which (the RDR-HX780) was sold in Canada last year. The x80 series (at least the Canadian version) is not nearly as good as the previous x25 or Pioneer models: the image quality is noticeably worse and they have more mechanical/electronic bugs. In Europe the Sony x25 models were well-reviewed, but the current x80 are also popular because they have just about the best PAL DVT-B digital tuner you can get in a recorder. From what I gather, there is tighter quality control and better electronics in the European x80s, closer to the final Pioneer x60 specs, while the Canadian RDR-HX780 machine was hastily thrown together using leftover scrapped Pio 640 NTSC parts from two years earlier.
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    Hi again. I've just replace the died 160GB HD with a new MAXTOR 160GB HD. I've write ID from HDD Menu, I Indicate ID, I've make the performance Check and everything OK. But when I go to "4)Format" it shows an error. I've previously format that Maxtor HD with NTFS with my computer. Anyone knows if I have to format previously with my computer? NTFS, FAT or FAT32?
    Thanks guys
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    Hello,

    I've allready format my hard drive... I've forgot to reboot the unit and that's why I couldn't format before.

    I have another question: ¿Anyone knows if I SHOULD place a NEW HARD DISK in 3.0GB or in 1,5 GB DATA TRANSFER MODE?. I've replaced for a 160GB SATA MAXTOR HD. This HD unit has a jumper for 3GB/1.5GB selection. I've tried in 1.5GB position and It seems to work fine, but I don't know whether it would be better to make it working in 3GB data transfer. The other HD (the old and broken SEAGATE) doesn't have this jumper. I've look for it's specs in seagate's web and it only says that works in 3GB mode (I guess if placing it in a 1,5GB hd controller works at 1,5 automatically).

    THANKS
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  17. I'm bumping this old thread because I have new information thats relevant, perhaps critical to someone trying to replace the HDD in a Sony RDR-HX525 or 725.

    Another member PM'd me earlier this week, frantic because he had followed the HDD replace instructions pdf I had linked to in my post of July 23, 2008 (above). He successfully installed the new drive in his RDR-HX725, and booted the recorder into service mode, but then got completely stuck: the recorder would not respond to the remote control, preventing access to the service menu. After discussing a couple of possible difficulties, I suggested he reset his remote control, and this immediately solved his problem: his machine is now happily working with a new HDD. For those who may encounter a similar roadblock, here is the info on matching the remote to the recorder when in service mode:

    Your remote might be using the wrong "infrared code", so the recorder when in service mode cannot understand it. Sony offers a feature that allows their recorders to operate under three different remote control signals, so if you own more than one Sony the remotes will not interfere with each other. The standard remote code the recorder is set to when new is "3". If by some chance you changed that code yourself, or the store changed it, then your remote is not sending signals that "service mode" can recognize.

    You will need to change the remote's control code to "3" before the recorder will recognize it while in service mode. To change the remote code, take the remote to another room away from the recorder. Hold down the enter button, then press the 3 button. Hold both buttons down for 7 seconds, then release. Try the remote on the recorder: it should now be recognized and able to operate the service menu. Upon exiting service mode, the recorder may revert back to whatever code was last set, and the "3" codes that worked in service mode may not work in normal recorder mode. If it does not, do the same as before: try changing the remote control from "3" to "2" or "1".

    Note the same instructions apply when replacing the HDD in the earlier RDR-HX515 and 715, except the remote control for those models has a tiny dedicated switch on it. You can use this to immediately change between remote signals 1, 2 or 3. (No need to press and hold the buttons as on the 525 and 725 remotes.)
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  18. Member
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    Hi Chaps,
    Maiden post.
    I have 2 Sony and 1 LG dvd/hdd recorders with frigged DVD units (cannot play disc or no disc inserted) I have found, I think, a supplier of replacement DVD drives but I wonder if I am also going to need any software/firmware thingermejigs?

    Rock on.
    Dave.
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  19. Originally Posted by orsetto View Post
    The Sony RDR-HX725 was developed in cooperation with Pioneer and is very similar in servicing to the Pioneer DVR-650. The difference is, Pioneers require a special service remote and service disc which are a pain to obtain and use, while Sony wisely chose to incorporate a service mode directly accessible in the unit itself.

    The service instructions posted by trashman8800 sound correct to me, I think I read something similar on another forum awhile back. I'm pretty sure that like the new Pioneers, the Sony will accept any standard 3.5" SATA drive within reason. Unlike the Pioneers, some Sonys apparently do not auto-recognize drive capacity larger than what they shipped with, so if you put a 320GB drive in a Sony that shipped with a 160GB drive, it might format the new drive to 160GB. That behavior is hardwired into the recorder and cannot be hacked. After you replace drives, follow trashman8800's instructions for formatting and resetting it. The most important step is telling it to transfer its EEPROM ID code to the new drive, otherwise the unit will display NG and HDD ERR. Note also, just like the Pioneer SATA units, often the SATA cable oxidizes its connectors or works itself loose after being improperly fitted at the factory: if your recorder suddenly goes wonky when trying to use its HDD, try removing and reconnecting the drives SATA cabling before spending money on a replacement drive you might not need.
    Originally Posted by orsetto View Post


    You might also take a look at this site and download the 12 page illustrated PDF file which explains how to service the similar RDR-HX525:


    osborneDOTwwwDOTidnetDOTcom/hx525%20repairDOTpdf


    (replace the DOTs with periods)



    Have a
    Sony RDRDC205 Freeview+ DVD Recorder 250GB Hard Disc Drive.
    Follwing your instructions and PDF - successfully managed to change hard drive from 250GB to 1TB.
    Sony accepted the NEW size increase.

    Brilliant.

    Now want to connect original drive to PC... and yeh I know it's complicated.

    And DVD burner is 1x would like to change this also.


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  20. Member
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    Hello again,
    HDD's I am ok for it is the DVD burner that I want to replace in THREE of my machines.
    Has anyone attempted this? Are the units just a standard pc dvd burner unit and do I need software/service updates?

    Dave.
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  21. hi, what about replacing hard disk in sony rdrhx710? the procedure is the same?
    thanks
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  22. conenitore21,

    Per the tenth post down (author "Mr_Mod") in this thread, the procedure for activating service mode and formatting a new HDD is slightly different for the Sony x10 models. You need an EIDE (PATA) replacement hard drive, not SATA as for the x25 models. It may be possible to use a SATA drive if you include a SATA>EIDE adapter plug. After removing the old HDD and installing the replacement, this is what you would do to initialize and format the new HDD (according to Mr_Mod):

    *********************

    The RDR-HX710 was designed by Sony and not an OEM model like their later ones, it was designed to take a 160GB HDD. The drive is a standard IDE type not a SATA, finding this type these days is extremely hard. You may be able to utilise a "IDE to SATA" such as this I bought a few earlier in the year in case i needed to change my HDD on my HX900.

    I am not sure if there is sufficent space to include such an adaptor into the case
    As the unit was designed for a 160GB drive, if you install a larger capacity drive into the unit the recorder will only ever recognise 160GB

    I would first try entering the service mode and writing the "ID" of the drive again, you will loose your recordings i beleive.

    To access service mode,

    The diagnostics can be executed using the remote commander (Remote Control Mode 3) and monitor.

    To execute the service mode, connect the VIDEO OUT (L2 OUT) connector to the monitor.

    Connect the AC power cord to the power outlet.

    A message, "WELCOME" appears on the display panel of the main unit.

    Keep holding down the "REC PAUSE", "REC STOP" and "REC" keys, of the main unit (about 10 seconds) until the screen appears on the monitor display.

    Either "OK" or "NG" appears on the monitor screen while the diagnostics is in progress.

    You can judge the respective device or its peripheral from the message of either "OK" or "NG" on the monitor screen.

    When an abnormality is detected, the diagnostics is stopped at that moment and you can select to proceed the diagnostics or to stop it.

    Use the keys on the front panel of the main unit to operate the diagnostics.

    If all is fine press "9" HDD

    1) When the key "1" is pressed down, the ID check will be executed.
    2) When the key "2" is pressed down, performance check will be executed.
    3) When the key "3" is pressed down, WRITE ID will be executed.
    4) When the key "4" is pressed down, Format will be executed.
    5) When the key "9" is pressed down, Factory check will be executed.
    6) When the "RETURN" key is pressed, the monitor display moves to the menu screen.

    *******************

    Note the service menus should appear on your TV screen, NOT the front panel display of the recorder. Front panel display may or may not show an "S" to indicate service mode.
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    Newegg.com sells 160 GB IDE hard drives. Some are refurbs though.
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  24. Member Seeker47's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by orsetto View Post
    As the unit was designed for a 160GB drive, if you install a larger capacity drive into the unit the recorder will only ever recognise 160GB
    This is only semi- On Topic, but it seemed a logical place to ask. How does that fellow we were talking about awhile back manage to specially format >160 Gb. replacement drives for the Pioneer models in such a way that the full 500Gb. or 1Tb. of capacity is recognized and usable ? Hacker-ish wizardry, or something a lot more accessible ?
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  25. Originally Posted by orsetto View Post
    conenitore21,

    Per the tenth post down (author "Mr_Mod") in this thread, the procedure for activating service mode and formatting a new HDD is slightly different for the Sony x10 models. You need an EIDE (PATA) replacement hard drive, not SATA as for the x25 models. It may be possible to use a SATA drive if you include a SATA>EIDE adapter plug. After removing the old HDD and installing the replacement, this is what you would do to initialize and format the new HDD (according to Mr_Mod):

    ......................
    I've found service manual here
    http://elektrotanya.com/sony_rdr-gx310_hx710_hx910_e_model_sm.pdf/download.html
    so i've used a 120GB PATA
    I've execute service mode
    unfortunately my front display is off, but service menu has correctly appeared on monitor.
    it has not appeared neither OK neither NG
    I've execute first 1) ID Check and it's appeared data of previous disk
    then I've execute 3) Write ID and then 4) Format
    after several minutes it's appeared Format OK and executing 1) I've seen data of new disk.
    But after rebooting device, I don't see the new disk.
    In screen of HDD titles, if i press "tools" does not appear "disk information" and I cannot record on new disk.
    To day I'll repeat procedure with old disk 160gb PATA(even I think it's damaged).
    what else can I try?

    thanks for your kindness and sorry for my english
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  26. Originally Posted by conenitore21 View Post
    so i've used a 120GB PATA
    I've execute service mode
    unfortunately my front display is off, but service menu has correctly appeared on monitor.
    it has not appeared neither OK neither NG
    I've execute first 1) ID Check and it's appeared data of previous disk
    then I've execute 3) Write ID and then 4) Format
    after several minutes it's appeared Format OK and executing 1) I've seen data of new disk.
    But after rebooting device, I don't see the new disk.
    In screen of HDD titles, if i press "tools" does not appear "disk information" and I cannot record on new disk.
    To day I'll repeat procedure with old disk 160gb PATA(even I think it's damaged).
    what else can I try?
    Some possibilities occur to me, based on your notes above:

    The Sony 710, like most other recorders, has a specific HDD size (160GB) permanently programmed into its operating firmware. It cannot recognize capacity larger than 160GB, so if you were to put in a larger 250GB drive, it would format it as 160GB. I suspect the firmware is coded to format any installed HDD to 160GB, so the problem might be the new 120GB you installed is too small to be recognized by the Sony 710 firmware: the recorder attempts to format it as 160GB, but fails because the HDD is smaller than 160GB. I cannot be certain, but I believe you would need an HDD of 160GB or larger capacity for the recorder to work correctly. This might be why the service screen refused to display NG or OK: it cannot properly analyze a 120GB HDD.

    There is an emergency format system you can try: turn on the 710, and when it is fully ready to use, press the HDD button on the front panel and hold it down for at least 10 seconds until the word FORMAT appears in the front panel display. Let go of the HDD button and the recorder will try to format the HDD. If it fails, it will be as before: you won't have access to the HDD. At this point I'd suggest you try reformatting the original 160GB HDD, or try a different new HDD at least 160GB in size.

    Finally, I am not quite clear what is happening with your front panel display. You say it is dark: did it stop working before you changed the HDD? If the front display is dark, that might indicate an electronics problem in the main circuit board which could interfere with HDD operation or formatting.
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  27. Originally Posted by orsetto View Post
    ......
    Finally, I am not quite clear what is happening with your front panel display. You say it is dark: did it stop working before you changed the HDD? If the front display is dark, that might indicate an electronics problem in the main circuit board which could interfere with HDD operation or formatting.
    no it stopped working several years ago and in these years 710 has worked correctly.
    I'll try your suggestions. thanks
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  28. Originally Posted by Seeker47 View Post
    How does that fellow we were talking about awhile back manage to specially format >160 Gb. replacement drives for the Pioneer models in such a way that the full 500Gb. or 1Tb. of capacity is recognized and usable ? Hacker-ish wizardry, or something a lot more accessible ?
    Probably more in the realm of hacker-ish wizardry. The person you refer to from earlier in this thread could not communicate very well in English, and never really specified clearly how they accomplished the feat. There is definitely a way to trick the x50 and x60 series into using the full capacity of larger HDDs: any number of electronics dealers in Hong Kong will sell you a leftover 550 or 560 recorder upgraded with terabyte HDD for $999. They receive good feedback from buyers, so it must work, but they aren't telling anyone how they do it.

    I have a friend involved with NASA who used a suite of Pioneer 550 recorders to document shuttle launches and other lengthy real-time events. He was very keen on hacking the 550 to enable full use of a terabyte HDD, and eventually figured out some kind of workaround involving a PC. He explained it to me a couple years ago, but I couldn't quite grasp the process and fell out of touch with him some time later. If I remember correctly, a second way of hacking the 550 requires access to an earlier Pioneer recorder that can be more easily tricked to accept larger HDDs: you format the larger HDD in that recorder, then transplant it into the 550 by using the service tools to reset the CPRM data (while leaving the format intact). Given that the 550 is SATA and the earlier models were EIDE, I assume you need a compatible EIDE>SATA adapter to fit the target HDD to the old recorder.
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  29. Originally Posted by orsetto View Post

    Some possibilities occur to me, based on your notes above:

    The Sony 710, like most other recorders, has a specific HDD size (160GB) permanently programmed into its operating firmware. It cannot recognize capacity larger than 160GB, so if you were to put in a larger 250GB drive, it would format it as 160GB. I suspect the firmware is coded to format any installed HDD to 160GB, so the problem might be the new 120GB you installed is too small to be recognized by the Sony 710 firmware: the recorder attempts to format it as 160GB, but fails because the HDD is smaller than 160GB. I cannot be certain, but I believe you would need an HDD of 160GB or larger capacity for the recorder to work correctly. This might be why the service screen refused to display NG or OK: it cannot properly analyze a 120GB HDD.

    There is an emergency format system you can try: turn on the 710, and when it is fully ready to use, press the HDD button on the front panel and hold it down for at least 10 seconds until the word FORMAT appears in the front panel display. Let go of the HDD button and the recorder will try to format the HDD. If it fails, it will be as before: you won't have access to the HDD. At this point I'd suggest you try reformatting the original 160GB HDD, or try a different new HDD at least 160GB in size.

    ......
    Goal!!!!!
    tomorrow I've first repeated the procedure executed yesterday and.... miracle.... it does function!!!!
    first performance test got error, then i repeat format and after that I see title list (empty of course)
    disk has seen as 119/160GB and it does correctly record and play.

    maybe yesterday an incorrect pressing of buttons after formatting
    I'm very glad: thank you so much!!!!
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  30. Congratulations, conenitore21! Glad you had success making your 710 work again!
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