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Startling success cleaning factory CD head

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by IdahoDoug, Feb 29, 2004.

  1. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    A few weeks back, I posted for suggestions on models to replace the factory stereo. The CD had stopped operating properly and I've read others having to replace theirs when this happened. Bought a Phillips wet brush style CD head cleaner a week ago and used it twice over a few days. I waited a week to post this as I couldn't believe it myself, but I got more than I bargained for. First, the CD indeed immediately started working correctly and has not malfunctioned since. It had progressed from a brief refusal to play once every couple months to a daily issue and finally stopped altogether. Now flawless.

    Atop this, the sound quality has jumped orders of magnitude. Someone please correct me if this is not possible as I'd thought with digital media it either played at full recorded quality or did not play until this. I can now hear details like the singer drawing breath, etc that I'd swear were not audible before.

    At any rate, color me happy not to have to mess with it, and having saved $500 on the stereo replacement.

    DougM
     
  2. Wayne

    Wayne Bought by His blood, kept by His power

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    IdahoDoug,
    Where did you buy the cleaning kit?

    Wayne S :cheers:
     
  3. ginericLC

    ginericLC Wagon Wheeler! SILVER Star

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    You can buy them pretty much anywhere now. Wal Mart sells a couple of different models. I've used a dry brush version with success.
     
  4. Wayne

    Wayne Bought by His blood, kept by His power

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    Hey, thanks......

    Wayne S :cheers:
     
  5. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

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    Yes, this is possible, and common. All CD Players have an amount of 'resolution' that they advertise based on the digital to analog converter, the circuitry, the processor, the laser itself, and other things. A CD player with much higher resolution than another CD player will sound remarkably better and will reveal aspects of the music that the other player cannot reveal. This is one reason why when I really want to get the most resolution, I play my CD's on my DVD player as its processor is many times more powerful. Players do not necessarily play all or nothing but at the point that there is not enough resolution to play the track properly, they will not play. Cleaners work well, there are even aftermarket CD treatments that are usually designed to fill in the flaws on the surface of the disk and therefore give the CD player's laser a more perfect surface to read. I use a cleaner as a regular preventive maintenance program for all my players and I have also used the cd treatment stuff with success although at that level it is somewhat 'esoteric' and I do not detect much difference unless I am going through my top end home system. HTH, Glad you got tunes again.
     
  6. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    TC,

    Thanks, I've always had extremely good hearing (once heard background noise during a hearing test that was supposed to be beyond the threshold of human hearing), and was hoping this was not my imagination. I got this Phillips Magnavox "Laser Lens Cleaner" at a chain book store (Borders or something). It's got 2 thin brushes on the disc 180 degrees opposite each other and the disc has the number "34120" on its label as the only thing I could find that might be a part number. It's designed for CD/DVD/CD-R/CD-RW as well as CD-ROM and Video Games and cost me about $11. By the way, this was the first time the CD optical head had EVER been cleaned, so that's probably why I got such a big result.

    DougM
     
  7. PDoyle

    PDoyle

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    If that is the case, I'm going to buy one in a few minutes and try to fix my CD.... Found one at Radio Shack. Wallymarts is out of stock!
     
  8. hpantier

    hpantier

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    is there any disassembly of the unit required or is this just something that you make it "play"
     
  9. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    Laughably simple. Wet brushes with solution provided. Insert in correct direction (arrow on disc). You get 30 seconds of dialogue telling you what a great product it is, followed by an instruction to click up to track 4 at the beep. Once you do this, it's over in 3 seconds and you kinda feel like you got ripped off (What? 30 seconds of blather and the actual cleaning takes a couple seconds? Waitaminutehere...).

    I let the unit dry (my choice) for a few minutes before putting a disc in to play and - wow.

    DougM
     
  10. hpantier

    hpantier

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    cool, i think i will have to go check one of those out as mine rejects about 9 out of 10 discs right now....doh
     
  11. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

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    Another cool trick is to try the "Disc Dr" or "Skip Dr". This little wonder mechanically 'scours' (a bad word to use with CD's but that is basically what happens) the surface of the disk in a direction perpendicular to the angle that the laser reads. This scouring and polishing process removes all surface scratches and makes disks that were previously unplayable, playable again. I do not use this thing though until it is needed like when I drop a disk into the mud and get it scratched!!! Can we all say in unison " I Hate Mud!" Anyway, HTH people who have scratched disks.
     
  12. hoser

    hoser SILVER Star

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    For cleaning discs, I've had good success with Maguires (sp?) Plastic Cleaner and Polish--the same stuff I use for detailing the plastic pieces on my cars.