What's new
  • Announcing New Ownership at Home Theater Forum. Learn More

Boo Hoo! My Sony MDS-JA555ES minidisc deck goes in for repair tomorrow. :o( (1 Viewer)

KeithH

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2000
Messages
9,413
Chip,

You were correct. I was in Miami this week on business. Just got back.

Barton,

I appreciate your continued interest. Actually, I have nothing to report yet. The deck is still being repaired at Sony's Westwood, MA facility. I have been checking the status of the repair on Sony's web site periodically. As soon as I get the deck back, I'll provide an update. Thanks again.
 

KeithH

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2000
Messages
9,413
UPDATE
I got a phone call from Sony today regarding my 'JA555ES. A customer service rep. told me that certain parts needed to repair the player to my expectations are no longer available. As a result, I was told that I could order a new 'JA555ES from www.soundpros.com , the only dealer that either Sony or I know of that still has the player, and get reimbursed for the full purchase price by Sony, or Sony could simply cut me a check for the amount I paid for the first deck ($825). I have decided to take the money.
So, what will I do with the money? I still want a quality minidisc player for my main stereo system, so I could order another 'JA555ES or go with a different model. Ordering another 'JA555ES is not an option. This player was discontinued quite awhile ago, so it is possible that other 'JA555ES players that Sound Pros still has in inventory are from the same batch as the one I had. I just don't have a good feeling about ordering another 'JA555ES from the same dealer. Bad karma there. Also, I now know that certain parts for the 'JA555ES are not available, so I could find myself exactly where I am now if a second unit were to break down. I just don't want to deal with the 'JA555ES again.
After considering my options for a quality minidisc deck, which are severely limited, I decided to order a Sony 'JA333ES from J&R Music World. I paid $725 shipped, so I will net $100 from the 'JA555ES refund from Sony. Not bad. The 'JA333ES is on backorder, but they hope to have it within the next ten days to two weeks.
According to two reviews that I read in British hi-fi magazines last year, the 'JA333ES is not quite as good as the 'JA555ES, but the former was still deemed a high-quality player. Actually, one of the reviews stated that the 'JA333ES was a bit smoother in the treble. The reviewer said that the 'JA555ES could be a bit harsh in that regard, though I never noticed that.
What Hi*Fi? out of the UK publishes a summary of ratings each month of all items it has reviewed that are still in production. Since the 'JA555ES is still available in the UK, it is listed, as is the 'JA333ES. Much to my surprise, the 'JA555ES only gets four stars out of five. What Hi*Fi's comment about the 'JA555ES is, "If you want the best MiniDisc machine, this is it. But lower-cost decks come so close." The 'JA333ES gets five stars out of five, and What Hi*Fi? says, "Challenges CD-RW for quality of sound, while bringing all the benefits of MiniDisc." These are obviously just opinions, but both players are quite excellent. My gut feeling is that the 'JA555ES is better, but the 'JA333ES is still an excellent deck.
The 'JA555ES definitely wins in terms of build quality. It weighs about 33 lbs., while the 'JA333ES weighs in at around 24 lbs. Of course, 24 lbs. is nothing to sneeze at. My Sony SCD-C333ES and 'C555ES SACD changers weigh 23-24 lbs., and they are very solid machines. The 'JA555ES is just a brute. It almost weighs as much as my Sony STR-V444ES A/V receiver, and it weighs more than my NAD stereo amps.
Once I get the 'JA333ES, I will post my impressions. Thanks again for reading!
 

Greg Schwabacher

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
May 31, 1999
Messages
173
Keith-
If you don't want to wait for J&R to restock the 'JA333ES , and don't mind spending a little more money, you could order the same deck from here -- they claim to have it in stock. I ordered an MZ-R900DPC from these guys when it first came out (I believe this dealer was the first place in the U.S. to stock it) and their service was great.
I realize the player is $100+ more from Planet Minidisc, but if J&R can't come through for you, that might be your only option.
Good luck and keep us posted.
-Greg
P.S. -- One other thing...I saw that a U.K. dealer had the 'JA333ES for sale for 405 GBP (about $600). They were out of stock, but that might be another option worth considering...they claim to ship worldwide.
 

KeithH

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2000
Messages
9,413
Greg, thanks for providing the Planet MiniDisc link. I will keep it in mind should things not pan out with J&R. One question I have is whether Planet MiniDisc is an authorized Sony dealer. I also wonder if they would match J&R's price. Anyway, I will keep Planet MiniDisc in mind.

I am familiar with techtronics.com out of the UK. In fact, I almost ordered a 'JA555ES with a gold chassis from them last June before I bought the infamous deck from Sound Pros. In the end, I was not comfortable ordering from a dealer overseas. If the player had arrived damaged, it might have been a hassle to get it replaced. Furthermore, I don't know if Sony in the US will honor a UK warranty. If a component from the UK broke down while under warranty (UK warranty), would Sony in the US take care of it? Would I have to ship it to the UK, and would Sony in the UK take a player shipped from the US? Anyway, I will also keep Techtronics in mind, but I'm not sure I want to go through the hassle. The nice thing is that they have the 'JA333ES and 'JA555ES in gold.
 

Rachael B

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2000
Messages
4,740
Location
Knocksville, TN
Real Name
Rachael Bellomy
Well Keith, it turns out that Sony is fast and efficent, te he, ha-ha.... I'm almost suprised they didn't offer you a deluxe 510 and a ten pack of 60 minute MD's. The 333 looks pretty nice. After looking at the link above I kinda' want one. Does it have a hookup for titling via keyboard? I proably won't get one but I'm a curious kitty.:) Best wishes!
 

KeithH

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2000
Messages
9,413
Rachael, I don't think the 'JA333ES has a keyboard input. Sony has not included keyboard inputs on its ES minidisc players. For example, the 'JA20ES and 'JA555ES have no keyboard inputs, while a number of Sony's cheaper models in recent years have them. If the 'JA333ES has a keyboard input, it is on the back panel. Believe it or not, Sony has placed keyboard inputs on the back panel of some mindisc players. That makes no sense to me. Anyway, my guess is that Sony does not include keyboard inputs on ES models because the focus is sound quality, not convenience. There is the theory in high-end audio that extraneous circuitry causes interference. Anyway, I can use the keyboard input on my 'JB930 for easy titling.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Forum Sponsors

Forum statistics

Threads
352,669
Messages
4,992,780
Members
143,307
Latest member
mufasaa
Recent bookmarks
0
Top