Question about Creative Labs Zen Digital Media Player

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My Zen Won't Turn On or Reset...

I plugged my zen into my usb hub at the back of my computer, and I waited a few minutes, and my computer didn't recognize it.  It was charging though, for a minute or two, then the screen when black.  I unplugged it, tried to switch it on two or three times, even tried to reset it, but nothing works!  Please, can someone help me?

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Posted on Feb 08, 2009

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it may be in a low power state, try a different usb cable and hook it up to a desktop computer (laptop ports are sometimes not powerful enough to charge the battery when it is in a low-power state). I had this exact same problem and that fixed it!

Also check out creative.com/support and look at their support forumns

Problems Charging, Turning On, or connecting the Zen to a computer, or upgrading firmware; Here are some things you can try:


1. If the Zen won't turn on, try using a wall charger (like the Motorola Razor) and see if it comes back on and begins charging. Wall chargers sometime will be able to output more current than the USB ports of a computer resulting in faster charging. Sometimes it is enough to turn it back on. Don't just try any wall charger though. You don't want it outputting too much power to the Zen and causing electrical damage. I would not go above a 5v charger for this since 5v, I believe, is the input power limit of the Zen.

2. If the Zen won't turn on or be recognized by the computer, try a hard reset by inserting a paperclip (or something like it) into the small "Reset" hole on the bottom of the Zen. Wait for it to rebuild the library and try again.

3. If the Zen is not detected by the computer when connected, try booting the Zen into Recovery Mode (See directions above) and do a "Clean Up". Wait for it to rebuild the library, do a hard reset and try again.

4. If the Zen is not detected by or charging from the computer when connected, make sure you are using a USB port on the back of the computer (built into the motherboard) instead of one wired to the case (front or side). That way you are using a USB port with the proper power output.

5. If the Zen is not detected by or charging from the computer when connected, make sure the USB port you are using are USB 2.0 and not v1.1. If you computer is a newer computer, this shouldn't be a problem, but if it is an older computer, it may only have USB 1.1 ports which doesn't output enough power as USB 2.0 ports.

6. If the Zen is not detected by or charging from the computer when connected, make sure you have no other USB devices plugged into the computer (front and back ports), but the Zen. That may be worth a try to see if you can get enough current from the USB ports to begin charging it again. Usually the more devices you have plugged into the USB ports, the less current that will be available for charging due to the power being shared with all other devices plugged in.

7. If the Zen is not detected by or charging from the computer when connected, make sure that the drivers are loading for it properly under Device Manager (no conflicts showing). I believe the Zen will not be detected or begin charging unless its drivers are loaded and working properly.

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Lithium-ion batteries (by themselves) with no built-in voltage monitoring circuit have a really low self-discharge rate (1-2% a month) when not being used. Having the addition of voltage monitoring circuits will slightly increase the discharge rate, but should not reach the point of excessively discharging the battery to where it won't turn back on unless sitting unused for an extended period of time and if its last state before powering off was a already in a low voltage state. So, as long as you aren't storing it for long periods of time at a low discharged voltage, the battery should be ok to recharge.

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There is a major bug in Firmware version 1.40.xx related to battery charging, and it will exhibit this behavior if there is not enough battery power available for your device to power up. You will need to upgrade your firmware to fix this.

There is a catch, however - your player will not power up on USB power alone, which poses a problem for firmware updating. You must obtain a DC wall charger, plug it into the player via the dongle. This will allow the device to turn on. Then you must plug into your computer's USB port. Do not worry - having both a wall charger and USB cable plugged in at the same time will not harm your player or your computer. This will allow your ZVM to remain powered up so you can update the firmwar

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