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What is the error code being displayed? is it U81 U61 or U99? U61 is likely to be a DVD drive error. U99 is an electrical problem, while U81 is a microprocessor feedback information error. Your best option is to submit this recorder to a qualified service technician in an authorised Panasonic workshop, for a quote, and a second opinion on the likely repair costs and/or parts involved. (it helps to be more specific when posting questions here about DVD drive faults so we can advise people properly on the best course of action to solve the problem (however a few consumers do not know what device error codes are and what they mean; this is understandable in many cases).
The cost to fix this unit depends where you go and whom you deal with. It is up to you, but be warned; if the unit needs a new DVD drive, this could prove expensive.
This seems to be a common fault with many Panasonic DVD recorders of the DMR-EX series.
This is one of several error codes generated by the main microprocessor IC in the unit which are
tripped by corruption, preventing proper operation and which may require the
processor to be reset (where practical) or replaced.
U81 means (in technical terms)
'microprocessor communication malfunction' on the universal asynchronous
receiver/transmitter' or 'microprocessor feedback information error'.
This is not something the user should undertake to repair
themselves; it should really go to an authorised Panasonic repair centre. The
cost depends on the parts used (if available) and the labour, however, it is not
unfixable. You can always get a quote on this and a second opinion, then decide for yourself if it is economical or not.
posted this 'advice' for this (and a couple of similar models) previously. The
DMR-EX series of models are prone to U81 - which is a common (and
extremely irritating) error code. As I said, it is not unfixable, if you
are prepared to spend a fair amount of money on the repairs by a
qualified service technician in a fully equipped workshop with access to
all the required components and service manuals.
Because of the malfunction, the user settings and options are inaccessible, and there is no official user-reset option on this or any model of the series to clear this particular error.
Certainly worth investigating at least, as Panasonic usually make great products. It's up to you as to what you decide to do from here.
First is there a disk in the dvd drive? If so it must be removed. have you tried a factory reset? Press and hold the up and down channel buttons on the front of the unit until the unit displays BYE then after it shuts down unplug it from the AC outlet for about 30 seconds then try to turn it back on it should be back in the first time setup.
This is not an error code!
RF CH21 simply refers to a channel that the recorder is set to and is the first channel it will display. For example, there is no CH20. Your recorder is trying to find stations on all its channels from CH21 through to around CH70 and when it gets to the end if it doesn't find any stations, it starts the process again. This will often happen when you first unpack the unit from new until it has been set up.
Firstly, make sure you have a TV antenna connected, even if you use a satelite receiver. If no antenna is connected, your poor old set will keep on searching until you tell it to stop. Incidentally, connecting an antenna will allow the machine to set the clock automatically too. Next, go into the menu options, this is incredibly easy, just follow the on screen prompt.
Find "Tuning Set Up" and make sure that it is not set to auto. If the recorder still continues to show CH21, you will need to switch the unit off from the power socket and leave it for at least 15 minutes before switching back on. Then repeat the above.
I am almost certain you'll fix this, because it sounds as though the machine is doing what it is supposed to. If it still doesn't work please give me a few more details.
I get this too, and a little research brought me lots of anecdotes but nothing concrete, but here's was I deduce from the stories...
The unit has an auto-scan feature that periodically checks for new services or channels. Sometimes when it adds one it encounters and error and hangs showing U80. When you're recording it seems the auto-scan doesn't interrupt, so your program will complete. I've had several failures of timed recordings when the unit has stalled before recording was due to start.
Try switching the auto-scan off...
Functions > Others > Display > New service message
Hoepfully that will resolve it, though you will need to manually scan for new services periodically to make sure you don't miss out. At least you'll be on hand if it fails so it won't sit showing U80 for hours!