Question about Sony MDS-JE480 Mini Disc Player

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Sony MDS-JE480...Inserting disc..C13 error READ CODE, keeps ejecting disc so dont know what to do pls help

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The c13 error means that the player is unable to read the table of contents (TOC) on discs any more.If it's an occasional error then you can try switching to TDK blanks as they seem to be easier for flaky players to read, but if it's happening regularly to all discs then your machine is unrepairable due to a total lack of spare parts.

On the plus side, there are millions of MD units now lying unused as folks have moved on from them and as they're mostly worthless people don't generally bother with trying to sell them. Almost every piece of MD gear I own has come free of charge via my local FreeCycle and Freegle groups. Whatever you do, don't buy a used player from anyone: they're all getting on now and the TOC error is an age-related fault which may occur at any time.

If you wish to see exactly what features other machines have then visit the superb equipment browser at The site is hosted but n longer maintained though so some information is out of date, but it's still the most comprehensive source of free information about MD available.

Sorry here's probably no hope for your MDS-JE480, but I hope that my reply has given you a practical alternative means of solving your problem.

Posted on Oct 07, 2010

  • gconewcastle Aug 07, 2011

    DO NOT GIVE UP. Mostly your machine just needs basic maintenance.
    On SONY machines C13 ERROR simply means the disc play cannot read the table of contents. This however a single symptom of at least five differnt problems where at least four can be EASILY fixed. First the most common reason your machine cannot read the table of contents is the lens is obscured or dirty.
    Solution No 1 - Do absolutely nothing. CORRECT. Many C13 errors are nothing more complex than the machine being moved from one place to another and condesation causing the lens to cloud over. This is usually the correct diagnosis if your machine behaves erratically showing this error infrequently. Just let it warm up and you can stop crying.

    If it doesn't recover? Get the lens cleaner if you have one. If you cannot find one, then remove the cover of the machine so that it exposes interior mechanism and look for the disk lens. - horizontally mounted blue hemishere 2mm diameter - usually with a silver washer ring surrounding it. Soak a cotton bud in soluble spirit based cleaner (or if you are really desperate try JOHNSON'S Mr. Muscle) and gently clean the lens. Once finished leave the unit at room temperature for about 10 minutes while the spirt cleaner evaporates.Try loading again.

    Still not working? Before you replace the cover, look carefully at the disc surface as the mechanism lifts the disc into the play position. If the disc visibly rotates as you press play the unit should read the TOC. If the disc does not rotate, this is another reason the machine is incapable of reading the TOC, however this is indicative of a motor problem. Usually fixed by gently spraying a very small amount WD40 carefully in the aread of the electric motor. Also using the spirit soaked swab used earlier try carefuly clearing grease, hairs, dust and cobwebs from the tiny plastic toothed discs and cogs that are part of the exposed mechanism.
    If after doing this the motor still fails to turn, it is either weak or dead. either way, it is unlikely to be worth replacing, as even if you do manage to get it working again, sooner or later it will fail.

    SONY Units are generally exceptionally reliable and suprisingly few truly die although loads get binned because owners don't what to do when a C13 shows up.
    The actual read mechanism is different from but still based very closely on the principles of a CD player. It is therefore robust and also far from techincally sophisticated by todays modern standards.

    Failed motors aside, the only things that can really kill one of these this way, tend to be the usual catastrophes, like spilled fluids or debris breking something. Wear an tear, needs to be at a stratospheric level for basic maintainence to be futile.

    Hope you find this useful.



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