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Old 07-21-2010, 08:06 AM   #1
miklizro
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Troubleshooting

My daughter's 5" EZ Reader beeped when she turned it on and then the screen began flashing repeatedly.
We tried reset.
We tried removing the battery.
As I searched the forums for help, it was Sunsparks post here in this thread that solved the problem.

We reset the flash memory as indicated by holding down the left page turn button together with the power button.

It told us it would clean the flash memory and to hit ok.

It read a list of things:
invalid block 3
1. update kernel
2. update system
3. update logo
4. update parser app
5. update resource

and voila, my daughter danced off to finish her book.
I can't thank these forums enough but wanted to post in case someone else ran into a similar issue.
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Old 07-21-2010, 01:15 PM   #2
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Thank you for your post! I'm glad your daughter was able to get her ereader working so she could finish her book. :-) I agree, these forums are wonderful!
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Old 07-30-2010, 03:06 PM   #3
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Well, this started out as a supposed similar problem, listed all the things I had done (on/off, firmware update reset, reset button. Then I discovered a soft spot in the screen where the "arrow" is pointing. So I have erased all that stuff, but left the post in case someone read it and might then scratch their heads as to why it disappeared.

Not sure how it happened, but it appears that somehow something impacted the screen thru the cover, so I will be contacting Astak yet again to send it in for repair. Or maybe buy a new one. Sigh.

Problem is that I just left on two weeks vacation with the intention of reading along the way.

=========================
Just so happens I will be in San Jose tomorrow, so perhaps I'll have the opportunity to work something out in person. Not looking encouraging, since its been about 3 hours since leaving two messages with Astask and I haven't heard a thing back.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:45 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by eGeezer View Post
Just so happens I will be in San Jose tomorrow, so perhaps I'll have the opportunity to work something out in person. Not looking encouraging, since its been about 3 hours since leaving two messages with Astask and I haven't heard a thing back.
Ouch! Geezer.
I hope your books are on the SD card.

Beware. Astak is just a few blocks from the Fry's on Brokow.

I don't think they normally man the joint on weekends, so I hope Monday is good. You have to ring the bell to gain entry (common for industrial park buildings)
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Old 07-31-2010, 02:12 PM   #5
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Thanks for the info and the sentiment.

Yes, all my books are on the SD card, although in my testing (before noticing the dent in the screen), I had occasion to connect via the USB port and was able to guess when to press what button to make it happen.

If I didn't hear back from Astak before leaving Hayward for San Jose this afternoon, the Brokow Frys was precisely where I was considering looking for a (non-Astak) replacement, so knowing now that Astak is close by will give me the opportunity to at least fruitlessly ring their doorbell, first.

Perhaps expecting an immediate replacement just because I happened to be in the area is a bit of a stretch, but expecting a response to two phone calls and an email shouldn't be.

Apparently, Robertb wasn't joking as much as he thot when he said:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robertb View Post
Dear all:

PLEASE... if you need anything... drop an email to: support@astak.com! Extra tech people will be monitoring!! It takes several of them to make up for what I try to do. (HA!)
Unfortunately, I didn't find his post until after making several phone calls and finally finding Astak keeps the support email address hidden in the fine print down at the bottom of the FAQ without a link to take you there.

So having not found his post yet, I had sent him a heads-up pm in case he could do something after 3 hours of silence. Naturally, after finding the post, I sent off a second pm apologizing for the first. Since one seldom comes back on the job precisely when expected after major surgery, I expect he won't get my pm's until the issue is resolved - one way or the other.

Anyway, thanks for the response and the info, Ducks. Now I have to decide if Astak's silence is enuff to make me throw the ereader in the trash and buy a (non-Astak) replacement, or just spend a few $$ on some pbooks to hold me over.

Left alone to stew over Astak's silence, I was ready to trash the thing, but while the forum might get by without Robertb, (temporarily), Astak can't, and giving thot to my response here because you, Ducks, give credence to Robert's claim that its you experts that make the forum what it is, perhaps I'll go the pbook route.

As a unit, the Astak is great, and I have had no complaints. I still have no complaints since the mysterious screen damage is not Astak's fault. But lack of response does NOT instill confidence in their support.

I don't know if I'll have wifi once I leave San Jose, so I may not know the outcome here until I get home. So, we'll see.
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Old 07-31-2010, 02:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eGeezer View Post
As a unit, the Astak is great, and I have had no complaints. I still have no complaints since the mysterious screen damage is not Astak's fault. But lack of response does NOT instill confidence in their support.

I don't know if I'll have wifi once I leave San Jose, so I may not know the outcome here until I get home. So, we'll see.
SUPPORT was the only differentiating thing ASTAK had to compete with, since they could not participate in the price wars and survive.

RobertB got it, the the PM has no clue .
SUPPORT. When the customer needs it. Not when they get around to it.
Damage happens
Breakdowns happen

3 weeks away for a repair (when you are in the same locale) , you might as well buy a Sony or a Kindle


$80 will get you a new screen, so don't bin it (or bin it my way )
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Old 07-31-2010, 08:02 PM   #7
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Well, you certainly had that right, Duck.

We are now at our motel waiting for the for the soccer game we came here for, but we stopped by the Astak address. As you say, doorbell in an industrial park. One car out front, but no answer to the bell. I'm sure I heard this before somewhere, but the name on the door is "Team Research, Inc" so I'm not all that sure if someone had answered the door I would have gotten more than a blank look.

We hopped across the street to Frys, but although they have an Alturek for $139 and Sony Touches for $149, I opted to wait it out. Like you say. If I can get a new screen for $80, its still a better deal, unless something else was damaged, too.

The friends we stopped to see in Hayward gave me some pbooks so I don't even have to go buy any, and I am free to wait til I get home to pursue this silliness.

If, as you say, it will take 3 weeks turn-around to get a fix, it sure would have been nice to be able to drop it off and only have a week to wait once I got home.

A Sony as a replacement would be an option, since it was a close race between them and Astak initially -- especially with a Touch for only $149.

But the Kindle still doesn't have access to Library books, so every book I buy with a Kindle that I should have been able to get from the library just adds to the true price of a Kindle. That nice $140 wifi K3 shipping at the end of August isn't really such a bargain, in my book (or ebook).

On the other hand, with other options out there now, I'll have to see how Astak gets around to addressing this problem and decide whether a refurbished unit (which I have no doubt is the Astak definition of "repair") out weighs just waiting a while and getting another brand's new model.

If I choose the latter, I'll keep in mind your binning option, since I've certainly gotten better support out of you than Astak, so far.

Thanks again,

Last edited by eGeezer; 07-31-2010 at 08:07 PM. Reason: A few random missing words
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Old 07-31-2010, 09:14 PM   #8
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You were at the right place.
If you had peeked through the glass, you could see a tiny lobby with all the Astak Cameras on display
I think there are 4 divisions of the parent company operating out of that warehouse.

BTW I have never been past the Lobby.

They gave me a Cuppa while they looked at my PEz with a bad USB (and peel).
They handed me a replacement that time. When #2 peeled, I decided working won over looks.
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Old 08-01-2010, 09:13 PM   #9
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Nice to know that if I had been there during working hours, I perhaps would have had a replacement, or at least would have been able to save time and money to ship it in.

Ah, well, the travails of bad timing -- although I still have a problem with no response whatsoever, so they are not fully off the hook, yet.
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Old 08-07-2010, 03:14 PM   #10
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Okay. Seems I'm the king of poor timing, here.

I learned after trying to contact them last Friday morning when I was within 30 miles that they aren't open on Saturdays (I finally got an email from "support" on Tuesday telling me so, but the email didn't include an RMA even tho I had explained the screen was broken and repair is the only option, so I gave up and waited til I got home.)

Since my sole complaint is the total silence in response to two phone calls which should have at least gotten me the information that they were closed on Saturday, I've decided I should at least wait for an example of true poor customer support, rather than bad timing, before abandoning Astak completely.

So of course, I got home from vacation late Friday night and here it is another Saturday allowing me the opportunity to wait til Monday to contact them again.

And now here is another choice to be made -- spend $200 on the latest and greatest EZReader Plus, or send the PPro in for repair? Warranty sez at least $95 for a new screen plus I own the shipping both ways. With the Plus not available til Aug 14, of course, there is no telling which would get to me sooner -- the "repaired" PPro, or the new Plus.

Although I waffled a bit about maybe getting a $149 nook rather than paying $100+ for repairs and then waiting to see how long it would take, doing further research I still feel Astak is still the better choice for my purposes. And buying a nook cover would make the price difference a wash, anyway, now that the Plus price has been announced. Of course, I saw that the Sony Pocket Edition was down to $149 as well, and with a metal case, perhaps my screen wouldn't have broken. hmmm.

So I have all weekend to decide: $100+ for repairs or $200 for new. Of course new would be 1" bigger, but it would be NEW, lol.

Last edited by eGeezer; 08-07-2010 at 03:21 PM. Reason: numerous missing or extra words
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Old 08-07-2010, 05:13 PM   #11
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If you go for new be sure to get a SquareTrade warranty.
They have damage coverage as well which will pay for repairs and they paid for shipping both ways.

I would of gotten one for my PP but I was a week late of my 90 days purchase.
It would of been $29.99 for 3yrs and $10 for damage coverage. So 39.99 plus tax which is much cheaper then paying for screen repair.

I just purchased a mp3 player and bought a SquareTrade for it for $8 for 3yrs.
My next reader will defaintly have one.

I learned about SquareTrade right here in this forum. There's a thread on it somewhere if you search for it.
Amazon has started offering SquareTrade warranty when you purchase devices which I did for my MP3 player.

A huge thanks to the person who mention it here.
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Old 08-07-2010, 05:22 PM   #12
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Even as I was making the update, I was wondering why other than not wanting to leave a loose end where someone wonders later whatever happened to that guy with the broken Astak screen.

Now I know. Thanks for mentioning it, Blossom. Never heard of them before. Didn't even know you could get that sort of extended warranty on an ereader.

Thanks for passing it forward.
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Old 08-12-2010, 05:47 PM   #13
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Getting a handle on the loose end, and almost got it tacked down.

On Monday, I got an RMA from support after a little phone tag, shipped the PPro by late afternoon.

On Tuesday, we got the announcement that Robert's knee operation apparently missed the target and his name is now Jenifer. In adjusting to the change and the way it was announced, my whining about support got Jenifer's attention.

On Thursday (today) I got a phone call from support asking for my cc info to pay for a new screen on the PPro. I have now received an email informing the PPro has shipped, along with a tracking number.

Because of slow and lack of response, as well as non-responses in the responses I did receive prior to Jenifer's involvement, I am sure that Jenifer had a hand in the quick turn-around , and I only await the arrival of the unit by Saturday so I will have a reader when I go off to Summer Camp with my BSA troop on Sunday.

While I am sorry to see Robert go , and I feel somewhat disloyal to him after all his loyalty to us, I thank Jenifer for whatever part she played in getting my PPro issue resolved in a timely fashion once I was able to drag an RMA out of support.

I will post one more time on this thread when the unit arrives, because I know everyone has dropped all they are doing and are waiting in front of their screens now in anticipation of this matter being closed.

Last edited by eGeezer; 08-12-2010 at 05:50 PM. Reason: Move the rofl guy to the end where he belongs
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Old 08-12-2010, 06:06 PM   #14
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I will post one more time on this thread when the unit arrives, because I know everyone has dropped all they are doing and are waiting in front of their screens now in anticipation of this matter being closed.
Repeat after me:

"I will always close the protective cover when transporting and not actually reading"
N.B. My PEz survived a 6 fool fall to a Slab floor (PEz not safe anywhere, when rick-o-shay kittens are loose), the cover was Open , hit jelly side down
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Old 08-14-2010, 08:22 PM   #15
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Okay,

All you folks refusing to leave your computers in anticipation of my last post in this matter, I got my "repaired" EZ Reader 5" Pocket Pro.

"Repaired" because it is a brand new, fully clothed in plastic, all pieces included, never been opened before, unit. I suspect this might be because, in addition to the broken screen, 3/4 of the paint had also peeled. Since the inside of the Cover is gray instead of the light tan of my previous one, I am sure this is the new cover that no longer peels the paint.

Got it on charge til morning and will throw in my SD card, load up books I have purchased while waiting (like the 300+ I got free in the Holiday Package, and numerous other unread purchases and downloads aren't enuff), check the FW, and start reading. Shoot, I will even be able to read the two library books I had borrowed before I left on my vacation during which the screen broke the second day.

One-week turn-around from support after all the disappointing stories we have heard, I can only but credit to Jenifer's attention. (Sent in Monday, back on Saturday).

I am probably more excited than I was when originally I got it for Christmas. For one thing, it is just in time to go on vacation, whereas it was just new at Christmas time.
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