BCD536HP: "SD Card Write Error" while scanning?!?!?!

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Jake68111

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One of the VERY few issues I've EVER had with this scanner.

Yesterday, I updated the DB on the scanner. Went through the standard hookup sequence and while I was writing to the SD Card, the scanner disconnected from the computer (somehow, loose USB connection, maybe?), giving me the write error immediately. Ok, I thought no big deal. I'll start over. Not so. Started everything over after restarting the scanner and when I turned the scanner on, it wouldn't boot up, having the same error. So I tried to format the card, "Clear User Data" through Sentinel....... No dice. I figured this would be a great time to go with a card with more GB's. Fine, used a 16 GB card. The formatting and the "Clear User Data" went well. Popped the card in and presto. I was back in business, kind of. Now, somewhere in the middle of good, normally scanning operation, BAM, I get the SD Card Write Error out of nowhere. It seems like this issue won't die easily as its happened numerous times. I can see why it would happen when trying to write to the scanner with the cable but why am I having that error while the unit is scanning and what can I do to fix the issue? Why is it happening, even with a different card? FWIW, the formatting and "Clear User Data" was done with a SD Card Adaptor, while the DB Update I do with the cable.
 
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tumegpc

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Power off the 536HP and apply rubbing alcohol to the contacts of the micro sd card and inset the card a few times before the alcohol has time to evaporate. Remove the micro sd card for a couple minutes to allow for drying. Worked for me with my PSR-800
 

marksmith

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The card is being written to or read from in lots of situations other than cabling stuff to the radio.

Recording anything?, avoiding anything? Any other changes?

536/436/ws1095/996p2/996xt/325p2/396xt/psr800/396t/HP-1/HP-2 & others
 

jonwienke

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If you have Replay turned on, every transmission is recorded, and then deleted after the Replay interval.

And it is probably time to get a spare card.
 

Jake68111

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Power off the 536HP and apply rubbing alcohol to the contacts of the micro sd card and inset the card a few times before the alcohol has time to evaporate. Remove the micro sd card for a couple minutes to allow for drying. Worked for me with my PSR-800
I've done this and have been up and running for about an hour now. Hopefully that did the trick.

The card is being written to or read from in lots of situations other than cabling stuff to the radio.

Recording anything?, avoiding anything? Any other changes?

536/436/ws1095/996p2/996xt/325p2/396xt/psr800/396t/HP-1/HP-2 & others
Recording is off, avoiding plenty of things but no other changes were made when this all occurred besides the attempt to update the DB and the unexpected disconnection between the CPU and the scanner. Settings have pretty much remained unchanged since I've initially set the scanner up.

If you have Replay turned on, every transmission is recorded, and then deleted after the Replay interval.

And it is probably time to get a spare card.
I do, in fact have my Replay turned on and set to 240 sec. Again though, this isn't a setting I've changed just recently. Pretty much everything has been set the way it is now, when the scanner was setup out of the box. I have a few cards around but yes, an extra is a must for the unexpected.
 

marksmith

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Replay on means the radio is continuously writing to the card, and continuously erasing from the card as transmissions are received. This activity will crash an SD card. No changes or other button presses need to be made.

Unless you turn off replay, you have continous SD card read/write going on.

536/436/ws1095/996p2/996xt/325p2/396xt/psr800/396t/HP-1/HP-2 & others
 

Jake68111

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Replay on means the radio is continuously writing to the card, and continuously erasing from the card as transmissions are received. This activity will crash an SD card. No changes or other button presses need to be made.

Unless you turn off replay, you have continous SD card read/write going on.

536/436/ws1095/996p2/996xt/325p2/396xt/psr800/396t/HP-1/HP-2 & others
I understand but I wouldn't think that you or jonwienke aren't insinuating that the replay feature should no longer be used. Up until the disconnection while updating the DB, it was continuously on without issue. Replay should be able to continuously be on, at whatever interval, without the worry of a write error, correct? I mean, if the scanner couldn't handle the feature, it probably shouldn't come with it.

At any rate, I'm hoping the contacts on either the card or inside the scanner was the issue, possibly creating a poor connection. I typically don't take the card out of the scanner and I've had it now for 3 ~ 3 1/2 years and took it out for the first time, yesterday.
 

jonwienke

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All SD cards have a finite lifespan. But if you use a good 16GB or larger card, you should be able to get several years of use out of a card. Cards are cheap enough they should be considered consumable.
 

marksmith

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Definitely not suggesting you not use replay.

Was trying to address the issue that you first started with, which was that the card could mess up "just by scanning" because even just scanning you are continuously writing to the card in the replay example.

It is not the radio that cannot handle the feature, but definitely the SD card. If you check through the forums you will find crashed SD cards as probably the most frequently addressed issue here.

There are now SD cards made for high volume of read/write that hold a stronger format, and in fact are now recommended by Uniden. Can't offhand remember the specific name, but they are high utilization or something similar. Several outfits make them. They are not necessarily fast cards, but are more heavy duty.

3 1/2 years on an SD card is pretty good. Understand, they ALL fail eventually. Nobody makes an SD card that lasts forever. It is more than likely not your contacts or anything similar. Chances are very very high, almost certsin, you just need to get another card.

536/436/ws1095/996p2/996xt/325p2/396xt/psr800/396t/HP-1/HP-2 & others
 

Jake68111

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Ah, duly noted. I will search the forums to see if I can find what's being recommended for the scanner. Will be picking up one.......... or two! ;-)

Thanks for the insight guys. It really did throw me for a loop, while I was always concerned that something like this could happen, I guess I thought I had some sort of super immunity because it never has, till now.

Thanks for the help and 411!!!
 

Jake68111

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Thought I'd pop back in with some findings.

So it has been up and running with it giving me the error once more. I decided to turn off the replay feature and I haven't gotten the error since. I'm confident now, that the constant read, write, then rewrite to the card is the issue. I'm hoping that a brand new card will eliminate the issue.

Still haven't found much in the way of card recommendations for these so if any of you come across it, please, lead me to the light. Thanks again for your expertise.
 

marksmith

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Go for a "high endurance" SD card. The speed of the card is not particularly important but faster are a little better.

My recommendation is a 32meg Transcend high endurance card. It's what I use in all my scanners now, and Uniden is actually also recommending high endurance cards. SanDisk also makes them.

536/436/ws1095/996p2/996xt/325p2/396xt/psr800/396t/HP-1/HP-2 & others
 

Ubbe

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SD cards are made to handle HD video recordings at tens of MB per second and a scanners audio are low KB per seconds. No need for high speed cards as the SD interface in the scanner are probably a low speed one anyways.

If you use the Replay loop it will record those 240 sec on the same place on the card over and over again and will reduce the lifespan of the card. If you set permanent record if will spread the recordings over the whole area of the card. Lifespan of SD cards are calculated with photo, video or audio in mind that fill up the card, not writing to one single area the whole time.

Only negative is that you loose the instant replay and need to use the menu to replay the recordings.

If Uniden could modify the record function so that the replay button automaticly puts you at the latest recording, with the option to step backwards thru the recordings, then there would be no need to have the SD card killer replay loop function.

/Ubbe
 

jonwienke

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If you use the Replay loop it will record those 240 sec on the same place on the card over and over again and will reduce the lifespan of the card. If you set permanent record if will spread the recordings over the whole area of the card. Lifespan of SD cards are calculated with photo, video or audio in mind that fill up the card, not writing to one single area the whole time.
Not true. Both Replay and normal recording write the same audio file format to the card, and the physical locations where each file is stored are selected by the card controller, not the scanner. All modern SD cards use logical sector addressing so that the physical location where a sector is stored can be changed (to transparently handle physical sector failures), and also use wear-leveling algorithms to prevent any individual physical sector from being over-used and wearing out prematurely.

Replay actually puts less stress on the card than recording. Because a maximum of 240 seconds of audio is recorded, there is a much larger pool of free space to write a new file, and each physical sector in the free space pool experiences proportionately less wear. For this reason, larger cards will last longer than small cards--increasing the amount of free space proportionately decreases the odds that any given free physical sector will be used. Doubling free space halves the average wear on each physical sector.
 
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