YouTube - MiniDisc Repair - Sony LAM-Z05 - Fixing Recording

click the image to go to YouTube - Sony LAM-Z05

The Sony LAM-Z05 (late 2004) is a slick, compact NetMD system. It didn't have any analog or digital inputs, just a USB port for NetMD, a headphone out, and a proprietary speaker jack.

The LAM-series always had cool opening mechanisms and this one uses a sliding top to reveal either the MD side or the CD side.

I bought this one cheap without speakers (since they're expensive to ship anyway), planning on it being a dedicated NetMD writer and using the headphone jack to listen to things. 

Unfortunately, it wouldn't record. Neither CD to MD dubbing, nor NetMD was working. I was hoping that the write head got misaligned in transit which wouldn't be too bad of a fix (and it's happened to another deck I own). Getting into and out of the LAM-Z05 would be the real challenge since I didn't see anything documented online and there was no Service Manual available.

Please check out the video for a walkthrough on opening it up, checking out and adjusting the write head, and then reassembling it. 

The main points are below:

Flip it upside down and remove the three screws holding the silver "foot" to the body.

After that, remove two more larger screws near the plug and near the rear. Then, the 4 screws that are holding the sides onto the body.

Next, we'll need to carefully pry the sides off (not too far!) to expose the "lip" of the grey section and slide it out.

Once you've pried the sides clear of the grey lip, you can pull it out and put it to the side.

Once that's out of the way, you can see the main frame and body inside. We'll need to work that free gently with a combination of prying the sides open and "wiggling" the mechanism towards the front, while lifting the sides upwards. This will make more sense in reverse later when you see how the sides clip into the internal frame.

Once the sides are off, the MD including the overwrite head are clearly visible.

Here, you can see I've pushed this white section down which keeps the write head up and out of the way. This is after I've adjusted it carefully with tweezers - the write head floats close to the disc surface, but doesn't touch it.

After I adjusted it, I just tested with CD to MD dubbing and then reassembled it. After reassembly, I tested NetMD which worked great, too. Now I have my dedicated NetMD writer tethered to my PC!

Please check out the video for a more detailed explanation!