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rio car dot org FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)



Category: Main -> Known problems and troubleshooting questions
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·  Why do the visuals disappear every time I put it in the car? 
·  Why is the stereo image of my MP3 messed up? 
·  I get a 'pump' error when I try to upgrade my player firmware. 
·  I get a Windows Installer or MSI error when I install Emplode. 
·  I'm having trouble with my tuner module! 
·  My tuner gets terrible reception, but the extension cable is fine. 
·  My tuner doesn't tune in the correct frequency increments. 
·  When I pause/un-pause, or sleep/wake the player, it starts in a different part of the song. 
·  Why don't fast forward and rewind work properly? 
·  When I pull the power, sometimes it plays a different song when I start it again. 
·  I can't perform an upgrade, install a logo, or install a kernel when the player is in the docking sled. 
·  Why did my player suddenly start freezing at the boot-up logo screen? 
·  Why isn't the headlight-sense dimmer working properly? 
·  Why does my player think it's at home when it's in the car? 
·  Why doesn't my player go into standby mode when I turn off the ignition? 
·  Why is there a 'thump' from my amplifiers when I turn off the ignition? 
·  Why doesn't my Rio Car work in my Mark 2 docking sled? 
·  Why is my docking connector loose? 
·  Why is my Mark 1 getting harder and harder to pull out of the sled? 
·  Why is my Mark 2 hard to pull out of the sled? 
·  Why is my warranty seal already broken? 
·  I get a 'hardware revision check failed' message when I try to upgrade! 
·  Why did ethernet and/or USB quit working after I upgraded the software? 
·  My tuner quit working after an upgrade! 
·  Why is the song count different when I shuffle? 
·  Why can't I figure out how to do searches on the player? 
·  I selected the correct title in a search, and pressed OK, but the song did not play. Why? 
·  Why does Emplode keep getting my tags wrong? 
·  Why can't I read the display in the daylight? 
·  Why am I having problems with my car alarm or my keyless entry system? 
·  My rotary knob is slipping on its shaft! 
·  What do the synchronization errors mean? 
·  The clock on my Mark 1 player does not work. 
·  The clock on my Mark 2 player does not work. 
·  The Mark (cancel) key on the Rio remote doesn't work all the time. 
·  Why is the Shuffle menu backwards? 
·  Why does my player say 'Waiting...' on the screen? 
·  Why does my player rattle when I shake it? 
·  I don't like seeing the circuitry when the sun shines on the player. 
·  I have database errors and all of my playlists disappeared! 
·  Why does Emplode say I have less disk space than I think I should have? 
·  Why does my player sound terribly distorted when I plug it into my home stereo? 
·  My remote control quit working! 
·  I have a Kenwood head unit, and its remote is controlling both players. 
·  Why doesn't Emplode work via USB on Windows? 
·  Why doesn't emplode work via ethernet on Windows XP? 
·  Emplode freezes up on 'Checking Disk Integrity'. 
·  I got an error message about 'e2fsck' at the shell prompt. What do I do to fix it? 
·  My docking sled's top edge is not 'bent'. 
·  Why doesn't my power antenna go up and down at the right time? 
·  The upper-left corner of my screen is cut off. 
·  My config.ini file went all goofy on me, and I can't edit my favorite visuals any more! 
·  My buttons and/or knob are sticking. 

·  What does the battery icon mean?
 (Entry last updated on March 28th, 2006)

The battery icon means low voltage, go figure. ;-)

Sometimes the player will display a battery icon in the upper left corner of the screen. Right before this happens, the VFD display will go blank for a moment and your amplifier will mute as well. This indicates that the power voltage has recently dropped below the player's warning threshold, which is between 10 and 11 volts.

This can mean one of many things:

  • If you are just starting your engine, the voltage in the car may have dropped briefly because the starter motor is consuming all of the juice. This particular case does not necessarily indicate a problem, and may be normal behavior for your vehicle.


  • There may be too much current draw from other components in the car, such as amplifiers, subwoofers, custom lights, etc. If you have installed a lot of other high-power stereo or street-rod components, you might want to consider the possibility that your car's charging system is not up to the task and it will have to be improved in order to run them. For example, it's common to install capacitors on the power feeds to high powered subwoofer amplifiers, specifically to prevent this kind of current drop.


  • Your alternator may not be charging well, and should be inspected and/or repaired.


  • Your battery may be dying or be low on fluid.


  • There may be a wiring problem with the stereo installation, such as a loose, shorted, or miswired connection.


  • The wire that is powering your player (or its ground wire) may be too thin to supply the necessary current to power the player. You may have to re-do the wiring better, for instance, wiring the player's constant power wire directly to the battery (always through a proper fuse block, of course).


  • You may have the Negative Spike Bug, click here.


  • If it's indoors running off of an AC adapter, it indicates that the AC adapter is inadequate for the job, or it is faulty.
More details on what's happening when you get the battery icon:

When power is lost to the player (let's say, you pull it out of the sled), it actually has a certain amount of juice left in its power supply. It takes a few milliseconds before it stops functioning completely. During this time, it will use those last bits of juice to write its current state to flash RAM.

To do this, it needs to shut off the display to conserve those last dregs of power, so that's the first thing it does when it detects a low voltage condition. Since the display on/off state is hardware-linked to the amplifier remote wire (display off == amps off), your amplifiers will mute as well. Then, the kernel does its flash-write trick and waits for death to come.

If, after a couple seconds, death hasn't come (the kernel notices "hey, I'm still alive, I'm not dead"), it turns the display back on and puts up the battery icon.

The voltage level at which this situation is triggered is not software-configurable. It's a hard-wired circuit that triggers the GPIO pin on the CPU.

For more detailed information, read this thread on the empeg BBS.


·  I just tried to edit one of the visuals, and now my player locks up! 
·  There are glowing red lines on my display! 
·  My display has become garbled or dim. 
·  My display is blank! 
·  Why does my Mk2 player have poor stereo separation? 
·  Why doesn't my player play very high frequencies? 
·  Why doesn't the car player put out as much bass as my CD player? 
·  How do I stop it from trying to play a bad track? 
·  My player takes a long time to boot and says it is Building Music Databases. 
·  Why does it say 'No hard disk found contact support'? 
·  Some wires have pulled out of my docking connector! 
·  My handle doesn't snap back into place as well as it used to. 
·  My handle sticks in the 'open' position. Can I fix it? 
·  There is a gap between the handle and the fascia. Can I fix it? 
·  What is the proper way to remove the display board and the main board? 
·  Why can't I use USB after installing or upgrading Emplode? 
·  Why is my Mark 1 having intermittent power failure problems? 
·  Why are there pops, clicks, screeches, and stutters when I play MP3s? 
·  Half of my display is blank! 
·  In DC mode, player responds extremly slowly to button presses, and music skips. 
·  My Mk2's volume knob is being jumpy! 
·  Why do I get an error message about reiserfs? 
·  Why did my player wake up in the car and start blasting music all by itself? 
·  Why does my player start doing things all by itself? 
·  Why do my remote and front panel buttons only work intermittently? 
·  Why won't the tuner scan for the next station? 
·  Why did the tuner change stations on me? 
·  Is there a way I can test the player's hard disk for sector errors? 
·  Why does it always say End of Playlist? 
·  Is there a master parts list for the car player? 
·  What do the ide_data_test messages mean? 
·  How do I fix the Daylight Savings Time dates on the player? 
·  There are vertical lines on my display! 


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