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Tech Tip Of The Day: Resetting Inoperable Gear

Is there a reason that two very different digital processors are suddenly dead? What can I do?

By PSW Staff August 13, 2010

Provided by Sweetwater.

Q: I’ve been recording for quite a while, and have a good-sized home studio.

However, I’ve got a problem that is really driving me up the wall. I have two external processors of different brands in my studio that recently went dead!

When I turn them on the display on one of them lights up, but it is blank, and the other one only partially lights up.

Two breaking at once seems like too big a coincidence. What happened?

A: One could speculate for hours about all of the possible things that may have caused this.

A lightning strike, or other electrostatic discharge could cause it. Power surges (also frequently caused by lightning) could be the culprit, or maybe it’s just a coincidence. Sometimes gear fails for no apparent reason.

But it’s quite likely the units aren’t really “broken” in the strict sense of the word. They may just need a hard reset.

You should find out how to do this for each unit (by reading the manual!) and give it a try.

I’ve seen hard resets revive more apparently “dead” gear than any other single technique. In fact, the hard reset is a common path we send people down when their equipment starts behaving erratically.

Over time it just seems like the various memory registers of some equipment become corrupt and before you know it weird things are happening. A hard reset solves the problem 90% of the time.

As always, we welcome input from the PSW community and would love your take on this situation. Feel free to let us know in the comments below.

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