MP3 Player Recovery and Hacking

The Problem:

Hi Knut and visitors to the site, here is a link back... This may be useful for MP3 players of different brands/chipsets if the site here doesn't help fix your MP3 player. Knutb - mp3 players

I purchased a cheap little MP3 player, branded under the "Ministry of Sound" label, with 1 gigabyte of flash memory and a simple LED backlit LCD display to listen to the many random MP3s I had made over time.

Ministry Of Sound MP3 Player

All went well, until I made the mistake of putting in a half flat battery... The display backlight flickered, and the device froze on the powerup intro screen. No matter, I thought, and put in a fresh battery, but the player was bricked. Every powerup would get to the intro screen and no further.

When plugged into a USB port, the player was no longer detected. It seemed that the battery, or more specifically the rapid power up and power down of the device had corrupted the firmware on the player. This is where the fun began.

First stop was the vendor website. This is where I found they no longer supported the device, and didn't offer any firmware updates or software. The disk that came with the player was also quite useless, with only a user manual and drivers for Windows 98.

Next stop, Google. This proved to be rather fruitless, as the results were almost completely for chinese vendors and resellers of the same device. All were listed with the ability to upgrade firmware, but no provider had firmware available for download. So, with one dead device and no obvious way of recovery, there was one possibility left.

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