Thursday, January 04, 2007

Using American version of SonicStage

Many people have questions about the Sony Ericsson W42S Walkman phone currently in use by AU/KDDI.

I will attempt to dispel some myths, confirm a few others, and then walk you through the process of getting it working with American versions of XP in (some) English.

The phone:
The phone is one of the few entry level AU phones with English menu options. It has a ‘music’ player (I say that because it is not true MP3, it has to be converted first), a radio tuner, a 3 mega pixel photo and short video camera (with sound and lowlight mode), GPS map location (via web), as well as typical schedule, note, and voice recording capabilities. Note that the GPS likely won’t work anywhere but Japan. The maps are downloaded from the web each time you use it.

It comes with 1 gig of internal memory and has a slot for a Duo MMC. These are the same cards used in PSPs.

Finally, a SIM card rounds out the phone giving it account transfer and global access possibilities. Although, I doubt very many places have compatible service providers.

Memory options:
First I few things about ‘internal’ verses MMC memory:
Yes, the phone comes with a gig of memory built in. Without an MMC card installed, this memory is multi-purpose. It stores applications, music, photos, and video. It is the ‘catch-all’ memory when the user has nothing else installed.

This is NOT the way to get the best use from the phone.

It is advisable that you install a Duo card in the phone. In fact, the process I am about to outline for you won’t work without one, so don’t bother if you don’t have a card installed.

Now, considering the fact that the phone is free with new accounts, or a cheap price upgrade to existing AU customers, the cost of a gig memory card (about $70) makes it all worth it.

What goes where?
With your newfangled Duo card installed, you might be asking: What’s the point?
The point is the phone changes its storage priorities once the card is installed. From now on, photos will get stored to the card. They can however be moved to the phone if you so choose, but there is no point to that, other than saving space for music. Video/audio captures will remain in the phone’s memory due to access speeds required to save and play back that content smoothly. Additionally, any music downloaded from AU music source will also be stored in the phone. To review:
Stored on the phone (1 Gig):
Video
Voice recordings
Downloaded songs
Applications

Stored on the MMC (up to 1 Gig [will likely hold more]):
Photos
User loaded music
General purpose file folder system (USB disk drive)

Ok, so you have your phone, and you have your MMC. You should also have a docking/charging station and the installation CD from AU. How do you get this thing working in English, or at least Engrish?

Steps to Get SonicStage to work with W42S:
1: Explore the AU cd
2: look in the data_communcation_tools\exe folder
3: Run and install:
a: W42S-setup1000
b: aupsetinst

NOTE: an alternate way to get W42S-setup1000 is to Explore the CD to SonicStage CP, and EXTRACT the setup file there. Then Explore to:(Extract root)\SetupSonicStage\Device\Driver\W42S

I have checked hash difference and they appear to match. However I am not guaranteeing that they are the exact same file (hard to mod a file without mod-ing the hash though).

4: open your favorite browser and point it to:
http://musicstore.connect.com/custom/promos/download.html
Now.. Assuming you live in Japan, downloading won’t work for you. Notice about halfway down there is a link that says “Having trouble downloading SonicStage CP? Please click here.”

You are on your own there now.. ;)

5: Install SonicStage English version and reboot.
6: At this point, plug in your phone, and make sure it comes up as a USB drive (choose MassStorage mode on the phone)

In my case, I have Music Port installed as well, so you have to tell it to quite that application.

7: Run SonicStage. It should start up with two panels, the one on the right called “au W42S (drive#)”
EDIT: it may start with only on panel untill you get everything set up for the phone!

8: In SS, go to Tools/Options/Transfer and you should see:
Memory Stick/Network Walkman/Portable IC Audio Player

Choose it and hit Transfer Settings

9: Select ATRAC3 transfer and OK out of both dialogs.


You are now ready to put some tunes in your phone. Remember that SS must convert the files to a format the phone can read. Conversion doesn’t take that long.

I do not know if downloaded music from AU is also in this ATRAC format or not.

Getting your photos:
Simply explore to the DCIM folder on the phone, copy and paste. Easy.

Playing your tunes:
On the phone, go to the Memory Stick folder, then Music folder.

Caveats:
Playing this way does not use the ‘player’ functionality of the phone. So, the Jog wheel and screen modes don’t work. Its sort of a let down that those features only work via downloaded music from AU or perhaps loaded with auMusicPort.

AU Music Port:
I also have this working on my American XP. It was a bitch to set up, and took a few days. I did It like, two months ago so I don’t exactly remember how. I also don’t read Japanese, so need my roommate to translate for me. I have not bothered asking him to help me put music on the phone with it. I would imagine that it will convert and load them to the main folder, and thus use the player controls?

Anyway, if enough people request a tutorial on this, I could get with him and we could write a walk through (it might be good for me to have anyway).

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

MRE, this is great info, I did everything as asked but when I plugged my phone into my comp (bought it from 100yen shop and know it works since the charge light comes up) SS isnt recognizing my phone! I have SS 4.2 previously installed so i didnt install SS as instructed, please help!

Anonymous said...

MRE, I think the cable is not meant to transfer information, I looked in the removable storage devices and it doesnt show anything, my phone charges though via the computer. Is there a special cable required that goes,perhaps from the headset connection to the computer? Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Also one last thing, I installed the 2 programs from the CD and ran only the w42s setup since it was easy but i didnt mess with the other program since it pops up an AU kddi menu with several options, so maybe thats causing problems too?

Anonymous said...

When i try to transfer the music file, I get an error saying "Cannot transfer anymore tracks. The memory of the device/media is full" even though i still have 222 MB of space in the memory card. Please help!

MRE said...

Hmmm.. I havn't ran into this error yet. I will try to fill out the card to see what happens. Currently my MS card starts are: 949 megs total, 431.2 used, 45% used (518 free). I will try to get it close to 100 free and report back.

PS is the error on the phone, or on Sonic Stage?

MRE said...

Yes, you dont really need the AU KDDI software. It will try to run by default. check the phone's Selection/USB mode menue and change it to ether Mass storage or user select.

Anonymous said...

The error is on the sonic stage. I formatted the memory stick and tried transferring again but got the same result :=[

MRE said...

Have you tried accessing the memory stick in My Computer as a normal drive? It should be a FAT format drive, and perhaps checking the disk for errors would be good.
You could also try borrowing a stick from someone else. Perhaps your MS is bad? I dunno.
You WERE able to get some files on it and play them right?

Anonymous said...

Yes I have. I can copy and paste photos to the DCIM folder in the memory stick. When I use Sonic Stage to transfer the MP3 file (which converts it to ATTRAC file) to memory stick, I always get an error that says "cannot transfer file" I formatted the memory stick and it still wouldn't work. I've just bought this memory stick at a Japanese mall. It's a 256 MB Lexar MS Pro Duo. My co-worker got the same phone and he never have any problem transferring files using sonic stage. I gave him my memory stick to try it out and he's having the same error. Maybe I should try getting another memory stick. But fuck man! Shit's expensive as hell..oh well..

MRE said...

Just to make sure the problem is your stick: First you gave him your stick and confirmed that he cant transfer data to it using his phone.. Now put his stick in your phone and check that you CAN transfer data to it. If yes, then, definately, get a new stick. (perhaps the place of purchase will replace [BICcamera will often do that if you have receipt]).

Now, if his stick wont work in your phone either, then Goto C: ;)

C: Your phone is in some way defective.. and you might have just trashed your friends stick.

MRE said...

one thing to check before calling it quits on that stick:
Since you can access it as data, take at look at the file structure.
You should have a folder like:

F:\OMGAUDIO
in that folder will be a few files (various data files making up the playlists for each CD you transfer) and another folder like:

F:\OMGAUDIO\10F00
This folder holds all your songs, with file names like 1000000A.OMA

If F:\OMGAUDIO isn't there, you might try manually creating the folder.

If you can transfer data to and from it like a data disk, its not likely the card is broken.. either something wrong with the phone (unlikely) or the file structure (more likely)

MRE said...

P.S. After formating, did you attempt option 9 in the memory stick menu to Initialize all of your folders? I have not needed to do this, but it might help you out?

Anonymous said...

can i request a translation on the au music port. like you said on the last part you get your room mate to translate it, thanks

e-mail it to me kyanmilesivan@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

i don't have a usb cable. is it possible to transfer music to my memory stick using a cardreader? i can see dcim and mobile folders on my memory stick. which folder di I need to place the songs?

MRE said...

Unfortunately, it is not just a matter of putting the file on the card. The phone maintains several files that act as directory pages on the phone. Copying files to the card wont update these pages, and thus you will not be able to see the files by the phone.

I have tried every way I can think of to put music on the card directly. The files are there(it acts as portable media) but in every instance the phone is unaware of it.

All I can suggest is that you attempt to purchase a phone cradle.

Stay tuned to this site! I will be announcing releases of TRANSLATED files for auMusicPort soon. I still have loads of work to do, but will be making incremental updates.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the info on this blog - very helpful.

A friend has the AU Music Port software running on her Japanese PC and explained how to use it (very simple) but I just need to get it set up on an English XP system.

You wrote: "AUMusicPort WILL work on American XP (with japanese fonts installed. Getting the package working the first time requires a lot of font toggling, but it WILL work.)".

Could you please explain the "font toggling" - I keep seeing messages and screens full of gibberish even though I have Japanese fonts installed.

Thanks in advance

Anonymous said...

I am currently living in Japan and I have been using this phone since last October. I bought for the music, but discovered that the software is a pain. It took me several days but finally I got both Sonic Stage and AU Music Port working. AU Music Port is the worst. After installing the Asian font package, you have to either change your locale or run a small program called applocale that will launch the software in Japanese. I think I remember having to rip the sonic stage cd to my computer and change the config to install on an english version of xp and then merge the w42s drivers in the install sequence. To be honest, I forgot most of what I did but I would love to help people out since I was desperate for help at that time, but unfortunately couldn't find any. Also, AU Music Port won't let you transfer existing music on your PC directly to the phone, you have to rip it from CD's into the software first, but of course, there are ways around that too. :) If anyone still has questions, please post and I will check back to see if I can't help a little bit.

Reggie said...

Anonymous, if you don't mind I would like some help with the jibberish business. I have Japanese installed on XP, but only some of the text from the au cd comes up. As of right now I have SonicStage 4.3, MySync suite, the AUPSETINST file, and Music Port. I also don't have this model of phone, I have the W51H. I wouldn't mind knowing how to get the music from directly from my pc to the phone either :). If you could help in any way, I would greatly appreciate it. If there is anything else you need to know that I have omitted just let me know. Thanks.

MRE said...

Reggie, as the anonymous poster said, you have to play with local settings.
So, 1: install Japanese language support from your Windows CD.
2: go to Start, Control panel, Regional and language settings. Make sure that under Advanced, the first setting now says Japanese from the drop down (language for non-unicode..) you will change this back to English after the install. Also make sure you have the language bar showing.
3. dick around with installing ;)
Thats the best I can tell you.. its a pain.. you may have to reboot once or twice to get it into Japanese mode.
Sorry I cant be of more help, but it as 7 months ago.

However.. in just a moment, I will post a link for a partially (and roughly) translated AUmusic port. I *Think* all the install screens are translated.. (thus the wait.. I want to double check and package it.)

MRE said...

Also Reggie.. the BEST method in my opinion is installing Sonic Stage for your music. You may need a memory card (not certain about how your model works).

I never use AUmusic port now that I have SS and the mem card.. my photos save to the mem card, and I move the videos over to it on the phone, then download all my pics and vids via Explorer.

Reggie said...

Ok, I'll give a try and keep messin' with it. Thanks a bunch for the info. Maybe one day I can actually use some of the functions on the phone other than the internet.
Thank you again.

marge said...

why does it prompts me to format my memory stick everytime my phone goes off when it ran out of battery? Is there a way to recover those files?