We just ran into a new Blu-Ray player problem. The problem manifests itself during the boot process where only a small window of the video is visible in the center of the screen.
We tried to play Crank 2 on our Sony BDP-BX1 Blu-Ray player. The boot process appeared to work fine until the first full video scene is supposed to appear, which is a movie preview. Only about a 10 inch by 10 inch square of the image is displayed in the center of the screen on our Sony 52 inch HDTV, and the same phenomenon occurs if you try to switch to the main menu. Only a small area in the center displays any video.
The BDP-BX1 is Profile 2 player and is supposed to be fully compatible with all new Blu-ray features, including BD Live. It is connected to the web and all player updates have been done.
We did find the solution, but it was through trial and error and “best guess” troubleshooting. The Crank 2 disk touts the introduction of a new BD Live menu system. That was the first clue. One would naturally assume that performing all of the firmware updates would resolve the problem, but we were wrong about that. All the latest firmware updates were installed. The clue was a message that appears during the Blu-ray disc boot process for Crank 2. We saw a message that displays in a box that reads, “Checking for updates.” At first we assumed that this meant that it was checking to see if all firmware updates were downloaded for the player. What it appears to mean is that it is checking to see if all BD Live updates have been downloaded to the memory in the player.
Profile 2 players have a USB port in the back, which is typically labeled “EXT.” This is for adding memory to the player and appears to be memory reserved for special Blu-ray disc features. We used a standard 1 gigabyte Cruzer USB flash drive, cleared the drive of all programs and files, and inserted it into the Ext slot. You do not need to buy any special memory from Sony or any other player manufacturers. Almost any standard USB flash drive should work.
After installing the USB drive, the next time we booted Crank 2 and hit the “Checking for updates” message, the message changed to “Downloading update.” This was not a standard player update, because while those occur a message displays on the front of the player. No message appeared on the player display. The download took about one minute. After completing, the boot process resumed and then the full video display appeared. We watched Crank 2 without any further problems.
This was one of those strange and unexpected technical problems that may only appear on players with insufficient onboard memory for storing updates or those that have run out of available onboard memory. The good news is that it is easy to resolve simply by adding additional memory with a USB flash drive. USB drives are very inexpensive. The manual for our Sony Blu-ray player says that the USB drive should have at least a one gigabyte capacity.
Some of the newer players from Panasonic and other manufacturers use an SD card for extended memory. If you are having problems with Crank 2, check the back of your Blu-ray player and if a memory slot exists, add the appropriate memory. A one or two gigabyte USB drive or SD card is all that you need. You also need an Internet connection to perform the appropriate update.