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Old 12-20-2012, 07:53 AM   #1
crazybrit crazybrit is offline
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Default Samsung BDP2500: Problem updating firmware. Dreadful Samsung support

My BDP2500 failed (stopped powering on) just after the warranty period and I had to pay to have it repaired (in 2009). Before it was repaired it only had Netflix. After the repair it came back with Netflix and also Pandora.

Unfortunately it also had an annoying bug where when streaming some Netflix titles, the video goes black after the first frame is played. Player stops responding and needs to be reset. Affects maybe 50% of titles but most work on after reset and resume play but some just crash every time.

Firmware version installed since repair is "090622.01_111208B1_1254.08_XAA"

I've tried to update via the online update but ever since the repair, it says "The latest version of the Firmware is already installed. There is no need to upgrade".

I've contacted Samsung about this numerous times since the repair and every time the text-chat conversation was "if the player says it has the latest version, there is no newer version available".

We hadn't been using Neflix that often as we got DISH so I just lived with the crashing. Our 2 year DISH commitment just ended and we cancelled so we found ourselves using the Netflix streaming much more often and the player crashes were driving me nuts .... so I contacted Samsung again via text-chat.

This time the person actually asked me (for first time) to provide current version of firmware installed and told me this firmware was old and newer versions were available. Could not explain why online update didn't work but sent me a link to website where I could download.

Unfortunately the burnt ISO refused to load, ejecting with "This disc cannot be played". USB was no more successful (RUF copied onto a newly formatted stick). Player recognised USB but then nothing happened. Exact same scenario as another user reported here: http://forums.cnet.com/7723-13973_10...date-firmware/

I tried e-mailing them with the details and above URL. Got no reply.

So I called them and worked my way past 1st level to 2nd level. Guy tried to help me debug. After 20 minutes the 2nd tier said he had no idea and was going to get next level to call me back within 24 hours. This never happened despite me sending e-mails asking when I would get call back. I have two replies from them saying you'll get call back from level 3 in 24-48 hours.

Asynchronous to this they finally replied to the first e-mail saying they would send me an official firmware disc and provided me a transaction#.

A week passed with no call back. I gave up and called back, endured having to re-explain everything to the level-1 and being cut off several times. Insisted on speaking to a supervisor. Got the supervisors employee ID.

They basically thought I couldn't burn an ISO so insisted on resending me the official firmware disc, this time with rush processing and gave me a second transaction#. Told me if it didn't work to call back and ask to speak to supervisor again.

The amusing things to come from this conversation were 1) that there is no 3rd level support, so I would have been waiting for ever for a call back 2) the reason the online update has never worked since repair is because they were having 'technical issues' and so stopped pushing new BDP2500 firmware versions to the online server

Anyhow, I got the official disc. Latest version, labelled for correct player. Won't load. Player makes noises and then ejects disc, same error message on screen "this disc cannot be played".

Called back, 1st level insisted I re-xplain all over again despite asking me for the transaction id (from the 2nd disc shipment) then tried to tell me there was no need to update firmware.

Eventually after insisting on speaking to a supervisor and explaining the entire history yet again, he told me Samsung was going to repair/replace at their cost even though it was out of warranty and that he was noting down these details in the log. He transferred me to generic "customer care" who he said would take down my shipping details.

Customer care immediately told me they were not going to repair or replace and the previous guy was incorrect. Goodbye.

So I called back, got to speak to level 1 Blu Ray support, got cut off, tried again and asked to speak to the same BluRay supervisor I'd just spoken to but instead got transferred to "customer care". Different person this time who told me there was no record of the conversation I'd had with the Blu Ray supervisor. He told me he was non-technical and therefore there was nothing further he could discuss.

I couldn't face trying to navigate the call system again so I wrote a letter detailing everything to Samsung USA Office of the President and sent it USPS.

Got call back today regarding the letter and then an e-mail. They don't seem to want to discuss the actual issues and the poor support. Instead they say that because they can find no record of the earlier conversations I had with their support about the online firmware update not working (short conversation each time "if the online update says you have the latest version then there is no new version") I will have to provide them with the transaction #s for these conversations before they will discuss any further.

What are other peoples experiences in regard to transaction #s? I've only ever got one when they physically did a repair or shipped something to me (official firmware cd). Never when contacting them otherwise.

I guess I wasn't really expecting them to budge, I just wanted to write to them and detail just how awful their support is. That said, I am a little surprised by their reply to the letter. Oh well. Their tech support really is terrible. It's a real shame as I think their products are good but I would never buy a piece of consumer electronics from them again because of the tech-support.


Anyways, long rant over (feels good to vent ). Maybe there is a way to fix this still? Anyone here have an idea? I can't think of anything. The level 2 guy had me do a "factory reset" and then gave up. The player loads other CDs so I'm not sure why it can't handle the firmware CD. USB of course doesn't work either which seems very odd, seems almost like a broken firmware install from the factory (when repaired).


My only option now is to pay to have them fix it (again). Since all the other playback functions work fine (CD, DVD, BluRay) I'd rather spend the money on a Roku if I want working Netflix.

Last edited by crazybrit; 12-20-2012 at 08:39 AM.
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Old 12-23-2012, 04:02 PM   #2
umich08 umich08 is offline
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Unfortunately technology has a shelf life. That's an old player, I think 4 or 5 years at this point. I had one at one point as well and it had glitches all over the place. Rather than pursuing that player, I'd recommend just buying a new one with wifi and a bunch of apps. There are several models and brands out there for under $100. They will have better load times and better firmware support. As you mentioned, you could also go out and just buy a Roku box. Good luck man.
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Old 12-23-2012, 05:32 PM   #3
crazybrit crazybrit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umich08 View Post
Unfortunately technology has a shelf life. That's an old player, I think 4 or 5 years at this point. I had one at one point as well and it had glitches all over the place. Rather than pursuing that player, I'd recommend just buying a new one with wifi and a bunch of apps. There are several models and brands out there for under $100. They will have better load times and better firmware support. As you mentioned, you could also go out and just buy a Roku box. Good luck man.
One thing is for sure, I'll never ever buy a Samsung again. Their tech-support is just terrible.

What's annoying about this situation is for 3 years they denied that there was any new firmware available when in fact the reason the online update didn't work was because they'd stopped pushing updates to the server. I can't believe that the ability to update from USB just stopped working due to age (same for CD). This must be a bug that they introduced in the new firmware they installed when they repaired it.

There is new firmware available (I'm several versions back it turns out) which I'm sure would fix the Netflix bug ... if only I can get the player to update :-(

But yeah it's an old player. I had assumed Samsung support wouldn't be incompetent. Bad assumption as I wasted hours being messed around by them.

In the end they offered me an exchange to a factory refurbished 2010 era player for $80. LOL. Googling I could buy the same refurb for less.

Last edited by crazybrit; 12-23-2012 at 05:35 PM.
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:14 PM   #4
The Duke The Duke is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazybrit View Post
One thing is for sure, I'll never ever buy a Samsung again. Their tech-support is just terrible.

What's annoying about this situation is for 3 years they denied that there was any new firmware available when in fact the reason the online update didn't work was because they'd stopped pushing updates to the server. I can't believe that the ability to update from USB just stopped working due to age (same for CD). This must be a bug that they introduced in the new firmware they installed when they repaired it.

There is new firmware available (I'm several versions back it turns out) which I'm sure would fix the Netflix bug ... if only I can get the player to update :-(

But yeah it's an old player. I had assumed Samsung support wouldn't be incompetent. Bad assumption as I wasted hours being messed around by them.

In the end they offered me an exchange to a factory refurbished 2010 era player for $80. LOL. Googling I could buy the same refurb for less.
The last firmware update was April 28 2011. I've had a 2500 since shortly after it came out and love it - rock solid for me and excellent DVD upconverting. But it is my secondary player, an Oppo BDP-83 is my primary player. The 2500 was one of the first BD players with Netflix streaming and I've read pretty much nothing but complaints about for streaming Netflix, so I don't think FW is your problem. I just checked and I'm behind as well, my FW is from 2010, but I haven't had any disc playback problems. I don't even have my mine connected to the internet, I live in a rural area where my WiMax internet service (long range wireless) claims to be "up to 1.5mbps", but is in actuality much less than 1mbps and doesn't cut it for streaming.

Even though I've been very pleased with my 2500 I would never buy a Samsung again, nor an LG. I'm sold on Oppo, but for a much more reasonably priced player I'd look at Panasonic or Sony. The current line up of BD players will end your frustration with Netflix streaming.
When you boil it all down, what does a man really need? Just a smoke and a cup of coffee. - Johnny Guitar

Last edited by The Duke; 12-23-2012 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:11 PM   #5
crazybrit crazybrit is offline
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Well I spent most of the afternoon today and amazingly I fixed it.

Full discussion is here: http://forums.cnet.com/7723-13973_10...pdate-firmware

So does any of your guys with 2500s have Pandora? The supervisor in their Blu Ray support told me the reason my 2500 left for repair with only Netflix but came back from repair with Pandora+Netflix was because they had added Pandora to the 2500 firmware due to customer demand.

Anyways, my 2550 now has the latest firmware. Plus of course the rear label listing it still as a 2500. It's a collectors item

Last edited by crazybrit; 12-23-2012 at 11:13 PM.
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Old 12-24-2012, 06:47 PM   #6
The Duke The Duke is offline
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Originally Posted by crazybrit View Post
Well I spent most of the afternoon today and amazingly I fixed it.

Full discussion is here: http://forums.cnet.com/7723-13973_10...pdate-firmware

So does any of your guys with 2500s have Pandora? The supervisor in their Blu Ray support told me the reason my 2500 left for repair with only Netflix but came back from repair with Pandora+Netflix was because they had added Pandora to the 2500 firmware due to customer demand.

Anyways, my 2550 now has the latest firmware. Plus of course the rear label listing it still as a 2500. It's a collectors item
Ah, so that was it - Samsung must have loaded 2550 firmware on it in the shop and now it wouldn't take 2500 FW because it thought it was a 2550. I'd read on AVSforum that folks were loading 2550 FW on their 2500 and getting Pandora, but I tried it a couple times and never could get my 2500 to take the 2550 FW. I don't need it now as DirecTV has added Pandora as a free extra feature, but I will load the newer 2500 FW now that I see I am out of date. Congrats on getting your Netflix fixed with the newer FW.
When you boil it all down, what does a man really need? Just a smoke and a cup of coffee. - Johnny Guitar
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Old 12-24-2012, 07:05 PM   #7
crazybrit crazybrit is offline
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Originally Posted by The Duke View Post
Ah, so that was it - Samsung must have loaded 2550 firmware on it in the shop and now it wouldn't take 2500 FW because it thought it was a 2550. I'd read on AVSforum that folks were loading 2550 FW on their 2500 and getting Pandora, but I tried it a couple times and never could get my 2500 to take the 2550 FW. I don't need it now as DirecTV has added Pandora as a free extra feature, but I will load the newer 2500 FW now that I see I am out of date. Congrats on getting your Netflix fixed with the newer FW.
Googling yesterday I read reports of people trying to install 2550 firmware on a 2500 but never succeeding.

I'm not sure what the firmware is checking to determine whether the player is a 2500 or a 2550. Maybe the serial# is in the hardware and there are ranges corresponding to the different players.

This is the system information screen from before the update (2009 firmware): http://i47.tinypic.com/w8p3if.jpg Is there anything in those strings that is different between a 2500 and a 2550?

My unit totally failed (would not power on). My assumption is that when they serviced it, they replaced the system board but it's possible there is no difference in the hardware at all and the decision on what variant you can use in an update is dependent on the original software load.

I'll never know as there was nothing on the repair invoice when I received it back and Samsung confirmed their system contained no details on what was done. It would have been real helpful if they had attached a note saying "in future you will need to update using 2550 firmware". Even more helpful would have been to continue to allow users to update via the players built-in online update. Sigh!

When you load the latest 2500 firmware you'll have to tell me if it now enables Pandora. My guess is it doesn't and the earlier was just more misinformation from Samsung.

Yes, the newer firmware also fixes the Netflix streaming bug, no more player crashes when starting streaming. Before, sometimes you'd have to reset 3 or 4 times to watch a title

So I'm happy it's now working. Not happy about the amount of time/effort it took and how poor Samsung's support is.

Last edited by crazybrit; 12-24-2012 at 07:30 PM.
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Old 12-24-2012, 08:27 PM   #8
The Duke The Duke is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazybrit View Post
Googling yesterday I read reports of people trying to install 2550 firmware on a 2500 but never succeeding.

I'm not sure what the firmware is checking to determine whether the player is a 2500 or a 2550. Maybe the serial# is in the hardware and there are ranges corresponding to the different players.

This is the system information screen from before the update (2009 firmware): http://i47.tinypic.com/w8p3if.jpg Is there anything in those strings that is different between a 2500 and a 2550?

My unit totally failed (would not power on). My assumption is that when they serviced it, they replaced the system board but it's possible there is no difference in the hardware at all and the decision on what variant you can use in an update is dependent on the original software load.

I'll never know as there was nothing on the repair invoice when I received it back and Samsung confirmed their system contained no details on what was done. It would have been real helpful if they had attached a note saying "in future you will need to update using 2550 firmware". Even more helpful would have been to continue to allow users to update via the players built-in online update. Sigh!

When you load the latest 2500 firmware you'll have to tell me if it now enables Pandora. My guess is it doesn't and the earlier was just more misinformation from Samsung.

Yes, the newer firmware also fixes the Netflix streaming bug, no more player crashes when starting streaming. Before, sometimes you'd have to reset 3 or 4 times to watch a title

So I'm happy it's now working. Not happy about the amount of time/effort it took and how poor Samsung's support is.
I don't know if there's any difference as I don't have a 2550. Yes, there is no hardware difference, just the firmware and model called '2550' that enables Pandora so Best Buy could have an exclusive. I installed the update earlier, no Pandora, nothing looks any different. The firmware probably just made Netflix more stable, and maybe an update for some BDs playback - but Star Wars played fine before, and Fox is the usual culprit for changing the BD+ copy protection scheme on their 'big' releases.
When you boil it all down, what does a man really need? Just a smoke and a cup of coffee. - Johnny Guitar
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Old 12-24-2012, 08:48 PM   #9
crazybrit crazybrit is offline
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I don't know if there's any difference as I don't have a 2550. Yes, there is no hardware difference, just the firmware and model called '2550' that enables Pandora so Best Buy could have an exclusive. I installed the update earlier, no Pandora, nothing looks any different. The firmware probably just made Netflix more stable, and maybe an update for some BDs playback - but Star Wars played fine before, and Fox is the usual culprit for changing the BD+ copy protection scheme on their 'big' releases.
I don't own any BluRays so I wouldn't know about BD stuff. I'm in the process of transcoding all my DVDs to a NAS, I have a Raspberry Pi that I'm using to stream them and quality is fine for me. I hate having huge stacks of discs cluttering up the room plus the DVD playback on the 2500 is painfully slow, FF/REW drives me nuts. The BDP2500 is pretty much exclusively for Netflix unless we happen to rent a DVD from Redbox which is rare. So far so good post firmware update though I wish the Netflix UI was better, it would be nice to have a way of grouping titles (genre etc) as scrolling through a long linear list isn't ideal. Not sure if the Roku UI is any better. If the Samsung fails again I'll probably get one of those.

Last edited by crazybrit; 12-24-2012 at 08:50 PM.
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Old 12-25-2012, 04:52 AM   #10
jtsonphone jtsonphone is offline
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yeah,i think so, Star Wars played fine before, and Fox is the usual culprit for changing the BD+ copy protection scheme on their 'big' releases.
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