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Troubleshooting Sony Walkman MP3 Problems

Max holds a B.S. in mass communications from SIU, an M.A. in communications from U of I, and is pursuing an MBA from Webster University.

Common problems with Sony Walkman MP3 players include the device freezing, static or other noise playing in the background of your files, files not playing, the device not turning on or being recognized by a computer, and more. Use troubleshooting to find your specific problem and resolve it on your own without having to send it back to Sony or take it to a repair person.


Sony Walkman MP3 Player Is Frozen

  • You may have accidentally slid the device's Hold button into the On position, making it so the device won't respond when you press any buttons. The Hold button is typically located on the right side of Sony MP3 players, but it may be located elsewhere on the device. Check the manual for your device to see where your Hold button is located and what the On and Off positions are for that button.
  • If the Sony Walkman MP3 has been exposed to an area with heavy moisture or has recently gotten wet, you may also experience this problem. The best thing you can do is power the device down and leave it off for at least a few hours. Operating the device while there is condensation inside of it can ruin the electrical components inside of the device, potentially rendering your device non-operational. After you feel the Sony Walkman MP3 player is dry, power it back on and resume operation. If possible, it's best to leave the device off for a day before attempting to operate it.
  • If your Sony Walkman MP3 player is not responding while it's connected to a computer, this is normal. You need to disconnect the device from the computer it's connected to before you can resume using the MP3 player.

You Hear Noise or Static, or an Audio File Doesn't Play Correctly

  • The Sony Walkman MP3 player may be near a device that sends or receives some sort of signal, such as a baby monitor, cell phone, cordless phone, wireless router, or a host of other devices. Turn off or move away from these devices to try resolving this problem.
  • The file that you're listening to may be a damaged file. Try listening to the file on the computer to see if the file plays correctly on there. If you converted the file before moving it to the Sony Walkman MP3 player, check the source file to make sure it plays correctly and then try re-converting the file. If the file doesn't convert correctly again, try converting the file using another program.
  • Your MP3 player may not support the type of file you're trying to play. Common audio formats supported by the Sony Walkman MP3 player include MP3, WMA and AAC. However, supported file types can vary from device to device and from version to version. As a result, check the manual associated with your player for a list of supported file types.
  • The headphones you're using may be damaged. Try using a different set of headphones to see if this resolves the problem. Alternatively, check your Walkman's headphone jack to make sure it's not filled with dirt or debris, and also make sure it isn't physically damaged.

Rate Your Sony Walkman MP3 Player

Sony Walkman MP3 Won't Charge or Won't Turn On

  • Ensure that you're using the USB cable that came with your Sony Walkman MP3 player. Just because another USB charging cable connects snugly to the device doesn't mean it will actually charge the device. Alternatively, if you're using a third-party charging cable, check the specifications associated with the cable to make sure it will work with your specific device.
  • If you're Sony Walkman MP3 player is connected to a computer and won't charge, try disconnecting or turning off other USB devices connected to the computer. Your computer's USB root hub can only output so much power, and if other devices are using all of that power, the root hub won't have any power left to charge your connected MP3 player.
  • Ensure the Sony Walkman MP3 player is connected to a high-power USB port and not a low-power USB port. High-power USB ports are located directly on computer towers and through using an AC-to-USB adapter. Low-power USB ports often include those located on your computers monitor or keyboard, or in other places, such as on desktop phones.
  • The charging cable you're using may be defective. Try using a different charging cable to see if that's the problem.

Data Transfer Problems

  • Data you thought you successfully transferred to the Sony Walkman MP3 player may not have transferred as a result of an error or the cable becoming accidentally disconnected during the transfer. Try transferring the data to your MP3 player again.
  • The data may have transferred to your Walkman MP3 player, but the data may not have been in a supported format. Check the list of formats your device supports to see if this is the problem. If the file isn't in a supported format, consider using free conversion programs such as Any Video Converter or Any Audio Converter to convert your file to a supported format.

Sony Walkman MP3 Player Not Recognized by Computer

  • If the Sony Walkman MP3 player battery is low, wait at least one minute for the computer to recognize the player. This happens because the player's battery needs to achieve a minimum charge before the computer recognizes it.
  • Try connecting the device to a different USB port. The port you're using may be damaged or defective.
  • Try shutting down other programs that are running. The best way to ensure other programs aren't interfering with the Sony Walkman MP3 player being recognized is to reboot the computer and then connect the MP3 player to the computer immediately after the operating system loads. If the computer still doesn't recognize the MP3 player, try other troubleshooting techniques.

Questions & Answers

Question: My mp3 player is continuously "creating library," and it won't stop loading. How can I fix this?

Answer: If you're using an SD card, I would start by rebuilding the content library. Sony has an article on that here:

If that doesn't work, try resetting the factory settings.

Question: After charging my JBL speaker, why does it show that the device is not charged?

Answer: That's just how JBL Bluetooth speakers work. After the device is fully charged, all of the charging indicator lights go off.

© 2012 Max Dalton


Tim Garrett on August 15, 2019:

My mp3 wont go thru all the songs in the all songs section. It stops at "C"

Luz María Culebro Sánchez on May 28, 2019:

My computer does not recognize my Walkman. Everything works on it and it's fully charged. I've tried it on different USB ports. I've looked everywhere for a solution and I'm really tired of listening to the same old music. I'm going to get some contactb cleaner and try to clean the cable connectors though I dont think that will do it. I just need some anyway. I think it's a solftware problem matbe but I dont know if I can download a new driver. Help Please!

Leri on April 08, 2019:

My Sony Walkman keeps repeating each song, how do I stop this?

Ivan on August 17, 2018:

My Walkman is nwz-b135f. When I charge it it went crazy. The display always flicker and it shows walkman logo. Can anybody help me? I've tried the pin reset method, it's useless!

Thutiyaporn Chittapalo on August 02, 2018:

No light on

Twinkle on March 19, 2018:

Dropped MP3 player in pool for about 3 seconds . Will not work

Marissa on January 13, 2018:

I've had my Mp3 for a few years now, and it isn't often it gets fuzzy or has trouble working. Last night I left it charging on my computer, even after the battery said full and now it won't turn on. I hadn't used it at all today after leaving it to charge. I've tried plugging it back in to get a response but nothing is working so far. Has anyone else had this problem before, and is there anything I can do w/o having to reset? I have certain music files on my MP3 that I can't find or buy anymore.

elaine on December 09, 2017:

after clicking on the mp3 download i am told that thisXML file does not have any style info

Tresha on November 13, 2017:

I plugged my MP3 player into an external mini speaker but it did not play. When I removed the player, it does not come on. If I put it into my PC, I see the player is charging but if I remove it and try switching it on, it does not come on. Please help.

Flade on October 09, 2017:

My Sony MP3 player stopped being recognized by my computer. It doesnt show up anywhere on there so that I can interact with it and download new music or delete stuff etc... The problem isn't the USB port or the driver or any other software issue. I've tried it all 10 different ways. I've finally come to think that the problem is in the cable connection on the MP3 side. I read somewhere that the MP3 player will charge using only 2 pins but to connect to and interact with a computer it needs 4 pins. So, I'm going to try a new cable and see what happens.

Halila H on October 06, 2017:

07 Oct 2017

On 25th September 2017, I bought Sony Walkman NWZ-B183F/R 4GB USB MP3 Player.

I only used this item 2 times. After that, the item is not functioning which I cant even turn ON the item eventhough the battery is full! Please help!

Iko2k on September 27, 2017:

My Sony nw-a26hn mp3 player has battery problems. It won't shut off. Even if I pause a song and then hold the pwr-off button. a week later, my battery is stone dead. Once I plugged it in again, it took a few minutes for the display to show it was charging. Any ideas on what to do?

Glenn on September 27, 2017:

My nw-a26hn mp3 player will not shut off even when I pause what's playing and then hit the pwr-off button. Sleep mode does not seem to work either. I last fully charged the player a week ago, paused a song, hit the pwr-off & a week later, it is completely dead. It took a few minutes for the player to show it was charging after I plugged it in.

Joe on August 20, 2017:

My sony mp3 player wont turn on even when fully charged

SURRESH LAL SHRESTHA on August 12, 2017:


Flade on August 12, 2017:

My computer does not recognize my Walkman. Everything works on it and it's fully charged. I've tried it on different USB ports. I've looked everywhere for a solution and I'm really tired of listening to the same old music. I'm going to get some contactb cleaner and try to clean the cable connectors though I dont think that will do it. I just need some anyway. I think it's a solftware problem matbe but I dont know if I can download a new driver. Help Please!

Clive on July 29, 2017:

My Track plays about half way through then fades out and starts playing next track

gwynneth jones on July 19, 2017:

didn't see my question my mp3 buffers for a while then goes off Its fully charged and doesn't get to any options

Matthew perez on July 15, 2017:

I was using my sony nwz-e384 mp3 until it stopped working it had troubleshooting and it won't turn on at all.

Michael from Chicago area on July 12, 2017:

My NWA26HN keeps crashing my computer. Like, plug in, blue screen of death immediately.

Werner on June 25, 2017:

My A25 got wet. Everytime it wants to power down after inactivity it starts again. The display lights up and drains the battery. When I press the "Power Off" Button it says it's powering down but it's back up after only two seconds or so.

Selvam SELVAM on June 16, 2017:

No power on

Selvam SELVAM on June 15, 2017:

nwz-b 152f no power on

Selvam SELVAM on June 15, 2017:

no power on

Derp on June 08, 2017:

My Walkman says it charges and it goes on till the battery signal says Full. I plug it in and the player will last for a solid 2-3 minutes. I am using a cable that did not come in the packaging, and an Apple iPhone port/outlet thingamabobber. Is it the cable, the battery, or the circumstances?

EB on June 01, 2017:

Walkman mp3 says "Connected USB (MTP) The player cannot be operated" If I reset it, does the data (music) get erased?

Darrell Powell on May 11, 2017:


Ralf on May 03, 2017:

I have a Sony NWZ-A17 i turn it off then after a while it lights on again with the message "power off" and goes on and on unless i play some music. Before stayed off, period, now is draining the battery by doing this. Can you help me please.

unknown on April 07, 2017:

I recently downloaded some pictures in my walkman. But 2 of them did not appear in the screen .What should I do?

Timw on March 28, 2017:

Hi I dropped my Sony nwz a865 player in the bath for a few seconds. It it stuck on hold now even after reset and months of being left to dry. The menu screen is with the yellow HOLD icon flashing. Sliding the hold switch has no effect. Any suggestions

daniel on March 26, 2017:

sony e394 shows fully chargd in half n hour

Bridget on March 19, 2017:

hi i kind of have the same problem. when i turn on my sony walkman it says its on hold but when i check its not. i tried reseting it but that doesnt fix the problem

Ashley on March 17, 2017:

Hello, my problem is that my PC does not recognize the Walkman nor is my Walkman charging; I've read all the tips you've applied but none seem to be working. I suppose it's just time I get a new one? Only recently I had this issue - two nights ago. I've never encountered it before. Nothing out of the way I treat my Walkman had changed, though I wonder if it had gotten magnetic interference some how? Do you have any other tips or should I just get a new device?

Ezinour on March 06, 2017:

hi , i have the same mp3 as Deltarame , a NWZ-B183F , and i am also having the same problem , my walkman cannot even turn on (even when charging or plug in) most of the times when i try to plug in the PC , it says this device is malfunctioneds , but rarely , it is able to recognize it , so I let it charge thinking the problem was the USB , but when i removed it , it says Updating Library (the buffer was frozen) then a few seconds later , it turned off. Please help

shenaz jaunbocus on February 23, 2017:

hi my mp3 sony is not working i have put it to charge .normally the design battery is like running meaning like loading but after a few minutes it stopped and i am not able to turn off as it is blocked saying charging even thought its not.

please help me thanks in advance

Anushi arora on February 19, 2017:

I transferred songs from my laptop to my sony nwz-b183f. After the transfer was complete, i dosconnected it amd clicked on the play button. The buffering sogn was rotating and updating library was written but just after a second or two, it froze, the same contents are showed on the screen but the buffer sign is not rotating. I tried restarting and formatting. After formatting it worked properly, but the same problem occured when i transferred some songs in it.

nick on February 10, 2017:

My sony nwz-e384 got accidently put in the laundry wash. After a few day it started working, but the screen display in very faint with light shining on it. My guess the screen back light went out.

yasir on February 06, 2017:

helloo... can anyone help me out, My NWZ273 volume goes down sudenly when on volume full background noise can listen. please help out

Deltarame on January 14, 2017:

I'm having a problem similar to an older comment. I have the NWZ-B183F Model, and though I've used it before, it won't turn on at all anymore. I've tried several different USB ports, including a WiiU Port, a TV Port, a MAC Port and an outlet port, but the screen doesn't show anything even if it's plugged in. It's been plugged in for about an hour now and still nothing. Any ideas?

Maria on January 09, 2017:

i have a sony walkman nwz-b142f that has worked perfectly for years, today i was transfering some new songs to it and all of a sudden in middle of transfer my computer stopped recognizing it, i tried unplugging the usb and plugging it again and nothing i tried to turn it off while unplugged from my computer and the screen only showed the word walkman and the loading dots (stand by) and only kept loading the dots and never turned on, i tried using the reset button and turning it on again and same thing happened, now the device manager in my computer only shows a mtp device connected but shows the warning sign(yellow triangle with a !) on it and says it "requires more installation"? I tried running the option in my computer that says 'controller update search' and it says the latest version of the controller is already installed but srill the file explorer in my computer won't recognize it! I'm desperate I don't know what else to do please help I don't wanna have to discard my walkman I love it, and I don't care if my computer can't recognize it I just want it to be able to turn on again and use it!

Drishya on January 06, 2017:

Hi Max,

I have a Walkman NWZ-e384 which is Irresponsible Nowadays.

Other buttons work completely normal but the option button doesn't work .

Due to that I'am facing different problems

kota on November 25, 2016:

I have a Sony Walkman MP3 digital media player. When I pause my audiobook, I want to be able to resume my listening where I left off. Now when I pause, I lose where I was before I left it. How can I do this ?

Era on November 12, 2016:

I have pressed poweroff button of my sony walkman model NWZ B142F while on hold.. And now it has been frozen. I have left it for about 3 weeks now to drain the battery but it doesn't helped me. After connecting to laptop it's not working still. What to do next?

AS on October 21, 2016:

Hi, I have a Sony mp3 model nwz-e354 that doesn't want to charge. I had the original charging usb cable but all of the sudden it stopped working. Now my battery is dead plus I waited too long to buy a new charger. It been dead for about 4 months or even more. I tried resetting the player but nothing happens.

Jo on October 08, 2016:

The shuffle function isn't working on my NW-E394 player, it just keeps shuffling through the same tracks in the same sequence rather than being random each time.

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on October 07, 2016:

Did you hold the Power button down?

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on October 07, 2016:

Did you try a hard reset?

Omna on October 05, 2016:

My iPod has frozen. I turned it off and it's frozen on the power off display for about an hour now . I tried connecting it to my laptop ,it didn't work. Please help!

h on October 04, 2016:

my walkman froze

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on September 13, 2016:

Is there a software update available? If so, please try installing it.

RY on August 09, 2016:

Brand new Sony Walkman MP3 says connecting usb n sometimes says updating library then looks to me like it crashes unplug it from laptop it then just goes blank like it died it is brand new and has not left my table I have downloaded songs to this but will not function when disconnected from laptop

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on June 28, 2016:

I'd recommend fully charging it right out of the box.

ezt maples on May 17, 2016:

when my mp3 player is fully charge and is in the off mode the the battery keeps draining down, I recharge it unplug it and make sure it is turn off , I turn it back on in 2 or 3 days later and it is drain down again this has been going on for 2 or 3 weeks, be for that it was working fine,

Gautam on April 22, 2016:

Hey Dan.

Just unboxed my new Sony nwz-b183f mp3 player. It wasnt turning on when I pressed the play button, so i assumed it was out of battery. So I decided to recharge the MP3 player. It has been over 30 minutes now, I still can't turn on the player.

Please HELP!!! I have used previous versions of sony mp3 player. Havent run into such situations before on those old models.

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on February 03, 2016:

It won't turn on at all? Even while connected to the charger? Have you ever been able to turn it on?

shawreenia on January 21, 2016:

hey I have just gotten this sony mp3 player for my 16th birthday this past November and I cant get it to turn on I have tried every thing and it still wont trun on I need someone who nows how to work these mp3 players to help thanks

frank on November 20, 2015:

i plugged my walkman mp3player into my wiiu and now it just keeps on loading whenever i turn it on please respond soon!

alex on November 20, 2015:

i plugged my walkman mp3player to my wiiu and now when it turns on it just keeps on loading

Reyagg on May 03, 2015:

I have an sd card on my walkman. My computer recognizes the sd card, but not the walkman. I even removed the sd card, but the walkman is still not recognized.

Gary on May 01, 2015:

I like to listen to audio books on my MP3 player, When I use it the next day it shows the menu screen and I had the hold button on. I can't seem to hold it where I left off. I have a Sony NWZ 475.

Gary on November 10, 2014:

could anyone tell me why there is the number 2 and lines beside it coming up on the bottom of the screen on my MP3 player

Mark on September 03, 2014:

Sometimes my MP3 player will randomly pause, go back to the menu, or skip to the next song without me even touching a button. Sometimes when ever i try to turn up the volume it doesn't do anything.

daniel on April 04, 2014:

Here's a question : my Sony mp3 player when I turn it on it sometimes randomly restarts it's self e.g it turns it's self off then starts up again, is there a way to it from happening ?

Ashok on February 08, 2014:


my mp3 player doesn't turn on, but it charges if connected to the usb and file transfer is also possible. If inserted slowly into the USB it turns on and then works fine while there for some time and then goes to charging mode.

Model - sony nwz-b173f

Christopher Pao on December 07, 2013:

My Sony Digital Media Player NWZ-E453 got problem after i restore again. Now even tune to FM radio also no sound at all, even the pre-store songs as well. The time is running but funny thing is: no sound. Help!

Caesar on November 13, 2013:

I have a walkman NWZ-E464, my computer wont recognize it most of the time and the times it does it only stas for half a minute which gives me no time to introduce music :/, i´ve tried updating the drivers and changing form usb port, it does get charged so i don't think it is the cable

Cindy on June 22, 2013:

My MP3 plays but it's like listening to a 45 rpm at only 33...can you help?

Abhishek Singh on April 01, 2013:

when i turn on my mp3 walkman it displays walkman and turn off .Please help

Eamo on March 29, 2013:

Hi, my MP3 player is recognised by my laptop when I plug it in. However on the actual screen of the MP3 player it keeps saying 'Connecting' but never actually connects so I can't transfer music to it now. My MP3 is a Sony NW-A1200, any ideas?

dionne on October 31, 2012:

my walkman NWZ-E354 use to stay fully charged up to at least 40-50 hours when i got it but now when i have it on for at least an hour the battery goes down even when i have it charged for alteast 3 days strait it still goes down in at least 30 minutes to an hour. is this a problem or do i just need a new walkman altogether

beauty on October 29, 2012:

my walkman NWZ-E453 is not displaying any song or video when conneted to my computer, it shows 0 item when conneted but when it is disconnet my all songs are there in my walkman. i tried the reset button but is not helping..i am not able to remove or add any songs!

priyesh on August 23, 2012:

I've only had my Walkman NWZ-w-202 and all of a sudden, whenever I connect it to my computer, the charging screen comes on, but the battery doesn't "flow" (if you want to call it that :P) and my computer completely and totally doesn't recognize it. I've tried everything on here, but it's still the same.

ALC on August 10, 2012:

I got a NWZ-E364 for my birthday a few months ago, and a week or so ago it accidentally got wet while I was listening to it. It froze up and moved at a snail's pace, but now it claims that the "hold" button is in use; I've tried turning it on with both the hold button on and off, but it's still claiming that the hold button is on. My computer recognizes the device, and I can still transfer stuff to it, but the reset button isn't helping and I'm afraid I'm past the 90 day warranty. Any ideas?

Alien on July 30, 2012:

I have a NWZ-E453 and when i connect it to the computer its not recognize.........please help, i guess its battery is drained cause i didn't use it for a week or so.

johny on July 25, 2012:

this walkman i have wount turn on completely it keeps shutting down when i try 2 turn it on it just says creating library and it shuts down it's a NWZ-E438F

Ruby on July 03, 2012:

My Sony NWZ-A845 does not switch off. Any ideas?

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on June 24, 2012:

Did you leave it exposed to extremely hot or cold conditions for too long? Did it suffer an extreme shock lately? It's best if you contact Sony and see if you're still within the manufacturer's warranty. If it is, they should replace it.

Chris on June 24, 2012:

Hi, My Sony Walkman turns on but when I press the buttons it wont respond at all, and no I haven't gotten it wet at all and its been sitting on my desk the entire time, worked fine a few days ago

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on April 17, 2012:

Hi Izzie,

That sounds like the kind of thing you need to contact the manufacturer about. Sorry. Maybe you can still exchange it?



Izzie on April 15, 2012:

My Sony Walkman hasn't been turning on for quite a while. I've tried charging it to see if the battery was dead, and it said it was charging and full, but when I tried taking it out, it turned off and I couldn't turn it on. I have tried restarting it, and everything but it still won't work...

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on April 08, 2012:

Hi JJohn,

I would try uninstalling the drivers for the player, restarting your computer and then reconnecting the Walkman to reinstall the drivers. Silly as it sounds, that may work.



Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on April 08, 2012:

Hi Karl,

Try forcing the Walkman to restart after you connect it to the computer. If that doesn't work, try restarting the computer with the device connected. If that doesn't work, try disconnecting other USB devices connected to the computer that aren't necessary, restart the computer and try connecting the Walkman. If it still doesn't work after that, I hate to say it, but contact Sony. What type of computer are you using?



JJohn on April 07, 2012:

My Sony walkman will connect with usb and it will charge but i can't open it or add any more songs to the mp3 player.

Karl Dabalos on April 05, 2012:

I've only had my Walkman NWZ-E364 for only two months and all of a sudden, whenever I connect it to my computer, the charging screen comes on, but the battery doesn't "flow" (if you want to call it that :P) and my computer completely and totally doesn't recognize it. I've tried everything on here, but it's still the same.

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on April 04, 2012:

Hi mark,

How long have you had it? Yes, I think it's safe to try a low-level format, and I suspect that's the best way to resolve your issue. If that doesn't work, you're probably right in your assumption that the internal components have gone bad over time.



mark on March 30, 2012:

hi max,my walkman is a E453 malay it was purchace in nz there is not a lot of info about these models but saying that it will only work intermittently as a mtp and the same as usb msd im starting to think the chip may be going on me is it ok to low level format the device as i have tried every thing on the net also it will take a file (mp3 in the right format and only play a small bit of it at the start then say no songs available for play back,thanks for your help.

Max Dalton (author) from Greater St. Louis, Missouri on March 08, 2012:

Hi Cindy,

Are you connecting the device to a computer? What message is coming?


Cindy on March 08, 2012:

Im trying to charge and when i plug it in the message come.Connected usb the timer and alarm will become invalid ...and i won't charge