WM-EX49/B603/2091 No power/ Bad Caps

Hi there,


I am new here, so bare with me If I am a total noob.


Anyway, I have a Sony Walkman WM-EX49. Which originally would only play audio out of the left channel, with the right channel not working and only giving out a whinning sound ( I have some audio that I took below of the issue).


After taking it apart looking at the diagrams from the service guide, after lifting over the circuit board, I went to replace back the battery into it to test it, (after making sure nothing was shorting out). But the walkman won't do anything at all now . No play, fwd, rev etc.... nothing.


I equipped myself with my dads multimeter and saw that the connections coming from the battery going from the terminals to the circuit was good. So no issue there.


I have a slight feeling it could be them old ribbon cable but no sure.














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Original Post

Oh, this mechanism again. Despite that I feel that this series has a rather poor quality mechanism, some models in this series are really nice looking (WM150/550C!). And some have an EX Amorphous head (2091/2095 does not. It just has an "EX Head").


Not likely to be the ribbon cable. Out of my 4 copies of this series only one has a working board. The other 3 have no sound or no power.

This series is plagued with leaky/dead capacitors, cheap plastic gears, and a rather cruddy motor that tends to self-destruct.


Check for:


Capacitors likely need replacement. This explains the whining, and likely the dead right channel.


Muting/Playback switches are in the correct position when board is screwed back in. You can test the switches by pressing them manually. (Power will turn on the motor, Play the amp. You should see the motor spinning and hear some hiss from the amp).


Dead motor. Check if the motor can spin freely with no scraping or resistance. Otherwise the motor core may have cracked/corroded/exploded.


Volume Control Pot/Headphone Jack connections.

This mechanism, has also known issues with the clutch system having issues and very cruddy motor also known issues with capacitors leaking out. look at picture above that how the ribbon is suppose to be mounted, you have it rubbing against the black pulley. 


The picture above is a ex50 with the EX head, works fine except audio is a little low on both channels, was going to recap it, but not to sure as case is worn, may use it as a donor. So if you need any parts let me know, as mechanism is in decent shape.

Hi there,


Wow thanks for all the replies so quickly! I wasn't expecting that


Do you know what voltage the motor runs at ? As I was thinking of directly connecting the battery terminals to it, so I could test to see if that motor is bad.


Also, would anyone know where I would be able to get replacement caps for it ? As if they are likely failing then this could also cause some issues with no power. Can you also test these caps with a multimeter ? (I have heard about needing a ESR meter for some things)


When you mean muting/playback switches I am assuming you mean the stop/play buttons located on the top of the device ? 


I may be needing some parts for it if I do manage to get the thing going again. So thanks for that





The motor is servo controlled and cannot run off power directly. Only method to test is with a working board.


YES test with an ESR meter for caps.You can buy them online from sites like digikey, farnell, etc. In this case your caps are dead as you could hear buzzing/whining.


Muting/playback switches are on the board, and marked as "POWER" and "PLAY". it is a small black box with a pin sticking out at one end.


Note: You NEED to have the board screwed back on for the buttons to work. And as retrodos said, your flex cable is in the wrong position.

After looking at the circuit board I noticed that the power latch wasn't engaging, after moving the mechanical arm to the left and screwing the circuit board back in....


SUCCESS! The walkman fired up back into life  


Thanks you so much, without you lot I would of been dead in the water.


Now the caps issue, I don't sadly have an ESR meter to hand and they are not cheap. Would it just be easier to replace all the caps ? If so where would I be able to source them from/what caps would I need?


EDIT: Thanks also about the ribbon cable, I do have my moments sometimes...





Hello Alex,


...and welcome to the forum.


The ESR meter is not absolutely obligatory, especially if you are planning to replace all the electrolytic capacitors. It is still useful if you are putting replacement ones in to identify if they are faulty or not though


With regards to sourcing replacements, that really depends where in the world you are. If you are in the USA, then you are in luck as Digi-Key and Mouser both stock the widest range of capacitors and postage relatively low. If you are outside of the US, then you may have difficulty sourcing them locally. Prices for the actual capacitors themselves is relatively low, but shipping and import taxes to outside of the US from either Digi-Key or Mouser can be many times more than the cost of the components.

I am in UK too.


I bought the EVB branded ESR meter in its kit form and that was 52€ delivered to UK from Portugal. Ready built it is slightly more expensive. It is not as sexy looking as the Peak branded ESR meter, but it serves its purpose fine.


Yup, forget going to Maplin for replacement caps. Your best bet is on-line from Digi-Key or Mouser. When I order from them I bulk up on the order to get the free postage deal, but note that you will have to pay import duty. Also I'd recommend FedEx over UPS as they don't charge the tax on the free postage.

I am looking for some info on the caps that I need now....

Can anyone give me some info on what type of caps they are etc ?

I have a feeling the 2v 330 one is failing as when I apply a small amount of pressure the static gets worse/better sometimes....




After doing some looking on this forum I fount these, which I have checked and all seem to be correct.


1x 330uf 2v

3x 2.2uf 50v

1x 3.3uf 50v

2x 4.7uf 35v

3x 22uf 6v

2x 47uf 4v


Happily, there is a local shop near me that stocks all different types of electronics and capacitors. So I shall try there first.





Okay, turns out that my local shop doesn't do surface mount capacitors.. Damn


We'll I ordered them off digikey and know going to installed them when they arrive.


Keep you posted monday/tuesday.


Btw, I am assuming that the caps just unsolder from the tabs on the side of it ? Or is there anything else I need to do ?





Okay, the new caps arrived. Replaced all of the ones I could.... And the problem is still there.


We'll I give in. I have spent far to much money into this walkman then it is worth. I only wanted it so I could listen to some of our old cassettes, but I have always admired the walkman and wanted a nice one.



I will still keep the parts as spares if anyone needs any mechanical bits. Which are in good shape.



Now... lets find another walkman

Sorry to bring up an old thread. Bought a WM 2091 recently which is very similar to the ex 49. Was hoping to have this as my daily player. Replaced the belt and everything works except only getting static noise from headphones? Anyone help? Are the capacitors the culprit?

That's the culprit for me most of the time. Also check for other corroded traces on the pcb and the head flex cable. Check to see if the mute switch works.

Remember to clean and neutralize the acid on the pcb from the leaking caps before replacement.

Nope, not the same. Different servo circuit, different battery holder and slight differences in switch placement I believe. The EX49 is a different revision from the original 150, with a revised hinge, hinge block, reel table, plastic trim and servo motor. I consider the EX49 (and 170, 190) a deprovement. The new servo motor is poorer in quality and the idler flywheel is now plastic. The resulting machines are thicker as well.

The pcb circuit in the newer series is revised as well, now with far more electrolytic capacitors instead. The redesigned servo circuit and motor produces less motor feedback than my 150, which is an improvement (if the bloody motors weren't so unreliable). Unfortunately the capacitors in all these new boards seem to be of poor quality and leaked, at least in all my copies. The 150 only has 2 electrolytic caps, and are easier to replace.

The revised hinge is far more robust than the 150's and should be an improvement, unless the unit was ever dropped, then the head block will never align properly to the reel table again.

See my post here if you need to repair the clutch:


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