Mark Levinson 39 Drawer problem

I have a problem with my ML 39: It seems that the drawer is not communicating with the main unit. The loading drawer does not open or close, the display states "Drawer" or "opening" or "closing" before "Stopped!"
I checked the internal connections between drawer and main board and also looked for obvious issues on the drawer unit.
I do not have a service manual...

Thanks for all feedback
re calibrate the drawer.   It’s either that or a bad  eprom  ( hopefully the former) 
Thanks. Can you tell me how to calibrate the drawer? I am not familiar with the process.
 I no longer have  it around since I  Included all the manuals etc when I sold my 390S .

  I did find this on Audiogon---this should be your first thing to attempt. I have a 390S that is now my backup (since I jumped on the AR CD7/8 bandwagon) and I follow Levinson's recommended drawer calibration procedure about every two weeks. It works best if the drawer is open and even better if it is closed part way, but it works (so I have been told by the former dealer) even when you start with the drawer closed.

1. Turn off the power at the back of the 39.
2. Press the drawer open button on the front of the 39 and keep it pressed while you turn on the power switch on the back of the 39.
3. With the drawer open button still pressed, watch the front display on the 39 change as the 39 runs through its cold start procedure. When you see the word "calibrate" in the display, remove your finger from the drawer open button and let the 39 cycle through whatever number of drawer openings and closings its software determines to be necessary until the drawer is deemed (by the software) to be calibrated.

If this doesn't work, you will probably need to send it in for service. And from what I have heard/read, their service is unfortunately quite expensive.   Good luck.

much appreciated! Unfortunately, I just tried the calibration procedure and I got "Failed" on the display. So I think I am doomed...

And you are correct with the expensive service: A while ago, I had my 333 serviced. Good work - repaired, new caps and updated to the latest version but paid over $2,000 for it.
I am not sure if I want to go that route with the 39...

Again - many thanks
I don't know for sure but I have heard they will not sell parts to anyone so you are at their mercy.   I would not spend too much fixing it.  That drawer setup is prone to problems.

I saw one bill bill to fix a 390s for $2200.  I sold mine for $2500.
Hi, just maybe try one more thing first before giving up. 
Open the ML39, take an earbud, dip it in terpentine (terps) and clean the sticky old lub off the two transport rails/rods.
In fact do NOT re-lub, else if the unit is swiched off i.e. getting cold, it will cause issues yet again after some time. 
As the ML uses a class A output stage it runs quite warm(ish) after being in stand-by drying out the lub after a certain period. 
If switched off completely (at the rear) for some time, say over night, the lub gets too sticky, and after some time is now sticky enough to prevent proper function. 
After cleaning, reassemble, go through the calibration procedure and see what gives. 
If it still fails its more serious as alluded to earlier on. 
Maybe you're lucky like myself having had the same problems with my ML390S. 😉

I already cleaned the rails/rod before. They were sticky, indeed. However, the posted results of my calibration process are from after the cleaning process.
Thanks for your input.
😢 so sorry to learn, eish.
I specifically made the lenghty effort to register (quite a pain...) to share my own experience with this issue. 
In fact I have to do a 'rod cleaning' yet again some time soon. Having switched off the unit over last night it once again refused to open, and only worked once sufficiently warmed up. I'm using my ML390S mostly with my ML36 Dac as I generally prefer sound of this ladder dac. 
Truly such a PITTY! 


indeed a pity! I am going to replace one other component as a last resort. If that fails, I am doomed...

Let's hold thumbs that it works, and keep us updated 😌 
It’s 20 years old...let it go...😉
Noooo, only if you really must! And then what? Streaming, and junk all of your CD collection? 
How about sustainabilty, 'Nachhaltigkeit'? 
Those are such nice and ever so well build units, definately no cheap-skate trashy throw away consumer junk. 😟 
I know this sounds quite emotional, and it is. Eish! 😢😱😖
I appreciate your passion, and I have not given up (yet). I still own another CD player so I have a backup solution. On the other hand, "ianrmack""is right: The unit is 20+ years old...
Unfortunately, the unit is very difficult to service as the PCB is multilayer, so any soldering effort is easily compromised. My experience with ML when it comes to service is not good, as also expressed in this forum several times. I can appreciate that ML tries to protect their service agents, but they should make service manuals available for old models (they used to do this but stopped when - I believe - Harman International acquired them). This and the associated cost if you need to go to a service agent are definitely reasons for me not to purchase any new ML anymore.
I'll keep you posted on my progress.
Thank you for sharing agosto 😉
My ML390S started off life (with me) as a ML39 - then top of the pops CDP and cabel radio decoder DAC in Munich in about 1996.
Back in South Africa in ~ 2000 and after a nasty lightning strike wiping out my then satelite decoder and the connected ML39 too. I then had it repaired and fupgraded to a 390S. Did it sound as much better as was e.g. reported by John Atkinson and company? 🤔 Hardly that I could tell... 🙄
More recently it got a laser replacement also here in SA by the former ML service technician and got another lease of life. 
By some flight of fancy I acquired a ML36 Dac for almost peanuts... because I liked the idea to listen to an R-2R Dac once again like the original ML39 using the 390S as a transport. In many cases I now like this setup to the upgraded 390S, if just marginally.
This may be so of course, as the Burmesters 961s, having highly resolving JET Air Motion Transformer tweeters are not too kind to lesser CD material, more ruthlessly resolved by the 390S' high up-/over-sampling rate. 
All this may put some perspective to my soft spot for these ML products, including the 326S pre-amp also used as a phono-pre and all nicely talking to each other via the ML communication links. 👌
Hm, what a novel to explain 🙈


most of my equipment s from the 90s as well and I am quite happy with it. I concur that subsequent research in semiconductors and circuit designs should yield to better audible results when comparing new products with the ones I own. On the other hand, I am happy with what I got (mostly ML) and enjoy my music. Just a shame that the 39 won't do anymore.
Thank you for your thoughts
Hi again, maybe let us know what your replacement will turn out to be, will you?
Having had a look about for some such, before my laser replacement, I had more than a hard time to find ANYTHING comparable, never mind at serious price multiples of say e.g. some Esoteric units (also ML31.5 top loader reference transport...) which by no means could convince me of their sq superority, and this in a much more 'magnificent' setting of sound optimised demo room, B&W 802 D3, et al. 🥴
So, it be interesting to learn your findings for my personal edification. 😉
Thank you, Michélle