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Wiki > Main > CreativeZEN

Creative ZEN information


Rockbox Installation on Windows

This has been verified using Windows 7, and devices that have and have not previously had a Rockbox installation. With a device that has previously had a Rockbox installation, some of the steps are redundant and some of the responses are different or absent.

NOTE: Using Windows XP, failure of Format has been reported.

  • On the device, power-on while holding down the Play button
  • Select Reload Firmware
  • On the device, plug-in the USB cable to the PC
  • Launch sendfirm.exe =firmwarefilename= and wait (while for most of the time the PC says 100%) for the PC to say Firmware sent successfully!
  • Unplug the USB. The device will say *PANIC*
  • On the device, press reset.
  • Plug-in the USB.
  • If the PC does not offer to format, launch format manually from Explorer
  • On the PC, format the device, using FAT if available (for low-capacity devices) e.g. pic else FAT32 pic and wait for format to complete.
  • On the PC, copy folder .rockbox to the device.
  • Unplug the USB
  • Wait for the Rockbox main menu to appear
    • If the display shows garbage or the Rockbox main menu does not appear inside a few seconds, press reset.
    • If the device says File not found, repeat the above from copying folder .rockbox to the device.
  • Verify the device responds to up and down button presses.

Rockbox Uninstallation on Windows

This has been verified using Windows 7.

  • On the device, power-on while holding down the Play button
  • Select Reload Firmware.
  • When the device says Start firmware download now!, plug-in the USB cable to the PC and launch the Creative firmware updater e.g. ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_03.exe
  • When the PC says Your player's current firmware is the same as this version. Do you want to continue?, answer Yes.
  • The device should say Upgrading firmware, then after ~1min, PC should say Player is now rebooting.
  • When the PC says completed, unplug the USB. The device should say Firmware problem.
  • Power-off the device, then power-on the device while holding down the Play button
  • Select Format All and wait for completion
  • Select Reboot
  • Wait for the Creative main menu to appear
  • Verify the device responds to up and down button presses

For further detail on specific steps see CreativeZENPort.

Rockbox Usage

  • Operative buttons
    • Menu/Back, Options, Direction pad (up, down, left, right), OK, Play/Pause/Record, reset, On/Off/Lock (two-way: down = On/Off; up (latching) = Lock)
  • Non-operative buttons
    • My Shortcut
  • Snags
    • If you set Settings, General Settings, Display, LCD Settings, Backlight to Off, you'll be unable to see the display image to turn Backlight back on. Connect to computer, open .rockbox\config.cfg, find the backlight timeout (sic) line, remove it and save the file.

Port Status

See CreativeZENPort

Information about the Creative ZEN


Nucleus RTOS

Device I/O

  • Input
    • buttons: (on front) Menu/Back, Options, Direction pad (up, down, left, right), OK, My Shortcut, Play/Pause/Record, (on bottom) reset, (on right side) On/Off/Lock (two-way: down = On/Off; up (latching) = Lock)
    • microphone
  • Output: display, charging light, headphone jack
  • Input/output: USB port, SD Memory Slot

Recover from a bad flash

To recover from a bad flash, turn on the unit while holding the play/pause button. The Recovery Mode mode will start up, where you can erase your bad firmware, and from there, reload the original (providing you have a PC, and the update program).

Firmware format

Using ZenUtils (see SVN for a newer version), I extracted these files from the updater program made available by Creative:
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01.opt (this is a ZenUtils specific file)
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk.bin (this is the main Firmware)

Further file extraction, again using zen_utils, yields:
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_0xa9544c20 (this is the actual main Firmware)
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_CINF
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_FRESC (this is the rescue mode firmware)
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_HCreative_S.TTF
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_HCreative_T.TTF
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_HDeviceInfo.xml
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_Hdevicon.ico
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_Hdevlogo.png
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_Hjukebox2.jrs
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_Hjukebox.grs
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_Hsplash.jbm
  • (this is a ZenUtils specific file)
  • ZEN_PCFW_L22_1_21_01_rk_NULL


For more information about the firmware format, see this.



Picture Component Info
SoC: Sigmatel/Freescale STMP3760 Linux BSP for the Sigmatel STMP36xx
1-4 Samsung K9HBU08U1M K9HCU08U1M
or 1-4 Hynix HY27UV08BG5M Part No decoder (use the old format)
Phison PS8000CC-G
Phison PS8005-A
SD controller
Philips TEA5761UK looks like the same component as used in the Zen Vision:M
Battery SK mobile energy (Creative branded)
3.7V Lithium Ion Polymer Battery 550mAh
Creative PN: BAC0603R79925
None. LCD: Samsung LMS250GF03 Has this on it: HA07103H0 S250GF03LB7N06H40 USP5280371


Here is a list of all the pins used by the OF. Pins are of form BxPyy where x is the bank and yy the number within the bank. Direction only applies to GPIO.
Pin Dir Comment
B0P01 ssp2_d1  
B0P02 ssp2_d2  
B0P03 ssp2_d3  
B0P10 OUT ssp1 power gate ?
B0P11 IN ssp1 write protect
B0P20 ssp2_cmd  
B0P23 ssp2_sck  
B1P00 lcd_d0  
B1P01 lcd_d1  
B1P02 lcd_d2  
B1P03 lcd_d3  
B1P04 lcd_d4  
B1P05 lcd_d5  
B1P06 lcd_d6  
B1P07 lcd_d7  
B1P08 OUT lcd power/enable
B1P09 OUT lcd SPI data
B1P10 OUT lcd SPI clock
B1P11 OUT lcd SPI chip select
B1P12 OUT backlight power
B1P13 lcd_dotclk  
B1P14 lcd_hsync  
B1P15 lcd_vsync  
B1P16 lcd_reset  
B1P22 ssp1_cmd  
B1P23 ssp1_sck  
B1P24 ssp1_d0  
B1P25 ssp1_d1  
B1P26 ssp1_d2  
B1P27 ssp1_d3  
B1P28 ssp1_det  
B2P01 duart_tx backlight control (!!)
B2P03 pwm3 power button light
B2P05 i2c_scl  
B2P06 i2c_sd  
B2P08 IN button/hold detect (see (1))
B2P12 IN ?
B2P14 ssp2_d0  

(1) The OF doesn't seem to make use of this pin but the ZEN X-Fi OF does and experiment shows that it works on the ZEN too.


  • SansaFuzePlusPort: existing port to another sigmatel 37xx device
  • CreativeZVMPort: contains a lot of information some of which is applicable to other models in the ZEN line
  • NewPort: contains information about starting a new port
  • SigmaTelSTMP3xxx: information regarding the chipset

r33 - 02 Apr 2021 - 20:46:06 - UnknownUser

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