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All I want to do is replace my mums VCR

Discussion in 'Digital TV & Video Players & Recorders' started by rondun, Sep 21, 2005.

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  1. rondun

    rondun
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    OK, so my mum wants to get rid of the VCR and all the clutter of tapes, so I'm looking at PVR's
    She's got SKY, so wants to be able to record from that, and then output any recorded signal from the PVR via RF socket to other rooms in the house.
    Also the PVR would need to have an analogue tuner since the Freeview reception is pretty ropey in her area, at the moment, but stb may replace the SKY in future.
    So, I know its been asked before , but are there now or will there ever be PVR's which can record from an external source.
    Or should I be looking at *gasp* TIVO - I wouldn't mind since I believe it would be easy for her to use, but unsure about long term support.
    Or should i be looking at DVD / HDD recorder combo (maybe more expensive than a 2nd hand tivo) Budget £250 - £300, simplicity to use main criteria.

    thanks
     
  2. LV426

    LV426
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    What's wrong with $ky+ (apart from the subscription cost)? It can be used to receive the same channels you watch via Analog (i.e. 1 2 ITV 4 5) as well as all the others, so you don't really need an analog tuner nor the ability to record from external sources.
     
  3. rondun

    rondun
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    the subscription cost.
    really looking to reduce costs and eventually dump sky, not pay more.
     
  4. LV426

    LV426
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    OK. The easiest (or maybe I should say most mass-market) way to go about this is with a HDD-DVD recorder. Something like the Pioneer 530 has
    - an analog tuner (ch 1..5)
    - ability to control a set top box (eg $ky) so as to turn it on and set it to the right channel for recordings. Would also work with a Freeview box if/when you replace $ky.
    - an Electronic Programme Guide (GuidePlus) to ease making timer settings for recordings from EITHER the internal tuner OR the STB.

    Whilst you might never actually use the DVD writer part, it's always there as an option, if you do record something you subsequently want to keep, permanently. Oh and you can of course play DVDs on it.

    What's probably missing from this is the required RF output. So you may need an RF modulator from somewhere like Maplin as well.
     
  5. rondun

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    Thanks LV, sounds good - got a few more questions now!

    Apart from the ease of use i guess the ablility to watch whats been recorded in another room is key.
    Maybe the old Bush DVD player could be put to use in other room and programmes recorded to DVD watched on that, but I'm not sure about compatibility?
    RF modulator like you suggest would use up a scart output as afar as i can make out- will it still be possible to connect recorder to main telly via rgb scart and others using modulator?

    As for something like Pioneer 530 ( i'm hoping your familiar with it) - how easy is the guideplus to use - is it just a case of selecting coronation street on tuesday night and pressing record? (my mother's ability to use the VCR is limited to selecting the channel and pressing record at the appropriate time, but is happy enough to scan through Sky's epg for something to watch).

    Once something is recorded (either to HDD or DVD) how easy is it to locate what you've recorded. ie. is the title of the programme stored or is it just date time and channel number - i'm thinking that once a lot of programmes have been recorded, it might become cluttered and hard to find stuff.

    Once you copy stuff to dvd, does it create a menu that can be accessed on a normal DVD player, and once again what info is stored by default (rather than you manually editing titles etc, which just wont happen?)

    deep breath, take your time - i appreciate the help!
     
  6. LV426

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    Maybe the old Bush DVD player could be put to use in other room and programmes recorded to DVD watched on that, but I'm not sure about compatibility?
    Can't speak specifically for your Bush, but well over 90% of DVD players will play DVD-R and DVD-RW discs recorded in DVD Video format (which is what the Pioneer does).

    RF modulator like you suggest would use up a scart output as afar as i can make out- will it still be possible to connect recorder to main telly via rgb scart and others using modulator?
    You need a "spare" SCART for the $ky box (later, Freeview box). And one for the TV. It has two. So I guess you are going to need a SCART splitter/sharer, too, to drive your RF modulator.

    As for something like Pioneer 530 ( i'm hoping your familiar with it)
    Not really. More with the specs, and the principles, not this actual machine

    - how easy is the guideplus to use - is it just a case of selecting coronation street on tuesday night and pressing record?
    I believe it is just as simple as that - provided the thing is set up and the infra-red controller properly positioned by the $ky box.

    Once something is recorded (either to HDD or DVD) how easy is it to locate what you've recorded. ie. is the title of the programme stored or is it just date time and channel number
    Don't know with a GuidePlus machine. It's just date an time on mine (which pre-dates this model and doesn't have GuidePlus).

    Once you copy stuff to dvd, does it create a menu that can be accessed on a normal DVD player,
    Yes. It's a manual process. Once you've recorded everything youy want on the DVD, you then "finalize" it which creates the menu.

    and once again what info is stored by default (rather than you manually editing titles etc, which just wont happen?)
    Whatever was stored on the HDD (which I'm not sure about - see above).

    There's a review of the Pioneer here
     
  7. rondun

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    Once you've recorded everything youy want on the DVD, you then "finalize" it which creates the menu.
    does that mean you cant watch a dvd-r on another player until its finalised? would be a bit wasteful on disks if all you want to do is watch a 1/2 hour show.


    It does mean exactly that (depending on the "other" player - some will play unfinalized discs). But you can always use and re-use DVD-RW's. i.e. record it, finalize it, watch it, erase it, record it, finalize...... and so on.

    P.S. Instead of replying, I edited your post. My mistake. Sorry.
     

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