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Best way of recording 3hrs on a disc with Panasonic DMR-E50

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by sdm197, Jul 10, 2003.

  1. sdm197

    sdm197
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    Hi All,

    I want to record 3 programmes, 1 hr each on three different nights, obviously I can't use FR to fill the disc for all, would the best way be to record the first in SP then the other 2 in LP, or is there a better way?:smoke:
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    No - you don't want to use SP and then LP - the latter two episodes would look crap. Use FR mode as this calculates the bitrate for the space remaining on the disk. For the first recording set it for 3hrs and stop it after one. For the second set for 2hrs and stop after one. For the third set to 1hr.

    May I suggest you experiement on a RAM disk?
     
  3. sdm197

    sdm197
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    Hi rasczak,

    thanks for the reply, the way you suggest is much better, but you have to be there I think. If i record the first one whilst I am present, is there any way of doing the other 2 using FR on timer over the next 2 nights, as I dont think I will be in??
     
  4. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Yes - you have to be in to do this. So ask yourself why do you have to go out? Do you have a life or something? :D

    Seriously I'm no expert on the timer function (I have Sky+ which I use for day to day timeshifting). However a work around might be (assuming your using a RAM disk):

    1) Record three hours of some random programme on a RAM disk (to use as a buffer programme).
    2) Partial Erase 1 hours worth and set the timer for 1 programme at FR.
    3) Next day (i.e. after the first porgramme but before the second) Partial Erase another 1 hour from your 'buffer' recording and set the timer for 1 programme at FR.
    4) Next day (i.e. before the last programme) erase the 'buffer' programme and set the timer for the final programme at FR.

    This assumes your 'in' somewhen during the day before each programme. If you can do what I outline above for the first programme but, e.g. not the second, then the 'least worst' option would be to set the timer for the middle 1 hour programme to be recorded in shudders LP and then set the final programme for FR. This would give a lower than average bitrate for the middle programme and a higher than average for the third.

    Of course recording a buffer programme if using a DVD-R is not an option.
     
  5. sdm197

    sdm197
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    Hi Rasczak,
    thanks again for the tip on using the workaround, I will be buying either an HS-2 or DMR-E90/100 whichever appears, but I don't know whether to get Sky+ instead, everyone I know that has Sky+ loves it but I don't want to give Sky an extra tenner a month:mad:

    How have you found Sky+, would you recommend it?, or would you get the Panny with the hard disk? The only annoying thing about the panny, is that when I record anything other than terrestrial, you have to title them (the discs) yourself, which I think the Sky unit does for you (correct me if I am wrong ), this is appealing, also what kind of quality does the Sky box record at, is it equivalent of XP on the Panny, and how many hours of stuff can you record??

    Sorry rasczak, I know thats a lot of questions, but I would welcome your advice:laugh:
     
  6. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Well I've gone for both. Sky+ is a very useful tool that maximises enjoyment of Sky and is what I use for 98% of my TV timeshifting. Don't really have a bad word to say about it except of course the £10 per month fee. It works by putting everything you've recorded in a 'Sky+ Planner' option in the menu. Everything is pre-titled. There is no loss of quality from the original transmission as the data from the satellite is recorded as is. You can record upto 20 hours (Although you can unofficially upgrade the HDD to upto 60 hours).

    As for the HS2 (and I assume it's upcoming replacement) - well I can't fault it. The machine is probably the most flexible recording device currently available that produces some fantastic results. I record everything I want to archive to the HDD in XP mode. Edit and then burn to DVD-R (or DVD-RAM for transfer to my PC) in FR mode.

    If I had to choose one I would say get the HS2 as this can do timeshifting perfectly well just with the slight inconvienence of not being able to record a different Sky channel whilst watching another and no EPG. If you got this then you would have full editting facilities at your fingertips.

    I should point out that you could get HS2 functionality by getting a DVD burner for your PC. Things get slightly complicated, i.e. audio sync issues, demuxing, DVD authoring, but if you prepared to put in the time and effort and climb the steep learning curve the results you'll get will far surpass many commercial DVD releases. This would also cost less than selling the E50 and getting an HS2/E90. There is also alot of help you can get on the internet so don't feel you would be going down this route 'alone' so to speak.

    I initially got the E20 (an early version of the E50) and quickly went down the PC route to maximise my use of the machine. I was very happy with this solution and only upgraded to the HS2 because it had RGB in and it meant I could save myself a fair amount of time (I work away from home during the week so my hobby is very much a 'time permitting' one!).

    Hope this helps.
     
  7. sdm197

    sdm197
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    Hi rasczak,

    thanks for the reply, youve got me thinking about a PC burner now, but what benefits do you get, what do you use yours for exactly.
     
  8. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    The benefits are you can make your own custom menus and insert your own chapter points. Depending on what software you use to author the DVD you can add subtitles, add animated menus, customise 'thumbnails' for chapter points etc etc etc. In short you can push the production values of your DVDs as far as you have time to do so.

    I use my PC burner for authoring DVD-Rs. I record everything to the HS2 HDD in XP mode, edit it using Partial Erase and then copy to DVD-RAM in FR mode. I then stick the RAM disk inside my PC, rename the .VRO file .MPG and demux it using TMPG Encoder into .m2v and .ac3 files. I can then import these into a DVD authoring programme (I use Spruceup although it is not the most powerful by any stretch of the imagination). Once I've made my custom menus, added chapter points etc and export and burn to DVD-R. Simple.

    Using it in conjunction with a E50 it's slightly more complicated as you may want to re-encode/merge things. For instance you may record 1 one hour programme in XP mode on a RAM disk and copy it to you PC's HDD. You then record another 1 hour programme in XP mode on another RAM disk and again copy it to your HDD. You can now use TMPG Encoder to re-encode these 4.7GB files so there are each 2.3GB so they will both fit on the same DVD-R. If you want them merged into one then TMPG Encoder will do this as well.

    Also if you use the partial erase features on an E50 before copying it to your PC then you may get audio displacement. This can be sorted out using Virtual Dub. The process is relatively easy but requires some trial and error. You may find it easier to use editting facilties on the PC rather than partial erase on the E50.

    Before you do think about going down this path though - I will say it uses alot of time. There is also a steep learning curve. You WILL run into numerous problems and by the end of Day 1 you'll be pulling your hair out. HOWEVER any problems you encounter can be overcome by reading the Digital Guides here: http://nickyguides.digital-digest.com/

    And in particular this one:
    http://nickyguides.digital-digest.com/audio-synch.htm

    There is also extensive PC authoring knowledge on the Digital Digest Video Forums here:
    http://forum.digital-digest.com/

    Not to mention any advice you can on this forum.

    I don't want to put you off DVD authoring in this way - as I say I have done it like this - and it produces TOP results. But I just want to make you aware of all the facts before you go down this path.

    If it helps the software I use is:

    - TMPG Encoder (for demuxing files, re-encoding video files, merging video files etc).

    - Spruceup (for authoring the majority of recordings which don't need editting).

    - Virtual Dub (for correcting any audio sync problems)

    - TMPG Author (for a one stop authoring package for recordings that need to editted).

    - Intervideo 4 (for taking high quality screen shots for use in menus)

    - Paint Shop Pro 7 (for compiling the menu JPEGS)

    - Nero (for burning the DVD-R)

    Obviously the software you use can vary - for example you may want to use Ulead Moviestudio - you can download demos before you purchase any software and you can (if you hunt around) find freeware that does the same job. In reality though be prepared to spend $50-$100 on authoring software depending on what you want.
     
  9. Party Animal

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    Hi Rasczak
    been reading a lot of your excellent posts about set tops etc
    and basically I do the same thing as you but with slightly a different method

    I capture straight to my Pc from SKY Plus using a Dazzle capture device it does Firewire and analogue
    once captured...I use media studio pro to cut out the ads/crap etc

    then encode to mpeg with various encoding & Authoring programs
    CCE
    tmpg
    Ulead Movie factory 2
    Spruce up
    DVD Architect

    with CCE being the best (most expensive)
    but the Mainconcept encoding is very very good, as for writing software Record now max fits the bill very well

    I have had nothing but trouble with Nero for DVD, it is great for everything else.. but UDF DVD is not as good as Recordnow Max (my opinion)

    Rasczak correctly points out that this process is not so easy to gets to grips with, very time consuming is an understatement

    Sky Plus is a fantastic bit of kit.. and yes the extra tenner is a pain in the backside but at the end of the day is does what it says on the can.

    Have you tried DVD Architect Rasczak --It is a top bit of software..Motion menus/Motion thumbnails AC3 Support...it comes bundled with Vegas Video 4

    Spruceup is good but no animated menus.. look a bit boring after a while

    I dont have a set top burner as of yet as I dont burn that many Tv shows, and Sky plus being so good, i dont need one having a Sony PC burner, but when I finally do get one I will definatly get a Hard drive model as the hard driv recording is just so simple.
     
  10. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    I've been looking for the 'ideal' video recording solution for sometime. On the PC side (I think it was about 1998) I experimented extensively with Video CDs capturing the input with a Dazzle device (Video Creator II). The quality was good (for Video CD) but no replacement for my Betamax/SVHS masters. I also found that (back in those days!?!) the analogue to digital process was a bit hit and miss, i.e. hard drive speeds being just a little to slow (even in SCSI) causing dropped frames. All this has been overcome now but back in late 2001 I decided to go for a DVD set-top recorder.

    I thus invested in the Philips DVDR1000 which was OK. But a demonstration of the Panasonic E20 convinced me to switch to RAM/-R. Ever since I have used set-top boxes for the basic analogue to digital conversion (primarily because I now have the kit). I then use the PC for completing the work. I currently use a Panasonic Multi burner for producing DVD-Rs/-RWs.

    No I haven't although thanks for the suggestion. I may give it a spin although the still menus of Spruceup don't really bother me to much. I'm kept pretty busy at work (I work away during the week and some weekends) so don't really have time to devote to much else.

    Yes there seem to be alot of people who have trouble with it. I'm surprised to be honest because using the DVD Video wizard in Nero 5.5 I have never had an incompatible disk. Obviously somewhere along the line my setup differs from everyone elses!
     
  11. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    sdm197,

    Just to let you know (should you have any more questions/queries about what I've posted) that I'm away on work from now (well 30 minutes from now!) to next Friday evening. I'll obviously get an e-mail informing me that someone has replied to the thread but any responce will be Friday evening. Just thought I should let you know why there will be a delay...

    Cheers
     

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