Buying advice needed please


Standard Member

Could I possibly benefit from some advice from some of the learned people on here please? In your opinion am I better off getting a standalone DVD recorder (one of the latest models with HDMI, Freeview, +/- DL recording, etc.) or a PC connected DVD recorder (such as the new multi-format Plextor which seems to be pretty good)?

My main requirements are:-

Archiving from Sky+
Recording the occasional avi/mpg from my laptop (which has s-video and stereo out connections)
Archiving my old VHS tapes
Recording from Freeview (I don't currently have a TV with Freeview tuner)

I suppose that the standalone player would allow all of the above but is obviously more expensive than a PC connected one. However, I would need to buy a separate video capture device for the PC to be able to have all of the above functionality (choices, choices :rolleyes: ).

I quite fancy the latest Pioneer DVR-545HX which has recently been discussed here.


Generally speaking, I would always recommend a dedicated device such as a standalone DVDR above a PC Connected device.

Despite the advantage that PC's have of giving the end user much greater control they have two very great drawbacks, when used as video/ authouring devices.
The first is the enormous amount of time that the user must invest in producing anything, and the second is the flakiness of the whole process.

This is largely because with a PC it is very difficult to get the guaranteed large data throughput required to process video AT ALL TIMES. This causes inumerable problems.

With a dedicated device there is that guarantee. The process is altogether simpler and much quicker.


markshark said:
I suppose it's easy enough to move/copy PC based avi/mpg files to a standalone DVD recorder?

I think in that case you would be forced to author the material onto conventional DVD's in the PC.

Theoretically you could 'play' them out of the PC and record them direct [ depending on your PC's output capabilities ] but in most domestic situations that would not be convenient or even possible, and would be theoretically more lossful, albeit , not necessarily critically so.

I see you have S-video and Stereo outputs, so since you mentioned it I assume in your case it must be a possible option, in which case I would recommend trying both methods of transferring [ if you can] and seeing which suits you best and if you find the results of direct recording satisfactory.

Good Luck

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