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HDD to DVD-R copying problem - what is the process?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by brownrog, Dec 15, 2004.

  1. brownrog

    brownrog
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    I wonder if anyone with technical knowledge can help with this please. I'm interested in understanding the process used when a recording made on the HDD is copied to a DVD-R on a HDD/DVD recorder.

    I have a Pioneer DVR-420HS and the manual says (P.61) "Copying between DVD and HDD is a completely digital process and therefore involves no loss of quality in the audio or video". What it then goes on to say suggests that this is the case in both directions of copying (so applies to HDD to DVD copies).

    The reason for asking is that I have encountered problems with playback close to the end of some Video mode DVD-R copies, in the form of frame skipping. The disks have 2 characteristics - they are nearly full (content length close to disk capacity) and they were created using fast copy. The titles were recorded in SP mode on the HDD and fast copied from the copy list. The content running time is 1:58+ ; the disk should take 2:00+ at SP.

    The problem is not there on the original HDD recording and when I re-copied the same titles to individual disks (so the DVD-Rs are only half-full), they played right through just fine. Also only some disks with these characteristics (fast-copied, nearly full) have the problem; others are fine. No disks that have reasonable space left when finalized have shown this problem. I have not been able to try real-time copies of the titles to a single disk as I stupidly erased them from the HDD before I thought of that test (though after I'd put them on separate disks)! The problem copies are on Verbatim 8x DVD-Rs, "supported" according to the manual.

    Anyone else seen this problem or similar?

    It raised questions in my mind. In spite of what the manual says about the copy process, when is some form of digital processing (re-encoding) involved in the process? It would seem this must be the case in Optimized Mode copying and may be the case in other real-time copying but how could it be the case in fast copying? So this could be a media problem even if the media is "supported", but it would also seem to be content-dependent since other fast-copied and equally full disks are problem-free. Could the problem occur in finalization? (I didn't play the pre-finalized disks).

    Any technical person / engineer out there throw any light please?
     
  2. tabatha

    tabatha
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    This sounds like a media problem, possibly associated with the speed of copying. In the early days of CD's, writeable discs were not even available in the 74minute length standard of a "Red Book", after a while 74 minute became available, then 80 minutes and now even 100 minute discs are available. The problem was partly to do with the discs and the writers/readers. It should be appreciated that DVD's and CD's start at the innermost part of the disc and gradually write to the periphery of the disc. Any eccentricity of the disc gets magnified the further the read/write head is from the centre of the disc. The faster the read/write process, the faster the head has to move to keep "on track". I have generally had good results with Verbatim discs but only use x2 due to the age of my HDD/DVD systems. High speed copies are purely digital and no re-sampling takes place. Re-sampling often does take place when a mode such as "optimised", "rate conversion" or "flexible" is used. If the 420 allows you to select a slower speed to do the transfer, you may well find the problem disappears. Alternatively, you could try disks made by Taiyo Yuden/Panasonic as these are generally thought to be the "creme de la creme".
     
  3. brownrog

    brownrog
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    tabatha, thanks for reply. I'm tending to use real-time copying now rather than fast mode, just in case. I've not had the problem since then but neither have I had a mix of titles that very nearly fills a disk. As soon as I get one I'll see if I can reproduce the problem with a fast copy and if/when I succeed I'll re-copy in real time, see if it goes away. What's the betting it won't re-appear now though?! :)

    I do agree that the Verbatim media may well have something to do with it as well although I've found it very reliable when authoring DVDs on a PC. I don't think this is a fault as such with the Pioneer recorder as so many recordings have worked perfectly.
     

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