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Just bought Panasonic DMR E500

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Doug, Nov 11, 2004.

  1. Doug

    Doug
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    This is my first DVD/HDD Recorder so apologies if any comments are too basic for the more experienced bunch..

    Set it up last night, fairly simple to do, used QED Squart (Video Only) to TV normal Scart from Sky to AV2 connection, optical cable to amp, composite from av out to amp, composite from vcr to av in.? Would appreciate any suggestions for a better set-up? :confused: My TV does not have component connections or prog scan capability - yet (planning on purchasing the Phillips 9986 LCD soon)

    Only had limited time last night, have just scratched the surface, will read the manual and play around and report back in a few days, but here are a few initial thoughts

    Plus points

    Looks - silver, shiny mirror-esque fascia, drops down to load disc, couple of pull-down flaps on left and right sides hide dv inputs and operational buttons
    Ease of use - was a race against time to set-up and learn how to record on the hdd before the program that i wanted to record started, but I needn't have worried, quite straightforward


    Minus points

    Doesn't recognise the pictures on the SD card from my Sharp GX30 phone - checked the details on the phone and they are JPEG's so don't know why not?
     
  2. dempsey

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    I think regarding the JPEGs theres a couple of things to be careful of. Firstly, they need to be in a file structure which is common to digital cameras as that's really what it was designed for. For example, my camera stores files in folders as follows...

    -DCIM
    --100_PANA
    ---P00001.JPG
    ---P00002.JPG


    The other thing is I think the pictures have to contain some basic EXIF data regarding dimensions etc otherwise the recorder won't know how to scale them etc.

    Hope this helps

    D
     
  3. MuffKing

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    Somebody obviously knows their cameras. Dempsey's spot on, it's know as the "Design rule for Camera File standard" or DCF standard for short, but phones don't have to conform to the same standard, although that doesn't stop you changing the file structure of the SD card via a PC to suit the DVD recordser though.

    The other plus points which weren't mentioned were also the on board 5.1 decoder with 6 channel DVD-Audio capability and gold plated terminals :)
     
  4. Doug

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    Thanks for the info guys, I'll give that a try :thumbsup:

    The DVD Audio is a big plus, although it's an issue for me as my amp only has 1 set of 5.1 connections, and I already have an SACD player connected up - going to have to keep changing the cabling or upgrade the amp
     
  5. MuffKing

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    Bear in mind that you would only use the optical output on the E500 for playing back 5.1 DVD movies as the 6 gold phono sockets on the back would be used to connect to the amps 6-phono inputs for DVD-Audio playback.
     
  6. pjroyal

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    Have you found a use for the Ethernet connection? I cannot decide between the 500 or the 95. (Smaller drive but also nearly 1/2 the cost and it is available as a multi region from Unbeatable.)
     
  7. MuffKing

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    Well I would use it in my main lounge and link it to my computers wireless router so that I can access it remotely from my PC and my laptop around the house, but the idea is that forthcoming products will have the same connection so I would then buy a cheaper model next time round which will be able to access the programs on the E500 so that I can play them in my 2nd living room or upstairs when I go to bed. That way I only need one hard drive recorder in the housewhich is weher all my programs will be stored, hence the reason for such a huuuuge HDD :)
     
  8. Doug

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    Well have now used it quite a bit this weekend, recorded from vhs to hdd, vhs to dvd-r, sky to hdd and camcorder to hdd. yet to set up the computer network and use the pc card

    everything seems to be working really well, quality is amazing. i left the hdd recording sky on xp mode for the whole weekend on one of the music channels and still had over 50 hours of xp time available - spent most of the evening editing the recorded content. started off by arranging the songs i wanted to keep into chapters and then erasing evry second chapter. then i saw something called partial erase, which seemed to be much better way of getting rid of the unwanted bits. would welcome any suggestions if there is a better way to do this?

    Also,if anyone could help me with the below questions that would be great! :lease:

    if i record onto the hdd in xp mode, and then want to transfer to the dvd-r in ep mode (as there isn't enough room on the dvd for xp) is there any high speed way to do this? don't know if i did it correctly but the dubbing was real time, ie it took the whole hour of the show to do the transfer?

    i have a wireless router at home - do i need to buy an ethernet cable to plug into this from the e500, or can that connection be wireless too?

    Is it possible to combine titles? As the Hdd automatically splits the continuous recording into 8 hour segments, I now have several titles which I would like to join

    cheers - so far a big :thumbsup: i would definitely recommend this recorder :D
     
  9. MuffKing

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    Q1. started off by arranging the songs i wanted to keep into chapters and then erasing evry second chapter. then i saw something called partial erase, which seemed to be much better way of getting rid of the unwanted bits. would welcome any suggestions if there is a better way to do this?

    A1. I use partial erase to make the mark in/out points and delete the junk bits in one go. That way it joins all of the chapters together.


    Q2. if i record onto the hdd in xp mode, and then want to transfer to the dvd-r in ep mode (as there isn't enough room on the dvd for xp) is there any high speed way to do this? don't know if i did it correctly but the dubbing was real time, ie it took the whole hour of the show to do the transfer?

    A2. Unfortunately not as the recorder not only has to dub the recording to DVD, but it has to render it with a different bit rate aswell.


    Q3. i have a wireless router at home - do i need to buy an ethernet cable to plug into this from the e500, or can that connection be wireless too?

    A3. Yes you need a straight through cable to connect the E500 to the router to make it wireless.


    Q4. Is it possible to combine titles? As the Hdd automatically splits the continuous recording into 8 hour segments, I now have several titles which I would like to join

    A4. No, but the reason why it splits the recordings in to 8hr segments is because that's the maximum amount of time which can be dubbed to DVD.
     
  10. MuffKing

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    Another point to expand on Q3. If your router isn't within reasonable reach of the E500 then you could always buy another wireless router to sit near your AV system. This would then allow you to connect via WiFi to your PC, but don't forget to setup WEP (wireless encryption) or a password in the DIGA Manager otherwise your neighbour could be watching MPEG4 copies of your porn..... I mean music collection on his PC :D
     
  11. OARDVD

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    You can combine titles by setting up a playlist. This is a function which will play whole titles (or sections of titles) in any order you like with no gap between them. So this can give you a "virtual" copy of titles which will appear to have been combined. At this point the titles won't exist physically on the HDD in a combined fashion. However, If you then high speed dub the playlist to DVD RAM you will get a physical copy there with the titles combined. You can then HS copy it from RAM to HDD. This will give you a physical copy on the HDD. Obviously, you can't copy a playlist which is larger than will fit on a single DVD RAM.
     
  12. MuffKing

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    I take it that they split in to seperate programs again when you copy them to DVD-R though?
     
  13. OARDVD

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    No they will stay combined.
     
  14. Doug

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    Thanks for the answers guys, much appreciated, :smashin: will give yr suggestions a go this week - have just finished transferring my entire camcorder tape collection to the hdd, now the editing starts! One thing I noticed with DV Direct record is that it stops automatically if there is a gap (unrecorded) on the source Mini DV tape, luckily didn't have too many of these as you are forced to monitor the recording and can't just leave it running and come back in an hour...

    Another query please, is it possible to watch the HDD or a DVD while recording from the camcorder to HDD? Tried the Timeslip button, but this didn't work? Possibly Timeslip only works during "recording", not "dubbing"?
     
  15. Manti

    Manti
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    Hi,

    Does the Panny DMR-E500 recognise the 8.5Gb (double-layer DVD's) to read/record ?


    Thanks in advance, :)

    Manti
     
  16. OARDVD

    OARDVD
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    Doug, it's usually best to decide what recording quality you want the titles to be on the DVD BEFORE you record on the HDD (if possible). So you can then record on the HDD in the same mode. That way you know beforehand that they will fit on the DVD & you will always be able to High Speed copy from HDD to DVD with no re-encoding. You need to make sure that the DVD-R compatible setting is ON before recording on the HDD. The maximum times on DVD are XP:1hr, SP:2hrs, LP:4hrs, EP: 6/8 hours.

    So for example say you've got a 30 min programme and a 90 min one to put on the same DVD. The total time is 120mins (2 hours), so if you use SP (on the HDD) for both of them then you know that they will both fit on the DVD when you do a HS copy.

    If you've only got one title to record, and the running time doesn't match up nicely to any of the fixed recording modes, then it's best to record on the HDD in Flexible Recording mode (FR) and then HS copy to DVD. FR mode uses the optimum quality for fitting on a DVD, so again, you know it's going to fit.

    FR cannot (easily) be used on the HDD for recording multiple titles together which will eventually go on the same DVD. If you have several titles to record and the total running time is between 120 mins (SP) and 240 mins (LP), eg, 2.5 hours, then it's probably better to record on the HDD in the highest quality (XP) and dub both together to the DVD in real-time using FR mode. When you dub from HDD to DVD, you can use FR for multiple titles because the system already knows the total running time from the originals on the HDD.
     
  17. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    No - none of the recorders currently available can do this.

    Instead of using the DV Direct Record just set the input to DV and do a simple dub from your camcorder. It should all copy without the need to monitor then...
     
  18. sdc395

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    To connect your E500 to your wireless network, you either need to connect it to the router with a cable or buy a wireless-ethernet bridge such as the Linksys WET54G. These effectively converts the ethernet socket into a wireless client.

    Two wireless access points will not talk to each other unless they both support the Wireless Distribution System (WDS) "standard" and I'm not sure WDS is especially reliable.
     
  19. Doug

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    Thanks all for yr replies - my next step is to archive all my old vhs tapes, I have about 40 3 hr tapes, probably gonna use lp for these and then do high speed dub to dvd..
     
  20. Rasczak

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    :eek: :nono: I would strongly urge you to use a full resolution and high bitrate mode. It is widely assumed that as VHS is a low resolution source so to should you use low resolution modes: this is fine in theory but doesn't take into account that 1) the VCR resolution is not in sync with the DVD recorder and 2) VHS is a very noisy source hence needing a high bitrate.

    Ideally you should use FR mode set to 90mins - although it naturally depends on the length of programmes on the tapes. Record onto HDD and then high speed dub to DVD-R.
     
  21. Doug

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    ok thanks - may have to buy some more dvd's then!!
     
  22. MuffKing

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    The quality of the copies will be helped along BTW as the TBC in the E500 will clean up VHS images a little to reduce noise in the original recording.
     
  23. Andre1234

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    Doug.

    I wonder if you can access the HDD of your Panny DMR-E500 through the netcard ( like you can with XBOX ) in order to FTP files from e.g laptop to the DMR-E500 and vice versa! Is this possible?
     
  24. Doug

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    Andre, not sure about this, have yet to explore the network capabilities - I plan to do this in the next month as I will be moving and will then be able to hook it up to PC
     
  25. NewToyForXmas

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    Firstly hello to you all. I was lucky enough to get an E500 for xmas from my gf (NoClue - I think she may have been asking a number of you for advice, so thanks for that). I'm hoping to get it all set up tonight but have a few questions that I would really appreciate some help with. Attachment to tv and NTL box seem easy enough - SCART to SCART in each case. My confusion is around my existing DVD system which is also the amplifier (Pioner NS-DV55) for the 5.1 surround speakers. The speakers that attach to this do not seem transferrable to the E500 (they attach into the sub on the DV55, bit of a proprietary set up) so I either need to buy new 5.1 speakers or hook the DV55 into my install. How would I attach the E500 to the DV55 and what considerations do I need to take into account. I think I can attach the 2 using optical but there was a response earlier in this thread that confused me somewhat. If I play DVD's on the E500 through the DV55, would they still be in 5.1? If I play back recordings from the HDD or live feed from NTL through the E500 and then through the DV55, would that work? It obviously wouldn't be 5.1 but what would it be or do I need something else to attach the 2 DVD systems. Do I just attach the E500 to the DV55 for audio and have the picture going direct from each system to the TV? Sorry for waffling, and thanks in advance for any help.

    It does look like a wicked new toy though!
     
  26. Rasczak

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    Yes you can - and DVD recordings would play in 5.1 surround sound (HDD and DVDR recordings will only play 2 channel because that is all they are recorded in - although if your 5.1 setup has a Dolby Pro Logic II setting you can use that to 'create' 5.1).

    The only drawback of using optical is that the onboard Dolby Digital, DTS and DVD-Audio Decoders of the E500 will not be used. This isn't really a problem unless you were planning to listen to DVD-Audio discs. When you next consider upgrading your 5.1 setup have a look at seperates as opposed to all in ones as this will allow you to acquire a model with 5.1 inputs.

    Yes - send the picture direct to the TV each time.

    It's currently the best DVD recorder available!
     
  27. NewToyForXmas

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    Great, thanks for the response - glad she chose a good one! She must have got some good advice from you lot, so thanks for that.
     
  28. Andre1234

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    Doug. Thanx for you replay.

    I think that DMR-E500 is not capable of transferring files from laptop to HDD and vv.

    The network capabilities are ( Some posts say )

    "Check out the Pana DMR-E500. 400 Gb hard disk with Ethernet port connectivity and Universal Plug & Play LAN recognition under Windows XP"

    and other say:

    "the network is only good for viewing the video from a PC or another networked DMR in MPEG4. You also have to make sure that when you record a video, that MPEG4 is also used.
    From the manual, the only other thing the network is good for is editing the names and titles. You can't even download the EPG from the net via Ethernet.
    So basically besides paying for the extra hard disk space, you are paying for Ethernet connection that doesn't do much.
    I would at least think you could program a recording from the web, given that the 500 has a DHCP client or static IP addressing capablities.
    Really, really bad marketing."


    "the Panny cannot play back material from your PC, only from other Panny units."

    The question is if it can be "modd" ?
     
  29. NewToyForXmas

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    So I think that my set up will end up looking like this:

    NTL box SCART output to AV2 of E500.
    AV1 of E500 to AV1 on TV
    Optical out of E500 to Optical In of my Pioneer NS-DV55 all in one amp / DVD player.
    AV1 of DV55 to AV2 of TV.
    Camcorder / VHS attaching to AV3 of E500 when required.

    Have I missed anything? Am I missing a trick? Anyone see any problems with this set up?
     
  30. Andre1234

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    Hi NewToyForXmas

    Could you please take a look in DMR-E500 menu if there is a possibility of setting an IP address in order to connect to the box via FTP prog.
     

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