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MPEG 4 on new Panasonic E100

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Sheks, Sep 20, 2003.

  1. Sheks

    Sheks
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    Hi,

    I have been looking to buy a DVD recorder for some time. I have come to the conclusion that one with a built HDD is the future and the way forward. I also require i-link (one of the primary reasons I have for a DVD recorder is to transfer our precious DV tapes to DVD).

    I thought I had decided on the Panasonic HS2, but have recently been reading about the new E100.

    Now correct me if I am wrong but the only difference between the 2 machines (other than the larger HDD) appears to be the inclusion of the ability to record in MPEG4 compression to SD card and to HDD. This all sounds very nice, but how useful is this feature? Is it going to be a "killer" feature for the future that I will kick myself in 6 months time if I don't have?

    Is the MPEG4 on the E100 worth the extra money over the (now bargain) HS2?

    Any enlightentment from the "experts" who frequent this forum would be much appreciated.

    Colin
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    If you don't use MPEG4 now, and you already have a DV Camcorder/Digital Camera, you probably won't need MPEG4 playback. It's never going to be killer feature - it is just a step nearer to Panasonic's vision that the DVD recorder will be the centre of the "home network". It's primary use is for Digital Cameras.

    That said in the E100 it is also used for sharing Digital Video images with friends who have suitably equipped hardware (i.e. a PC, compatible Digital Camera, E100 or the upcoming replacement for the E60). And if you have the Panasonic Multi-Media devices such as the SV-AV100, SV-AS10, or SV-AV20 (or similar from other producers) then you can make recordings in MPEG4 to watch on the device when (e.g.) your travelling. If you think this has any use then maybe the E100 is for you.

    There are a number of other changes that may or may not be significant to you:
    - DVD-Audio (2 Channel) Playback
    - HiMAT Playback (MP3, Windows Media Audio)
    - Thumbnails can be selected for DVD-R Menus
    - (Slightly) Improved Interface
    - Better DVD-Video Playback

    The latter two should in no way imply the HS2 was bad at these things - just that the E100 is better.

    As you also say the machine has a 80GB, rather than 40GB, HDD although this doesn't add to the core functions of the machine - just means you don't have to clean up the HDD so often.
     
  3. Sheks

    Sheks
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    Thanks for the prompt and thorough reply Rasczak.

    You state that the E100 will have better DVD playback. Do you know if the HS2 will have better or worse playback than my current Tosh SD510.

    In the future I may well also pick up a Panasonic playback only machine - so this question may not be relevant in the future. I will be getting rid of the tosh (my sister wants it), so will be using the HS2 as a primary playback deck as well for the mo.

    Thanks again

    Colin
     
  4. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    I'm afraid I've never seen the Toshiba SD510 in action so can't compare playback to the HS2. As a very rough guide I would say the HS2 is comparable to a £250-£300 DVD player - it's good but not outstanding. I mean the HS2 beats my budget(Toshiba) 210 hands down but doesn't measure up to my (not so budget) Arcam 88. All things said though it will be perfectly acceptable as a DVD player - just don't expect TOO much.

    The money you pay for the HS2 goes into the recorder side of things - which are top notch.

    [EDIT]
    I forgot to mention in my list above that the E100 allows you to select a Thumbnail image from the recording for use on the DVD-R menu - the HS2 doesn't (you just select the menu style you want). I've added it to the list for people who are reading this thread.
     

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