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Newbie to DVD recorders, What are the facts I need to know?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Duster, May 24, 2003.

  1. Duster

    Duster
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    Hi,
    I'm a newbie to DVD recorders, what are the facts I need to know?
    The main uses of the DVD recorder would be to copy my DV Camcorder footage on to DVD.

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    You may want to do a search of this forum on this subject as it has been discussed extensively.

    Panasonic, JVC, Toshiba, Samsung and Hitachi support DVD-RAM and DVD-R. These machines have a Hybrid Variable Bitrate which optimises the data rate for each scene giving the best picture. This coupled with the Flexible Bitrate, which calculates the optimum data rate, for the space left on the disk. DVD-R is the most compatible format with existing DVD players but has minimal editting facilities. DVD-RAM is a very flexible format (i.e. editting, timeslip, chasing playback) but has very limited compatibility. Currently exclusive to the DVD-RAM/-R camp are Hard Disk Drive/DVD Recorder combos (such as the HS2) which allow all the benefits of RAM disks on the HDD and allow dubbing to DVD-R. If you can afford it (the units are between £550 and £600) this is by far the best option to go for. DVD-RAM and DVD-R are 'official' formats supported by the DVD Forum.

    Pioneer and Sony support DVD-RW and DVD-R. DVD-RW can be recorded in two modes - Video which is highly compatible with existing DVD players and VR Mode which is similar to RAM in it's editting abilities but is very limited on compatibility. DVD-R is as described above. DVD-RW and DVD-R are 'official' formats supported by the DVD Forum. DVD-RW is a good format but there is only one recorder currently available in the UK and it's vastly outdated (equal to a first generation DVD-RAM/DVD+RW and has no RGB in!). More modern units are rumoured to be appearing late this year. There is a Sony machine out that can also record on DVD+RW but overall impressions have not been that favourable (especially re the price).

    DVD+RW is the format adopted by Philips and Yamaha and a number of minor companies (e.g. Daewoo, Mico) for there set top recorders. It is partically supported by Sony (it's DVD-RW machine has limited DVD+RW support). DVD+RW has virtually no editting facilities but is slightly more compatible than DVD-RW (slightly). DVD+RW is good for timeshifting and is very easy to use. The machines also record to DVD+R which is slightly less compatible than DVD-R.

    My personnel choice (and others may agree/disagree) would be for the DVD-RAM/-R option due to the VBR and FR which makes it ideal for archiving. Ideally go for the HDD/DVD-RAM combos from Toshiba or Panasonic as these are by far the best and most flexible DVD recorders available.
     
  3. Duster

    Duster
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    Thanks Rasczak
    Thats a great help:)
     
  4. Arthur Dent

    Arthur Dent
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    Consider too the cost/availability of blank media. You'll also require a recorder with IEEE 1394 (Firewire) input for DV camcorder use.

    Regards
     
  5. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    The cost of media isn't that relevant really. It's always best to get media via the internet - prices for all types of media in the high street are grossly inflated.

    DVD-R (around £1-£2.50 each) is cheaper than DVD+R (around £1.50-£3 each) but the cost is only a matter of a few pence. DVD-RAM (£2-£8) is more expensive than DVD+RW and DVD-RW (each around £1 to £6) but then the former will last almost 100 times as long and is more likely to keep your data safe.

    Clearly DVD-Rs are cheap enough to be through away and nowbody is going to need that much re-recordable media. This is even more true if opting for a HDD/DVDR combo.

    Most DVD recorders have the DV input - the HS2 does, the E60 does and the 890 does. It is only the budget 880 and E50 that don't.
     
  6. Duster

    Duster
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    Thanks again guys for lots of good info :cool:
     
  7. malcom

    malcom
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    If you want all the operating info of the recorders then go to the Panasonic web site and you can download the manuals of their current models.

    You can find the manuals for the Philips machines on the link below.

    http://www.dvdplusrw.org/cgi/forum/ikonboard.cgi
     
  8. Duster

    Duster
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    Hi Guys,
    Thanks again for all the replys,
    Just one other thing I need to know, would I lose any quality in the copying From DV camcorder format to DVD format?

    Thanks..
     
  9. Duster

    Duster
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    Hi ferris57
    Thanks for your reply,

    Would I still lose quality even if I was using the DV input on the DVD recorder?
     
  10. ferris57

    ferris57
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    Hi there, I didn't read your initial post properly and I didn't notice you had intended to use the dv input when I first replied, hence why I deleted my post after reading it properly.

    So to be honest I am not sure. I would think that the point of dv inputs would be to make lossless recordings, but I don't actually know. Im sure someone else can help though.

    Sorry.
     
  11. ferris57

    ferris57
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    O.k, I had to go and find this out myself because it was bugging me ;)

    It looks like there is a very small loss in quality using dv inputs.

    The loss is minimal however as the video data stays in digital format throughout the compression/conversion process. As a result there won't be any resulting quality loss from an analog conversion.
     
  12. Arthur Dent

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    I've copied DV camcorder footage from my JVC DV camcorder to my Philips DVDR890 using the DV input. Glad to say quality was excellent. Couldn't discern any noticeable difference between recording and source.

    Cheers
     
  13. Duster

    Duster
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    HI,
    Thanks ferris57 & Arthur Dent & all the others that have help me out with DVD recorders, I now have a much better understanding of them.

    Thanks again:smashin:
     
  14. malcom

    malcom
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    I doubt you will see any quality loss even if you use only "S" video connection instead of DV input. At least I don't! Then I don't use a sreen any larger than 32". The larger screens would perhaps show up the differences!!!
     

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