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Nightmare choice

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Dadd, Apr 27, 2005.

  1. Dadd

    Dadd
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    This is my first post. And it will be my first DVD player... when I decide on one! Been using a terrible Thomson VCR, and at last, I've decided to move with the times. I have poured over threads on this site relating to the DVD recorders that I have shortlisted. My wife now hates me for spending so long on this thing, so your advice will be very much appreciated but has come at a cost! I live in Singapore but I think the models are the same as you guys in Europe.

    I basically want a DVD recorder to (i) transfer home videos to DVD (ii) transfer a few VHS tapes to DVD (iii) record programmes off TV. I am not a real movie buff, more into sport.

    Sony HX900 - I love this machine for its look and obvious build quality, but am concerned about its shortcomings that have been mentioned on this forum. The next machines look a long way off. I could pick up HX900 for around 500 quid with a 5 yr warranty.

    Pioneer 720 - seems to have everything I want, but 2 issues:- the first is that its appearance is dated and looks cheap; the second is that Pioneer have started manufacturing this product in China, where the quality of components and workmanship is questionable compared to Japan.

    Toshiba - XS34 isn't out here yet. And I worry that the multiple options may cause me headaches. XS32 sounds too complicated - is it just cos there are lots of options or because the menus or interface or whatever are complicated.

    Panasonic E95 - I hate those card slots, can't ever imagine using them. Concerned by RAM even though I don't know why!! This machine looks dated too.

    Phillips 720 - all shop assistants over here are pushing this big time, but you guys say otherwise, apart from that one guy.

    But bearing in mind what I want the machine for, and that I only have a 29" Samsung Plano TV, what would be the best choice? In terms of PQ, remember that anything is going to be a marked improvement from my Thomson VCR.

    Thank you for your advice. I am going in circles at the moment. Have different models held for me in all different stores!

    Cheers,

    Dadd
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    With the exception of the Philips model, all the DVD recorders you list will do what you want (the Philips has no TBC so is an immediate write-off for anyone considering archiving VHS to DVDR).

    The Toshiba RDXS34 is available now. It is effectively the same as the RDXS32 but with a bigger HDD. Like it's predecessor it is a top machine and well worth considering. The RDXS34 gives you more options for menus then other DVD recorders as well as options for tweaking just about everything. It is a complex machine but if your prepared to invest the time learning how to use it this soon becomes a non-issue!

    Still an excellent machine. Don't be put off by the DVD-RAM/DVD-R options only - 99% of the time you'd only use DVD-R whichever recorder you get. The benefit of the E95 is upto 3hrs full resolution recording and is easy to use.

    The 900 is now discontinued with only the 1000 model (250GB) remaining on sale. Both are good DVD recorders but I would recommend avoiding if you want to make edited recordings from your Digital Camcorder. The editing isn't as slick on the 900/1000 models when compared to Panasonic/Pioneer/Toshiba and thus it proberly isn't your best choice.

    The Pioneer 720 does suffer from cheap build - but then the other models aren't exactly high end either. Although a very good machine it falls in between the Panasonic and Toshiba, i.e. not as slick as the former and with less options than the latter. Nevertheless a very nice recorder that won't disappoint.
     
  3. Dadd

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    Just found out I can pick up a Toshiba XS32 for just over 200 quid with a 5 year warranty, which is very tempting. The 34 isn't out in Singapore for another couple of months. I would prefer it for its nicer design, but waiting is tough.

    What does the Pioneer 720 have that the Toshiba doesn't? Does the tosh have thumbnails and all that stuff. The nice features relating to editing and storage interest me most. Will I really regret not getting a 160gb machine? Is navigation good on the tosh? Does the tosh have a DV input for my sony camcorder?

    Thanks again, and again.

    dadd
     
  4. redsox_mark

    redsox_mark
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    I haven’t used the Pioneer to compare, but I’m a happy XS32 owner. Yes it has thumbnails and the navigation is good… in terms of editing power I don’t think there is anything it can’t do that the others can. Yes it has DV-in. As for the 80 GB, it obviously depends on how much you record. 80 GB gives you about 36 hours at “SP” quality; or 18 hours at maximum quality. I find this fine for me. Some things I record, watch, and then delete, others I archive to a DVD. I haven’t got close to filling the HDD. But it all depends on how you will use the machine.

    Mark
     
  5. Dadd

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    Just read a thread about the XS32 getting loads of interference, and/ or freezing on playback and stuff like that?!! If this is the case, why is the XS32 rated so highly amongst vistors to this site? I'm either going for E95 for 500, Pio 720 for 350, or Tosh XS32 for 225 quid. I keep stumbling on threads that highlight problems for all!
     
  6. redsox_mark

    redsox_mark
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    Unfortunatly, if you keep looking you'll find some posts talking about problems, which ever model you go for. The interference issues were generally solved by using a better quality RF cable, and/or keeping that RF cable away from electrical power supply. I've never had mine freeze on playback.

    Mark
     
  7. sinclair

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    I agree with Mark in that glitches appear in all models due to a component failure or setup problems. There have been recent posts about ghosting and other strange behaviour on the EH50 but this is a great recorder and many forum members here have this machine, have had no such problems and I'm sure couldn't be happier. It would be madness to dismiss any of these machines on the basis of a localised problem and I struggle to see what machine that would leave you with.

    FWIW my XS34 has experienced none of the troubles you allude to.
     
  8. musukebba

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  9. Rasczak

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    For the most part yes. Use decent, quality media and you will have very few problems.
     
  10. sinclair

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    I can't speak for the XS32 except to note that this firmware update appears to have addressed that issue though it's not clear to what extent. I bought a sample pack from SVP with about 10 disks to see if I'd get lucky and surprisingly each one of them worked perfectly in the machine in my XS34. Time will tell if anyone else has probs but so far there is no disc recognition issue.
     

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