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Opinions: Panny DMR-E55 vs Pioneer 220 vs Sony RDR-GX300

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

  1. turbohat

    turbohat
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    Neck and neck between these two (Pioneer & Panny) as to which to buy.

    Might go the extra for the Sony if it's extra special

    I'd really appreciate people's opinions
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    The benefits of each machine largely depend on what you want to do with the machines! If you want all out best recording quality then the Panasonic is the winner - however if you want/need DVD-RW then it isn't a good choice. Likewise what screen will you connect the recorder to? The Pioneer doesn't offer progressive scan/component so isn't so good for Plasmas/LCDs or decent CRTs. What media do you want to play, i.e. DVD-Audio, VCDs, MP3s, WMAs, or just DVDs? Is this going to be your main DVD player.

    All three are good recorders in their own right -it's just each has there own areas where they excel.
     
  3. turbohat

    turbohat
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    Mainly I'm after a decent player of commercial DVDs. All of these entry level recorders are on a par price wise with players with 2x scarts (I need 2x scarts to replace my sony DVP-735D). I do have quite a few 'backup' DVDRs (-Rs) that I have created on a PC and would like to play these too.

    The display I'd be using is only a 28in CRT TV so progressive isn't an issue (at the minute)

    In the house I have another DVD player that I might want to play recording son (it can handle -R and +R) and I also have a portable (Panny) that can handle -RAM too.

    I can't see me making a huge number of recordings, apart from a bit of timeshifting because I have Sky (not +) and as I understand if I record terestrial I can't watch Sky if the signal is passed through anyway. I do have some old F1 VHSs that I would like to backup though.
     
  4. thejudge

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    I'm not an expert by a long way but i recently bought the pionner 220s and i'm more than happy with it.......so far.

    The picture quality on playback is superior to my pioneer dv454 dvd player on my samsung 32" CRT. The recording quality athough not without fault is as good as i would expect for a low budget machine. It's easy to set up and has 32 or so different recording quality settings. I have sky+ and so don't need dvd-ram for time slip but the 220S has timeslip on dvd-vr if you really need it.
     
  5. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    turbohat, given your requirement to play your recordings on your other DVD player then I would avoid the Panasonic E55 as the rewriteable media (DVD-RAM) will probably not play on it. Out of the other two then the Sony offers the better DVD playback,connectivity and recording quality. The Pioneer has more features and, with careful use of recording modes, can achieve better results than the Sony.

    Do note another worthy contender at the price range your looking at is the new Toshiba DR3 - a DVD-RW/DVD-R/DVD-RAM machine that offers the best DVD playback from a budget DVD recorder. It also offers component/progressive for when you upgrade your screen.
     
  6. Biker

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    Hi Turbohat,
    Price may be a factor in your decision.
    Pioneer 220 is 169.95 at Richer Sounds.
    Panasonic 55 is 184 odd at empire direct and a few other retailers
    Toshiba DR3 is over 200 - typically nearer 250 at most stores.

    I went for the price decison and am now the proud owner of the Pioneer 220. Nice piece of kit that simply blows away VCRs in terms of picture quality from Off air recordings , which I guess is what most people will want as the main reason for a recording medium. Whichever decision you make on model x vs model y , rest assured it will be a good one - you will have no major issues I am sure..:>)
    Cheers
    Graham
     
  7. mray

    mray
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    Hi Rasczak.
    Apologies to the original poster for going off topic!
    I had the DR3 for one day and I can't say I was happy with it.
    It looks like a cut down Sony, (no bad thing!).
    It doesn't have progressive scan.
    It doesn't have component outputs.
    FR mode is only available through timer recordings.
    The drive on mine was REALLY noisy, the noisiest I've heard, more so than XBOX, or any other DVDR I've had experience with.
    The GUI is complicated.
    Playback defaulted to 4.3 every time I used the DVD/TV button.
    Recording/playback quality was no different to my E50 (Nothing wrong with the E50, but I've read good things about Tosh machines playback, so was expecting more).
    It's gone back and I've got an E55 instead.
    Could be I got a dud, but I was not impressed.
     
  8. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Are you sure you had a UK model? Are you sure it was the DR3? Take a look at the specifications for example (or at the www.toshiba.co.uk website) - you'll see it's not the same machine as the one you describe. The UK DR3 is identical to the DR1 but with the addition of RGB input.
     
  9. mray

    mray
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    Yes it was definitely the DR3. Not the DVR3.
    I've looked at the website too, but I can't see any mention of component, or prog scan for the DR3.
     
  10. mray

    mray
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    Turbohat.
    I had the GX3 for a while and it's recordings at 2hr, and playback were very good.
    The only downer for me at the time was that it coudn't record in NTSC, which the Panasonic could, and it was a very large box.
    I don't know how big the GX300 is, but it's the updated GX3, as far as I know.
    Rasczak.
    I've been to the Tosh website, but there's no mention of component or p/scan for the DR3.
    The website I bought it from had it on the spec list though, as did your link.
     
  11. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    What on the specifications link I posted or Toshiba website. If the latter then that is ALWAYS out of date anyway - like most large companies they don't make the most of the internet. If the former then it is stated quite clearly as:

    From a brief play I've had the machine is effectively a RDXS32 but without the HDD. An excellent piece of kit IMHO and it's already receiving rave reviews. Perhaps you saw a pre-production model or something similar? When did you try it BTW as it has only become available in the the last few weeks.
     
  12. mray

    mray
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    I bought it this week. It was definitely a DR3, and the well known web retailer that I got it from only source UK spec equipment, according to their site. I know you're very well informed, but the machine you're talking about doesn't sound like the one I received. The FR mode was the most annoying aspect, along with the noisy drive.

    I've also downloaded the instruction manual and that doesn't have anything about component output either.
     
  13. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Well all I can say is we'll have to presume there are two models out there causing this confusion... The DR3 I have seen I would have no hestitaion in recommending as a top class budget DVD recorder.
     
  14. mray

    mray
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    Did the one you saw have component connection etc?
    Mine looked nothing like the DR1, more like a Sony and the drive on every other machine I've used has been whisper quiet in comparison.

    Also the manual I got with it was for the UK.

    Another thing I noted was no thumbnails when using dvd-r.
    It also took ages to read & write to disc.

    I only had it for a day, but I can't imagine things would improve over time.
    It made me realise just how good the Pannys are!
     
  15. turbohat

    turbohat
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    Cheers for the comments over the last few days....

    Absolutely torn between the Panny & the Sony.

    The Sony seems to be regarded as a better 'player' (which it would be used most for), but I;ve read a few comments about disc problem with the Sony (and the GX-3) in regard to recognising discs from other machines / PC and also not playing it's discs on oter machines. Can anyone comment?

    Cheers
     
  16. mray

    mray
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    As a player, I would go for the Sony, though I'm basing my recollections on a comparison between the E50 and the GX3. The Panasonic is a more user friendly machine, in my opinion and it's cheaper too.
     
  17. richiecas

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    How would you rate any of the philips systems in this company, DVDR 610, 615 or 740.
    I am looking at something that can replace my current philips VCR and DVD player. I would use it to record TV from sky and playback DVDs and recorded DVDs. Also I would be connecting to a home cinema system and 28in CRT but plan to get a plasma/lcd in the future.
     
  18. JamesL

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    Very badly. Compared to equivalent big brand DVD recorders they are severely limited in features and offer only average performance - the reliability issues are also a concern. This is a well discussed (argued?) topic - do a search. But the general consensus seems to be that there is much better out there...
     
  19. okcomputer331

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    of the 3 the sony is more flexible with its +RW support but all 3 are excellent machines. i had to return the sony for refund as HQ mode wouldn't record properly but no one else has had this issue
     
  20. JamesL

    JamesL
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    I would disagree with. Dual format compatibility is always nice but is largely unnecessary. If you want your re-writeable media to be compatible with other DVD players then either DVD-RW or DVD+RW is enough - the end result is a disc that can play in most, but not all, DVD players. Naturally as DVD-RW offers more features (albeit at the expense of compatibility) then this is the preferred choice.

    I currently have the Sony GXD500 and, whilst it is an excellent DVD recorder, it is no match for my older Panasonic HS2 in features and general performance. So I would suggest going for the Panasonic E55 unless DVD-RAM is a problem for you, in which case opt for the Sony and then the Pioneer.
     
  21. Hobo4

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    Just afew comments on my sony GX300, exellent pic quality down to SP=2hr mode, tried so far +RW auto finalises & plays on my other player(sony355)
    -RWvideo & -RW vr mode need to be finalised on menu to play on other player
     
  22. JamesL

    JamesL
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    Hobo4, the trouble if you use DVD+RW is you don't get any of the fancy features of the GX300, i.e. timeslip, playlists and accurate editting. With DVD-RW you get the option of compatible (Video) or incompatible (VR) modes so I would recommend sticking with that type of media so you have the choice as opposed to limiting your options. That said it is a benefit not having to finalise - I have recently got the Sony GXD500 having been a DVD-RAM user (which also does not require finalisation) and it can be quite annoying to have to wait a few minutes for it to complete.
     
  23. Hobo4

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    JamesL, i think timeslip is only on -RW vr ?
    ? for you, with the 500 with it`s digi tuner if you hookup a freeview box as well you can record & watch any diff freeview ch at the same time
     
  24. JamesL

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    No! It is available on all DVD-RAM machines, when using the HDD on most HDD/DVDR combis and on some DVD-RW recorders (when using 2x speed media and VR mode).

    Yes. If you went for a setup such as:
    Sony GXD500 >> TV EXT1 (RGB Input)
    Second Freeview >> TV EXT2
     

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