PC or DVD Recorder?



I'm in the market for a DVD recorder. Anybody any views on whether I should buy a DVD writer for my computer and a DVD player for my TV or just a dedicated DVD player/recorder for the TV?

I mainly watch terrestrial and Sky TV and use the Sky+ box to record programmes some of which are archived onto SVHS. So I want to replace the archive with a DVD.

I'm asking the question because I would also have a use for a DVD writer on my computer for data back-up.

Can the Sky+ box be easily connected to a computer DVD writer (physical wiring will not be a problem)?

All input gratefully received.

David Caple


Established Member
I have a Phillips DVDR1000 DVD Recorder (one of the early ones), but I no longer use it.
The only advantage of the DVD Recorder is ease of use. Treat it like a VHS and simply program it and let it go. However the technology is not as reliable as you are led to believe, and discs will give errors, refuse to record, and in my case will not even play manufactured DVD now. Even when working the menu system is very inflexible, and editing the recorded video is difficult.
One last point is they all have a copy protection system built in which stops you recording Macrovision and other protected sources such as Sky Box Office movies, commercial VHS tapes you want to transfer, and of course commercial DVD.

I now use Sky+ and connect this to a Vidac VMagic hardware MPEG1/2 capture card via s-video, With this I can choose the quality of recording and author a finished DVD either as a fast menu-less stick-it-in-and-play job or full menus/chapters etc. I also archive childrens programs at MPEG1 VCD quality either on CD-R at up to 1hr 12 mins or onto DVD-R at up to 7 hours.
Copy protection is totally ignored as are "Press Red" which are not recorded on the Sky+ HDD

I would never use a DVD recorder again, and I have also seen Freeview tuners with built-in HDD as an alternative.

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