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Pioneer DVR420 - Opinions ?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Griffin, Nov 10, 2004.

  1. Griffin

    Griffin
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    Guys,

    Thinking of getting one of these for a christmas Pressie (wife buying). Would like your opinions on them if possible. Also interested in how it compares to the Panasonic DMRE55 (hard drive aside obviously)

    Thanks
     
  2. Barzo

    Barzo
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    Had a Panny E55, traded it in for a Tosh RX32, which I then took back and traded for a Pioneer 420. (Tosh had some drive issues with DVD-R discs (and from some high class manufacturers such as TDK and Maxell) - there is a thread on here if you search).

    I am VERY happy with the 420. I have read a lot about the current Panny models having a better MPEG encoder, and that may well be the case, but I am more than satisfied with the quality of recordings from the 420.

    Quick list of pros and cons as compared to Panny:

    Pros

    HDD - really is a big factor!
    DVD-RW compatible (useful if making copies for friends - more compatible than RAM)
    Numerous picture tweaks for recording
    WMA and JPEG playback
    Faster and better presented operating system (Home Menu system is excellent)
    Faster start-up time

    Cons

    MPEG encoder not as advanced (Panny can do 3hr high resolution recording, Pioneer 2hr 15 mins)
    No Component outputs or Prog Scan playback (a big loss if (a) you have a prog scan capable monitor/projector and (b) intend to rely on the DVR as your main DVD player)
    DVD-RAM double sided discs (can record accross two sides in one cartridge)
    Price (fairer comparission is the Panny E85)


    Hope this helps
     
  3. Griffin

    Griffin
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    Thanks Barzo, what sort of recording quality does the Pioneer have over the Panny do you know ?

    (eg - 1Hr HQ, 2Hr Medium q etc)
     
  4. Barzo

    Barzo
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    Panny has, as far as I remember, four modes - XP (1 hr), SP (2 hrs), LP (4hrs), EP (selectable as 6-8 hrs). It also has an excellent FR mode, where it sets the bit rate for the time - e.g. this is how the 3hr full resolution recording mode is accessed.

    Pioneer has similar modes - HQ (1 hr), SP (2 hrs), LP (4hrs), EP (6 hrs) and a manually selectable bit rate setting in 32 steps (which replaces the FR mode on the Panny). It also has a version of the FR mode - Auto - for timer recordings only.
     
  5. Pupsi

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    Hi Barzo,

    How would you compare the fan noise between Pinoeer 420 and Pana E55?

    From various posts I've read that the new Pioneers have a noisy fan but how does it compare to the Panasonic's.

    Thanks.
     
  6. stanleyntl

    stanleyntl
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    Have you tried recording from the TV tuner on Pioneer what's that like?
    What's it like for DVD replay - prerecorded discs?
     
  7. eddyad

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    1. My 420 fan is unobtrusive - quieter then the Sony VCR. But fan noise can vary from machine to machine despite being identical products.
    2. TV tuner is OK. LP mode is better than Sony SP VCR
    3. I like the scart passthrough on the Pioneers. You can feed RGB from external soure (e.g. Freeview box) into the 420 and it passes through to the output scart then to the TV. This works in standby and can be used during 420 recording from its internal tuner. So you can have a complete RGB path for viewing and recording digital source.
    4. Editing is quite powerful. You can edit a title in the copy list without changing the HDD version, among other things.
    5. It will also change bitrate during copy HDD==>DVD. So you can always optimise an HDD title to a DVD side. This works in 10 minute bites as you go through the MN recording modes. (obviously it's not worth going to better quality on the DVD than is on the HDD)

    I can't think of anything that makes me wish I had something else yet. Have you downloaded the manual from the Pioneer site? It's in the Support string from the main menu. When you get to the search box type 420. It's a shared manual with 520 and 720.
     

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