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Please help me choose...

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by mmm, Jan 4, 2005.

  1. mmm

    mmm
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    I am very interested in buying a DVD recorder, and I want it to do the following things...

    1. Record on as many formats as possible (RAM I am not so bothered about).
    2. Be able to connect my camcorder (sony trv340e) and edit the movies.
    3. Pause live TV.
    4. Connect my digi-cam and save my pictures/movies to DVD.
    5. Play MP3, and even have tracklists (a bit like a pc with winamp)
    6. Play normal audio CDs.
    7. Dual-layer (although not absolutely necessary)
    8. 5.1 output (via phono plugs)

    I have done a little research and have found the sony RDR-HX900 to almost fit the bill...any other suggestions?

    many thanks
    m
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    It is NOT worth choosing a DVD recorder based on how many formats it supports! If you want to make compatible, re-writeable recordings that play on other DVD players then you should look at a machine that offers DVD-RW or DVD+RW. Whilst so called 'Dual' machines, such as those offered by LG and Sony, mean you can write to both DVD-RW and DVD+RW there is actually very little benefit to you. With either a DVD-RW or DVD+RW recording you will be able to put the disc in another player and watch it. Buying a Dual machine - because it is a dual machine - just means you are paying for two licences. And certainly with a Sony or LG DVD recorder you would be well advised to stick to DVD-RW - especially as the main features of the machine are only available with this format.

    Ironically the format your not bothered about - DVD-RAM - is actually of more use than a Dual format machine as it's substantially different structure and proven longevity make it ideal for high integrity backups. However even then I wouldn't make this the sole reason for choosing a particular DVD recorder! :lesson:

    Much more important for you to decide is whether or not you want a DVD recorder with a HDD? That will affect your end use MUCH more than multi-format support!

    Ensure you get a model with an iLInk (Firewire) connection.

    Most brand name recorders will do this. Just avoid Philips and associated cheap/unbranded names.

    Only Panasonic and Samsung recorders allow you to do this - these machines will allow you to copy JPEGs to DVD-RAM to form slideshows/archives.

    All DVD recorders will do the latter - most will handle the former although playback is normally quite basic. Most give tracklists but generally speaking DVD recorders aren't as 'presentable' as decent dedicated DVD players in this respect.

    No DVD recorders record to dual layer media yet - and it is likely to be over a year before we get any decent models that can do it.

    The top-of-the-range Panasonic E500 is the only DVD recorder with analogue 5.1 outputs.
     
  3. mmm

    mmm
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    many thanks rasczak, very informative.

    dont think I will be going for the panny e500...about £950ish.

    I like the idea of a HDD. I would guess that this would make editing movies (from a camcorder) a little more easier?

    So I have done a little more homework, and have found the following...

    1. sony rdr-hx900
    2. panasonic drm-e100, e95, e85

    each of these models sacrifice on what I want - but I guess I am really interested in recording, editing, mp3 and archiving.

    what is peoples thoughts...?
     
  4. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    The key benefit of a HDD is it enables you to make editted recordings that play on other DVD players. With a standalone DVD recorder you can either make editted recordings OR compatible ones - not both.

    The Sony machines aren't that popular on here - the editting isn't quite as good as some of the other main brands. Discount the Panasonic E100 as that is an old model. Otherwise the machines to look at are:
    - Panasonic E95 (the E85 doesn't have iLink, JPEG ability which you stated you wanted)
    - Toshiba RDXS32 (offers powerful editting)
    - Pioneer 520

    The Panasonic has the best recording PQ out of all of them. Editting ability is about the same. DVD authoring options (i.e. set menu backgrounds etc) are best on the Toshiba.
     
  5. mmm

    mmm
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    Just had a look at the tosh rd-xs32 and it looks like it fits the bill...especially on price - around £400.

    Wasnt too keen to be honest with the sony system - not had much luck with sony kit. I have already got a tosh dvd player (sd9000 - i think its called - about 5years old with the dual-tray and 5.1 output) and cant fault it. so these two pieces of kit shall sit beside one another...(the old one will still be used because of the 5.1 outputs)

    again, much thanks rasczak. appreciate the time and effort you gave me.
    m
     

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