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Noob with a question re DVD Recorders
8 replies to this topic
Posted March 14 2013 - 03:01 AM
My sweetheart's DVD Recorder/VHS/HDD machine (Panasonic DMR-EH75V) has finally crapped out on him. He's had this machine for years and years, and we're struggling a bit to find him something comparable to replace it. Does anyone here have any suggestions? I've tried doing some research, but it looks like the technology is significantly different from when his machine was produced. (As much as he'd like to keep the three main abilities of his now-dead machine (VHS->DVD, DVD playback, and "DVR" [HDD]->DVD), I'm guessing the VHS aspect may be obsolete at this point.) If any of you would be kind enough to provide some knowledgable input, we'd truly appreciate it! (Note: The one thing I've definitely learned from my research... we will likely steer clear of any future Panasonic purchases in this technology realm, as it appears their track record - in production, repair and customer service - is very poor!) Our sincerest thanks for your time and input!
Posted March 14 2013 - 07:23 AM
The Panasonic repair center used to fix their DVD HDD recorders for a flat fee of about $149, as I recall. I had to do this once when the hard drive on mine crapped out. HDD recorders are extremely hard to find (in the USA, anyway) these days. Certainly hard to find a "new" one. I wouldn't worry about getting one with a build-in VHS deck. A separate deck would probably be just as good, if not better. After my Panasonic broke down that time, I bought a used/remanufactured Pioneer one (a DVR-640-H-S) from eBay for, I think, less than I paid to have that Panasonic fixed (certainly a lot less than the price of the one I see on Amazon). Any of their DVR models with "H" in the name would be one with a HDD (the "S" in mine is for Silver chassis. The black chassis ones have a K). One really good feature the Pioneer has over the Panasonic one is that you can defragment the hard drive. Fragmented hard drives are a big killer of the Panasonics. I love the way the Pioneer one works versus the Panasonic. Also, it isn't documented, but you can record a PAL source to a PAL-formatted disc with the US Pioneer if you need that sort of thing (comes in handy for me), even though there's no mention of it in the manual or the menu system. It'd pretty easy to operate, and I've had mien for a bunch of years.
Posted March 14 2013 - 07:58 AM
Thank you both for your replies!! I've noticed that Amazon has quite a few Magnavox models (minus the VHS component), and most seem to have solid customer reviews (such as this one). Hard to find much in the way of "techie" reviews (i.e., CNET-style) though, so I very much appreciate the information each of you has provided.
Posted March 14 2013 - 08:13 AM
I've never used them, but Philips also used to make inexpensive HDD recorders. You can probably still find a few of those on the secondary market. Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't know of any HDD recorders with HD TV tuner. I think all the US models will only record from SD sources (though some have a firewire/DV jack enabling you to record 16x9 SD picture from DV camcorders, etc).
Posted March 23 2013 - 06:27 PM
My regular Panasonic dvd/vhs recorder stopped recording or playing discs so i took it to a repair shop to have it looked at and was told that the part needed to fix will cost $432 from Panasonic..more than the $154 i paid for it new. Glad i still have 2 other Panasonic dvd recorders (one band new ) because Panasonic stopped making them which is a shame since i do record alot off my satellite and the recording images even on the LP mode was still very good. It looks like only Toshiba and Magnavox makes stand alone dvd recoders for now.
Posted March 23 2013 - 06:52 PM
Last time I checked about a year + ago Walmart - of all places- was still selling a model (Magnavox or /Phillips?) with HDD and digital tuner, I was supposed to pick up one to replace an aging RCA with analog tuner I own but never did, not sure if they still stock that model, I would have to check again..
Posted March 29 2013 - 10:15 AM
I have never had a DVD recorder with HDD. My Panasonic DVD-R/DVD RAM recorder recently died after 10 years or so. I bought one of the Magnavox recorders for around $90 from Amazon. So far, I like it more than the Panny, and it records to both + and R as well as RW. I have not made any coasters yet. Often, I take the disc I record and rip it my PC so as to make a properly authored DVD with menus, etc. When my PC recognizes the disc and asks me what I want to do, it identifies the DVD as "Funai DVD"; so all these recent models are indeed Funai as Sam stated. Dunno how their HDD recorders are, but I am pleased with the Magnavox/Funai DVD recorder and am using it to record laserdiscs and VHS tapes as well as programs (mainly TCM movies) archived on my dish HDD.
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