There are alot of these in use and, while some are highly critical of them, most who own them are pleased with what they do -especially for the price. I hope you bought it from a source that will readily take it back if you have problems.
They tend to be reliable, but there are many (of all brands) that give people problems. This is true of most microelectronics that are produced as quickly and inexpensively.
More commonly the problem is with the user. DVDR's are not the same as VCR's. It takes awhile to "feel" your way around them.
That particular model will record on anything but DVD RAM, which is a good thing. I'd buy a 25 pack of DVD-R (because almost any DVD player will play these) and about 15 DVD-RW's. Play around with these for awhile (the RW's). It will give you an idea of how DVDR's operate and what to expect.
My best advice:
1)Be Patient! To start or stop a recording takes much more time than with a VCR. It can take several minutes and you have to know the proper steps for each. Taking this time is NORMAL. Let it do it's thing.
2)Remember to finalize your disc before trying to play it or copy it in any other machine. More often than not, new users fail to know/remember this and can't figure out what happened to their recording. If it is an RW, it can be "unfinalized" (no kidding) or re-formatted. A disc doesn't have to be finalized to watch it on the machine on which it was recorded.
3)This is a different recording process than any you've previously tried. You will make mistakes, have questions, etc. Don't worry.
Thanks! I have some Verbatim & Fuji -R and tons of Maxell+R(MIJ) and Fuji+R(TY002MIJ). I will have to give the +R a test spin to see if it works. It is going to be a challenge to hook this up with my Sony 300 DVD changer. But it looks like my HK7200 and Hitachi has lots of inputs. If it is bad it will be shipped back to buy.com. So lets hope its good.
I suspect you'll have good luck with it. If you are experienced with DVD recording, you should have no trouble. If not, PATIENCE is, again, the best approach. We all have to start somewhere, so don't be afraid to ask.
It is much more active than this one, but both are worthwhile. Just be aware, people in all forums are extremely opinionated, but that doesn't mean they're right in what they say. If you have a problem, some use it as an excuse to take a shot at the manufacturer, but you should keep reading/asking until you get some actual help.
I picked one of these up at Costco for $129.99 and made two successful recordings this afternoon, with NO experience with DVD recorders at all (other than taking a VHS tape over to a friend's house and saying, "Can you put this on a DVD please?").
I like that it records all the different formats (supposedly...I've only tried DVD+RW) and inserts chapter stops at 5-30 minute intervals. I figured they all did this.
I just used the one blank disc that came with it, and it turned out to be a DVD+RW. I have some +R's to try. Looking forward to playing around with it!
Glad you are finding it easy. My cautions are meant to allay fears when "something weird" happens. (You'll know it when you see it.)
IMHO, although I don't currently own one, the 5005 is about the most versatile, & easiest-to-use of the stand-alone DVDR's. The biggest problems I found with it are: 1) It tends to be over-sensitive to Macrovision (reading tapes that are not commercially recorded as "copy-protected". 2) Reliability (when first put into use or shortly thereafter) has been a problem -at least with some runs. I am a big fan of Costco and Sam's club for this reason. 3) When doing any firmware upgrades, the instructions are not clear and doing it wrong tends to make the machine useless (didn't happen to me).
Additional problems with DVDR's in general 4) Most people don't realize you have to finalize a DVD to get it to play in any other DVD player. 5) Media can fail and some brands of media have a high failure rate when used with certain models of DVDR's. 6) DVD recording involves much more complex and variable procedures than conventional (analogue) recording and therefore is much more prone to operator or electronics errors.
I also think it produces superior results when everything works right.