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New problem with recording off-air onto DVD (1 Viewer)

Mike Frezon

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I've been using a cheapo Insignia DVD+/-R/RW recorder for several months now with great success. Most use has been for dubbing from VHS and recording off-air.

And all has been well. Except for the past couple of weeks.

Lately I've been dealing with the fact that various instances when I've been recording off-air have been stopped early. Most times this has happened during a timer-record session when I've been away and have come home and found that I might have only 2 1/2 hours out of a planned 4 hour recording.

Needless to say this is extremely aggravating...especially during baseball playoffs.

The only clue I have is during non-timer recording sessions...such as tonight--when I simply pushed play at the start of a one-hour program and returned to find a message on my DVD-recorder that said Record-blocking signals are detected.

Is my cable company (Time-Warner) sending out some kind of signal to defeat DVD-Recording? Or, are the networks sending out some kind of signal to defeat digital recordings that is being passed-through by T-W?

FWIW, the Insignia recorder has no built-in tuner. I have it connected to a Sony VCR which I am using as a tuner for the unit.

Thanks for any info.
 

Mike Frezon

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This is quickly turning into a situation in which I am expecting this to happen more often than not.

Tonight I only recorded 8 1/2 minutes of a 1-hour timer record. :angry:

I wonder what is going on?
 

Mike Frezon

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Google searches on the topic are taking me mostly to forums where people are complaining that they cannot record movies off of premium channels onto their DVD-recorders.

I just want to be clear that I am only trying to use my DVD-recorder to time-shift network programs such as off Fox, CBS & NBC.
 

Scott Strang

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I have a sony dvd recorder that all of a sudden started doing that with directv ifc channel. Since the sony was garbage in the first place I bought a panasonic dvd recorder and it even allows recording of ppv movies as well as ifc and it was far cheaper.

Not sure who makes the Insignia/Best buy recorder but I bet it's one of the majors like Sony/Panasonic/Phillips.

Having said that I found that those messages came immediately rather than after recording for few minutes. My panny says that it will record over the air SD digital broadcasts but must use DVD-RAM discs that have some flag to record only that copy and not allow subsequent copies (like SCMS). I've never tried it before since I have no rabbit ears where the recorder is located. But on the sony burner it would give the typical cannot record a copy writed program crap.

If you have not had that Insignia burner for too long you might consider taking it back to Best Buy and getting a Panny burner. I got mine at Target for $180 (vs $300 for the Sony at Sears).

It even encodes a pretty decent picture at the LP speed.
 

Mike Frezon

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Thanks, Scott. Do you suppose it was a fault of the player? Or that IFC started sending out some signal?

Last night, for example, I ended up with an aborted attempt to record Boston Legal off ABC (crapped out 20 minutes in), but had no problem recording two hours of The African Queen off TCM.
 

Scott Strang

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That really sounds more like the burner or media is having trouble. That is exactly what would happen to my Marantz cd audio burner (worst $2300 I ever spent) after it recorded a few minutes. It would get too hot and I guess lose it's tolerances. It would trash discs w/o warning and that was at $7-15/disc.

I think Best Buy or Target would let you try a recorder and would take it back if it sucks.

Hope this helps.
 

Mike Frezon

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That's interesting...because I would have thought that my experiences last night would indicate that it wasn't really the recorder's fault.

I figured TCM probably wasn't sending out any macrovision signals...but that the networks must've stepped them up (although I also figured if everyone else was suffering the same consequences the outcry would have been deafening!). But I guess it's also possible that my recorder seems to have developed an intolerance for signals which might have pre-existed.

Maybe I should swap out the VCR feeding the signal into the DVD Recorder (I think I've got a couple different machines kicking around the basement gathering dust).

Thanks VERY MUCH for the input.
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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DVD records in general are a pretty blinky and unreliable catagory. Check the user reviews for virtually any model at Amazon.com and you'll be hard pressed to find one with more than a 50% approval rating. For reliable timeshifting, your best bet is a Philips combo DVD/ hard drive recorder. It's going to cost more, but it's as easy to operate as a VCR so you'll have no hassles.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

Mike Frezon

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I was surprised to find that I recorded all four hours of the ALCS game last night on TBS (although I don't know why I will ever want to watch THAT again!) without incident.

I DID change the media. But I don't know if that's a variable I should take into account with this situation...
 
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TonyD

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every post that person has made is only a bunch of smilie faces or bananas.

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