Sony RDR-HX780 Specs and Info - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 03:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Seen one today at futureshop. It was posted in the flyer.


Equipped with 1080p (HDMI) upscaling capability, Sony's RDR-HX780 DVD Recorder is a must-have media unit for today's busy lifestyle. With it you can record up to 24 hours of your favourite programs on a single DVD+/-DL dual layer disc. Sporting endless other features, this DVD recorder also allows you to pause live TV, play back DivX files, and even MP3 files for hours of continuous music playback. Sony's new BRAVIA Theatre Sync feature even lets you control all HDMI connected equipment with the touch of a button. Experience the RDR-HX780 for yourself and never miss your favourite moments again.



Control your Experience with One Touch
BRAVIA Sync
Thanks to the BRAVIA Sync function, one remote controller is all you need to simultaneously turn on your television, home theatre system, and start playing a loaded disc. With the touch of one button, you can enjoy your favourite movie and avoid needing a complicated remote control collection. One button, one remote, one system - yes, it really is that simple.

Welcome to the World of Full HD
HDMI Connectivity
Maximize the quality of your content and experience the power of Full HD. By using HDMI connection to bring together all of your multimedia devices, you ensure faithful reproductions of audio and video in 1080p resolution across your BRAVIA HDTV, DVD Recorder, or HD Handycam. HDMI is at the core of a world of high-quality entertainment ready for your utmost enjoyment.

The Sound of Convenience
Music Jukebox
Sony's Music Jukebox provides an all-in-one solution for discovering, playing, editing, and burning music. Exert greater control over your music collection by managing it from one source. Added convenience like this means you won't have to fret over organizing your collection, so you can simply relax and enjoy your favourite songs in peace.

Print Without a PC
PhotoMovie with PictBridge
Imagine viewing photos with friends and family from your DVD recorder's hard-disc drive or a burned disc, when you come across a photo so enjoyable you wish you could share it instantly. Sony prepares you for that exact scenario, offering PhotoMovie with PictBridge in the RDRHX780. You can easily print still images to meet instant demand. Connect a PictBridge-compatible printer to your DVD recorder via USB cable, select images onscreen using PhotoMovie, and print - it's that simple. Life's moments are meant to be shared, so go right ahead.

Pick a Format, Any Format
DivX and MP3 Playback
The RDRHX780 is nothing if not flexible and versatile. Capable of playing file formats such as mp3 and DivX, be confident that all your music and movie files can be viewed through your DVD recorder and on TV. It's a digital age, and Sony makes sure that you can enjoy all your digital content conveniently.

Your Personal Time Machine
Chasing Playback
Expecting to miss your favourite TV show, you program your DVD recorder to save it for you. To your surprise, you make it home early, and now you're halfway through a show being taped. With Chasing Playback, you don't have to choose between watching it and recording it. Simply start watching the show from the beginning as your DVD recorder continues to record in real-time.

Build your Entertainment Collection
160GB Internal HDD
Sony's RDRHX780 doesn't offer you the power to record your favourite TV shows, and expect you to limit yourself. Save up to 455 hours on the 160GB internal hard-disc drive and stockpile your favourites. In no time, you can look back and see how impressive your collection has become while choosing that evening's entertainment option.

Twice the Space, Twice the Content
Dual Layer Disc Recording
To further maximize your content collection, and help you cut down on the number of discs you need, Sony's DVD recorder allows for recording on a dual-layer disc. Whereas a single-layer recordable DVD holds up to 4.7GB of content, a dual-layer disc has a capacity of up to 8.5GB, so you can record up to 24 hours on one disc. Dual layer disc recording lets you save more content on fewer discs, so your digital media collection can continue to grow.

High-Speed A/V Connectivity
iLink® (DV) Input
iLink is Sony's way of connecting audio and video devices so that they work in unison and at full capacity. Capable of high-speed data transfer, iLink lets your DVD recorder communicate with Cyber-shot digital cameras or HD Handycam camcorders, so you can better manage your personal content. Those are not just photos and videos in those devices, they are memories. iLink gives you a faster, simpler way to preserve those memories for as long as you might want to enjoy them.

Form a Connection
USB Connectivity
Play content from all sources on your BRAVIA Z-Series television. USB connectivity lets you play music and share photos directly from a USB key, so you can turn the contents of your pocket into a full entertainment experience.




Recording
Rec Modes: HQ+ (HDD only), HQ (1h), HSP (1.5h), SP (2h), LSP (2.5h), ESP (3h), LP (4h), EP (6h), SLP (8h), SEP (10h)
Max Recording Time: 13h22m (DVD); 24h (DVD+/-DL), 455h (HDD)
Max Recording Title Numbers: 99 (DVD-R/RW); 49 (DVD+R/RW), 999 (HDD)
Rec Mode Adjustment: DVD to HDD
Recovery Recording: DVD to HDD
Recording Events: 32/Month
One-Touch Timer: 30 minutes, max 6 hrs
Advanced Intelligent Scene Chaptering: HDD, -VR
JPEG Capture on HDD: DVD-R/-RW, CD-R/-RW, USB
JPEG Copy on DVD: DVD-R/-RW (Video)


Playback
Instant Advance/Replay: 30 sec, 2hrs / 5 sec, 2 hrs
Repeat and A-B Repeat
Program
DVD Fast Playback w/sound (1.5x)
Simultaneous Record and Playback (HDD)
Chasing Playback (HDD)
BRAVIA Sync
MP3 Playback (CD-R/-RW, DVD-R/-RW/+R/+RW, DVD-RAM)


Editing
High-Speed Dub: HDD to DVD, DVD-VR to HDD
Bit Rate Change Dub
DVD Backup
HDD Cam Dubbing
DV Edit (One-Touch DV Dub)
Automatic Chaptering from DV/D8 Camcorder
Playlist Edit (-VR)
x-Pict Story
MP3 Jukebox


Still Picture
JPEG Playback (DVD-R/-RW, CD-R/-RW
Still Picture Rotate
Still Image Slideshow


Picture Quality
10-bit Video D/A Converter (108MHz)
Video Equalizer (Rec/Playback)
YNR
CNR
Block Noise Reduction (Vertical/Horizontal)
Mosquito Noise Reduction
Progressive Output NTSC (PCP)
1080p Up-Scaling


Media/Format (1 Layer)
DVD-RAM Playback
DVD-R (Video) Playback/Rec
DVD-R (VR w/CPRM) Playback/Record
DVD+R Playback/Rec
DVD-RW Playback/Rec
DVD+RW Playback/Rec


Media/Format (2 Layer)
-R (Video) Dual Layer Playback/Rec.
-R (VR) Dual Layer Playback/Rec.
+R Double Layer Playback/Rec.


Media (Others)
CD-R/-RW (CD-DA) Playback
Video CD/SVCD Playback
DivX Playback (w/External Subtitles)


External Controls
Synchro Rec


Inputs
Composite Video: 2 (Rear)/1 (Front)
S-Video: 2 (Rear)/1 (Front)
Audio (L/R): 2 (Rear)/1 (Front)
i.LINK® (DV): 1 (Front)


Outputs
HDMI: 1 (Rear)
Composite Video: 1 (Front)
S-Video: 1 (Front)
Digital Audio (Coaxial): 1 (Rear)
Component Video: 1 (Rear)
Audio (Cinch) (L/R): 1 (Front)
Printer Connection (PictBridge Compatible)
USB Type A (for DSC, Flash Drive): 1 (Front)
USB Type B (for PictBridge): 1 (Front)


Convenience
DVD Menu Screen w/ Thumbnail Image
DVD Menu Wallpaper (9 Sheets)
Tray Lock
Child Lock
GUI Languages: English, French, Spanish (Latin), Portuguese (Brazil), Chinese (Traditional)


Power Supply
Voltage: 110-240V
Frequency: 50/60Hz
Power Consumption: 42W
Standby Power Consumption: < 0.5W


Weight & Dimensions
Dimensions (W x H x D): 430 x 66.5 x 286.5mm
Weight: 4.4kg


Supplied Accessories
Instruction Manual (English/French)
AV Cable
RF Cable
Remote Commander® Control (RMT-D246A)
AA' Battery x2
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post #2 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 06:08 PM
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Interesting that Sony would choose to re-enter the Canadian DVD/HDD market shortly after Panasonic abandoned it. Maybe there's some dim hope after all that one or another mfr will keep throwing these at the wall (in Canada, forget the States) as long as competition is weak. For the lucky Canadians who now have access to it, the RDR-HX780 is more-or-less a Pioneer 560 but with Sonys own encoder and dedicated circuitry to interface with Sony televisions and other components. This could be interesting if you already have a Sony A/V system, but if you don't you might find the recording features on the Pioneer version more useful (the Pioneer encoder allows you to fit the recording more precisely to a blank DVD by setting manual recording 'speeds' at ten minute intervals, and the Pioneers have more flexible editing tools). Pioneer and Sony have been co-developing their recorders since 2006, but the Sony versions have not been available in North America until now (assuming this Future Shop sighting pans out...)

In Europe the Sonys with HDD are considered to have superior DTV tuning, so far the ATSC non-HDD USA models are only so-so but that might change if an ATSC Sony with HDD were to appear. Well, we can dream, anyway.
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post #3 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 06:33 PM - Thread Starter
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I was checking out the manual and you can set it for like the Pioneer models MN settings. There is an option in the menu to bring it up. Here is a link to the maual you can download. Check out page 128, 129 and 130. http://www.sony.ie/product/dvd-recor...780/tab/manual
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post #4 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 06:59 PM
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I wondered why there wasn't much info on the tuner(s) in the 780... MAYBE THE LINKED MANUAL ISN'T THE ONE FOR THE MODEL IN CANADA???

The specs list PAL/SECAM, and pg 103 of the manual lists these regions from which you have to select before scanning for tuner channels:

FR... Select this when in France

Western Euro... Select this when in West European countries

UK & IE... Select this when in Great Britain/Ireland

Eastern Euro... Select this when in East European countries

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post #5 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 07:22 PM - Thread Starter
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By golly gee I think your right. When I searched for the product manual I assumed it would give me the Canadian one. Not!, It is the Euro one. I can't seem to find it on the Canadian site and a link to the manuals comes up page no loner exists soemthing like that. I even registered and still can't seem to find any manuals.
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post #6 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 07:27 PM
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I searched for some info and found lots of "foreign" sites/refs but no manual or better info on U.S. or Canadian sites... Sonystyle.com comes up blank on the 780.
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post #7 of 114 Old 08-14-2008, 07:33 PM - Thread Starter
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I found the way to the product manuals but it doesn't list the RDRHX780. Only the RDRHX715 and up to the RDRHX730 models, thats it.
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post #8 of 114 Old 08-15-2008, 12:14 AM
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Living in the USA, I cannot personally check the Future Shop print ads. The lack of specs or manual on Sony Canada website could mean one of two things: one, the model is still so new to Canada it will not appear on Sonys website for a few weeks yet (this happened when Pioneer introduced the 460/560/660 earlier this summer), or two, Future Shop may simply be advertising the PAL/SECAM overseas version for those who need such a recorder (several major stores in the USA promote similar Panasonic and Pioneer models). If the Future Shop ad is for a new Canada-specific model, it will undoubtedly be limited to an NTSC analog tuner. It may or may not have TVGOS. We'll just have to wait until a Canadian member walks into Future Shop and reports back here with details.

The manual link provided by ripper64 indicates Sony and Pioneer have indeed moved closer with this new model: last year the Sony OS and encoder was quite different from Pioneers but judging from the tables and illustrations in the RDR-HX780 manual, Sony is now using a near-identical editing subsystem and MN variable recording modes. This pretty much closes the gap and makes the Sony and Pioneer units twins of each other internally. The advantage now might move to Sony, because they are much easier to service (if the hard drive fails in a Sony, you can replace it using a built-in hidden service menu). Pioneers still require the tedious acquisition of a Service Remote and Service Disc, on the other hand they allow larger replacement drives. To each his own...
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post #9 of 114 Old 08-15-2008, 05:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Living in the USA, I cannot personally check the Future Shop print ads. The lack of specs or manual on Sony Canada website could mean one of two things: one, the model is still so new to Canada it will not appear on Sonys website for a few weeks yet (this happened when Pioneer introduced the 460/560/660 earlier this summer), or two, Future Shop may simply be advertising the PAL/SECAM overseas version for those who need such a recorder (several major stores in the USA promote similar Panasonic and Pioneer models). If the Future Shop ad is for a new Canada-specific model, it will undoubtedly be limited to an NTSC analog tuner.

This model is new, but has been listed on Sony's website for at least 6 weeks. Futureshop and Best Buy have just been a little slow at getting it onto their product website. It is not overseas model stock, but is specifically for the Canadian market, complete with an NTSC tuner. It is essentially identical to last year's model, and is identical in functionality to the Pioneer models.
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post #10 of 114 Old 08-15-2008, 08:12 AM - Thread Starter
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JeffWld is right that futureshop and bestbuy in Canada are slow getting new products onto their websites. The futureshop in my town just put the unit out yesterday. I went to look at it and they had a display model and only 1 new unit for sale. The box was pretty sparse for information. I looked at the back of the unit but it didn't cross my mind to check what tuner was in it because I knew it wasn't going to be ATSC and no TVGOS either. It is cheaper than the Pioneer retail $479 160GB HDD and the Sony $399 160GB HDD.
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post #11 of 114 Old 08-15-2008, 08:40 AM
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Clicking on the "specifications" tab gives a reasonable overview until Sony gets a manual posted for this unit:

http://www.sonystyle.ca/commerce/ser...=n100421n47000
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post #12 of 114 Old 08-27-2008, 01:24 PM
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Does anyone know if the RDRHX780 have programming features similar to a vcr, and whether it provides the capability of buring dvd's from its memory?
Thanks. Best Buy and Future Shop have them but the sales people know nothing about them :-)
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post #13 of 114 Old 08-27-2008, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Rumin View Post

Does anyone know if the RDRHX780 have programming features similar to a vcr, and whether it provides the capability of buring dvd's from its memory?
Thanks. Best Buy and Future Shop have them but the sales people know nothing about them :-)

What do you mean by "memory"?

It does have a hard drive, which can be recorded to, and you can transfer material from that to DVD (after editing it first, if you want).

And yes, you would set manual program timers, just as you would with a VCR.
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post #14 of 114 Old 08-27-2008, 03:09 PM
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Yes, the Sony 780 works "like a VCR" but not exactly: if you have never used a DVD/HDD recorder before, you need to study the manual for awhile before you will be fully comfortable using it. In basic terms, yes, you would usually record shows to its internal hard drive "memory", where you can edit commercials out with no loss of quality and do several other things that were not possible on a VCR. When you have the shows exactly the way you want to preserve them, you can copy them at high speed to DVDs using the Sonys built-in DVD drive. The machine has a tuner/timer that operates much like a VCR does.

This unit is a brand new model for Canada. It may be helpful for you to know it is more-or-less identical to the Pioneer 460/560 (they all come out of the same factories). Buy whichever one is on sale at the best price when you're ready, all are equally good.
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post #15 of 114 Old 08-29-2008, 10:26 PM
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As of now on sale at Bestbuy for $299...
Sale Ends: 9/4/2008
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post #16 of 114 Old 08-29-2008, 10:26 PM
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Would gladly post the link but since I'm a newbie I need at least 3 posts...
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post #17 of 114 Old 08-29-2008, 10:27 PM
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At that rate I'll be able soon...
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post #18 of 114 Old 08-29-2008, 10:28 PM
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post #19 of 114 Old 08-30-2008, 07:56 AM
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Unfortunately if you're in the US, they won't ship it to you. Can't ship to BB USA for your pickup either, even if you pay for it...
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post #20 of 114 Old 10-10-2008, 08:04 PM
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CitiBear -> You mention in your message that there is a "built-in hidden service menu" on the Sony RDR-HX780. Can you elaborate on this? I purchased this unit yesterday, and would love to see what this looks like.
Thanks in advance!
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post #21 of 114 Old 10-10-2008, 08:16 PM
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I think I could provide a unique perspective on the comparison between the Sony RDR HX780 and the Pioneer DVR-560H-K.

I picked up the Pioneer (from Futureshop in Quebec), and played with it some, until I discovered that it was giving me trouble playing back AVIs. The AVIs were displaying in black and white, and the image was offset appx 20% down from the top. I figured that it was a matter of older firmware, and so I went back and swapped it for the Sony ($299).

The salesperson had not told me anything about the similarities between the two units, but when I got the Sony home, it became obvious really quick. Identical menus. The only difference really was the remote control's layout (the Pioneer seemed a bit better organized ergonomically, and had a "Help" button - mostly useless, since the help shows on the menus automatically).

I am having the same problem with the AVIs however. I haven't yet been able to figure it out or find anything on the internet, but I am at this point thinking it has something to do with protected content. Regardless, the Sony's not going back to the store. My wife loves it.
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post #22 of 114 Old 10-10-2008, 08:27 PM
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I wonder if this info on AVI for my Philips 3575 will help you find something in your manual or provide a clue as to the B&W pic or 20% offset:

It is recommended that files to be played back in this unit are recorded under the following specifications:
Official DivX® Certified product
• Playable codec of AVI files: DivX®3.x, DivX®4.x, DivX®5.x
• Maximum size of image : 720x480 @30 fps or 720x576 @25 fps
• Sampling frequency of audio : 8 kHz-48 kHz
• Audio type : MPEG1 audio layer 3(MP3), MPEG1 audio layer 2, Dolby Digital

Notes:
• A file with an extension of “.avi” and “.divx” is called an DivX® file. All files with the “.avi” extension are recognized as MPEG4.
• Files whose extension other than “.avi” and “.divx” will not be listed on the DivX® menu. However, unplayable folders and files may be displayed, depending on the recording conditions.
• Even if the file has an extension of either “.avi” and “.divx”, this unit cannot play it back if it is recorded in the format other than DivX®.
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post #23 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 08:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angloboy42 View Post

CitiBear -> You mention in your message that there is a "built-in hidden service menu" on the Sony RDR-HX780. Can you elaborate on this? I purchased this unit yesterday, and would love to see what this looks like.
Thanks in advance!

This is not something you fool around with unless you have a DEFINITE need to repair the unit- there's no reason to mess with one you just bought. It is not easy to "back out" of service mode without actually performing service, so you risk loss of your recordings or worse.

If, and only if, you encounter a problem such as needing to replace the hard drive, the Sony service mode is accessed by turning the unit off, unplugging the power cord, and connecting the Line 1 output to your display (if it isn't already). Then you need almost to have three hands to enter service mode: you have to hold down the OPEN/CLOSE and PLAY buttons at the same time while plugging the power cord back in. Keep holding the buttons until the front panel displays an S and the service menu appears on your TV. This can take between 30 seconds to a minute to appear, be patient.

If the unit does not go into service mode within 90 seconds, stop what you're doing and forget it- Sony may finally have adopted Pioneers firmware hook line and sinker meaning you would need the Pioneer service remote and service disc to repair a Sony recorder now. Being in the States I don't have access to a Sony 780 to test this myself, but the last few Pioneer-based Sony recorders incorporated the built-in service mode. Those units used a Sony operating system, however, and worked very differently from similar-looking Pioneers. Since the new Sony 780 has moved to a 100% Pioneer operating system, the earlier service mode may have been dropped in this model. (Although that would be weird: I can't imagine Sony service centers using Pioneer-branded service tools to handle a single new machine.)
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post #24 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 10:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angloboy42 View Post

I think I could provide a unique perspective on the comparison between the Sony RDR HX780 and the Pioneer DVR-560H-K.

I picked up the Pioneer (from Futureshop in Quebec), and played with it some, until I discovered that it was giving me trouble playing back AVIs. The AVIs were displaying in black and white, and the image was offset appx 20% down from the top. I figured that it was a matter of older firmware, and so I went back and swapped it for the Sony ($299).

The salesperson had not told me anything about the similarities between the two units, but when I got the Sony home, it became obvious really quick. Identical menus. The only difference really was the remote control's layout (the Pioneer seemed a bit better organized ergonomically, and had a "Help" button - mostly useless, since the help shows on the menus automatically).

I am having the same problem with the AVIs however. I haven't yet been able to figure it out or find anything on the internet, but I am at this point thinking it has something to do with protected content. Regardless, the Sony's not going back to the store. My wife loves it.

I suspect that protected content has nothing to do with it; the recorder is just picky about what it will play. With my Pioneer DVR-460H-K, I've had no luck at all playing AVIs derived from PAL sources (25 fps) and inconsistent results with videos from NTSC sources (29.97/30 fps or 23.976/24 fps). As workaround, I've tried running the NTSC ".avi" files through the free "Dr. DivX OSS" software on my PC to create ".divx" files. This has worked reasonably well although there is some loss of quality. However, depending on the age of your PC, the processing time could take hours and may not be worth the effort.

Tony
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post #25 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 03:37 PM
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I'll hold off on playing with Service Mode - it would only be a curiosity for me. I like to push buttons. I'm willing to bet that it works like the Pioneer now anyways.
I tried using Dr DivX OSS to re-encode a problematic AVI, but it did not help.
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post #26 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 03:43 PM
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I discovered a hidden function that shows the version information for the player..
  1. Bring up the system menu
  2. Select "Initial Setup" and press ENTER
  3. Select "Audio Out" and press ENTER
  4. Select "Dolby Digital Out" and press ENTER
  5. Hilight "Dolby Digital" but DO NOT PRESS ENTER
  6. Press ANGLE
Detailed information will now be shown. Mine reports:
Version: 1.05
SYSCON: RELEASE_331
TUFLCON: 1.243 *
DRIVE: 1.00 -
DEVICE: E2R-FEx1.1
REGION: 1
Also, if you follow steps 1 through 5, and then press "9" instead of ANGLE, it will show a one-liner containing the version number only.
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post #27 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 05:22 PM
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Re the version check tip posted by angloboy42: this is exactly the method used to check Pioneer firmware versions, going back years. Along with the now-identical menus and operation screens, this pretty definitively proves the 780 model is a Pioneer at heart.
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post #28 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 06:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Re the version check tip posted by angloboy42: this is exactly the method used to check Pioneer firmware versions, going back years. Along with the now-identical menus and operation screens, this pretty definitively proves the 780 model is a Pioneer at heart.

Sony and Pioneer have had an OEM relationship for decades: Pioneer laserdisc players were made by Sony, Sony's division Aiwa has made high-end audio components for Pioneer and Sony, and now Sony 780s are made by Pioneer, - going full circle. Actually I would guess Sony and Pioneer are using a common "noname" OEM builder.

I haven't tried the Sony method of entering the System menu yet on my 780, but it would be no surprise if it doesn't work. It's no big deal that "Sony" would have to get a Pioneer DVD and remote for a Sony player, actually repairs are farmed out to a third-party facility who would always be supplied with the necessary tools by their clients. The Pioneer DVD and remote would become a Sony DVD and service remote.
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post #29 of 114 Old 10-11-2008, 08:45 PM
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Just to confirm that the method described here and elsewhere for accessing the Service Menu for Sony recorders does NOT work with the RDR-HX780. So it's Pioneer all the way and the Pioneer (or a new Sony) service DVD and remote would be required.
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post #30 of 114 Old 10-13-2008, 11:38 AM
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I wonder then if the firmware version is up-to-date It appears that I have version 1.05. I cannot seem to find a firmware update related to the Sony (are they good about providing updates?), but I found plenty regarding Pioneer.
For example, firmware 6.20 for region 1 for the DVR-540H/543H/640H can be found here
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