Would like to thank you so much for starting this thread. I have owned two Panny recorders, my current one being the dmr-ea18.
Equipment does not last forever and I am very upset that Panasonic has discontinued making recorders. Even though there are some still on the market, none have the flexible recording feature that makes the DVD recordings stand out by using only the minimum amount of recording space required.
I am not a technical savvy person but a lover of old movies in particular and have accumulated a large collection off TCM, HBO. Using this format, dubbing from HD down converted to 480i via s video and playing back up converted on my 50 inch Sony, two older films, either color or black and whites about 3 1/2 hours is about an 8.5 out of ten compared to the original, older source. Newer, films around two hours are maybe 7.5 out of ten which is not bad, considering its forty cents. Won't do that for classics like Lawrence of Arabia or Star Wars or 007 which I love, but for Roustabout, Royal Wedding and the 1926 Ben Hur, this is more than just acceptable quality. Had a Toshiba which was just a par above VHS in comparison.
So will keep an eye out for those that might still be available even if refurbished should the need come up.
Thanks again from a collector. Flexible recording makes a tremendous difference in acceptable picture quality.