Is Pioneer Coming out with a new HDD/DVD Recorder in Canada? - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 77 Old 08-14-2009, 12:05 PM
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I have a Pio 460 and I think it's a lovely machine! Citibear recommended it to me and I'm grateful.
It does everything I wanted, which is: "title" creation, basic Menus, editing, etc. It let's me adjust recording time for slightly better PQ from dubbing VHS (or anything else for the matter), I can hook a keyboard up to it to rename titles which is far better than using the remote. It's also fast when burning and finalizing. What is also fab is that it is not buggy!
My Pio has a place of honor in my elegant Egyptian Entertainment Center
I only wish I had a spare stash in the closet because you won't find anything like it anymore save the few left in Canada which could be gone tomorrow for all I know.

Regarding the LCD TV: But...but...but...but I have a Sammy 40 inch LCD that cost me a fortune (according to my budget) and it was the best looking of the choices amongst many other brands. Plasmas were or are too expensive to purchase and operate. LCDs are more energy efficient. Granted not long ago Plasmas offered better PQ and especially motion with thier higher mhz and stuff. These days LCD TVs have caught up to Plasmas in that area.
Granted my LCD is 60Hz instead of 120 due to budget, but it's ok mostly. (I don't watch a lot of sports, hardly any so it's not a huge deal to me as action movies seem to be fine).
I thought I got a good TV after doing homework for 3 months solid and cramming my head with too much info. Did I not get a good thing? (Not that I can do anything about it now).
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post #62 of 77 Old 08-14-2009, 12:09 PM
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If you're happy with it then it's a good thing.

We're just talking what really comes down to personal preferences here.
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post #63 of 77 Old 08-15-2009, 03:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

I believe 2008 was the last model year for Samsung DLP.

So sad. I was looking forward to someday owning a phlatlite darkchip set... Guess I'll have to pine for a Mitsu Laser set now... I doubt if DLP front projectors will disappear anytime soon, but I prefer rear projection, because the screen does not reflect ambient light.
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post #64 of 77 Old 08-20-2009, 11:57 AM
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...in response to previous OT DLP comments:

I only have one thing to say about DLP:
82"
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post #65 of 77 Old 08-20-2009, 12:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6volt View Post

...in response to previous OT DLP comments:

I only have one thing to say about DLP:
82"

Only 82"? They made them up to 120".

(I don't know where or if you could buy them, but at least one was made.)

Don't believe everything on the Interwebz! A duck's quack DOES echo!
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post #66 of 77 Old 08-20-2009, 02:38 PM
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So does anyone have any recent leads on where I can get hold of a North American Pioneer 560H in Canada? Or should I just keep checking ebay.
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post #67 of 77 Old 08-20-2009, 03:14 PM
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Supplies of the 560 and 660 were depleted across Canada awhile ago. The only model left that occasionally pops up on eBay is the 460, which is a 560 without the GraceNote CD audio database (at this point, an utter "who cares" feature). Keep looking and you'll eventually see a few pop up as "new open box" for around $369. (When searching eBay, enter "pioneer dvd recorder" instead of using a model number, or you'll get no hits.) Avoid the units for sale via Hong Kong: they're usually way overpriced. As mentioned earlier, World Import, J&R, and B&H sell "international" versions of the 560 and 660 for about $450. From what buyers tell me, these work well in USA/Canada, unlike last years tricky "international" 550/650 models.

Thats it. Canadian Pioneers were cheaper by $100 when they were still being made a few months ago, but just like when Panasonic walked away prices skyrocketed and units became scarce as soon as people learned there wouldn't be any more. The only option for Pioneer and Panasonic fanciers now is the pricey "global import" versions in the $450 range. The Canadian Sony 780 is an overpriced, watered down, trouble-prone knockoff of the older Pioneer 640. The Magnavox H2160A is usable, a bargain at $250 and very attractive for off-air ATSC recording. But it isn't quite as versatile as a Pioneer or Panasonic for cable/satellite or tape dubbing projects, and it has an annoying conflict between its timer recording and DVD finalization functions. Its great value for the money, and viewed in that light its an attractive possibility, but if you really want a Pioneer or Panasonic you'll likely be happier spending the extra money for one.
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post #68 of 77 Old 09-10-2009, 01:22 AM
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I have been recording from star-choice/shaw for several years. At this time, my main recorders are 2 pioneer 650s (250 G), a pioneer 640 (160 G), a pioneer 80G (can't remember model no.) and the sony 780 (160 G). I got the sony as a replacement for a panasonic 200 G recorder that had the burner burn-out while under extended warranty; and the pioneer 640 as a replacement for another 640 that had the same burn-out after 10 months (but nearly 1,000 recordings!). I also have in unopened boxes: a pioneer 660 (250 G); a pioneer 460 (160 G) and 2 sony 780s.
The 2 recorders that burned out were, as pointed out in this thread, not fixed by pioneer and panasonic because of cost inefficiency to the manufacturers. I was able to recover all my hdd movies from each recorder before sending them for repair - which leads me to believe that there is an afterlife for dvd/hdd recorders after burn-out. They can still be used for recording programs unto the hard drive - just like tivos, etc. And the hdd recordings can be viewed at any time. So if your dvd/hdd cannot be repaired, you don't have to dump it - and you can still hook it up to a stand alone dvd recorder, or possibly a pc, and continue to use it for years to come!
I'm hoping that the sony 780s are not as bad as indicated. I have recorded about 50 movies on them in the past 6 weeks, and it works perfectly.
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post #69 of 77 Old 09-12-2009, 12:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by searchers View Post

I'm hoping that the sony 780s are not as bad as indicated. I have recorded about 50 movies on them in the past 6 weeks, and it works perfectly.

I have a total of five Pioneer machines of various vintages from the 533 through to the 650 - four are in active use and all of them are working fine (one, a 633, had a hard drive failure that was repaired under the extended warranty of my credit card).

With the Sony 780s on sale for as little as $320 here in Canada I've been half-considering the idea of buying one as backup. I'd be very interested in any comments you have about the experience of using them from the perspective of someone used to the Pioneers.
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post #70 of 77 Old 09-12-2009, 01:28 PM
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Earlier on, it seems the Sony 780 was bought primarily by Canadians who were not interested in posting about it to AVS . Those who did post here and elsewhere were the ones who had problems with the 780, not the buyers who were happy with it. The 780 is one of those devices where you see the defects immediately: its not one of those "it got wonky three months after I bought it" deals. The problems reported appear right out of the box and mostly concern connection to HDTV displays, either the video is tinted green or there are compatibility problems with the HDMI and/or component connection. If you buy a Sony 780 and do not see these symptoms then your recorder is probably fine and equal to similar Pioneers.

At this point beggars can't be choosers, all the remaining Pioneers floating around lately got snapped up by panic buyers, so the Sony 780 is the only "bargain" option if you want a new "Pioneer" recorder. Odds are you will NOT get a defective unit, if you do it can be fixed by Sony under warranty. Compared to the recent Pioneer 550 and 560 models, the Sony 780 is very similar and operates the same way. Minor differences in setting up for HDTV displays and setting a remote code (if you have more than one Pioneer recorder). The Sony cannot record to DVD-RAM, and uses the older Pioneer 640 10-bit video encoder vs the newer Pioneer 550/560 12-bit encoder. If you're extremely picky you might find the Sony (or the 640) slightly inferior in video performance compared to a Pioneer 550 or 560 series, but the difference should be hard to notice in normal use.

Personally given the current inflated Sony pricing I would probably opt instead for a global-model Pioneer 560 or 660, selling new for about $419-449 US. But if the extra $100 breaks your budget, the Sony 780 should be 90% comparable. We're starting to see a trickle of "satisfied" reports here on AVS now that the 780 is finally selling in significant numbers: more owners should be chiming in over the next couple months. The 780 should remain repairable for quite some time, since the same basic design underpins all Pioneers since 2006 and all current Sony models worldwide (globally there are a half-dozen 780 variants with different digital tuners and hard drive sizes.) Assuming Sony sticks it out in Canada a few more years, we may finally see an "ATSC Pioneer DVD/HDD" in the form of a Sony. If so, there'll be a lot more border crossings by Americans! (Assuming Sonys DVD/HDD models don't have the same awful protection sensitivities found in their USA DVD/VHS ATSC combos.)
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post #71 of 77 Old 09-12-2009, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Minor differences in setting up for HDTV displays and setting a remote code (if you have more than one Pioneer recorder).

Are you actually implying here that the Sony can be controlled by my cherished Pioneer 533/633 remotes?
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post #72 of 77 Old 09-13-2009, 10:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Nelson View Post

Are you actually implying here that the Sony can be controlled by my cherished Pioneer 533/633 remotes?

Yes, I believe this would work. Pioneer and Sony have been sharing recorder technology and manufacturing since 2006. The 2006 and 2007 Sony models retained the Sony operating system and remote protocols, but beginning with the 2008 x80/x90 series Sony and Pioneer merged almost completely. The 780 has exactly the same operating system as the Pioneers (navigation screens, copy list, editing screens, setup screens, menu finalization options). There is only a very slight difference in the timer screen (they look identical, but the Sony has an additional oddball timer option carried over from the European version). And of course the compatibility settings for tandem operation with a Sony TV.

According to the instruction manual, Sony has also switched over to the Pioneer method of changing the remote code. The buttons used on the remote and the menu used in the recorder to change the remote code now operate just like the Pioneers. Apparently the Sony 780 also requires a Pioneer service remote and service disc to repair/replace its hard drive. So I think you stand a very good chance of your old preferred Pio 633 remote being able to operate the Sony 780 (although you might first have to set the Pio remote to run under "code 3", which is the default code for the Sony- the Pios default under "code 1"). Perhaps you could set your 633 remote to "code 3", bring it to the store, and try it on the Sony display model? You could confirm if it works before you buy, and also report back here for others benefit? I'd do it myself, but they aren't sold in NYC.
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post #73 of 77 Old 09-14-2009, 12:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Perhaps you could set your 633 remote to "code 3", bring it to the store, and try it on the Sony display model?

Excellent idea, I think I might just try that...
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post #74 of 77 Old 09-16-2009, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Nelson View Post


With the Sony 780s on sale for as little as $320 here in Canada

$319 at the Thunder Bay ON Future Shop. The 780 was the ONLY DVDR w/HDD available in store. Even the much despised LG was gone. I'm not sure if this has been posted(or what the Pios do) but the Sony was listed as having 1080p upconverting, not the older 1080i.
DVDRs at this FS location was quite dismal, in fact they had more Sat. DVRs than DVDRs What a change from 1 1/2 years ago when they had Pannys, Pios and more.
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post #75 of 77 Old 09-17-2009, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

The alcohol trick might work: I'll have to try it and report back.

I'm thinkin maybe spit after using mouthwash? Listerine has a high alcohol content, anyway, but the combo might work cause the spit itself adds a special je ne sais quoi to the mix -- helps it sticks to the disc better? Gotta laugh... what we do for our machines....
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post #76 of 77 Old 10-06-2009, 06:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Perhaps you could set your 633 remote to "code 3", bring it to the store, and try it on the Sony display model? You could confirm if it works before you buy, and also report back here for others benefit?

OK, so I finally managed to get my remote and myself into a Future Shop with a Sony 780 display model. Sad to say, but the Pioneer remote doesn't work with the Sony. I tried all three remote modes ("1", "2", and "3"), but no joy.

I had my Pioneer power cord with me too because the display models aren't plugged in. But it turns out the power cord is slightly different. Fortunately I found a Sony DVD player that was plugged in and had a compatible power cord.

So while I really don't know where the similarities between the Sony 780 and the Pioneer models start and end, I can definitely say they don't extend to the power cord and remote codes.

That's too bad, because I've invested in a service remote for my Pioneer recorders and if the Sony was remote-compatible then it would have been very tempting. As it is, I think I'll pass.

For those who can make it to Canada within the next couple of days, Future Shop has the Sony 780s on sale for Cdn$300 (actually 299.99) until October 8, at least here in Vancouver.
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post #77 of 77 Old 10-06-2009, 09:10 PM
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Thats too bad, Sean, although I suppose its nice for previous Sony owners who want to have their remotes still be compatible with the new models. I guess the final thing to verify is whether the 780 responds to the Pio service remote. Indications from some international forums imply the 780 does not respond to the usual Sony front-panel service mode activation, so either it uses the Pio tools or Sony has come up with a new service mode of its own. I'm thinking I should just buy one off eBay and end the suspense already.
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