Recorder Market Is Unsettled Everywhere, Not Just USA/Canada Anymore - Page 9 - AVS Forum
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post #241 of 289 Old 02-29-2012, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Dartman View Post

Kelson, I forgot to mention I'm using the batch builder now too, works nice. Get a bunch of videos edited down and added to the queue and just start it and walk away.
Even when videoredo locks up or whatever on huge files and I give up and shut it down it keeps a backup of what I was working on and asks me if I want to use it when I restart it so I don't loose all my work

When I was running VRD on my old XP media-PC, I was having some VRD lockup problems when batching a lot of files. Since I installed it on the i7 under Win-7 I've had no further lockups. I ran Ad-Detective on 14 episodes of Desperate Housewives (my wife is collecting them) using a VRD batch file without any issues -- took less than an hour. After a quick proofing, I used batch-builder again to make the cuts and save the final edited files to the NAS without a hitch.

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The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #242 of 289 Old 02-29-2012, 09:53 AM
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I guess wake up on LAN must be included somewhere, might be part of the sleep function or on the Bios on my board but I know it works anyways. The new Q from Ceton will also function as a extender for any WMC setup they say, just wont have the extras that it can use with that new 6 tuner monster it's designed to work with. It is supposed to be cheaper then a 360 so waiting to see what happens when they finally get released price wise.
And yep as long as it can play a 1080p stream you should be good to go and capturing HD to a hard drive without doing any recoding doesn't take much either or how would we be able to capture up to 4 to 6 raw streams at once without issues.
His box worked fine, think he put premium on it and it just boots and then feeds his big TV, looks awesome. We watched the latest Star Trek on it and it and his projector looked and worked great, like 100 inch screen.
Just one of those dedicated HTPC tiny boxes that looks like a VCR or something. He has the full TechNet sub so he gets all the latest Microsoft goodies.
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post #243 of 289 Old 02-29-2012, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Dartman View Post

The new Q from Ceton will also function as a extender for any WMC setup they say, just wont have the extras that it can use with that new 6 tuner monster it's designed to work with. It is supposed to be cheaper then a 360 so waiting to see what happens when they finally get released price wise.

I'll be curious about the whole Ceton system when it finally gets released. Since I'm OTA only, none of this DRM stuff affects me.

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The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #244 of 289 Old 02-29-2012, 05:45 PM
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Read all this thread last night. Thanks for all the good posts, although it was quite depressing reading.
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post #245 of 289 Old 02-29-2012, 09:09 PM
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Read all this thread last night. Thanks for all the good posts, although it was quite depressing reading.

Depressing in what way?

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post #246 of 289 Old 02-29-2012, 11:11 PM
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That DVD recorders seem to be vanishing which will probably mean blank DVD-Rs will too. from what i read here, even Blu Ray looks like it could be heading the same way.
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post #247 of 289 Old 03-01-2012, 07:06 AM
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That DVD recorders seem to be vanishing which will probably mean blank DVD-Rs will too. from what i read here, even Blu Ray looks like it could be heading the same way.

DVD Recorders may have both feet out the door but blank disks will be here for a long time to come. The DVD recorder use for DVD-R blanks has been a fly-spec in the overall market for blanks which is almost entirely for and driven by PC use. While no DVD recorders ever burned at 16X, almost all the DVD-R blanks you find in retail stores are 16X because just about all DVD burners sold in PC's or as add-on's are 16X burners. Obviously the same goes for BD-R blanks and PC use. The market for BD-R blanks is good. Prices for BD-R blanks have plummeted and stabilized at about $1/disk for decent quality 4X media. Unlike DVD-R which uses a dye, BD-R uses a solid-state recording layer so there appears to be less quality variation between brands. At $1/disk, a BD-R (which has the storage capacity of 5 x DVD-R) is price competitive with DVD-R blanks and beats DVD+DL into the ground. If you are doing HD recording and archiving to optical disk, you are using a TiVo and/or a PC and you are burning to BD-R, not DVD-R.

It's always sad to see the end on an era one has participated in. People don't like change in general and want to stay comfortable using what they have been using. People clung to their VCR's long after their era was over and only now some come here looking to replace worn-out units with the "next technology" only to find this party is also over. The stand-alone DVD recorder was a great device that allowed a lot of people to pursue a recording hobby without a lot of technical expertise -- and in its final years without a lot of cost. You are seeing a repeat of history -- people stocking up to cling to their DVDR's and remain comfortable with what they do for many years to come.

Unfortunately, the new paradigm of HD recording will leave a lot of people out in the cold -- either because of cost and/or needed expertise. Recording with a TiVo has got to be one of the easiest things ever, yet people used to paying $250 or less for a single-tuner DVD recorder will balk and dismiss any thought of spending $600 for a dual-tuner TiVo -- even though many of those same people will buy multiple DVD recorders. Using a PC to record, although not as user friendly as a TiVo, can be cheaper -- if you already have the PC to dedicate to the task. If not, between hardware and software you'll end up spending around the same amount. Then, of course, there is the whole complexity of networking the TiVo to the PC to transfer the files and, in any case, having to use PC applications to edit, author and burn the disks. These things have learning curves well beyond just figuring out which buttons to press on the remote and unfortunately that along with the initial cost will keep many of the casual recordists out in the cold.

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post #248 of 289 Old 03-01-2012, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Cyclone82 View Post

That DVD recorders seem to be vanishing which will probably mean blank DVD-Rs will too. from what i read here, even Blu Ray looks like it could be heading the same way.

They have been vanashing for a long time. The year was 2007, when none of the manufacturers of quality HDD equipped DVD recorders came out with models to follow up on their '06 models. DVD recorders have been rapidly vanishing from the market ever since. This year may be their last year.

Luke

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post #249 of 289 Old 03-01-2012, 06:06 PM
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The year was 2007, when none of the manufacturers of quality HDD equipped DVD recorders came out with models to follow up on their '06 models.

Canada had updated recorders for 2008.

I know the Sony RDR-HX780 was a 2008 model. My unit must have been built after April 2008 as it mentions that date a couple times in the manual that came with the unit. Probably has an updated firmware with an April 2008 date as this date is mentioned regarding compatibility issues dubbing from Sony camcorders and it mentions the April 2008 date again when stating which discs can be burned with this unit. This unit was available until mid 2010.

I think the Canadian Pioneer 460, 560 and DVR-660H-K were year 2008 models?

The LG RH398H-M was sold in Canada until mid 2011, not sure what year the unit was last updated, 2008 maybe?

You guys down south didn’t get these because the manufactures didn’t abide by FCC rules - new recorders with tuners needing ATSC / QAM with NTSC. You’re right though Luke, the manufactures knew from lack of sales that DVD/HDD recorders are not worth manufacturing, it would have been pointless to include ATSC/QAM and try selling them down south. My theory is that the only reason Canada had them a while longer is -they had the factories still making parts and Canada has no such silly tuner regulations. In fact we had VHS NTSC only VCRs sold a while longer in Canada.

Any of you Panasonic experts, what year was the last updated HDD/DVDr Panasonic unit sold in Canada and what is the model number?
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post #250 of 289 Old 03-01-2012, 06:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Super Eye View Post

Any of you Panasonic experts, what year was the last updated HDD/DVDr Panasonic unit sold in Canada and what is the model number?

The last Panasonic HDD DVDR I saw in Canada was in '08, it was the '06 designed EH-55. Canada also had a couple non HDD Panasonic models after '06 but both were based on the '06 design. The ES-16(based on the ES-15) and the VHS combo ES-36v(based on the ES-35v) both models were sold through '08.
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post #251 of 289 Old 03-02-2012, 06:57 PM
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I wonder if the DMR-XW385 is the last Panasonic we are going to get here in AUS? It seems strange because i first became aware of DVD recorders around 02/03 but prices were pretty high and i just thought, no need to buy a DVD recorder now as i was still into VHS and bought a new JVC deck around then and thought DVD recorders will be around for ever.
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post #252 of 289 Old 03-05-2012, 11:43 AM
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I wonder if the DMR-XW385 is the last Panasonic we are going to get here in AUS? It seems strange because i first became aware of DVD recorders around 02/03 but prices were pretty high and i just thought, no need to buy a DVD recorder now as i was still into VHS and bought a new JVC deck around then and (I) thought DVD recorders will be around for ever.

I thought that DVD recorders would be around forever too. The reality of it though is, that they were a pretty short-lived phenomena. It appears to not be just limited to USA, or North America but world-wide.

Luke

Evil is charming and beautiful. It makes you doubt yourself. It asks for one small compromise after another until it whittles you down, and it functions best when no one believes in it.-JOA
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post #253 of 289 Old 03-05-2012, 12:58 PM
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I never thought DVD recorders would be around forever because of the digital transition and broadcast HD. I did think that they would be replaced by HiDef disk recorders (BluRay or HD-DVD). That just never happened.

- kelson h

The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #254 of 289 Old 03-05-2012, 03:23 PM
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I never really expected to see standalone, HD disc recorders.

The HP zz555 came out no later than early '05, and I don't remember exactly when the first Sony Vaio Entertainment Center came out. I was pretty sure by then (especially at the prices they were going for) that we would never see an HD disc recorder in a unit in the US (other than recording in full HD resolution from a camcorder).
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post #255 of 289 Old 03-05-2012, 10:46 PM
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They (DVD recorders) barely had 10 years development.
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post #256 of 289 Old 03-06-2012, 09:39 AM
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They overestimated the number of consumers who were truly interested in burning stuff to disks for keeping.

- kelson h

The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #257 of 289 Old 03-06-2012, 11:31 AM
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I assume that they expected ALL the VCR business to migrate to DVD recorders. When that didn't happen, and the expected sales volume never materialized, they had to cut their $ losses.

Luke

Evil is charming and beautiful. It makes you doubt yourself. It asks for one small compromise after another until it whittles you down, and it functions best when no one believes in it.-JOA
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post #258 of 289 Old 03-06-2012, 05:55 PM
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I think a lot of people clung onto VCR/VHS for a lot longer than expected. Not everyone jumped straight away. Same thing happening now how not everyone is jumping across to Blu ray.
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post #259 of 289 Old 04-30-2012, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Unfortunately, the new paradigm of HD recording will leave a lot of people out in the cold -- either because of cost and/or needed expertise. Recording with a TiVo has got to be one of the easiest things ever, yet people used to paying $250 or less for a single-tuner DVD recorder will balk and dismiss any thought of spending $600 for a dual-tuner TiVo -- even though many of those same people will buy multiple DVD recorders. Using a PC to record, although not as user friendly as a TiVo, can be cheaper -- if you already have the PC to dedicate to the task. If not, between hardware and software you'll end up spending around the same amount. Then, of course, there is the whole complexity of networking the TiVo to the PC to transfer the files and, in any case, having to use PC applications to edit, author and burn the disks. These things have learning curves well beyond just figuring out which buttons to press on the remote and unfortunately that along with the initial cost will keep many of the casual recordists out in the cold.

This is a very useful thread, only recently brought to my attention, which I have just now finished looking through. (I've been active on VH for some years, much less so here apart from occasional research reading of certain threads. Don't think I've actually posted here in a few years, so I'm pleased to find that my circa 2006 account was still viable.) Your post, along with #188, aptly summarizes where we are today. I too prefer the better standalone DVDR models solution, but their use cannot continue indefinitely, and it may be time to add some more up-to-date alternatives to have waiting in the wings.

There is much good info in this thread, but it appears to be overwhelmingly cable-provider-centric (e.g., lots of reference to cable-card based tuners), whereas I have been in the satellite camp for the past few years. Some years ago, DirecTV had a cooperative venture with Tivo -- which ended -- but from some recent promotional materials I've seen they may have struck up a new one. However, some current gen Tivo boxes I've seen have dropped some of the connectivity options that I think the earlier gen Tivo boxes had . . . leaving nothing going out but HDMI and ethernet ? Also, if I can't save stuff like HBO (which I could with a Pioneer DVDR, albeit in SD), there wouldn't be much point to it.

If there are some good solutions for satellite subscribers, I may be interested in going the HTPC route, but preferably in as small a form factor as possible. That said, I think it would need to take a good video card and have at least one expansion slot available ? Though I'm partial to the Shuttles, I've already discovered that their hardcover book sized model does not fit these specs. I have heard of a couple competing units that may be worth checking out. And then I guess there is always the possibility of employing a laptop, which would be the ultimate in portability. (If it helps, let me say that this is important enough to me that cost probably won't be much of a deterrent.)

I'm hoping this thread is not deemed too old, as I expect to have some related questions for you all.
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post #260 of 289 Old 04-30-2012, 06:45 PM
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There is much good info in this thread, but it appears to be overwhelmingly cable-provider-centric (e.g., lots of reference to cable-card based tuners), whereas I have been in the satellite camp for the past few years.

There certainly is cable commentary but I would hope that we engaged in at least an equal amount of OTA talk. In many cases the hardware is the same or closely related. For example, a TiVo can be used for OTA (which is what I do) or, with addition of a cable card, can be used for cable & FIOS. The Silicon Dust HD Homerun network tuner is dual tuner device for PC recording that does OTA (ATSC) or clear QAM -- I also have one of those I use for OTA; it gives me four tuners in total. Its sibling, the HD Homerun Prime, is made for cable card and has 3 tuners.

Unfortunately, satellite is in its own world as far as receivers. A satellite signal is distinct from ATSC/QAM. People have tried to plug a satellite coax into a DVD recorder and blown out the tuner. So there are really no TiVo-like boxes or PC tuners for satellite -- you have to use one of theirs to receive the signal and output the video.

Having said that, the best options for satellite are either the Hauppauge HD PVR 1212 or the Hauppauge Colossus for recording your satellite STB or DVR to a PC. The HD PVR 1212 is a USB connected device vs. the Colossus which is a PCI card that goes in the PC. Both devices have component inputs for HD video and optical inputs for AC3 (DD/5.1). In addition they both have IR blasters to control the satellite STB and change the channels. The component HD video & DD/5.1 is encoded by the devices to H.264/AVC. Once it is on your PC, Video ReDo/H.264 will take care of editing out commercials and, if desired, transcode HD video to 480i MPEG-2 for making standard DVD Video (it will author the DVD-R disks). Unfortunately, Video ReDo does not author AVCHD or BD-Video if you want to burn HD/5.1 video to BD-R, you need another application for that.

Problems circumventing copy-protection are the same as if you were using a DVD recorder. What is copy-protected depends on your satellite provider setting the flags. There are a number of reasonably priced analog copy-buster boxes available and discussed in other threads in this forum. In your case you would need one with component inputs/outputs.

- kelson h

The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #261 of 289 Old 04-30-2012, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Seeker47 View Post

There is much good info in this thread, but it appears to be overwhelmingly cable-provider-centric (e.g., lots of reference to cable-card based tuners), whereas I have been in the satellite camp for the past few years. Some years ago, DirecTV had a cooperative venture with Tivo -- which ended -- but from some recent promotional materials I've seen they may have struck up a new one. However, some current gen Tivo boxes I've seen have dropped some of the connectivity options that I think the earlier gen Tivo boxes had . . . leaving nothing going out but HDMI and ethernet ? Also, if I can't save stuff like HBO (which I could with a Pioneer DVDR, albeit in SD), there wouldn't be much point to it.

Yeah, it's a real shame that Walmart don't import the MTV-7000D:



Good luck with the HTPC.
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post #262 of 289 Old 05-01-2012, 06:29 AM
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You seem to have a real obsession with this device. If it were available in a NA or international version that could be purchased from within the US it might be an interesting product -- but it's not and probably never will be available here. It doesn't appear to be readily available anywhere outside of HK and is just another in a line of foreign video products we will never see here (like BD recorders). God knows how many US technology patents it tramples with impunity in china.

Oh, and if it were sold in the US, that connection diagram you list would be completely useless. The whole purpose of HDMI is to provide a digital A/V interconnection that prohibits digital copying of protected source. The chinese may ignore those restrictions for devices they make for sale in china, but it won't fly in the US. Any HDMI inputs would have to be governed by HDMI license restrictions which means they can NOT accept connections to an HDCP protected source -- that leaves out the satellite receivers pictured in your diagram, as well as cable/FIOS boxes, TiVo, BD/DVD players and just about any other device with an HDMI output except game consoles (when playing games, not BluRays). The Hauppauge Colosus has an HDMI input, which they tell you upfront is useless for just about anything other than recording your X-Box gameplay.

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post #263 of 289 Old 05-01-2012, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Any HDMI inputs would have to be governed by HDMI license restrictions which means they can NOT accept connections to an HDCP protected source -- that leaves out the satellite receivers pictured in your diagram, as well as cable/FIOS boxes, TiVo, BD/DVD players and just about any other device with an HDMI output except game consoles (when playing games, not BluRays). The Hauppauge Colosus has an HDMI input, which they tell you upfront is useless for just about anything other than recording your X-Box gameplay.

The chinese said in 2010 (don't know about new Firmware restrictions) that this machine can "dub" any BR, and that the HDMI inputs can take care or "handle" HDCP protection (per HK sat receivers/cable STBs), just like the original Gefen HDMI DVR. (That's why they don't sell it outside of HK) In anycase, the componet inputs still will working until the analog sunset.

Shame on the Hauppage Colosus. Thx for the info.
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post #264 of 289 Old 05-01-2012, 05:45 PM
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Don't forget analog sunset only pertains to BluRay players. Cable/satellite/FIOS boxes are under no obligation to get rid of component outputs or to restrict component output to SD. Eventually component will go away as the number of legacy devices that need it dwindle -- such as has occurred with S-Video -- but that won't happen with STB's any time soon.

There is no shame on Hauppauge. They are simply following the terms of the license. To do otherwise would cause their HDMI license to be revoked and a probable injunction issued to cease sales of their product. Such was the case with the HD Fury 4. The HDMI input on the Colosus is there primarily to enable PC gamers and X-Box gamers to record their gameplay. Lord knows why they would want to do that, but they do and it is a very popular use of the Colosus.

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The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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post #265 of 289 Old 05-01-2012, 09:36 PM
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Thanks for your reply.

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Unfortunately, satellite is in its own world as far as receivers. A satellite signal is distinct from ATSC/QAM.

OTA is not really an option for me: the signal here is very problematic . . . at least insofar as the few indoor antenna products I've tried go; there is no attic to speak of, and I'm unwilling to go 12 rounds with a very troublesome HOA over a roof antenna, when no one else here has one.

A further problem I'm running into is frequent spontaneous reboots of the DirecTV DVR receiver, whenever I'm attempting to dub something off to the Pio 640. (The DirecTV box is only about two years in service, and was new when I got it.) This result began relatively recently. The research I did about this online yielded only posts from a few years ago, suggesting early signs of HDD or other component failure. I find this behavior to be way too specific for that, and suspiciously so -- no reboots when just watching a 2 1/2 hour movie from the receiver's HDD, for example -- so I lean more towards it being either some nefarious scheme by the powers-that-be to thwart subscriber archiving, or a bug pushed along to us in one of the regular firmware updates. More likely the latter, considering that a couple of other longstanding but non-controversial features have also gone away.

As an interim workaround, a friendly correspondent from VH suggested this gizmo: http://www.amazon.com/HDMI-Composite...pr_product_top

and I might also try out a Component to S-Video version -- if there is one -- in case the Component Out tap from the DirecTV box is also unaffected by this. Along with the HDMI converter, I may also be in need of a good HDMI DA, because I believe the DirecTV box only has one HDMI Out, and frequent reconnects will quickly become a drag.

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Having said that, the best options for satellite are either the Hauppauge HD PVR 1212 or the Hauppauge Colossus for recording your satellite STB or DVR to a PC. The HD PVR 1212 is a USB connected device vs. the Colossus which is a PCI card that goes in the PC. Both devices have component inputs for HD video and optical inputs for AC3 (DD/5.1). In addition they both have IR blasters to control the satellite STB and change the channels. The component HD video & DD/5.1 is encoded by the devices to H.264/AVC. Once it is on your PC, Video ReDo/H.264 will take care of editing out commercials and, if desired, transcode HD video to 480i MPEG-2 for making standard DVD Video (it will author the DVD-R disks). Unfortunately, Video ReDo does not author AVCHD or BD-Video if you want to burn HD/5.1 video to BD-R, you need another application for that.

I'm certainly open to avenues like those. But, being able to continue archiving selected premium content -- in SD or otherwise -- is a must. I have an older, lesser version of VRD, but am willing to upgrade it as necessary. [i]What[/I] other app for authoring AVCHD or BD-Video ?

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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Problems circumventing copy-protection are the same as if you were using a DVD recorder. What is copy-protected depends on your satellite provider setting the flags. There are a number of reasonably priced analog copy-buster boxes available and discussed in other threads in this forum. In your case you would need one with component inputs/outputs.

So far, I think the provider's flag-setting has not been an issue. At the moment, I have the Datavideo 1000, the Go Video CT 200 (not much good, in any case), the AVT-8710, and the Zorilla filter. (Unless I'm forgetting something else that I bought, over the years.) Of these, I'm pretty sure that the first three do not qualify. Other suggestions ?
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post #266 of 289 Old 05-02-2012, 12:57 AM
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The BD recorders comming out in Australia soon will support external HDD and transfering files off internal HDD. I think i read that in a Panasonic blog last week.

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might also try out a Component to S-Video version -- if there is one

Yes theres plenty out there. Theres a huge 18 plus page thread on them here on AVS.
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post #267 of 289 Old 05-02-2012, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Seeker47 View Post

As an interim workaround, a friendly correspondent from VH suggested this gizmo: http://www.amazon.com/HDMI-Composite...pr_product_top . . .

Read what I wrote above to profhat about HDMI inputs. If that device is US legal it won't work for you because the HDMI output on your satellite box is almost assuredly HDCP protected.
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. . . I might also try out a Component to S-Video version -- if there is one -- in case the Component Out tap from the DirecTV box is also unaffected by this.

Don't bother with a converter unless you are forced into using one. They all step on and degrade the video quality and you are still stuck in SD if you are converting down to S-Video -- not to mention that good ones are expensive. If your objective is to archive HD/5.1 content from your satellite receiver (or sat DVR) then you need a PC based device with component input (to directly capture the analog HD signal and encode it to MPEG-2 or H.264) and an optical input (to directly capture the digital DD 5.1 sound). The Hauppauge units are two examples that will do this and are used by many in the HDTV Recorders forum. Once the encoded video is on your PC you can do anything with it you want. Video ReDo/H.264 will let you edit commercials on either MPEG-2 or H.264 encoded HD/5.1 recordings; it can transcode between the two codecs; it can generate all the main file formats; it can re-encode to 480i SD/5.1 and author to DVD. You can archive to optical disk or to your network server(s) for streaming playback to media players.
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What other app for authoring AVCHD or BD-Video ?

I currently use MultiAVCHD to author titles to BD-Video and burn onto BD-R/RE. MultiAVCHD is open source that is no longer developed. Like most open source projects of this magnitude, it is complex, poorly documented and requires the installation of 3 other open source helper applications (ffdshow, AVISynth, Haali Media Splitter) that can also be confusing to install and may not play nice with Win-7. It is NOT for the user with a low desire to learn and spend a lot of time doing so. It will require a lot of playing around (and a pack of BD-RE) to climb its learning curve. But once you master it, it does the job of combining all sorts of files (SD & HD) and authoring either an AVCHD or BD-Video formatted structure with a simple top-level and chapter level HD menu for burning to disk. I got into the free MultiAVCHD in the beginning because I wasn't sure how far I wanted to get into burning BD-R before I spent any money on commercial software. For someone who wants something more polished, there are commercial BD authoring packages, but the cheaper ones (Pinnicle Studio HD, $70; TMPGEnc Authoring Works 5, $100) have people complaining about bugs and the others get expensive very fast. Of them all I would probably take a close look at TMPGEnc Authoring Works for BD authoring -- but I would still use Video ReDo/H.264 for all editing, encoding and creation of compliant files.

I don't bother with AVCHD -- that decision is based on experience. I did a lot with AVCHD early on so I could make test compilations with MultiAVCHD and burn them to DVD-RW (I didn't have any BD-RE blanks at the time). AVCHD was made for camcorder footage; the format is too restrictive as a subset of BD-Video. Yes, if you want to burn to DVD-R or DL then AVCHD is the format that you must use, but in my opinion, burning HD video to DVD instead of BD-R is a waste of time.
Quote:


So far, I think the provider's flag-setting has not been an issue. At the moment, I have the Datavideo 1000, the Go Video CT 200 (not much good, in any case), the AVT-8710, and the Zorilla filter.

If copy-protection has not been an issue, that's all to the good. I don't know what those devices are -- Citibear would know -- but if one of them is a TBC with component inputs/outputs, it could be used to remove any analog copy restrictions.

- kelson h

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post #268 of 289 Old 05-02-2012, 09:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seeker47 View Post

As an interim workaround, a friendly correspondent from VH suggested this gizmo: http://www.amazon.com/HDMI-Composite...pr_product_top

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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

Read what I wrote above to profhat about HDMI inputs. If that device is US legal it won't work for you because the HDMI output on your satellite box is almost assuredly HDCP protected.

Kelson, I bought 2 of this cheap HDMI>S-video converter when timtofly tipped us all off to the price reduction on Amazon a couple months ago. I don't know how it gets around the US import restrictions, but I can tell you it does in fact work just fine with my cable box and would likely work just as well with seeker47's DirecTV box. I've had no trouble recording from premium channels or even the "free on demand" channels. The trick to using it is to set things up counterintuitively: if you set your decoder box to output the standard 480i, the converted output is terrible: soft and muddy. But if you set your cable/sat box to output 720 or 1080, the little box converts it to a very usable 16:9 480 s-video signal. Is it perfect? No: its still a bit softer than direct connection to the decoder box. But its worth the compromise to get true 16:9 anamorphic into a DVD recorder.

If you get a good example of this one-piece integrated little Lenco / MonoPrice / Amazon converter (mfr quality control seems variable), its a very cost effective alternative to the very pricey HDfury solutions. The HDfury is ultra high quality, but it carries a commensurate nosebleed pricetag, further spiked by the necessity of adding a top-quality component>s-video converter. We're talking $400 or so, a lot of money for someone who only has occasional use for such a device. Depending on the specific HDfury, one also has to contend with flashing its firmware before use, a process described by its fans as "quick and painless" but detailed on tech boards as being a tricky minefield.

Depending on your personal quality standards and recording needs, the cheap little converter is definitely worth a try at $40. Many of us have cable service video quality that is barely adequate, and thats being charitable: the supposed "degradation" caused by use of the cheap converter amounts to no more than a 10% visible quality loss in many cases. I'm extremely picky about PQ, so if I'm willing to use the thing you can assume its at least passable for occasional use. I can well understand why some power users here turn their nose up at it, but there is also a bit of snobbery involved: blanket condemnation is inappropriate just because its cheap. Someone with a 70" Plasma connected to flawless HD cable may legitimately take issue with it, but that doesn't mean its not perfectly acceptable for average crummy cable output played on a 40" screen.

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Don't bother with a converter unless you are forced into using one. They all step on and degrade the video quality and you are still stuck in SD if you are converting down to S-Video -- not to mention that good ones are expensive.

Here I would agree. While it can be very annoying when certain decoder boxes fail to auto-detect SD connections, and difficult to remember needing to switch output resolution every time you want to record to an SD device, its still better than adding a converter to work around it. Good converters are expensive (yet flimsy), cheap converters have potential overheating issues and variable impact on the video. For the moment I'm willing to tolerate 4:3 letterbox recording for most cable programming, as I share my DVDs with family still using 4:3 CRT TVs.

I only use an HDMI>S-video converter when I know in advance I want to record a particular movie in 16:9 rather than the normal letterbox SD output of my cable box. I usually record network broadcast TV series OTA from a roof antenna in 16:9 using a Zenith DTT-901 tuner box, this works great except when I forget to change the channel on it and miss an episode of "Fringe" - when that happens, the cheap HDMI>s-video converter lets me pull that "Fringe" episode in 16:9 off the cable box free-on-demand system, so it will match the other episodes recorded off-air in 16:9.

These days it makes more sense to just record directly in full 16:9 HDTV, with a TiVo or HTPC solution. Those of us still using creaky old DVD/HDD technology are doing so out of habit and because our recorders still work. Old habits die hard, but when my last DVD/HDD recorder croaks I don't intend to blow $500 on a dubious HDMI converter out of Hong Kong: for that money, I'll buy a TiVo and network it to my PC.
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post #269 of 289 Old 05-02-2012, 10:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Kelson, I bought 2 of this cheap HDMI>S-video converter when timtofly tipped us all off to the price reduction on Amazon a couple months ago. I don't know how it gets around the US import restrictions, but I can tell you it does in fact work just fine with my cable box and would likely work just as well with seeker47's DirecTV box.

My guess is it's just flying under the radar now as small potatoes the way the Fury 1,2&3 did. Seeker47 already indicated he has a Pioneer 640 for SD recording off the satellite DVR. I was under the impression that he was looking for something new to be able to capture HD/5.1, hence my confusion at his discussion of using converters to down-convert an HD signal to SD.

Quote:


I usually record network broadcast TV series OTA from a roof antenna in 16:9 using a Zenith DTT-901 tuner box . . . the cheap HDMI>s-video converter lets me pull that "Fringe" episode in 16:9 off the cable box free-on-demand system.
These days it makes more sense to just record directly in full 16:9 HDTV, with a TiVo or HTPC solution. . . . when my last DVD/HDD recorder croaks . . . I'll buy a TiVo and network it to my PC.

And don't forget, for people like you who use both cable and OTA, the TiVo has dual Rf inputs for antenna and cable and an integrated tuner. Once you pop in the cable card you will get all your cable and OTA channels simultaneously in a single organized guide listing.

- kelson h

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post #270 of 289 Old 05-02-2012, 11:15 AM
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Quote:


What other app for authoring AVCHD or BD-Video ?

To add to Kelson's excellent run down, if you don't want to climb the MultiAVCHD learning curve, there are also a couple of programs I use for authoring AVCHD and Blu-ray discs I'd like to suggest. Corel's (formerly Ulead) DVD MovieFactory Pro 7 is easy, not too expensive and has a lot of customizable menu templates.

I also use Nero Vision 10, which came included in some Nero 10 packages, so you may already have it in your Nero folder if you have Nero installed. Yes, ImgBurn is the preferred (free) burning tool and it's excellent, and Nero justifiably gets accused of being bloatware, but in this instance I've found that Nero Vision 10 is a very versatile and dependable authoring app, again with templates you can use out of the box or customize to your heart's content. The most recent version has changed names and is now called Nero Video. It's available as one of the included programs in some versions of Nero 11, or as a really budget-friendly stand-alone.

Also, AVCHD discs can be a good complement to BD. First off, they were a great way of burning a good quality authored disc of up to just about an hour of HD before I got a Blu-ray burner about a year ago. Second, they're good for "one-off" videos, like children's recitals and the like, before you get enough footage to make up a season's worth of recitals on a BD with a nicely authored compilation menu.
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