can I use an European HDD recorder in US ? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 07-11-2012, 10:31 AM - Thread Starter
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It looks like all the HDD recorders are discontinued in US. Is it possible to buy a Freeview HDD recorder from Europe and use it in US ?

I know that I can get the 220V needed to power the unit.

I can buy a SCART coverter with RCA composite output so I can connect to a US TV.

Is it possible for an European Freeview tuner to receive US digital signal through the air ?


Are there any other issues that I should consider ?


Thanks for help!
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post #2 of 9 Old 07-11-2012, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acwai View Post

It looks like all the HDD recorders are discontinued in US. Is it possible to buy a Freeview HDD recorder from Europe and use it in US ?

I know that I can get the 220V needed to power the unit.

I can buy a SCART coverter with RCA composite output so I can connect to a US TV.

Is it possible for an European Freeview tuner to receive US digital signal through the air ?


Are there any other issues that I should consider ?


Thanks for help!
Can you get a European HDD recorder and use it here. Yes, BUT, the tuner will be useless. You would need to connect it to a cable/satellite/external-tuner of some kind. Without this extra box serving a tuner, the machine will be useless. B&H and J&R both sell international Panasonic DVD recorders. Several on this forum use them with good results. What make and model are you considering buying?

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 #3 of 9 Old 07-11-2012, 01:09 PM
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Its a VERY bad idea to buy a country-specific recorder (i.e. anything with a "FreeView" digital tuner) thinking you will use it in the USA or Canada. Using a voltage converter might be necessary, and those aren't really meant to power advanced electronics like a DVD recorder. Such models are usually optimized to record in PAL and will only play NTSC DVDs, they often can't record NTSC from line inputs. The tuners are absolutely useless in North America. Finally, many here who tried your idea discovered there are mfr trade restrictions preventing European dealers from shipping to North American buyers. You would actually have to go to Europe, buy the recorder, and ship it to yourself.

If you want a new DVD/HDD recorder, there are only two practical choices for North America. The current Magnavox 513 or 515, or the upcoming 533-535-537 series, are the better choice for off-air broadcasts with their nice 16:9 digital ATSC tuners. When used with cable, they can be mildly to severely problematic. Cable/satellite subscribers, or those who want a more elegant recorder with more refined editing features, should opt for the "tunerless" import Panasonic EH59 or EH69 (these are like the European FreeView recorders you covet, but without the useless tuner and with multivoltage power and NTSC-selectable recording mode).

The fancy FreeView DVD/HDD and BD/HDD units are being phased out as we speak, Panasonic was the last name brand but has begun winding down production, so this "recorder envy" issue will become moot within a year anyway. European consumers are now following the American trend towards HDD-only non-disc recorders.
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post #4 of 9 Old 07-12-2012, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply.

I was thinking of using a Hitachi HDR255
http://www.ebay.com/itm/HITACHI-HDR255-250GB-DIGITAL-TV-FREEVIEW-RECORDER-WITH-HARD-DRIVE-RECORDING-/320939818825?pt=UK_Sound_Vision_Hard_Drive_HDD_Recorders&hash=item4ab980ff49

It uses a 12V DC input, I can get a 110v AC adaptor for $25. I was planning to use an external TV tuner and connect to the HDR255 via the SCART connector.

Quote:
If you want a new DVD/HDD recorder, there are only two practical choices for North America. The current Magnavox 513 or 515, or the upcoming 533-535-537 series, are the better choice for off-air broadcasts with their nice 16:9 digital ATSC tuners.

I thought Magnavox has discontinued producing HDD recorder forever. When is the 533-535-537 series going to be available ?
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post #5 of 9 Old 07-12-2012, 04:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acwai View Post

If you want a new DVD/HDD recorder, there are only two practical choices for North America. The current Magnavox 513 or 515, or the upcoming 533-535-537 series, are the better choice for off-air broadcasts with their nice 16:9 digital ATSC tuners.

I thought Magnavox has discontinued producing HDD recorder forever. When is the 533-535-537 series going to be available ?

Best info is "Fall" but my guess is September? Lately, Funai seems to like Sep-Oct release dates.

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post #6 of 9 Old 07-12-2012, 05:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acwai View Post

Thanks for the reply.
I was thinking of using a Hitachi HDR255
http://www.ebay.com/itm/HITACHI-HDR255-250GB-DIGITAL-TV-FREEVIEW-RECORDER-WITH-HARD-DRIVE-RECORDING-/320939818825?pt=UK_Sound_Vision_Hard_Drive_HDD_Recorders&hash=item4ab980ff49
It uses an 12V DC input, I can get an 110v AC adaptor for $25. I was planning to use an external TV tuner and connect to the HDR255 via the SCART connector.

Granted, its cheap, but it wouldn't work in USA/Canada. These units are designed to be inexpensive self-contained devices completely dependent on the broadcast signal for all functions. "FreeView" means "EPG-dependent for timer recording," so without a FreeView EPG signal you can't even set a timer on this thing. Connecting an American ATSC converter will not solve that problem- the Hitachi has no line input recording ability thru SCART, and probably won't even boot up properly in the absence of a FreeView DVB-T signal.

Wait for Sept-Oct and see what happens with the new Magnavoxes. Even if they're more expensive than last year's models at first, the price always goes down after the first few weeks and then once the clueless consumers start returning them to WalMart in droves again you'll see bargain refurbs (like-new returns) pop up at clearance dealers like J&R for under $200. You'll be much happier with an integrated American tuner/timer recorder.

If you don't care at all about DVDs, look into the ChannelMaster CM7000PAL HDD recorder, which is more-or-less an American version of the Hitachi 255 but upgraded to full HDTV recording quality with HDMI output for newer TVs as well as standard outputs for regular TVs. Its a bit pricey at $299 but does have dual tuners, HiDef capability and manual or EPG timers.
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post #7 of 9 Old 07-12-2012, 08:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the information. I have a Philips HDD recorder and 2 Panasonic DVD recorders. One of the Panasonic DVD died due to the failure of the DVD burner. I was trying to buy a Magnavox HDD recorder, but all of them were sold out.

I will wait until the new Magnavox HDD recorder is available.
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post #8 of 9 Old 07-12-2012, 10:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acwai View Post

Thanks for all the information. I have a Philips HDD recorder and 2 Panasonic DVD recorders. One of the Panasonic DVD died due to the failure of the DVD burner...

See this post:

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1055071/panasonic-2006-and-newer-dvd-drive-hub-spindle-cleaning-and-reassembly-complications/0_60#post_14479898

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #9 of 9 Old 07-13-2012, 11:17 AM
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Wait for Sept-Oct and see what happens with the new Magnavoxes. Even if they're more expensive than last year's models at first, the price always goes down after the first few weeks and then once the clueless consumers start returning them to WalMart in droves again you'll see bargain refurbs (like-new returns) pop up at clearance dealers like J&R for under $200. You'll be much happier with an integrated American tuner/timer recorder.
Are you sure that they won't wait until Christmas for this item to magically appear in the stores, isn't that their policy?
Quote:
Originally Posted by acwai View Post

Thanks for all the information. I have a Philips HDD recorder and 2 Panasonic DVD recorders. One of the Panasonic DVD died due to the failure of the DVD burner. I was trying to buy a Magnavox HDD recorder, but all of them were sold out.

I will wait until the new Magnavox HDD recorder is available.

I *HIGHLY* recommend ou send a PM to MICINCT about your non functional recorder. He has been able to fix these problems for many of us, me included. the things are nrealy irreplaceable (as you have seen yourself) so it's worth the attempt.

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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