I had been living in Japan and had a Toshiba HDD-DVD recorder with a dual digital tuner, the model was the RD-Z300, 'Regza' was part of the name, and it had a hard drive of 160 GB.
It was a great machine. In addition to being able to record two programs simultaneously, I could even watch a third program through the deck's tuner while those two were being recored. Of course, the manual was in Japanese, and while i had no problem to use it to record and watch programs it took some time before I could learn how to dub programs from the hard drive to DVD. Even my Japanese friends had a very difficult time figuring out how the deck worked. (People there would complain Toshiba products are too complex.) I'm sure I only scratched the surface of what I could do with it, but it worked great and the quality built-in tuners (which I used for my TV viewing with my analogue TV after Japan went all-digital) of the recorded programs was outstanding.
Now I'm back in the U.S., and was looking forward to getting a similar deck here, in part because I'd be able to learn how to operate such a deck from the English manual. But after searching around, and reading some of the threads in this valuable forum, it seems that such a machine does not exist in the market here. Kind of a drag.
Unless anyone knows of older models that might be so-equipped. And if so, a question. Do/did the dual tuner models here--if there are/were any--allow for simultaneous recording of two programs and the viewing of a third?
Thanks for any information.
- 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
The only remaining HDD/DVD recorder in the U.S. is the single-tuner Magnavox described in the 1st link in my signature.
A list of HD DVR availability is here, in the HDTV Recorders forum.
Only PCs and the DVD-less Digital Video Recorders (DVRs) do that, like TiVo or a cable company DVR. Some of them have up to four tuners, allowing up to four channels recorded at once. DVD recorders in North America never had more than one, and they were useless if channels were encrypted anyway (which is the majority on cable.)
You could hook up a DVD recorder to a DVR as an outboard burner. It'd be limited to real time playback (meaning if the show's an hour, the dubbing takes an hour.) TiVo also allows for transferring a recording to your computer's hard drive, and from there encoding/burning to DVD. That is if you even want a DVD at that point, because if I had it on a hard drive, I'd just play it back from there.
After some looking around at the other suggestions--thanks Wajo, and what a valuable thread--it seems like the new-ish or latest Magnavox series of HDD-DVR DVD recorders with digital tuner, the 53x series, could be the best way to go. Just get by with one tuner, and it wasn't that often that I had a couple recordings going at the same time anyway.
What's seems odd is the 515 series is being offered new on Amazon for $280-ish, while the newer 535 (320 GB, more than plenty for me) is going for $230-ish from Walmart. Hmm....
I'll get over there and see it they have any of them on site for an actual look.
Thanks for you help, fells.