Pio 533/633 vs. Tosh XS34 vs. Pan EH50 - Page 17 - AVS Forum
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post #481 of 500 Old 07-21-2005, 04:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattFoley
Can you tell us how the picture quality of those VHS transfers to DVD look? And are you pleased with the ease of the transfers? Have you encountered the "blackout problem" on VHS transfers that plagued the older Pioneer units?
NO sorry, my 633 is in an airplane over Indiana right now.

I can tell you that the transfers I made with the POS 233 at SP, and even LP, look pretty good on my 27 inch analog Toshiba TV via s-video input. Taped about a dozen 15 year old tapes originally recorded on a long-deceased VCR with no blackouts.

Matt - read this whole thread - you will learn a lot. :)
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post #482 of 500 Old 07-26-2005, 04:57 PM
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Quote from an earlier post from longplay:
Quote:
it is a well known fact that Pioneer, JVC, and Toshiba all implement non-standard resoultion in their VR mode recordings longer than 2 hours, and Pioneer continues this practice with the new MPEG encoder chipset. However full D1 resolution (720x480) in DVD-Video mode is extended to 6 hours for DVD-R DL and about 3 1/3 hours for a single-layer disc.
OK, excuse my ignorance but please help me understand this point . . . . does this mean that one can record "up to 3 1/3 hours" on a regular DVD-R disc in XP mode with the new Pioneer recorders?
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post #483 of 500 Old 07-28-2005, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattFoley
Quote from an earlier post from longplay:

OK, excuse my ignorance but please help me understand this point . . . . does this mean that one can record "up to 3 1/3 hours" on a regular DVD-R disc in XP mode with the new Pioneer recorders?
NO, it just means you can fit up to 3 1/3 before it switches to lower resolution. The resolution is higher but very blocky, I was disappointed.
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post #484 of 500 Old 07-30-2005, 11:37 AM
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Hi There,

I recently purchased the Tosh XS34 and hooked it up to my Cablevision SA4200HD STB. The guide won't load no matter what I do. Worse than that, my manual recordings only work as long as the Tosh is powered on. When the Tosh turns itself off after three hours of inactivity, it starts its "download" of cable channel info. After a few hours it turns the cable box off! So, when the manual recording I've set wakes up the Tosh, the STB is off and nothing but black is recorded!!! Question is: How can I either keep the Tosh powered on or the cable box powered on? Either one would allow manual recordings of all kinds.

I've spoken to a Toshiba rep(s) and they say TVGOS is working on the problem...that was 3 weeks ago. I went on vacation this past week with 3 manual recordings set for 2 and 3 days later, and none of them worked. The cable box was turned off as was the Tosh. I work professionally in television production and, quite frankly, this one has me stumped. Any help would be greatly appreciated! :(

Update:

I figured out a way to timer record without the TVGOS: Went into TV Guide setup and answered "no" to the question "Do you have a cable box hooked up to the recorder?" I can use the cable box "VCR Timer Record" feature to get the box to switch channels on it's own. I then set start & stop times in the Tosh, with the input "Line 1". This method stops the Tosh from eventually turning off the cable box (because it thinks it's not there). I can now confidently timer record 6 days at a time if I wish, on any channel. It would be nice if TVGOS worked, but this is an acceptable solution until that happens- if ever.

Mike
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post #485 of 500 Old 08-18-2005, 04:30 PM
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I've had about enough with my xs34. It's missing timer recordings, TV Guide listings were working seamlessly, then, boom, they're gone. I talked to Toshiba..he says it's been a big problem and that it's TV Guide's deal. Double-ugh. If I could get a Pioneer 530HS (which I see doesn't have the awful TV Guide thing- correct me if I'm wrong) for 350$, which includes shipping and tax, would it be wise? As most of you know, it's the European model.. would that be a big deal?

Hmm.. is this thread over with? I see it's been like half a month since anyone's posted here LOL

Well, even more confusion..(and look, I'm here in this forum just chatting with myself LOL) The DVR at the military exchange website has 80 GB HDD and it doesn't say it's European.. but when I go to the European Pioneer site, it says it has 160 GB HDD. Maybe these are two different things?
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post #486 of 500 Old 08-19-2005, 12:41 AM
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If you really want European 530HS, pay your attention on fact, that it HAVE GuidePlus, which is European version of US TVGuide.

If you want new Pioneer without TVGuide or something like that, you may choose DVR-433HS (also European model). It has 80 GB HDD, Auto record feature, but uses simpler remote (some functions are available with Shift key). This model is available in silver or black color. For more info look at www.pioneer-eur.com

Good Luck, ArtS :)
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post #487 of 500 Old 08-19-2005, 06:17 AM
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Thanks Art

Yes, I am realizing that the European one isn't the one to buy. Boy, you'd think that the military exchange would put in SOMETHING about it being a European unit..

Thanks for responding : )
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post #488 of 500 Old 09-09-2005, 04:58 PM
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I bought the Toshiba as I have always had good luck with their recorders.
I have been in the industry for over 20 years and I still sell these things.
The Toshiba is well designed and makes a decent recording .
That is the end of the good things I can say about it .
The remote control is a train wreck . WAY to many buttons . SOme behind a panel that you need to get to occasionally and some on top that you use once if you are at a certain part of a certain menu page . There are no less than THREE menu buttons on the remote . It has TWO sets of channel up/down buttons WTF?!.
Then it has two more buttons that are essentially menu buttons .
WAY to many buttons and horribly thought out and executed.
The TVGUIDE is a HUGE pain in the ass . I could probably live with this unit if I could disable that feature .
I talked to some reps and expressed my total unhappiness with the product .
It is clear to me what has happened here .
The manufacturer's designed and built a great product but when they went to TVGUIDE they were told it had to have this feature , and that feature , and it has to do things this way , etc. . The pioneer's remote is clearly much more logically laid out and the firewire can go both directions . Unlike the toshiba.
If you have nothing more than basic cable then they work ok . For sat and digital cable users ... get the one for the provider at least then you aren't out $600.00 and when they finally get things ironed out you can trade up to the newer version.
We all need to get the manufacturers to understand just how bad this TVGuide thing is . In my opinion anything with this feature should also have the ability to disable this feature.
What say you all?
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post #489 of 500 Old 09-09-2005, 06:30 PM
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I totally agree on the remote issue. The layout of the remote is very important, especially on a DVR, because you spend so much time using it. I took one look at the Toshiba remote and mentally put it as a big item in the "minus" column for the machine. I particularly dislike the fact that the chapter skip, search and other forward/back buttons are in a circle. That just doesn't make sense to me - they should all be in left/right pairs. And you're right about the menu buttons, just look at them all:

Menu
Content Menu
Quick Menu
DVD Top Menu
DVD Menu

I'm sure my Pioneer 533 remote has buttons that do exactly the same thing, but at least they gave some of them labels like "Disk Navigator" and "Home Menu" to help me mentally separate their purposes.

The TV Guide is by far the most contentious issue on all of these new machines. FWIW I quite like it. My machine is able to pick up the guide data from my cable provider (Shaw in Vancouver BC). Although I have digital cable, I have the DVR connected directly into the analogue cable outlet. When I want to record a digital channel I just program the DVR and the digital set-top box separately. For most analogue programming, the guide works just great and is super-convenient. I think it helps a lot if you know all of the secret buttons that let you navigate around it - perhaps one of the problems is that the documentation isn't very good.

I have had an instance where the guide data disappeared for a couple of days, but it didn't affect my scheduled recordings and I didn't have to reset the machine to get the data back - it came back on it's own. As far as I'm concerned, it was an annoyance, but no worse than not having the TV Guide in the first place.
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post #490 of 500 Old 11-01-2005, 10:51 PM
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Sorry to dig this thread back up, but I needed to find out a couple of questions that this thread left unanswered about the Pioneer 533/633:

1) Can it correctly record 16:9 material via S-video? (Record anamorphic material to DVD-R from S-video input?)

2) Does the Auto record function (available in the 520) still exist in the new versions (533/633)?

3) How are the VHS dubbings to DVD on the 533/633? (Does anyone know if they are better than the Toshibas?)

I think I am down to the Pioneer 633 or the Toshiba XS54. I just spent the past 3 hours reading this thread, and others on many of these players. I like some of the advanced features of the Toshiba, but the Pioneer track-record and PQ may be hard to beat.
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post #491 of 500 Old 11-01-2005, 11:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flix1
2) Does the Auto record function (available in the 520) still exist in the new versions (533/633)?

The new Pioneers dropped the auto record feature that was on the Pioneer 520 (they put in the TVGOS instead). I can't answer the other questions as I have a 520.
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post #492 of 500 Old 11-02-2005, 01:55 PM
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For what it's worth, I'm very satisfied with the Toshiba's picture quality. (I have an XS34)

Also, it can record onto DVD-RAM discs, which is nice. One minor gripe I have is that you can't do "Instant Timer Recording", i.e., you can't just hit the Record button a certain number of times to record for a desired period of time.
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post #493 of 500 Old 11-02-2005, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Shirk
One minor gripe I have is that you can't do "Instant Timer Recording", i.e., you can't just hit the Record button a certain number of times to record for a desired period of time.
I didn't know the XS34 couldn't do that. I use this feature on my Pio 533 more than I setup recordings through the TVGOS. I wonder why they neglected to include this.
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post #494 of 500 Old 11-07-2005, 09:21 AM
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I'm trying to decide between the Toshiba and Panasonic, and hopefully those of you who have experience can enlighten me...

They both have TVGOS, is this something developed by TV Guide so it's the same on all of the recorders? If not, does one deal with it better than the other. Do either of them let you one touch schedule a recording of a show, or even better, set it up like tivo and record all available listings of a particular show? I know this is getting into Tivo type of features, but I really don't like the idea of paying for a monthly service if something close to it is available on these recorders.

Also, are there any other features which seperate the Toshiba from the Panasonic that come to mind? (Besides the hd size) They both seem to be about the same price from what I can see which makes a hard decision even more so.
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post #495 of 500 Old 11-07-2005, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krisb01
I didn't know the XS34 couldn't do that (one-touch recording). I use this feature on my Pio 533 more than I setup recordings through the TVGOS. I wonder why they neglected to include this.
I wonder, too. I suppose they were thinking that if you're watching a show that you decide you want to record, all you have to do is go into the TVGOS menu (which will then display the name and time slot of show you're watching) and hit the record button. Not a big deal, but it does add an extra step to the process, and requires that you have the remote handy.

This also addresses one of atthegates's questions ("Do either of them let you one-touch schedule a recording of a show..."). The Panasonic does; the Toshiba only does via the TV Guide system as described above.

Quote:
Originally Posted by atthegates
They both have TVGOS, is this something developed by TV Guide so it's the same on all of the recorders? If not, does one deal with it better than the other?
The TVGOS interfaces in my Panny (E95) and Toshiba (XS34) are very similar but do differ slightly; but that may be because the Panny was manufactured in May 2004, while the Toshi was built in February of this year. The version on my Toshiba is a bit easier to navigate; if I want to jump x number of hours ahead (or back), I just press the number and a menu comes up. I can then choose to go to that channel number or to jump that number of hours forward or back. The Panasonic, on the other hand, requires me to press the > (right) button again and again until I get to the time slot I want. If I want to jump 8 hours ahead, I have to press the > button 16 times.

Quote:
Originally Posted by atthegates
Do either of them let you...set it up like Tivo and record all available listings of a particular show?
Yeah, I think they both do, in their own way. I know that with my Toshiba, if you set a show to be recorded "Regularly", it will record that show each time it appears in the same time slot with the same title. Can't remember if the Panny works the same way....it may be somwhat less sophisticated -- i.e., it may be that you can set it to record the same time slot each week, but it doesn't recognize if it's actually the same show or not. (Sorry I can't be sure about that, but I rarely use my Panny anymore, and it's a feature I don't use much in the first place.)

The TVGOS system isn't as sophisticated as actual Tivo, but I think it's "close enough" -- to the point that I personally can't justify putting up with the added hassles associated with Tivo-featured recorders (to wit: [1] the expense, [2] having to run a phone line to the machine, and [3] the lack of editing features that Tivo-enabled recorders suffer from).

Hope that helps.
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post #496 of 500 Old 12-26-2005, 02:34 PM
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In various reviews I've read of the Pioneer DVRs, the common theme is that they're quite noisy, especially when downloading TV Guide info. Those of you that own Pioneers:

Has that been your experience? Do you find the noise issue to be significant? My setup involves such components to be in a compartment with a glass door.
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post #497 of 500 Old 12-26-2005, 10:13 PM
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I have the dvr-531 and the hard drive noise is not an issue for me. I also have the unit behind a glass door.
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post #498 of 500 Old 12-27-2005, 09:49 AM
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The clicking - clicking (hard disk seeks I suppose) are an issue for me. (I do not have the unit behind glass (YET!).

I've only had it a week, and am still playing with getting the TVG to work to my liking. So I'm still doing a new set-up everynight and so it is always off and running collecting listings...so I really don't know if in the longer term, it will quiet down once it gets filled up with listings?

It is most disturbing when I'm not watching TV - but trying to read with the TV off. When the TV is on it still is somewhat of a problem. But sometimes it simply shuts up!

I wonder if all the Hard Disk DVR's with TV Guide's EPG share this same problem? I wonder if some are less noisey?
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post #499 of 500 Old 12-27-2005, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SiestaKeyJim

I wonder if all the Hard Disk DVR's with TV Guide's EPG share this same problem? I wonder if some are less noisey?
No, not all HDD recorders with TVGOS are as (reportedly) noisy as the Pioneers.

I have the Panasonic E-500 and it is whisper quiet all the time. In fact, since it doesn't flash "EPG" while downloading the TVGOS EPG data, I have absolutely no idea when it does in fact download the EPG data. In my E-500, the TVGOS works great, and I would not want to be without it.

BTW, all the Panasonic HDD recorders, as far as I know, are quiet while downloading the TVGOS EPG data.

RG
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post #500 of 500 Old 12-28-2005, 07:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SiestaKeyJim
The clicking - clicking (hard disk seeks I suppose) are an issue for me. I wonder if all the Hard Disk DVR's with TV Guide's EPG share this same problem? I wonder if some are less noisey?
Some harddrives are whisper-quiet and others sound as though a miniature train wreck was in progress. My Toshiba RD-XS52 makes only a faint whishing sound from its fan and only my cat could hear it from more than 3 feet away. The HDD and DVD drive are completely soundless (no TV Guide). However, my new Philips PET 1000, a portable DVD player, does a rendition of a blender grinding chicken bones when it's loading or searching for a segment. The question is, does noise equate to internal clashing of parts and early breakdowns or is it just a quirk of certain models, not causing any problems beyond user irritation? My knees have always made horrible noises, but they're still working just fine.
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