Just picked up a new Panny DMR-ES15 at BB! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 280 Old 04-07-2006, 09:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Will get it home later tonight and check it out this weekend. I will report back.
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post #2 of 280 Old 04-07-2006, 10:46 AM
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Ditto.

Just picked one up at the BB in Plano Texas.
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post #3 of 280 Old 04-07-2006, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Quick initial thoughts/observations:

2006 model records to +RW now!

I do not see/hear a fan inside the unit even though there is a fan cutout on the back.

Remote seems to be slightly redesigned - larger fonts/numbers on keys. Keys seem to be identified easily and placement is good.

UI seems redesigned over 2005 model. Slightly more intuitive?

So far I do NOT detect RF interference on TV passthru or recording like I did from the ES20. This is GOOD!

Initial observations indcate proper audio sync when played back on other equipment, which is good like ES20. I don't like watching TV recorded like bad Kung-Fu movies!

Drive mech seems slightly more noisy than other units I have tried lately (with +RW anyway), however this is not really a problem.

I am recording off of HBO on-demand and so far so good!
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post #4 of 280 Old 04-07-2006, 05:29 PM
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Can someone Please check & see when you are doing a "Manual" FR recording can you "Pause" the recording to cut out commercials & etc & also how does it handle Dual Layer Discs on playback & in the Menu System (Titles & Etc)? Thanks.
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post #5 of 280 Old 04-07-2006, 06:14 PM
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Congratulations on your purchases and thanks for posting your initial experience with these brand new models!

I second Bill1313's request - if you have time to check, please check if you can Pause when recording in FR mode. Thanks!

Boldly trying a new DVR:
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post #6 of 280 Old 04-07-2006, 09:58 PM
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I don't connect mine to an OTA source, I did pause on FR using line in and it worked.

I've been playing all night, here's a quick & dirty;

- PQ seems excellent. I hooked up my ES20 as a source to back up some DVDs thru CT200 and noticed a poorer PQ. When I switched back to the same Sony player I used for comparison and re-recorded, PQ was right back spot on.

- On my downstairs DVD player, I had some compatibility problems with -R and the Panny top menu (title menu) which have not been evident with the new 15 model.

- On that same playback unit (downstairs) there is a pseudo bitrate monitor with 1 to 10 bars indicating the level. The ES15 seems to manage its PQ with a lower indicated bitrate using subjective comparison. On a sub 4 hour FR test, I frequently saw 2-3 bars versus 4-5 with the ES20. I'm not ready to draw any conclusions, but the implication is that the new model is more efficient with its VBR recording. The ES15 still claims 500 line resolution in LP (4 hour) mode.

- One thing thats BUGGING THE CRAP out of me - the new ES15 remote doesn't have a tray open (Eject) button, you gotta use the console button to eject. Sure, you have to go to the unit anyway, but it changes the way I work. The ES20 remote seems fully compatible, and the Eject function works on the 15 when using the 20 remote.

- there are several UI changes in the menu and front panel with the 15 showing more info, such as the % complete on finalizing certain disk formats.

- the 15 takes you through a stepped format process for, and I'm hoping I recall correctly, +R discs. If I'm mistaken, then its -R. Once you load the blank disc, the machine prompts you to format and you get the joy of saying Yes a couple times. In one instance, I was prompted to set the "Playback Starts With ..." parameter at format.

- Audio seems outstanding.

- NO bugs found yet.

- I tested DV In recording with my Sony 480 camcorder. You don't get remote control over the camcorder. Upon detection of the DV, you are prompted automatically to begin DV In Automatic Recording. The Panny seemed to back up the camcorder a few seconds then synchro start - NOT a full rewind. A small nit, using manual recording via DV, if the camcorder is not playing, then the "start" will fail on the Panny and prompt you to start the camcorder first. On the ES20, it would simply pause and begin recording upon frame detection. This is a step back, coupled with the step forward of auto detection and less steps required vs the ES20. Full rate recording at XP speed worked fine with both 15 and 20 - (a defect in the Sony 315 model I have which can't keep up with the data rate).

- The chassis is a bit more elegant with soft moulded curves versus the older model.

- The new model DID recognize and play some old +RWs of mine done on the Sony, which is a newly supported format for Panasonic.

- The new remote (despite not having Eject) is a great deal faster to use with its rounded switch design for up/down/left/right versus the discrete 4 buttons of the older unit. I find it MUCH faster to perform text entry and menu nav.

That's tonights report. Work goes on though the weekend!

Kent
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post #7 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 07:15 AM
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Thanks for the "Quick" Report, & hopefully onto Dual Layer -R & +R testing including Record, Playback, Menus, Titles & how DL discs made on the Panny play on other dvd players & recorders. Thanks Again.
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post #8 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 09:19 AM
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Well, very nice indeed! And thanks very much for this report......please keep us updated... Many thanks !
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post #9 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 09:31 AM
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Does anyone know if this model is available in black? I see a few online merchants advertising both silver and black models, but they are not merchants I would do business with.
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post #10 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 09:57 AM
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Well if it's like last year? The Big Boys will have the "Silver" version & the smaller guys will have the "Black" version.

They don't have them listed yet but I would think that www.crutchfield.com will have the black model & they are a great company to do business with but expect to pay top dollar from them also.
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post #11 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 10:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill1313 View Post

Can someone Please check & see when you are doing a "Manual" FR recording can you "Pause" the recording to cut out commercials & etc & also how does it handle Dual Layer Discs on playback & in the Menu System (Titles & Etc)? Thanks.

Bill1313 and ncaahoops,

Are you both reffering to the ES20 when you speak of NOT being able to pause a manual set FR recording to delete commercials?

I have the ES30V(VCR/DVD Recorder) and have used the manual FR recording modes(on DVD-RW's and -R's) and have had no problems pausing(or stopping to create new title's if I want) the recordings to delete out commercials/etc.

I did this during the Steeler's run to the Super Bowl this year on DVD-RW's. I set the manual record to 2HR 55min(just in case of an overtime game), and as I watched the game's, I would pause the unit(using the remote) when the commercials began, and press pause again when they came back from commercials to begin the recording again(I know this would all be a hell of alot easier with an HDD recorder, but since I don't do this often, I have not been able to justify the cost of one yet).

I used the -RW discs because if the Steelers had lost the game(WHICH THEY NEVER DID!!! WOOHOO!!!!!) I could simply use the -RW disc again, after re-formating it to erase it, for something else.

I've done about 10-15 recordings this way with no problems. After finalizing the -RW they all play fine in any dvd player I have come across.

Is this something Panny took away in the later models? It doesn't allow you just to pause an FR manually set recording?

Seems strange they would do that(eliminate that ability), but of course stranger things have been done.
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post #12 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 11:35 AM
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Just a couple of quick minor observations;

- disc recognition is amazingly fast. In goes the tray, BAM.

- I've let the machine reach the end of the DVD while recording 3 times so far, no problems finalizing.
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post #13 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 12:12 PM
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STEELERSRULE, Yes & it seems that only the ES20 model was the only model that Panasonic ever made that you could'nt do it on & what you used it for is the exact reason why I think it's so important to have this feature.

But form reading the posts above it sounds like Panasonic put the FR "PAUSE" feature on the new entry level ES15 so I would guess that the rest of this year's Panny models must have it too.
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post #14 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 12:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill1313 View Post

Well if it's like last year? The Big Boys will have the "Silver" version & the smaller guys will have the "Black" version.

They don't have them listed yet but I would think that www.crutchfield.com will have the black model & they are a great company to do business with but expect to pay top dollar from them also.

I totally agree with your opinion of Crutchfield. I have purchased many audio/video products from them and will continue to do so. Just to make my original statement clearer, the vendors presently offering the black model, are ones I would not use.
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post #15 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 05:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STEELERSRULE View Post

Bill1313 and ncaahoops,

Are you both reffering to the ES20 when you speak of NOT being able to pause a manual set FR recording to delete commercials?

Yes, Panasonic took out stuff from the ES20 that used to be available in the ES10, but it looks like they have put them back on the ES15, which is good news!

Yes, the ES20 cannot pause during an FR recording. I tried all media (-R, +R, -RW, -RAM), none of them pause!

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post #16 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 07:30 PM - Thread Starter
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I just have to say that this thing is working like a champ so far. I'm very pleased with what this offers at the price I paid. For an "entry level" model, it does most of what I could possibly ask of it, and it does it pretty well. PQ is very good, remote and UI are upgraded and work well. I was also looking for the eject button on the remote, minor issue at best. I even finalized a few discs that were laying around from last month that I originally recorded on the ES20 I returned with no problem! Right now I think this is a keeper - Panasonic must have put some thought into this years model!
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post #17 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 08:00 PM
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If you can, Please try & do some Dual Layer Disc recordings. Thanks again for all the info you have supplied so far.

Taking a quick look at one of the Top-Of-the-Line Panny models the EH75V I noticed that it also doesn't have a Remote "Open/Close" Button.

So I guess they eliminated it on ALL the new models & I'm surprised your older Panny remote worked it because if you notice in the Owners Manual that the codes you enter for controlling a TV are different than all the older Panny remotes so the new remote seems to be a completely New design.
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post #18 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 08:02 PM
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just fyi from me: I have no, and likely wont be getting any DL discs.
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post #19 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 10:54 PM
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I'm looking into buying this, the last time I checked, circuity city was sold out everywhere in NYC Panasonic seems to make top notch dvd recorders.
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post #20 of 280 Old 04-08-2006, 11:17 PM
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Quote:


I'm surprised your older Panny remote worked

All functions of the old remote work identically to the new.
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post #21 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 12:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRetroGamer View Post

UI seems redesigned over 2005 model. Slightly more intuitive?

Are there any sites that have screenshots of the interfaces from different DVD recorders?
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post #22 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 04:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV Freak View Post

I'm looking into buying this, the last time I checked, circuity city was sold out everywhere in NYC Panasonic seems to make top notch dvd recorders.

Besy Buy NYC has them, that is where I got mine!! Still shows in stock at most NYC locations today.

Honestly will not probably be doing any dual layer recording any time soon but the manual states you cannot record continuously from one layer to the next, the first layer has to be closed before you can use the next layer. Until the price of DL discs comes down to a more reasonable level, I'll just stick with single layer for now.
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post #23 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 11:48 AM
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I appreciate the early reports on the ES15 and the comparisons to the ES20. But I've noticed that my local Costco is still selling ES10s, which don't seem to be available anywhere else. So, if you'll pardon a little digression here and based on the ES15 reports, since I'd like to pick up either the ES15 or the ES10 really soon, (today even) does anyone have an early opinion. Thanks.
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post #24 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 05:11 PM
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How much is Costco asking for the ES10?

As for which model to buy I would probably opt for the new ES15 just because it adds +RW recording & DL recording but if you need more A/V Inputs then maybe the ES10 because it has 2 Rear A/V Inputs compared to the ES15 that only has one set.

Also the ES10 maybe better built because it was designed to sell at a higher price?

But I would'nt be afraid to buy either one, but I would stay away from the ES20 model just because you can't "Pause" when using the FR Recording mode.
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post #25 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 05:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill1313 View Post

... but if you need more A/V Inputs then maybe the ES10 because it has 2 Rear A/V Inputs compared to the ES15 that only has one set.

There is also a set of AV inputs in the front of the ES15, hidden behind the flip down door. This is also where the firewire input is, and a channel up/down selector is in there too!
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post #26 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 05:38 PM
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The ES15 was advertised in the Sunday paper ad-insert for Best Buy, along with the ES-35V.

Did anyone test whether you can pause FR with the ES15? :-)

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post #27 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 06:34 PM
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Yep forgot about the Front DVI Input for a Cancorder so if you need that go with the ES15.

So I guess it's kind of a trade-off DVI Input on the ES15 or Extra set of Rear A/V Inputs on the ES10.

The ES10 also has Front Inputs behind a flip down door.

ES10:
2 Rear Inputs with S-Video
1 Front Input with S-video

ES15
1 Rear Input with S-Video
1 Front Input with S-Video
1 Front DVI Camcorder Input

ncaahoops, Kents stated above that he was able to "Pause" it when using the FR Recording Mode using a Line Input.

So I would guess if you can do it using the Line Inputs you should also be able to do it using the Panny's tuner.
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post #28 of 280 Old 04-09-2006, 06:43 PM
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Quote:


Did anyone test whether you can pause FR with the ES15? :-)

As Bil1313 stated, It works on the ES15 using my line inputs. Double checked.
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post #29 of 280 Old 04-10-2006, 05:29 AM - Thread Starter
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I briefly checked out the FR pause function, worked fine!
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post #30 of 280 Old 04-10-2006, 10:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRetroGamer View Post

I briefly checked out the FR pause function, worked fine!

Great news Kents and MrRetroGamer! Thanks for testing it out! I missed the earlier comment on the FR mode.

Pausing the FR mode is a very handy feature, especially if you like to put multiple titles (eg episodes of a TV show) at a quality level between 2-4hrs (eg 2:55 as Bill1313 mentioend in one of his previous posts), or recording a live movie/sporting event and pause-out the commercials/boring-stuff or simply recording something from a DVR/Tivo/VHS that you know how long it is going to be when pause-edited.

It looks like Panasonic did the right thing here, maybe they actually listened to user feedback - they restored the ES10 features in the ES15/ES25/ lineup!

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