Magnavox 557, 537, 535, 533, 515, 513, 2160A, 2160, 2080 & Philips 3576, 3575 - Page 859 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #25741 of 26733 Old 07-09-2014, 12:49 PM
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I was going to say the same thing, if the OP has clear QAM cable then the iView, if OTA a iView or Homeworx should work. As you said they are a bit crude but they do record HD to a USB HDD and it's easily readable by a Windows PC. Note neither has a line input so recording from a STB or something like a DVD player would be a no-go, they can only record from a RF input and DIGITAL at that(not modulated channel 3 or 4 analog).
Of course another option is to record directly to a HTPC, which is what I thought you or other PC centric people might have suggested.
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post #25742 of 26733 Old 07-09-2014, 01:38 PM
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Of course another option is to record directly to a HTPC, which is what I thought you or other PC centric people might have suggested.
At a $40 entry, it's cheap and simple for this purpose so it's hard not to put the iView on the table first. If he wants more, he'll ask.

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post #25743 of 26733 Old 07-13-2014, 10:12 AM
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Interesting deal on Newegg on 537 today, refurb with 500G HD for $176:

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post #25744 of 26733 Old 07-13-2014, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by mrmazda View Post
Interesting deal on Newegg on 537 today, refurb with 500G HD for $176:
Newegg has the model number wrong. That's a 535. Still a good deal.
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post #25745 of 26733 Old 07-26-2014, 09:33 AM - Thread Starter
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The 557's recording standard was changed from the previous +VR Std to Video/VR-mode, and Make Recordings Compatible has been eliminated. I suspect, but would like confirmation, that this change will make the 557's DVDs act like they would in a Panasonic or Pioneer recorder as far as unfinalized "acceptability" is concerned.

So, would someone with a new 557 model create a DVD in the 557, leave Unfinalized, and see if an older Mag HDD model does or doesn't "recognize" that Unfinalized DVD. Then, Finalize the DVD in the 557 and try again.

Another interesting and useful test would be to try the Unfinalized DVD in a Panasonic or Pioneer recorder before Finalizing for the 2nd part of the test above.


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post #25746 of 26733 Old 07-26-2014, 12:29 PM
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Another interesting test....do the new Mags have the ability to unfinalize a RW DVD, add more things and finally finalize it again? I don't think this is possible with Video/VR mode DVDRs, for sure not with Panasonics. Also on Panasonics +RW discs need to be "closed" which is similar to finalizing before you can see the top menu, I don't believe this needs to be done with the older Mangnavoxes.
I'd think compatibility with unfinalized DVDs would be a big concern for owners of older Magnavoxes that wanted the ability to swap such discs.
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post #25747 of 26733 Old 07-26-2014, 12:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes, you can Undo Finalize in the Disc Edit menu. (Option toggles between Finalize/Unfinalize for -RW discs.)

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post #25748 of 26733 Old 07-31-2014, 12:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Walmart has finally got the MDR557H/F7, $298.00.

(I wondered why Amazon had "mysteriously" lowered their price from $349.99 to $298.88 just a few days ago, before it appeared on Walmart site.)


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post #25749 of 26733 Old 07-31-2014, 02:48 PM
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Hi guys, is great to write here again. As always you have done an amazing job with this forum.

Just have two basic questions:

1. Is there a way, a bug maybe, which can make a Title to be automatically erased in a 513 Mag?

2. Is there in the 557 and 537 any progress with the recovering of an erased Title?

Thanks a lot!
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post #25750 of 26733 Old 07-31-2014, 06:58 PM
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Hmm, the 557 is looking more and more tempting...
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post #25751 of 26733 Old 08-01-2014, 09:14 PM
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A picture quality question.

Upon review, I'm assuming that the correct answer to my question is this: "If you have to use an STB ("box") to decode your TV signal, that impacts the PQ your DVDR will receive due to (1) high source compression (low bit-rate) so they can get more channels in a slot, and (2) the need for an analog line connection between the box and this DVDR."

Comcast's decision to encrypt channels has altered my setup. Now, my setup has the cable line feeding directly into the high-definition cable box. A line connects from the cable box to the Magnavox 2160 Ant-in. The cable box and the Mag are each connected to the TV via a HDMI cables.

The result, aside from the Magnavox recording whatever the cable box is tuned to (insert emoticon of outrage here), is that the picture quality as viewed through the Mag is poor. The Mag is receiving through Channel 3, not DTV Channel 3, just plain old, um, analog channel three.

This is par for the course, yes? There aren't any Mag, Setup/Menu options that can improve the picture quality?

Thanks for your input.
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post #25752 of 26733 Old 08-02-2014, 06:14 AM
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Analog RF channel 3/4 is the WORST quality connection, worse than VHS IMO. Your best bet would be S-video which is about DVD quality, unfortunately basically all modern equipment has omitted S-video and were lucky to get VHS quality composite. If you have a STB(vs a DTA) you should have composite output which is what I'd suggest, if you have a DTA it will more than likely only have RF3, again the worst quality connection. If this is the case I'd really look into a cable company supplied DVR(or Tivo or HTPC) to do all your recording and then for things you want to save, PLAY on the DVR and record realtime using the DVRs composite(I believe they all have composite) to your Magnavox. It will cost more money to rent the DVR but hey, thats your cable companies whole point of scrambling things requiring you use a STB, they want more money
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post #25753 of 26733 Old 08-02-2014, 10:54 AM
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While you didn't mention audio quality specifically, I am pretty sure that rf 3/4 gives you mono sound. Another major disadvantage of using this method.
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post #25754 of 26733 Old 08-02-2014, 10:59 AM
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Nope, for what it's worth, I'm pretty sure RF gives you at least stereo sound.
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post #25755 of 26733 Old 08-02-2014, 11:08 AM
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Stereo over RF only ever happens if MTS is listed in the RF specifications of both source and destination.

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post #25756 of 26733 Old 08-02-2014, 01:35 PM
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Yes I highly doubt the RF modulator in a STB or DTA would be stereo, technically it could be but I'd be highly doubtful. I kind of forget about audio but it's another reason to use at least L&R line audio outputs.
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post #25757 of 26733 Old 08-03-2014, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post


Walmart has finally got the MDR557H/F7, $298.00.

(I wondered why Amazon had "mysteriously" lowered their price from $349.99 to $298.88 just a few days ago, before it appeared on Walmart site.)

Maybe refurbs will show up somewhere for a sane price.

Yes, naturally I mean for me.
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post #25758 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 07:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post


Walmart has finally got the MDR557H/F7, $298.00.

(I wondered why Amazon had "mysteriously" lowered their price from $349.99 to $298.88 just a few days ago, before it appeared on Walmart site.)

Hi again Wajo - my 515 is recovered but I'm contemplating buying another unit just in case. I probably would have gone with a 535 over a 537, but I'm trying to figure out if any of the 557's new features would be useful to me. My 3 units are used strictly to burn dvdrw for ripping to MKV for use with a WDTV streamer - I'm not seeing anything in the specs to improve that process.

Apparently the remote conflict issue is still there, so I might connect a new unit to an old 23" LCD (HDMI) monitor in a different room from my 2 TV's. I can't see why there would be any issues with that?

Lastly, my older units were bought from Walmart - should I consider Amazon this time? I have Prime so delivery would be much faster than site-to-store, but that's not much of a factor in this case. I'm inclined to give WM the business for sticking by the product the last few years...

Thanks,
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post #25759 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 07:54 AM
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I probably would have gone with a 535 over a 537, but I'm trying to figure out if any of the 557's new features would be useful to me. My 3 units are used strictly to burn dvdrw for ripping to MKV for use with a WDTV streamer - I'm not seeing anything in the specs to improve that process.
Unless you are limited to recording scrambled cable from a STB, why don't you get something more appropriate to your task like a $40 iView, so you can just plug the external HDD into a PC and drag the files over without having to burn anything.

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post #25760 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 07:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi again Wajo - my 515 is recovered but I'm contemplating buying another unit just in case. I probably would have gone with a 535 over a 537, but I'm trying to figure out if any of the 557's new features would be useful to me. My 3 units are used strictly to burn dvdrw for ripping to MKV for use with a WDTV streamer - I'm not seeing anything in the specs to improve that process.

Apparently the remote conflict issue is still there, so I might connect a new unit to an old 23" LCD (HDMI) monitor in a different room from my 2 TV's. I can't see why there would be any issues with that?

Lastly, my older units were bought from Walmart - should I consider Amazon this time? I have Prime so delivery would be much faster than site-to-store, but that's not much of a factor in this case. I'm inclined to give WM the business for sticking by the product the last few years...
I can't see any advantages gained from the new 557 over a 53x unit for your specific usage scenario... you won't be using any of the "better" features... at least, today!

I'm partial to Walmart for their 90-day return policy and ship/return to local store, plus their reasonably priced extended warranty if interested in that.

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post #25761 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 08:29 AM
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Unless you are limited to recording scrambled cable from a STB, why don't you get something more appropriate to your task like a $40 iView, so you can just plug the external HDD into a PC and drag the files over without having to burn anything.
Sounds like it might be worth a look - editing probably wouldn't be a factor for most people but with my particular setup it would be a hassle. FWIW I have 2 PC's with tuners but only use them for recording when I have no other choice, and same for using Playlater for internet recordings. The price tag is tempting though...

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post #25762 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 08:30 AM
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I can't see any advantages gained from the new 557 over a 53x unit for your specific usage scenario... you won't be using any of the "better" features... at least, today!

I'm partial to Walmart for their 90-day return policy and ship/return to local store, plus their reasonably priced extended warranty if interested in that.
Good info - thanks...

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post #25763 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 09:18 AM
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Sounds like it might be worth a look - editing probably wouldn't be a factor for most people but with my particular setup it would be a hassle. FWIW I have 2 PC's with tuners but only use them for recording when I have no other choice, and same for using Playlater for internet recordings. The price tag is tempting though...
Once you complete the shallow learning curve, editing TV captures on a PC using Video ReDo far surpasses anything you can do on a DVD Recorder as far as ease, capability and speed. You can batch-run a group of files through the auto commercial detection module then refine the cuts in the editor. It takes me 6-7 min to finalize the edits in a typical 1 hr show -- I just did the whole summer season of 24 in about an hour. The best choice would be to use your existing PC's with tuners to do the recording but it sounds like you don't like that route, in which case using an iView would probably not suit you either.

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post #25764 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 10:46 AM
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Once you complete the shallow learning curve, editing TV captures on a PC using Video ReDo far surpasses anything you can do on a DVD Recorder as far as ease, capability and speed. You can batch-run a group of files through the auto commercial detection module then refine the cuts in the editor. It takes me 6-7 min to finalize the edits in a typical 1 hr show -- I just did the whole summer season of 24 in about an hour. The best choice would be to use your existing PC's with tuners to do the recording but it sounds like you don't like that route, in which case using an iView would probably not suit you either.
I use VRD for all content recorded on PlayLater, but due to my setup it's still more convenient to edit on the Funai's. But I'm not ruling out the iview until I find out more about it - like what formats it supports. (One of the cons for PC OTA recording is ridiculously huge files)...

FWIW I think the smaller MKV rips from Funai SP recordings are better quality than larger PlayLater MP4's from a network's website...

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post #25765 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 11:26 AM
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One of the cons for PC OTA recording is ridiculously huge files
The 4 Iview .mts recordings I haven't deleted are all about 6000M: 2 1-hours from NBC, 5845M and 6082M SVU episodes, and 2 1-hours from Fox, 6230M and 6147M Bones episodes.

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post #25766 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 12:20 PM
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But I'm not ruling out the iview until I find out more about it - like what formats it supports. (One of the cons for PC OTA recording is ridiculously huge files)...
They are larger but not ridiculously so -- you are recording HD/5.1 after all not SD/2.0 like on a DVD Recorder. The iView is also recording the HD/5.1 transport stream so it will be the same as PC recording. After editing out commercials, a 1hr show is around 4GB. If you don't want HD/5.1 you can always let VRD recode it to SD/2.0 that can be burned to DVD-R.

At the end of the day, if all you ever want is SD/2.0 and never want to record/watch in HD/5.1, stick with a DVD Recorder because all the modern options record in HD.

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post #25767 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 12:30 PM
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The 4 Iview .mts recordings I haven't deleted are all about 6000M: 2 1-hours from NBC, 5845M and 6082M SVU episodes, and 2 1-hours from Fox, 6230M and 6147M Bones episodes.
Thanks for the info - that's up there with WMC recordings. An edited SP-mode ~42 min is < 1.5GB. I assume the quality is proportionally better but I'm perfectly happy with SP quality for digital. My non-local channels are analog so EP is adequate at half that size. I'm not really interested in re-coding everything, and not at all confident the quality would be comparable...

I've mentioned before here that I often go years between recording and viewing, so size is important to me. I record lots of new shows but never watch until they survive at least a season - well, except maybe for something special like Fargo...

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post #25768 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 12:53 PM
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They are larger but not ridiculously so -- you are recording HD/5.1 after all not SD/2.0 like on a DVD Recorder. The iView is also recording the HD/5.1 transport stream so it will be the same as PC recording. After editing out commercials, a 1hr show is around 4GB. If you don't want HD/5.1 you can always let VRD recode it to SD/2.0 that can be burned to DVD-R.

At the end of the day, if all you ever want is SD/2.0 and never want to record/watch in HD/5.1, stick with a DVD Recorder because all the modern options record in HD.
Well I was never that impressed with the HD recordings I was getting with WMC. And I seem to remember getting HD-like file sizes even when the broadcast wasn't HD. But why would I would I want to burn anything to DVD? My whole setup with the SMP is to get rid of the DVD's. HD is great for movies but for TV I don't even find HQ to be worth doubling the size over SP. Now if all I was doing was time-shifting, size wouldn't be a factor and I'd use the best available recording mode even for an incremental quality improvement.

Consider too that PlayLater now supports HD, but very little free content is available in HD.

It seems kind of funny to me that it hasn't been that long since analog TV was the norm, and now even DVD-quality video is deemed obsolete!

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post #25769 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 01:18 PM
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Well I was never that impressed with the HD recordings I was getting with WMC.
WMC is recording the broadcast digital transport stream which means the recording is identical to the quality of the HiDef broadcast since it is just spooling all the bits as they come in. If you can't see a difference between broadcast HiDef and the SD recordings of your DVD Recorders on your TV's then don't bother with any other options other than your DVDR's.

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post #25770 of 26733 Old 08-04-2014, 01:34 PM
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WMC is recording the broadcast digital transport stream which means the recording is identical to the quality of the HiDef broadcast since it is just spooling all the bits as they come in. If you can't see a difference between broadcast HiDef and the SD recordings of your DVD Recorders on your TV's then don't bother with any other options other than your DVDR's.
Well I can see a difference between a BD and DVD movie. But I don't see anywhere near that difference on HD broadcast TV and non-HD digital cable...

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