Why NO Blu-ray RECORDERS with atsc-qam tuners available in the USA??? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 46 Old 11-04-2015, 08:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Why NO Blu-ray RECORDERS with atsc-qam tuners available in the USA???

When looking at other markets around the world there are literally endless amounts of major brand blu-ray disc recorders and HD Hard Drive recording units easily obtainable while here in the USA they are IMPOSSIBLE to find, (no atsc qam tuners integrated!)
Sure we have TiVO and some others but it seems ridiculous that with a demand from consumers they are not here. I know that constantly around the internet and from people I know they would be happy to buy these stand alone units if they were in the market place.

Looking for big brand manufacturing reps to reply especially.

Yes I KNOW you can buy units for PC, but I don't want that, I want a stand alone unit.
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post #2 of 46 Old 11-04-2015, 08:56 PM
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The film industry's lobbying power has ensured that the US has far more restrictive copyright laws than other countries, and those overbearing copyright laws have killed products that are available everywhere else. Besides, most people in the US don't care about discs anymore, anyway, as they're moving to streaming services, so neither the freedom to make nor the demand to buy such products exists.
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post #3 of 46 Old 11-04-2015, 09:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
The film industry's lobbying power has ensured that the US has far more restrictive copyright laws than other countries, and those overbearing copyright laws have killed products that are available everywhere else. Besides, most people in the US don't care about discs anymore, anyway, as they're moving to streaming services, so neither the freedom to make nor the demand to buy such products exists.
I agree with the comments about the creative industry trying to restrict copyrights, but honestly I know MANY people even a number of younger folks that still record things on DVD discs.

The market is here, but agreed it is being quashed by lobbying interests.
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post #4 of 46 Old 11-04-2015, 10:15 PM
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Maybe you should consider the hard disk units.

Yes, DVRs have limited capacity - but many of them let you plug in an external hard drive (make sure you get an external HD with the right type of connector - some DVRs won't take USB drives) , which can store a lot of programs - and it may be fairly inexpensive on a per program basis.

There may be a problem with cable company DVRs - someone I know with a Comcast DVR said Comcast updated the software so it wouldn't work until he unplugged his external HD.

You can get an old TIVO HD DVR through Craigslist fairly cheap - but make sure you get one with "Lifetime Service", and bear in mind that the oldest HD TIVO boxes, Series 3 DVRs, need you to rent 2 cablecards from the cable company if you want to record two programs at once.

I do record HD shows from broadcast channels on a Series 3 DVR. I don't have a cablecard, so I can't verify it will work on cable, and I make do with the built-in HD, rather than using an external drive, so I can't say I've tested that - but the instructions say it should work.

And I know nothing about satellite.

(I assume you aren't trying to record off-air, since you mention QAM. Though ATSC is the broadcast standard - for which you don't need cablecards. And, BTW, many cable companies - e.g., Comcast - have dropped unencrypted QAM programming.)

Video DVDs should be considered extremely unreliable - they often only last a few plays. And they are getting less and less reliable. When you insert a modern DVD into a DVD player, it sometimes reprograms the player firmware to stop letting it play older disks, as part of an "improved" copy protection scheme. Perhaps a hard disk drive is more reliable.

Good luck!

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post #5 of 46 Old 11-05-2015, 03:19 AM
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It doesn't have anything to do with copyright. It's all about consumer demand. All the major Japanese, Korean and Chinese manufacturers pulled out of the US DVD recorder market because they just couldn't sell them here. It's as simple as that. They're not going to repeat that mistake with Blu-ray.

When I was at LSI Logic, the marketing folks did some surveys and the number one complaint about DVD recorders was that they were too complex to operate. For that reason, they just didn't appeal to the average Joe.

In addition, to get below the magic $299 level, the margins on DVD recorders were very thin. If you're not selling millions of units, you're not going to make enough money.
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post #6 of 46 Old 11-05-2015, 07:35 AM
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^^^
I was going to make that reply. There is no market. The disk recorder market died years ago with the switch to digital TV. People were more attracted to DVR's and streaming and not digital VCR's -- which is all a disk recorder is. Only funai stayed in the game with low-end models and while their latest US model records in HD to the internal HDD, it only burns the content to DVD in SD format -- no BD-R.

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post #7 of 46 Old 11-06-2015, 04:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
Video DVDs should be considered extremely unreliable - they often only last a few plays. And they are getting less and less reliable. When you insert a modern DVD into a DVD player, it sometimes reprograms the player firmware to stop letting it play older disks, as part of an "improved" copy protection scheme. Perhaps a hard disk drive is more reliable.
Not true at all.
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post #8 of 46 Old 11-06-2015, 08:52 PM
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It's been my experience (admittedly with some pre-blue-ray DVDs), that many new store-bought DVDs only played well for a few times - then they started showing artifacts, or having problems. This was a major step back compared to old VHS tapes.

Presumably this hasn't been your experience. What can I say?

I've met a lot of old movie aficionados who, for this very reason, prefer old movies in VHS format, even though the primary commercial VHS formats did not support high def. (There were a few very expensive VHS decks made that could record high def - but they never become popular, and commercial movies, AFAIK, were not released in that format.)
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post #9 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 01:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
It's been my experience (admittedly with some pre-blue-ray DVDs), that many new store-bought DVDs only played well for a few times - then they started showing artifacts, or having problems. This was a major step back compared to old VHS tapes.

Presumably this hasn't been your experience. What can I say?

I've met a lot of old movie aficionados who, for this very reason, prefer old movies in VHS format
Maybe those old movie aficionados should learn how to handle discs properly instead of treating them like frisbees and scratching them beyond recognition. The only reason a disc would stop working after a few plays is if the user is damaging them by handling them incorrectly.
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post #10 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 02:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
It's been my experience (admittedly with some pre-blue-ray DVDs), that many new store-bought DVDs only played well for a few times - then they started showing artifacts, or having problems. This was a major step back compared to old VHS tapes.

Presumably this hasn't been your experience. What can I say?

I've met a lot of old movie aficionados who, for this very reason, prefer old movies in VHS format, even though the primary commercial VHS formats did not support high def. (There were a few very expensive VHS decks made that could record high def - but they never become popular, and commercial movies, AFAIK, were not released in that format.)
I've never heard of this phenomenon. Since they are digital media, typically they would either play perfectly or not at all, some kind of diminished performance after normal use wouldn't seem too likely. Admittedly, I didn't buy too many DVDs because while they were superior in format and reliability, the picture quality improvement wasn't all that noticeable to me on my old 32" tube TV. But I'd think it would be widely discussed, particularly on a site such as this one, if it was very common at all. I have heard of long term reliability with recordable DVDs, but that's a different issue.

Now Blu-Ray, that's a different case and the quality improvement is huge. I still haven't bought a ton of them as there aren't that many movies I want to watch more than once, but I certainly appreciate the technological improvements.
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post #11 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 03:38 PM
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In all fairness, We've rented a fair number of DVDs from Redbox. I expect they get a lot of plays. And I've only had problems with them about twice, and that was a fairly long time ago, when DVD players had trouble handling minor data errors. I don't think I've recently had any problems using modern DVDs on modern players.

(DVD's rented from Redbox have Redbox's logo on them, so they may be in some way different from DVDs sold to the consumer.)

I can't speak for handling by other people, by I would never handle a DVD by anything but the edge, and I'm very careful not to scratch anything.
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post #12 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by JDLIVE View Post
....Now Blu-Ray, that's a different case and the quality improvement is huge. I still haven't bought a ton of them as there aren't that many movies I want to watch more than once, but I certainly appreciate the technological improvements.
Interesting, coming from quality DVD players(and VHS before that) I saw a huge improvement in picture quality moving to DVD, but not all that much of a jump moving to BD.
Don't get me wrong, a well mastered BD of material that warrant it can look amazing but DVD wasn't that bad, much better than VHS.
AFA DVD longevity, I've got pre-recorded DVDs as well as burnt DVDs that go back over a decade and still play and look like new. Of course I still have VHS tapes that go back 35 years and still look pretty decent(assuming the source was good) but I anyway noticed a big difference going from quality VHS to quality DVD.
I've found with DVD one of the biggest issues is what player your using, a poor player won't look all that great and tend to skip or lock-up with "iffy" DVDs, a decent player is well worth the little investment.
I like older(but not too old) Sony players and you can't really go wrong with Pioneer players. Oppo players are also very good but you aren't likely to run into them too often used, where all decent DVD players reside now days.

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post #13 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
In all fairness, We've rented a fair number of DVDs from Redbox. I expect they get a lot of plays. And I've only had problems with them about twice, and that was a fairly long time ago, when DVD players had trouble handling minor data errors. I don't think I've recently had any problems using modern DVDs on modern players.

(DVD's rented from Redbox have Redbox's logo on them, so they may be in some way different from DVDs sold to the consumer.)

I can't speak for handling by other people, by I would never handle a DVD by anything but the edge, and I'm very careful not to scratch anything.
What happened to the numerous store bought ones that crapped out? Redbox could easily be abused versions. Usually the only rental limitation is lack of extra features and lack of the lossless soundtrack.

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post #14 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 10:11 PM - Thread Starter
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I agree I have never noticed that retail copies of DVD movies have ever been troubled by play degradation issues, nor has anyone else I know had this issue.

Again the world markets still find Blu-ray recorders very desirable and only tiny changes need to be made so that these units are salable in the USA. So volume sales is not really a good excuse.

Panasonic to name just one still sells millions of Blu-ray recorders around the world.
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post #15 of 46 Old 11-07-2015, 11:28 PM
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Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
In all fairness, We've rented a fair number of DVDs from Redbox. I expect they get a lot of plays. And I've only had problems with them about twice, and that was a fairly long time ago, when DVD players had trouble handling minor data errors. I don't think I've recently had any problems using modern DVDs on modern players.
That's an entirely different can of worms, then, for two reasons.

1) People who rent DVDs love to use them as coasters or treat them like frisbees, because they are often almost unplayable. Renting discs from Redbox is often a horrible experience, as their high level of automation means that nobody is checking to make sure the discs are in good condition after people return them.

2) Redbox DVDs have a special kind of copy protection that involves deliberately corrupted data. The idea is that putting corrupt data on the disc will cause your disc ripper to fail when it can't correct the errors, so you won't be able to copy the disc, but your DVD player should just ignore the errors and play the movie anyway. If your player actually tries to correct all the errors, the disc won't work. You can blame Redbox for that and not DVDs. Redbox DVDs are purposefully gimped and don't match the retail versions. (They have no special features, either, as a way to encourage you to buy the retail version.)

I miss DVD rental stores. Stupid Netflix.
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post #16 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by jjeff View Post
Interesting, coming from quality DVD players(and VHS before that) I saw a huge improvement in picture quality moving to DVD, but not all that much of a jump moving to BD.
Don't get me wrong, a well mastered BD of material that warrant it can look amazing but DVD wasn't that bad, much better than VHS.
I should clarify that I was not an early adopter of DVDs so by the time I even considered getting any, HDTV was on the horizon and I started comparing both VHS and DVD to that and it just didn't stack up. So I wasn't going to invest any money in the technology I could see was already inferior.

Back in topic, I do have a Blu-Ray burner in my HTPC and have archived some college sports games that way, but IMO the advent of streaming content and increased desired for DRM protection from content owners makes the market too small for much interest from manufacturers.
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post #17 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by dr1394 View Post
It doesn't have anything to do with copyright. It's all about consumer demand. All the major Japanese, Korean and Chinese manufacturers pulled out of the US DVD recorder market because they just couldn't sell them here. It's as simple as that. They're not going to repeat that mistake with Blu-ray.

When I was at LSI Logic, the marketing folks did some surveys and the number one complaint about DVD recorders was that they were too complex to operate. For that reason, they just didn't appeal to the average Joe.

In addition, to get below the magic $299 level, the margins on DVD recorders were very thin. If you're not selling millions of units, you're not going to make enough money.
Most people couldn't operate a VCR. So I don't see how they could operate a stand alone DVD burner. Although personally I think both are extremely easy to use. But surprisingly most people I ran into had no clue how to properly operate them.

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post #18 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 06:16 AM
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Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
It's been my experience (admittedly with some pre-blue-ray DVDs), that many new store-bought DVDs only played well for a few times - then they started showing artifacts, or having problems. This was a major step back compared to old VHS tapes.

Presumably this hasn't been your experience. What can I say?
..........
This was definitely not the case in the late 90's and early 2000's. I purchased hundreds of DVDs back then. But I stopped watching DVDs in late 2005(in anticipation of BD and HD DVD in 2006) and eventually just donated them to a local charity.

And my GF still watches DVDs. She got first crack at the DVDs I purchased prior to 2005 before I donated them. She has no issues watching them or other DVDs she has purchased over the years.

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post #19 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 06:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
That's an entirely different can of worms, then, for two reasons.
...

2) Redbox DVDs have a special kind of copy protection that involves deliberately corrupted data. The idea is that putting corrupt data on the disc will cause your disc ripper to fail when it can't correct the errors, so you won't be able to copy the disc, but your DVD player should just ignore the errors and play the movie anyway. If your player actually tries to correct all the errors, the disc won't work. You can blame Redbox for that and not DVDs. Redbox DVDs are purposefully gimped and don't match the retail versions. (They have no special features, either, as a way to encourage you to buy the retail version.)

I miss DVD rental stores. Stupid Netflix.
No idea about DVDs from Redbox but that is certainly not the case with BDs from Redbox. There is nothing on them that causes a ripper to fail.

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post #20 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 08:43 AM
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What about D-VHS?

I do notice the difference between original and blue ray DVDs. In particular, a lot of movies put text on the screen (e.g., you see a picture of a computer screen, or a newspaper). You often can't read it on a normal format DVD, but just barely can on a Blue Ray DVD.

--------------------------

This is getting off-topic, but did any of you try D-VHS recorders? How were they?

It was a VHS format that fully supported resolutions up to 1080i. If that article is correct, it looked better than original-format DVDs, and, at the highest quality settings, better than many modern blue ray DVDs.

Some of the units required firewire input, others had integral tuners. But if some of the Internet sources are correct, the tuners were ATSC - you had to add an HD tuner with firewire output to record HD OTA.

I looked at getting one once, but the prices were high. They are even high for the old used ones - and you would need to find an old HD tuner that supported firewire output. Probably not worth the trouble.

-------------------

But realistically - a good computer geek would have little trouble setting up a PC with an installed HD tuner, in such a way that you could easily use it as a stand-alone OTA ATSC Blue Ray recorder - if by stand-alone you mean that it all fits in one box, which you can connect to your TV and to your antenna. I'm not sure about recording cable QAM - it is possible that some cable QAM signals incorporate copy protection components that would disable recording on commercial DVD recorders - I just don't know.

I used to record Comcast cable QAM channels (in Maryland, near DC) on a SD DVD deck before they started encrypting them, but now they encrypt everything - and that was only SD resolution.

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post #21 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MRG1 View Post
I do notice the difference between original and blue ray DVDs. In particular, a lot of movies put text on the screen (e.g., you see a picture of a computer screen, or a newspaper). You often can't read it on a normal format DVD, but just barely can on a Blue Ray DVD.

--------------------------

This is getting off-topic, but did any of you try D-VHS recorders? How were they?

It was a VHS format that fully supported resolutions up to 1080i. If that article is correct, it looked better than original-format DVDs, and, at the highest quality settings, better than many modern blue ray DVDs.

Some of the units required firewire input, others had integral tuners. But if some of the Internet sources are correct, the tuners were ATSC - you had to add an HD tuner with firewire output to record HD OTA.

I looked at getting one once, but the prices were high. They are even high for the old used ones - and you would need to find an old HD tuner that supported firewire output. Probably not worth the trouble.

-------------------

But realistically - a good computer geek would have little trouble setting up a PC with an installed HD tuner, in such a way that you could easily use it as a stand-alone OTA ATSC Blue Ray recorder - if by stand-alone you mean that it all fits in one box, which you can connect to your TV and to your antenna. I'm not sure about recording cable QAM - it is possible that some cable QAM signals incorporate copy protection components that would disable recording on commercial DVD recorders - I just don't know.

I used to record Comcast cable QAM channels (in Maryland, near DC) on a SD DVD deck before they started encrypting them, but now they encrypt everything - and that was only SD resolution.
DVHS essentially required a firewire interface to bitstream the content from a STB tuner to the bit bucket VCR. Yes they made 1 DVHS deck with internal ATSC tuner but they were all expensive decks with the negatives of linear tape-ie no random access and tape dropouts.

The manufacturers saw firewire as a premium "feature" and priced it mainly into higher end models. Content owners hated the fact that a computer interface was going to be used as an AV transport since that meant PC's had easy access to the transport streams so they dreamed up the DTCP encryption protocol to "protect" the content. At the end of the day the content owners do not want you recording content yourself, they want to sell it to you over and over again so in order to support their business model they impost all kinds of restrictiions on recording devices..........

I personally have not had any issues with my firewire TV, or any of my DVHS decks from at least 3 manufacturers, nor has my comocast DVR ever been a problem for me using the firewire interconnect.

But they are getting harder and harder to find as time goes on and nobody makes firewire equipped hardware anymore except for maybe in the Japanese market-with inflated Japanese prices.

Why no BD recorders in the USA with ATSC tuners?
1. Content owners dont want you recording their content.
2. Most consumers are too cheap the pay for anything over $299 (sarcasm)
3. Cable companies which most people subscribe to offer DVR for like $9.95/month and people are short sighted.
4. Consumer electronic manufacturers see BD as a premium feature and want to price accordingly, combined with #2 is a disconnest between the supply and demand sides with no resolution.
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post #22 of 46 Old 11-08-2015, 01:30 PM
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No idea about DVDs from Redbox but that is certainly not the case with BDs from Redbox.
BDs already have far more robust copy protection than DVDs, so the studios don't seem to employ that type of copy protection on BDs (not that the existing mechanisms prevent copying, either).
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post #23 of 46 Old 11-09-2015, 07:06 PM
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Panasonic to name just one still sells millions of Blu-ray recorders around the world.
BluRay recorders are not selling well and certainly not "in the millions": they never really did well outside the bizarro Japanese home market. In all of Europe, the primary vendor of BD recorders is Panasonic, and all you read on European forums is complaints that Panasonic's BluRay decks are garbage compared to their older far more functional dvd recorders. Europeans LOVED their Panasonic DVD/HDD recorders, the BluRay models- not so much. They are called many things by their owners, but "desirable" isn't one of them.

Other than Panasonic, you have a couple cheezy Funai units (that go in and out of production with the weather) and thats about it today. It is significant to note Sony itself could never be bothered selling BD recorders: they were very clever in swindling Panasonic for near-exclusive rights to market the concept unchallenged. Panasonic bitterly regrets that expensive albatross of a deal- they're STILL trying to pay it off, which is the only reason they haven't completely dropped these slow-selling machines.

BluRay recorders in Europe were rather quickly eclipsed by BluRay *players* with built-in TiVO-like multi-tuner hard drive PVRs. The majority of models offered for sale on European dealer websites are of this type, but the description is often tricky so unwary Americans think they're seeing a ton of listings for BD recorders. Look more closely: they're players grafted to a PVR. Even those are starting to die off, in favor of hard-drive-only PVRs with streaming. Lazy human nature is the same around the world, Americans were ahead of the curve but streaming is now the dominant consumption mode nearly everywhere. Recordable discs are dead, aside from us hard core geeks and obsessive archivists. Hand a disc to anyone under thirty, they look at you with a combination of pity and contempt in their eyes.

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Again the world markets still find Blu-ray recorders very desirable and only tiny changes need to be made so that these units are salable in the USA. So volume sales is not really a good excuse.
You overestimate the North American demand on a gigantic scale. There is NO market for generic non-subscription recorders here: none. The clamoring on forums like ours from enthusiasts amounts to less than a drop in the bucket at retail. The same factor that killed DVD/HDD recorders here applied to BD/HDD recorders, which is why mfrs never wasted their time with USA/Canada BD after the DVD debacle. That factor is monopolistic, essentially unregulated North American cable and satellite services, which provide the TV signal used in the vast majority of households with enough disposable income to consider a recorder.

Those households have ZERO interest in retail standalone recorders, because such units cannot record unfettered from their precious cable or satellite service. Just as the previous DVD recorders couldn't. The machines were more popular in Europe (and stayed popular much longer) because Europe has no cable to speak of, and all satellite service follows a common tuner spec. So it was/is a simple matter to design recorders with multiple built-in HDTV tuners that handle all available signal sources internally. The consumer BluRay recorders in Europe do not have any ability to record external HDTV sources: it all comes in via the tuners.

USA/Canada, by contrast, is a morass of competing privately-run cable/satellite monopolies that encrypt everything in creation and alter their channel specs hour to hour. There is no possibility of mfrg a recorder with a universal tuner, and external HDTV connections to a decoder box are forbidden. Sooo... there's nothing to record on your BluRay machine, even if you could convince Panasonic to sell you one.

Yeah, yeah, I know what you're gonna say: "millions of off-air-antenna households would buy a recorder." No, they wouldn't: if there was money to be made from that niche, how come nearly all the off-air PVRs discussed here on AVS are no-name Chinese boxes? Where's the Panasonic, Toshiba, Sony or Samsung off-air PVR for ATSC? Nowhere, because there aren't enough buyers to make a marketing push worthwhile. (Funai does it with Magnavox, but its a trainwreck.) In North America, "off air only household" translates as "very little serious interest in TV" or "can't afford a recorder" to the eyes of electronics mfrs. Neither group is a strong sales prospect.

TiVO is the exception that proves the rule here: it can't tune satellite at all, but gets a pass on cable encryption because it holds a patent threat over the cablecos "stealing" the PVR-with-guide concept. So cable grudgingly tolerates giving TiVO near-complete access to their signals.

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I agree I have never noticed that retail copies of DVD movies have ever been troubled by play degradation issues, nor has anyone else I know had this issue.
Then you must not have bought many TV series box sets over the years. Early ones degraded very quickly due to their fragile crappy glued double-sided double-layer discs. Even today, the Mad Men or Game Of Thrones set bought for Xmas often develops playback issues by Memorial Day. Perhaps not as big a problem with the BluRay versions, but the DVD sets? No guarantees on those. They can go bad sitting on the shelf untouched.
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post #24 of 46 Old 11-10-2015, 09:51 AM
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But realistically - a good computer geek would have little trouble setting up a PC with an installed HD tuner, in such a way that you could easily use it as a stand-alone OTA ATSC Blue Ray recorder - if by stand-alone you mean that it all fits in one box, which you can connect to your TV and to your antenna. I'm not sure about recording cable QAM - it is possible that some cable QAM signals incorporate copy protection components that would disable recording on commercial DVD recorders - I just don't know.

I used to record Comcast cable QAM channels (in Maryland, near DC) on a SD DVD deck before they started encrypting them, but now they encrypt everything - and that was only SD resolution.
I've been running HTPCs in place of my cable box for many years now. I use a Silicon Dust HD Homerun Prime CableCard tuner and Windows Media Center as the DVR, with Kodi as the front end. Works very well though of course WMC hasn't been updated in many years, but it continues to run. I don't have any OTA tuners, but those should also work.

As for cable, the encryption isn't the problem, that's why you have the CableCard. What matters as far as being able to archive the programs is if they are flagged as "copy once" or "copy freely". I'm on Verizon FiOS and up until recently, everything except the premium channels (HBO, PPV, Showtime, etc) were flagged "copy freely" so there was no DRM present on the recordings and I could edit/convert them as I wished. Even burned a few Blu-Ray discs, all it required was setting up the correct file structure and then burning the disc - no conversion needed.

I think Comcast is similar to FiOS in that much of their lineup is "copy freely". FiOS has started flagging some of the Fox owned channels as copy-once (Fox Sports, Discovery, etc) which is unfortunate and hopefully doesn't set a new precedent.
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post #25 of 46 Old 11-12-2015, 10:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Actually there are a number of Panasonic Blu-ray Recorder/ HDD units on sale in Europe today and they do sell quite well.

Interestingly if you go to some of the European AV websites you find many folks inquiring about the reduction of choices in such units. I believe people want them, but as some here say, the creative copy right holders want to prevent folks from recording high quality disks that can be readily passed from person to person....

As for streaming a LARGE part of the USA, and Canada, and still plenty of Europe too can only get slow DSL speeds that just aren't practical for streaming content, event today. So plenty of folks MUST rely on physical DVD/BR discs to get programming by mail such as Netflix.
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post #26 of 46 Old 11-13-2015, 07:48 AM
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I believe people want them,
But just not in enough numbers to sustain the market for them.
People like to blame rights-holders but the fact is that the boxes are not banned or restricted. They are available freely for sale to do what they were designed to do. It's just a simple fact of a very small market relative to what a major player would want to see before continuing investment. That's why the DVD recorder market crashed in the US and all the major players pulled out.
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post #27 of 46 Old 11-13-2015, 02:19 PM
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I don't buy the argument that they don't exist because "nobody wants them", as in other markets beyond MPAA influence (e.g. Europe, Japan, and Australia), there are both Blu-ray recorder units and DVR units for sale, which suggests that the demand in other markets exists either because the MPAA doesn't have the same influence over their copyright laws as it does in the US or their national mindset is simply different. Perhaps it's just what an open market looks like when TiVo doesn't have a stranglehold on every competitor due to ill-advised software patents.
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post #28 of 46 Old 11-13-2015, 03:48 PM
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I didn't say that nobody wants them. Just that there are not enough people who would buy them to support a market in the US. People in the US have far more choices for their entertainment and those choices compete for a limited pool of dollars. Disk recorders are stone-age technology compared to modern DVR's, on-demand and streaming. It has already been noted that cable is the dominant delivery system in the US. Digital cable is rapidly locking down to require a cable card for all channels -- that leaves out disk recorders and any other kind of recorder that doesn't want to go through the expense of Cable Labs certification. The TiVo argument is stale. Remember Moxi? A direct TiVo competitor in the cable market that was in many ways ahead of TiVo. Did they die because TiVo sued them? No, they died because the market couldn't sustain them. Channel Master is on their 3rd generation of DVR and TiVo hasn't sued them either.
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post #29 of 46 Old 11-13-2015, 05:15 PM
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It has already been noted that cable is the dominant delivery system in the US. Digital cable is rapidly locking down to require a cable card for all channels -- that leaves out disk recorders and any other kind of recorder that doesn't want to go through the expense of Cable Labs certification.
This undercuts your argument in support of mine, though. DRM is being pushed by the content providers as a way to reduce the viewer's choices and fulfill corporate interests. In a non-US market where the MPAA et al. aren't constantly trying to stop people from watching content the way they want, CableCards are not required and thus there are no DRM certification fees associated with making a device capable of recording TV, as it's all DRM free.

The content providers are actively involved in reducing DVR/disc recorder options by making sure that their delivery systems are proprietary and incompatible with everyone else's equipment. You can't simply say "there isn't enough demand" when an outside force is pushing people to demand what the content providers want, because they've made sure that the alternatives don't work at all and are thus not viable.

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post #30 of 46 Old 11-13-2015, 06:36 PM
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The content providers are actively involved in reducing DVR/disc recorder options by making sure that their delivery systems are proprietary and incompatible with everyone else's equipment. You can't simply say "there isn't enough demand" when an outside force is pushing people to demand what the content providers want, because they've made sure that the alternatives don't work at all and are thus not viable.
You're just playing with semantics here.
Bottom line is that there is simply not enough demand to sustain a market for disk recorders. OTA users would be the target market and there are a lot of choices for the OTA crowd. Disk recorders are not high on their list. Cord-cutters switching to OTA are not clamoring for digital VCR's that burn disks. The are looking for guide-based DVR's like they had and Internet streaming boxes for Netflix, Hulu, Prime, etc.
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