or Connect
AVS › AVS Forum › Video Components › DVD Recorders (Standard Def) › Toshiba D-VKR3SU DVD Recorder-VCR Combo Question
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Toshiba D-VKR3SU DVD Recorder-VCR Combo Question

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I bought a Toshiba D-VKR3SU DVD recorder VCR combo unit used. It came with the remote. However, the remote does not seem to work. The unit itself seems to work fine as far as playing DVDs and VHS tapes. For anyone that has this unit, is the remote necessary to be able to record DVDs? I attempted to record something to DVD from the TV. I put the DVD in, hit record and it said it was recording. When the show was over, I hit stop. Then, however, when I tried to play the DVD, it would not play. I put the DVD in my computer, and it treated it as a blank DVD. I assume that maybe there is some kind of DVD finalization process that you must do once you finish recording a DVD? I was hoping someone on here has the unit and could help me with what to do.

I searched for a free manual online but could not find one. I have found some to purchase for around $10 (which I plan to do eventually). I also have found the remote online for around $15. Before I purchase one, I was hoping to find out if I need one to record DVDs (which is the primary reason I bought this).
post #2 of 17
You will need the remote to make any reasonable use of the recorder: these aren't like old VCRs where you could skate by for basic functions using only the front panel. Managing the DVD recorder requires choosing functions from a menu. Finalization, disc formatting and recording speed are all menu-driven settings.

While the specific model D-VKR3SU seems to have vanished from Toshiba's corporate memory, and that of the overall internet, that might be because the unit was possibly a "CostCo Special." Seven or eight years ago, when big chain stores still hoped DVD recorders would become as popular as VCRs, they cut deals with all the major brand names to make "exclusive" models for them so they couldn't be easily price-shopped. Usually the only difference from the standard model was cabinet color and/or model number. Asian mfr model numbers with a "K" in them usually indicate black faceplate/cabinet: is your unit black? If so, try looking at the manual for the silver D-VR3SU, which may be the same DVD/VHS recorder:

ec1.images-amazon.com/media/i3d/01/A/man-migrate/MANUAL000059762.pdf

This special Amazon link is not clickable- copy and paste the link into your browser, and hit enter: it will immediately present a PDF download option for the manual. This may or may not be your exact recorder, but its worth a look.

Most recorders did not really change from year to year except for the external cosmetics: operation and function usually stayed the same, so if you look at the manual for a similar model most of the info will apply to your own (esp if the illustrations of the on-screen displays match what you see with yours). Somewhere between 2006-2007 Toshiba gave up making its own DVD recorders and contracted with Funai (Magnavox) to mfr them. This may have happened earlier with the combo DVD/VHS units. If there is a date stamped on the back panel, you could use that to determine where you should look for a similar model's manual. Pre-2006 you can probably use the manual for any Toshiba DVD/VHS made 2003-2006. If the date is 2006 or later, the manual for any recent Toshiba or Magnavox DVD/VHS would probably help you.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thank you CitiBear for the reply. The unit is silver. If I understand you correctly, I will need the remote to access the menu to be able to finalize a dvd recording. From what I can tell the remote does not work. I do not see any physical reason for why the remote should not work (no signs of acid leak from batteries, for example). But the unit will not respond at all to the remote.

The year on the unit is 2004. The reason I bought it is that I did not want to invest a lot in a recorder (the new ones I have looked at start at around $125). I can record TV to my computer and burn DVDs there. However, I wanted to be able to make some recordings quick and easy (such as shows recorded for our kids), where I did not have to move the computer over next to the TV (or purchase an expensive cable long enough to reach the TV from the computer). I only paid $20 for the DVD recorder. I guess I will buy a remote and go from there. Thanks again.
post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by genx80s View Post

...The year on the unit is 2004. The reason I bought it is that I did not want to invest a lot in a recorder (the new ones I have looked at start at around $125). I can record TV to my computer and burn DVDs there. However, I wanted to be able to make some recordings quick and easy (such as shows recorded for our kids), where I did not have to move the computer over next to the TV (or purchase an expensive cable long enough to reach the TV from the computer). I only paid $25 for the DVD recorder. I guess I will buy a remote and go from there. Thanks again.

A 2004 Toshiba is most certainly a pre-Funai model. A DVD Recorder of that vintage is probably at the end of it's useful life.

You might want to consider a later bargain-priced tunerless model of good quality. Here's a $50 example:

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Magnavox-ZC320MW8/17281655

Tunerless models are useful when recording from a cable or satellite converter box or an ATSC converter box for antenna reception.

Finding used DVD Recorders in the $25 price range is quite common on Craig's List. This thread has some advice when considering DVD Recorders found on Craig's List:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1281815
post #5 of 17
The standard Toshiba DVD/VHS recorder for 2004 was the D-VR3SU: download the manual using the Amazon link I provided earlier, its almost certain its the same recorder as yours or close enough to apply. The remote could be broken for many reasons, or the recorder may have developed a defect in its remote receiver: don't discard the old remote until you're sure the new one works.

Not to discourage you, but the older Toshibas were known for faulty, short-lived burners. For $25, you might have found a bargain, or might have a unit that makes unplayable discs. Don't invest too much more money in it, and if the second remote doesn't work junk the recorder and sell the remotes on eBay to make back what you put into it.
post #6 of 17
I've got a couple of the D-vr4xsu units 2005, they where built like a tank, they used panasonic pc based sw-9573 drives, .
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

The standard Toshiba DVD/VHS recorder for 2004 was the D-VR3SU: download the manual using the Amazon link I provided earlier, its almost certain its the same recorder as yours or close enough to apply. The remote could be broken for many reasons, or the recorder may have developed a defect in its remote receiver: don't discard the old remote until you're sure the new one works.

Not to discourage you, but the older Toshibas were known for faulty, short-lived burners. For $25, you might have found a bargain, or might have a unit that makes unplayable discs. Don't invest too much more money in it, and if the second remote doesn't work junk the recorder and sell the remotes on eBay to make back what you put into it.

That does appear to be the correct manual. I also was able to program a universal remote to control the unit. I basically did this to see that the unit could receive control from a remote (not because I expected to be able to get any meaniful use from the universal remote). If I understand the manual, to record a DVD it looks as if the remote may not be needed. It needs DVD-R (of which I have a few). Basically, you just hit record and when done, you hit stop. After hitting stop, the message "Updating the information on the disc. Please wait for a moment" should be shown.

After I put a blank DVD-R disc in, it seemed to accept it. I could see that the TV channel was being received on the DVD unit. I hit record and the unit said it was recording (and showed progression of the DVD). Then, when I hit stop, it showed the messege, "Updating the information on the disc..." However, after this, the unit treated the disc as if nothing was on it. After I put it in the DVD drive of my computer, it showed it as being a blank DVD. Unless I have overlooked it, I did not see on the manual any type of function to do after this to make a recorded DVD-R disc playable. I am wondering if it is the brand of DVD. From what I read in the manual, apparently not all brand DVDs will work.

Worst case, I have a $20 DVD player and VHS player.
post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by genx80s View Post

If I understand the manual, to record a DVD it looks as if the remote may not be needed. It needs DVD-R (of which I have a few). Basically, you just hit record and when done, you hit stop. After hitting stop, the message "Updating the information on the disc. Please wait for a moment" should be shown. [...]Unless I have overlooked it, I did not see on the manual any type of function to do after this to make a recorded DVD-R disc playable. I am wondering if it is the brand of DVD. From what I read in the manual, apparently not all brand DVDs will work.

Instructions for Finalizing are given on Page 47 of the downloaded manual, and it does require the remote. Unless you intend to play the DVDs only on this unit, you'll need the original remote (or your universal clone) to access the disc finalizing feature. It is rather odd that you cannot get the unit to play the discs after recording them: unfinalized discs should play in the recorder, tho perhaps with a different appearance to the menu/navigation. You may need to read over the disc playback instructions again: getting unfinalized discs to play on some recorders requires going into a different menu system or pressing a different button on the remote than you'd use for finalized or Hollywood discs. Early recorders made before 2005 tended to be especially peculiar in operation: you really need to study the manual, and unfortunately this manual is difficult to understand.

You might also be experiencing blank media incompatibility: this recorder was engineered for the old 4x-8x speed DVD-R. If the problem discs are typical modern 16x media, it may burn but then not play because the burn was bad or corrupted during recording. To rule this out you'd need to try some JVC/TY or Verbatim 8x DVD-R from an online dealer. For DVD-RW, this unit needs the slower 2.4x variety, some newer RW is 4x. And as DigaDo and I both mentioned, its an old recorder: DVD recorders do not last indefinitely like a VCR. Most DVD recorders bought in 2004 stopped working by 2007.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mickinct View Post

I've got a couple of the D-vr4xsu units 2005, they where built like a tank, they used panasonic pc based sw-9573 drives, .

Different model, might use a different burner. Toshiba, like Sony, was all over the map in terms of what burners they used model to model in the 2004 period. Some were good, many were garbage. If most of them were good, you wouldn't have so many ongoing threads discussing how to shoehorn a 2009 HP burner into a 2005 Toshiba and what functionality you may or may not get from it and for how long. Toshiba mostly used crap burners. Sony mostly used crap burners until 2006. Pioneer went up and down each year. JVC used LG RAM drives, bizarre considering their association with Matsushita, but JVC has never had any common sense. Panasonic was pretty stable in burner durability from the beginning to now, but as you know many owners threw them away in frustration because they were unaware disassembly/spindle cleaning was necessary to bring them back to life when they play dead. Some early Panasonic drives were none too fond of DVD-R and were better at RAM. Lotta teething pains in DVD recorders, by the time most mfrs finally got their act together in 2006 consumers had lost interest.
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
[quote=CitiBear;21981139]Instructions for Finalizing are given on Page 47 of the downloaded manual, and it does require the remote. Unless you intend to play the DVDs only on this unit, you'll need the original remote (or your universal clone) to access the disc finalizing feature. It is rather odd that you cannot get the unit to play the discs after recording them: unfinalized discs should play in the recorder, tho perhaps with a different appearance to the menu/navigation. You may need to read over the disc playback instructions again: getting unfinalized discs to play on some recorders requires going into a different menu system or pressing a different button on the remote than you'd use for finalized or Hollywood discs. Early recorders made before 2005 tended to be especially peculiar in operation: you really need to study the manual, and unfortunately this manual is difficult to understand.

You might also be experiencing blank media incompatibility: this recorder was was engineered for the old 4x-8x speed DVD-R. If the problem discs are typical modern 16x media, it may burn but then not play because the burn was bad or corrupted during recording. To rule this out you'd need to try some JVC/TY or Verbatim 8x DVD-R from an online dealer. For DVD-RW, this unit needs the slower 2.4x variety, some newer RW is 4x. And as DigaDo and I both mentioned, its an old recorder: DVD recorders do not last indefinitely like a VCR. Most DVD recorders bought in 2004 stopped working by 2007.
QUOTE]

I think the blank DVD was a 16x media. Is online the only place you can now buy JVC/TY or Verbatim 8x DVD-R?
post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by genx80s View Post

I think the blank DVD was a 16x media. Is online the only place you can now buy JVC/TY or Verbatim 8x DVD-R?

Frys or MicroCenter may carry some 8x discs but mostly people get them online from places like SuperMedia.com, Rima.com or even Meritline.com. Personally I like SMS(SuperMedia) but you need to spend $50 to get the free shipping.
If your DVDR is not playing back your DVDs you just recorded I'd really suspect it has a bad burner. As Citibear said Toshibas are notorious for bad burners Of course any 8x discs you buy would work in any other DVDR you bought(well I guess if you got -R (which may be the only ones the Toshiba burns) they wouldn't work in some of the early cheaper Funai recorders. Any modern day(well as modern as DVDRs are) will burn both formats and all speeds.
post #11 of 17
genx80s
Why don't you just go to your local store and buy a single 2x speed DVD-RW just to see if your recorder works? Costs under a $1 and your disc will be reusable in other recorders and PCs.
post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Eye View Post

genx80s
Why don’t you just go to your local store and buy a single 2x speed DVD-RW just to see if your recorder works? Costs under a $1 and your disc will be reusable in other recorders and PCs.

I actually went by Walmart on the way home from work to try to find an inexpensive pack of 8X (or slower) DVD-R discs. The cheapest they had was a 10 pack for about $15 (more than I want to spend).

However, I just got a recorded DVD to play. I put one of the DVDs in that I tried to record on today during lunch and it played. This was a 16X DVD-R. I used the universal remote's menu key (ATT Uverse remote) and was able to get to the screen where I would finalize the disc. However, apparently there is no key on the universal remote that corresponds to an enter key for the DVD recorder. Thus, I cannot chose any options on the menu screens. I am going to test record on a couple of more DVDs I have, and if I get the same result, I guess I will buy the remote for the unit. I think I found one online for about $10.
post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Instructions for Finalizing are given on Page 47 of the downloaded manual, and it does require the remote. Unless you intend to play the DVDs only on this unit, you'll need the original remote (or your universal clone) to access the disc finalizing feature. It is rather odd that you cannot get the unit to play the discs after recording them: unfinalized discs should play in the recorder, tho perhaps with a different appearance to the menu/navigation. You may need to read over the disc playback instructions again: getting unfinalized discs to play on some recorders requires going into a different menu system or pressing a different button on the remote than you'd use for finalized or Hollywood discs. Early recorders made before 2005 tended to be especially peculiar in operation: you really need to study the manual, and unfortunately this manual is difficult to understand.

I wonder now if this is the correct remote for this unit. The remote does not look like the one pictured in the manual. I could not find the model number of the remote in the manual. The remote I have is a Toshiba SE-R0220.
post #14 of 17
The remote pictured in the D-VR3SU instruction manual is SE-R0152.

The SE-R0220 you received with your D-VKR3SU recorder was the remote matching a similar group of Toshiba DVD player/VCR combos from roughly the same time period. While DVD recorders have more functions than DVD players, the basic controls are usually the same and if the SE-R0220 was in usable condition its arrow and enter buttons should be able to operate your recorder. Of course its possible Toshiba was strange, and had completely different remote frequencies for its player combos than it did for its recorder combos. You'll probably need to find a cheap SE-R0152 on eBay, or pick up a Philips universal remote for $10 at WalMart.

Since you were eventually able to get the unfinalized DVDs to play in the D-VKR3SU, chances are its in decent working condition and might have been one of the Toshibas with the more durable burner, per mickinct. In that case, you might get some use out of it, perhaps a year or more, and it may be OK with 16x discs (tho not ideal, pick up some 2.4x RW next time you're at WalMart). Mickinct is a specialist in Panasonic recorder repairs and knows a great deal about their burners, if your D-VKR3SU contains the drive he proposed, you've found a nice bargain thats worth spending extra for the remote.
post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

The remote pictured in the D-VR3SU instruction manual is SE-R0152.

The SE-R0220 you received with your D-VKR3SU recorder was the remote matching a similar group of Toshiba DVD player/VCR combos from roughly the same time period. While DVD recorders have more functions than DVD players, the basic controls are usually the same and if the SE-R0220 was in usable condition its arrow and enter buttons should be able to operate your recorder. Of course its possible Toshiba was strange, and had completely different remote frequencies for its player combos than it did for its recorder combos. You'll probably need to find a cheap SE-R0152 on eBay, or pick up a Philips universal remote for $10 at WalMart.

So a $10 Philips universal remote should work for this? If so, I will probably do that. I only found one SE-R0152 remote on eBay and it is $18.95. I found another site selling one for $29.95.

If the person who sold me the recorder was truthful, I think he said he never used it to record DVDs and only used it as a DVD player and VCR. Cosmetically, it looks basically new with no noticeable wear.
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by genx80s View Post

So a $10 Philips universal remote should work for this? If so, I will probably do that. I only found one SE-R0152 remote on eBay and it is $18.95. I found another site selling one for $29.95.

When we try to bargain hunt for complex electronics, it almost always blows up in our faces. Forgive me, but it was unrealistic of you to think you would just be able to pick up some random eight year old DVD recorder and it would come with the matching remote and work perfectly all for the low, low price of $25. It doesn't happen that way, except for a very few lucky people. You really need the genuine remote, even if it pumps up your investment total to $50: if that is too much for you, then sell this Toshiba and wait until you can afford $125 for a complete new recorder.

These machines need their original remotes, they are basically computers dedicated to making DVDs and the remotes are the "software" that runs them. I recommended the Philips universal because it seemed you couldn't find the Toshiba remote for a decent price, but the $18.95-$29.95 you're seeing are very decent prices (most replacement recorder remotes run $44.95 and up). The Philips can likely be programmed for most of the functions, but they will be awkward, mislabeled and in the wrong places. Once you begin to use the machine with any frequency you will be bothered by missing function buttons you thought you "didn't need" from the correct remote. It truly isn't worth the $10-15 you might save: go for the original remote if you decide to keep this recorder.

Quote:
If the person who sold me the recorder was truthful, I think he said he never used it to record DVDs and only used it as a DVD player and VCR. Cosmetically, it looks basically new with no noticeable wear.

If true, of course thats very nice: "low miles" beats "worn out" any day. Just be aware that "hardly used" doesn't guarantee anything with a DVD recorder: they're voodoo electronics that don't follow the logical rules that apply with other devices. The biggest variable is the burner: even the best ones are weirdly different from the burners sold for PCs. A PC burner can last several years and burn a couple thousand discs, while you could buy a brand new DVD recorder and it will die on you after three hundred discs.

Also, burners in general are ticking time bombs: they somehow begin deteriorating the moment they leave the factory. A burner that sits new and unused for six years is about as likely to fail today as the same burner installed in a PC and used every day for those six years. Plus with recorders made between 2003-2005, you have the added complication of the Chinese capacitor scandal (they sold millions of failure-prone counterfeit parts to all the major consumer electronics companies early in the decade, causing defects in everything from coffeemakers to laptops). IOW, it may be a nice "mint" recorder, but don't assume you'll get five years out of it for your $25. Most of us have been lucky to get 30 months on average, and that with recorders we bought new for $400 in 2006. DVD recorders are outrageously short-lived products.
post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

When we try to bargain hunt for complex electronics, it almost always blows up in our faces. Forgive me, but it was unrealistic of you to think you would just be able to pick up some random eight year old DVD recorder and it would come with the matching remote and work perfectly all for the low, low price of $25. It doesn't happen that way, except for a very few lucky people. You really need the genuine remote, even if it pumps up your investment total to $50: if that is too much for you, then sell this Toshiba and wait until you can afford $125 for a complete new recorder.

It would be more accurate to say that I "hoped" it would work and come with its original remote. I always know that with anything off of craigslist (especially electronics) there is a chance it won't work or last long. I did not want to invest a lot in this, because, if need be, I will just move my computer close enough to a TV to burn DVDs. I was just trying to find a stand-alone DVD recorder for easier recording. (Also, I forgot that I actually only paid $15 or $20 for it. He was asking $20 or $25 and I asked if he would take $5 less.)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: DVD Recorders (Standard Def)
AVS › AVS Forum › Video Components › DVD Recorders (Standard Def) › Toshiba D-VKR3SU DVD Recorder-VCR Combo Question