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Neither my Lite-On VHS - DVD and Panasonic DVD Recorder with tuner will format

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Have used in the past Memorex recordable dvds with no problems. Within the last several months neither machine will format either the + or - discs. Tried swapping polarity in the machines, the Panosnic will format a - disk, will do one or two, then nothing. The Lite-On will not format anything with any polarity. Is this a case of built-in obsolescence? Can these machines been repaired? Both have tuners which are hard to find in the dvd recordable market. Would be curious to discover if anyone has solved this issue.
post #2 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by irulan View Post

Have used in the past Memorex recordable dvds with no problems. Within the last several months neither machine will format either the + or - discs. Tried swapping polarity in the machines, the Panosnic will format a - disk, will do one or two, then nothing. The Lite-On will not format anything with any polarity. Is this a case of built-in obsolescence? Can these machines been repaired? Both have tuners which are hard to find in the dvd recordable market. Would be curious to discover if anyone has solved this issue.

Blank DVD-R discs do not require "formatting."

Beginning in 2005 I've been a regular user of Panasonic DVD Recorders and HDD/DVD Recorders.

I've recorded more than 13,000 DVDs. None of these DVDs required "formatting" in any of my recorders.

Memorex brand DVDs, as well as several other brands, are manufactured by China Magnetics Corporation (CMC), http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CMC_Magnetics. CMC manufactured DVDs are generally regarded by AVS Forum members as inferior, or "landfill" grade products.

My Panasonic DVD Recorders, manufactured from 2005 to 2009, work best with DVD-R media. I prefer to use Taiyo Yuden 8x Premium Line DVD-R media, designated "For Professional Use," in all my stand-alone recorders (Panasonic, Magnavox, Philips, Toshiba, PYE, Emerson, etc.).

Basic servicing and diagnostic information for Panasonic DVD Recorders is found in this post:

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1055071/panasonic-2006-and-newer-dvd-drive-hub-spindle-cleaning-and-reassembly-complications/0_60#post_14479898
Edited by DigaDo - 5/3/13 at 5:07am
post #3 of 14
I could be wrong(since I haven't used +R discs in probably 5 years) but don't +R discs get a prompt to format when first inserting them in a Panasonic? I think I remember that. AFA the Liteon, I think?? they may be + format only, could be wrong. I agree with Digado though, Memorex discs while prolific are probably the worst discs to use in standalone DVDRs. For cheap discs use Verbatim Life series and for better discs use Verbatim AZO discs, Tys are top of the line except for maybe there "value" line that may be problematic.
You can get decent AZO Verbs everyday for ~$27 on Amazon, sometimes closer to $20 during a rare sale, for those prices personally I wouldn't want to chance it with Memorex DVDs. If you have a Microcenter store in your area they regularly have the Life Verbs for <$20/100, which again are inexpensive discs but not junk IMO.
Stick with - R for your Panasonics and probably +R for your Liteon(although if the Liteon is rated for -R you might be able to just purchase - Discs).
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Yes, both machines will not let one record without formatting. Just tried it on the lite-on and it just came up with invalid disk yet again. Have had no problems with the Memorex burning vids/pix off computer, but, hey, am not a brand loyal person., Will give this other brand a try, nothing to lose. Thanks for all the info, folks.
post #5 of 14
Yeah, it sounds like you got one of the craptastic batches of Memorex, which over the past several years seems to be every batch they make now.

Taito-Yuden and Verbatim are recommended, definitely. I used some Verbatims last week and they worked fine. Last Memorex I tried to use is now serving as a coaster (it really is my coaster for my desk. smile.gif )
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks all will try the Verbatim, lols on the coaster. Have a number of parties, so that is a great idea!
Cheers!
post #7 of 14
Not to beat a dead horse, BUT, Memorex are among the worst media you can use. I recommend you go back and look at some of the earliest recordings you made with them, and see how well they have lasted. I had a whole bunch of disks go bad on me.

The Panasonic's that I have--all of them--always request that blank +R media be formatted before it will be useable in the machine.

As jjeff and DigaDo have said, the only media to use, and the only media I have used for many years, is Verbatim -R AZO, Verbatim +R DL AZO, and Taiyo Yuden 8x Premium Line. I know, that isn't a lot of choice, but almost all of the "good" media has gone away, and is now rebranded CMC trash (landfill). There is still one brand of -R DL media,Taiyo Yuden, but you have to pay a fortune for it, and it's really hard to find. I have some, but I mostly use the Verbs simply because they are so much easier to get, and much less expensive. The -R DLs do not require formatting.

You can always get the Verbs and T-Y media on line at Supermediastore, Rima, Amazon, and others.
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Ordered some at Best Buy curious to see if this solves the problem or if its the machine. And, yes, both dvd recorders will not record (tried to force the issue,) unless formatted, so hopefully Diga Do will share how he bypassed this process?. Have not had any problems with disks made earlier., just watched one a few weeks ago. Wonder why this problem does not service when you are burning from a computer? Must be the required formatting process on the recorders? Anyway, thanks for the many responses, really hoping a solution is as easy as switching dvd manufacturer.
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by irulan View Post

Ordered some at Best Buy curious to see if this solves the problem or if its the machine. And, yes, both dvd recorders will not record (tried to force the issue,) unless formatted, so hopefully Diga Do will share how he bypassed this process?. Have not had any problems with disks made earlier., just watched one a few weeks ago. Wonder why this problem does not service when you are burning from a computer? Must be the required formatting process on the recorders? Anyway, thanks for the many responses, really hoping a solution is as easy as switching dvd manufacturer.

There is no "process" to bypass. Here's how it goes, beginning to end:

1. Open the tray.

2. Insert DVD.

3. Wait while DVD Recorder "reads" or "loads" the DVD. This takes 15-30 seconds. (Panasonic recorders show "READ" on the display. Funai-manufactured recorders show "LOAD" on the display and "LOADING" on the screen. Panasonic recorders are usually faster at "reading" than Funai-manufactured recorders are at "loading.")

4. Schedule a recording; or press "Record" to immediately start recording.

5. When recording is concluded there is a brief "writing" process, taking another 10-20 seconds. (Panasonic recorders are very polite, asking one to "please wait" during the countdown screen while Funai-manufactured recorders just show a "progress bar.")

6. Once all the desired recordings have been written to the DVD remember to "finalize" the DVD.

7. Open the tray and remove the DVD.

8. With a Sharpie label the DVD with it's content and DVD number. (I use a date/finalizing order as the DVD number, i.e., the fourth DVD finalized today will be assigned DVD number 130503D.)

9. Place the DVD in the current archive album.

It's as simple as that.

This is how it has worked with my 13,000 home-recorded DVDs.

(BTW, I own around three dozen Panasonic and Funai-manufactured recorders but only a dozen or so are set up for daily use.)
post #10 of 14
Digado, not to question your extensive DVD burning but I'm guessing you like I never really use +R discs in your Panasonics? If so you might not be aware (I believe since I don't currently have any blank + discs) that shortly after inserting a +R disc for the first time you are prompted to format the disc, this step is not required with -R. The only + discs that I occasionally use are +R DL and I know with those you must do the little formatting routine, I seem to remember it's also required for the regular + discs as well(when used in a Panasonic). Not sure if you have to format +R discs when used in a Funai recorder, again I have no +R discs to try(only +R DLs which I know won't work in a Funai recorder).
post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

Digado, not to question your extensive DVD burning but I'm guessing you like I never really use +R discs in your Panasonics? If so you might not be aware (I believe since I don't currently have any blank + discs) that shortly after inserting a +R disc for the first time you are prompted to format the disc, this step is not required with -R. The only + discs that I occasionally use are +R DL and I know with those you must do the little formatting routine, I seem to remember it's also required for the regular + discs as well(when used in a Panasonic). Not sure if you have to format +R discs when used in a Funai recorder, again I have no +R discs to try(only +R DLs which I know won't work in a Funai recorder).

As I said earlier, YES, single layer and dual layer +R disks must be "formatted" on the Panasonic DVD recorders prior to use. I put formatted in quotes because I am not at all sure exactly what my Panasonic recorders are doing, but they do something that makes the disks slightly non-standard. I have a DVD player that won't play any +R disks that I have made on my Panasonic DVD recorders.
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Church AV Guy View Post

....I am not at all sure exactly what my Panasonic recorders are doing, but they do something that makes the disks slightly non-standard. I have a DVD player that won't play any +R disks that I have made on my Panasonic DVD recorders.

My PFMA guess is that your Panasonic (I have 3) is converting the default VR mode to Video mode (which Pannys use). As for the player, it may be confused by a +DVD formatted in Video mode, especially if it is a brand "used" to + media recorded wit VR mode.
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by crabboy View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Church AV Guy View Post

....I am not at all sure exactly what my Panasonic recorders are doing, but they do something that makes the disks slightly non-standard. I have a DVD player that won't play any +R disks that I have made on my Panasonic DVD recorders.

My PFMA guess is that your Panasonic (I have 3) is converting the default VR mode to Video mode (which Pannys use). As for the player, it may be confused by a +DVD formatted in Video mode, especially if it is a brand "used" to + media recorded wit VR mode.

It is a Sony older DVD player. It plays the -R and -R DL disks just fine, but the +R and +R DL disks, it only shows the top menu (titles and thumbnails) but will not show any content beyond that. When I press play on a title, the screen goes blank for a moment, then the top menu reappears. My other DVD players have no problem with those disks, even the REALLY cheap Walmart player that was less than $30! If I make a +R disk and copy it to a -R bank in my DVD duplicator, the -R copy won't play. If I make a -R disk and make a copy onto a +R blank in my duplicator, it WILL play properly (this works for single layer or dual layer disks). The non-standard format follows whatever was first recorded.
post #14 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Church AV Guy View Post

It is a Sony older DVD player....
Which would explain it, I guess. It is my understanding that some older players would play only - media, some only + media. I came to DVD recorders (relatively) late in the game and fortunately never had to deal with that. I use (mostly) - media on my Pannys and + media on my little Lite-On recorder. As has been related in this forum, certain brands are "more comfortable" with one or the other, even if they will do both.
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