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Panasonic ES10 or ES20 ?  

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I purchased a Panasonic ES10 at Costco a couple of days back. It is just an amazing product considering that it can record 16 hours at lowest PQ on DVD-RAM.

I also happened to be in a BestBuy and picked up an ES20 (it was the last box they had!). I have not opened the ES20 yet, I dont want to open it and return it to BB or else they may charge a restocking fee!

I noticed the following differences between the two units (suprisingly the older ES10 had a few more features than the newer ES20):

1. ES10 has a 12-bit A/D converter, ES20 has a 10-bit A/D converter.
2. ES10 has an extra feature which will allow you to reorder your playlists (I think), ES20 does not have this feature.
3. ES10 has 3 A/V (S-Video) inputs. ES20 has 2.
4. ES20 has a firewire input (anyone know if you can also record to your computer using firewire for output, or does it only work in input mode?)
5. ES20 is lighter and smaller.
6. ES10 purchased at Costco has sort of a long term warranty.
7. Seems as though the ES10 uses 7W standby power while ES20 uses 15W, not sure why.

Anyone know if it is worth sending the ES10 back to Costco and keeping the ES20. The only significant advantage that ES20 has over ES10 is the firewire port in place of the 3rd AV (S-Video) port. Anyone get a chance to compare the PQ of both ES10, ES20 ? The ES10 PQ is ok, tuner is ok, I am wondering how it's tuner compares to ES20 (I am assuming that all internal electronics and chipset is identical to the ES10, or is ES20 a newer chipset with integrated firewire ?).


Your feedback/thoughts will be gratefully appreciated.
post #2 of 20
It seems to me that with all the new electronic products as each new model comes out the price goes down (Not in the 20s case as of yet) & so does the quality & sometimes the features too.

If I was you I would keep the 10 over the 20 especially if the 20 is a 10 bit A/D compared to the 10s 12 bit A/D & as for myself I'd rather have that 2nd set of Rear Inputs than a Front DVI Input.

Also I would be willing to bet if the 20 is smaller & lighter that it's a whole new Panasonic design & it's probably using a lot cheaper parts from China in it.

The only advantage the 20 seems to have as you said is the DVI Input & that's really only good if you have a digital camcorder & you plan on dubbing from it a lot.

The DVI Input is only an Input & can't be used as an Output.

It's too bad that you can't open the 20 & compare it to the 10 because I always thought Best Buy's policy was that if you din't like something you could return it without any restocking fees.

I know some outfits have restocking fees on big screen tvs, computers, camcorders & cameras but I never thought they charged fees for returned dvd recorders?

I would give Best buy a call & find out if there is any restocking fees on dvd recorders or maybe someone from Best buy will chime in here & let you know & if not do a test on them & let us know what you think.

I haven't checked Panasonic's website lately but where did you get the Specs. on the 20 from? Thanks.
post #3 of 20
As Bill said, call best buy and be certain they have a restocking fee first. I actually heard the new Panasonic 20 might (I stress might) have an LSI chip in it rather than Panasonics usual Panny branded DIGA one which isn't very good really. An LSI chip would be a big improvement and if that's the case you'd be better off with the new 20. It's always best to do a PQ comparison first though so you can really know which recorder is better. The Best Buy near me does not have a restocking fee, I'd check if I was you, yours mights not either.
post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill1313
I haven't checked Panasonic's website lately but where did you get the Specs. on the 20 from? Thanks.
Thanks for your response. Here are the Japanese links (I am assuming that the specs would hold for US models):

panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/specifications.html
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/index.html

(I am a new poster - I had to drop url prefix before the urls: htt.// :) )
post #5 of 20
Where are you getting the specs on the A/D converters and the other feature comparisons?

The Panasonic website says both the ES10 AND ES20 have 12-bit A/D's which is consistent with all the other Panasonic 2005 model DVD recorders.

And the ES20 should allow playlist re-ordering on DVD-RAM just as the ES10 (and EVERY other Pansonic recorder has allowed since the DMR-20 which was released in 2002). So that doesn't make sense either.

The Panny website confirms the only 2 video inputs + DV-in for the ES20 vs. 3 video inputs and no DV for the ES10.

In any event, the choice really boils down to whether you are going to make use of the DV input feature or not.
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by vferrari
Where are you getting the specs on the A/D converters and the other feature comparisons?

The Panasonic website says both the ES10 AND ES20 have 12-bit A/D's which is consistent with all the other Panasonic 2005 model DVD recorders.

And the ES20 should allow playlist re-ordering on DVD-RAM just as the ES10 (and EVERY other Pansonic recorder has allowed since the DMR-20 which was released in 2002). So that doesn't make sense either.

The Panny website confirms the only 2 video inputs + DV-in for the ES20 vs. 3 video inputs and no DV for the ES10.

In any event, the choice really boils down to whether you are going to make use of the DV input feature or not.
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/specifications.html

Panasonic apparently realized this and removed that information from the above link, for ES20 it used to say 10bit and for ES10 it used to say 12 bit.

ALso check this page, it says 4X gradation (ES10 only, says 4096 steps which is 12-bit and 1024 steps which is 10-bit):
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/high_picture_quality.html

PLaylist playback feature is only on ES10 according to this link:
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/other_features.html

It just seems that the site may be riddled with typos and errors, so it is hard to say what information is accurate.
post #7 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse99
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/specifications.html

Panasonic apparently realized this and removed that information from the above link, for ES20 it used to say 10bit and for ES10 it used to say 12 bit.

ALso check this page, it says 4X gradation (ES10 only, says 4096 steps which is 12-bit and 1024 steps which is 10-bit):
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/high_picture_quality.html

PLaylist playback feature is only on ES10 according to this link:
panasonic.co.jp/pavc/global/diga/usa/es20_es10/other_features.html

It just seems that the site may be riddled with typos and errors, so it is hard to say what information is accurate.

EDIT: I have edited this post to make a correction. As Bill1331 pointed out, the USA ES20 is different from the UK ES20, so please keep in mind when readingmy post below. I have left it intact.


Anonymous99,

The user manual for the ES20 is available for the UK version of this model at http://www.panasonic.co.uk. Please note this is the UK manual so some things are different because of the different TV system in Europe/UK.

From what I have seen skimming through the ES20 manual I did not find any new differences - other than the ones you mentioned above. Please note I did not compare the manuals page by page, so I could be wrong.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=585365


EDIT: I have edited this post above to make a correction. As Bill1331 pointed out, the USA ES20 is different from the UK ES20, so please keep in mind when reading my post above. I have left it intact.



I am also very interested in the PQ of the ES20 and how it compares with the ES10 (and the Pioneer 220/225/233). I am ready to buy but don't have enough information on the ES20 yet.
post #8 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much for your response. It would be nice if someone can find and direct me to the US user manual.

I also found that the full component size of this unit makes it a little easier to stack my satellite receiver on top of the ES10.
post #9 of 20
I don't think you can compare the European 20 with the USA 20 because from looking at the European 20 model Owners Manual (Panasonic Canada has it up on their website I think by mistake?) the weight & size are exactly the same as the 10 model & according to anonymouse99 the weight & size on the new USA model 20 is different?

I think you should open up the 20 :eek: & report back on how it compares with the 10 & exactly what "ALL" the differences are between them :D
post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill1313
I don't think you can compare the European 20 with the USA 20 because from looking at the European 20 model Owners Manual (Panasonic Canada has it up on their website I think by mistake?) the weight & size are exactly the same as the 10 model & according to anonymouse99 the weight & size on the new USA model 20 is different?

I think you should open up the 20 :eek: & report back on how it compares with the 10 & exactly what "ALL" the differences are between them :D
I have seen the ES20 on display at Best Buy. It appears to be about 2/3rds the depth and weight of ES10 (not good if you wish to stack your components). ES20 also has a fan, not sure what to make of that ? The standby power is 15W, maybe it dissipates more heat, I prefer no fan, which otherwise may become noisy and gather dust.

At this point I am pretty set on keeping the ES10 (mainly because of Costco warranty). I could not find a link to the ES20 (canadian site) manual, can you kindly post it?

Another observation, I had recorded MNF game on my VCR on the slowest (lowest PQ speed). I decided to record a small segment on DVD-RAM. The transfer quality seems slightly better than the original especially the wavy edges (which seem a lot more defined, linear, solid, stable and not wavy or distorted). I wish I could open the ES20 but I am not really keen on doing that, I think the next BestBuy customer deserves an unopened unit :) .

One other issue, I have recorded various segments on DVD-RAM which is readable by Nero Ultra6. I want to make some of those recordings permanant on a DVD+/-R using my PC. I am not sure what software or how to separate the segment into its own disk (please point me to appropriate software or sites, I am not sure if Nero will be able to do this). What strategy should I use to regularly make permanent copies of disks, since I wont know ahead of time ? I know some people suggest that a DVD recorder with a HD would be ideal for this kind of activity.
post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse99
It would be nice if someone can find and direct me to the US user manual.
Edited: Panasonic's Canadian website has the ES20 user manual for download, but for some reasons the English version has the European specs as previously mentioned:

http://www.panasonic.ca/PDP/Operatin...s20-oi-eng.pdf

But the French version seems to have the correct North American specs:

http://www.panasonic.ca/PDP/Operatin...es20-oi-fr.pdf
post #12 of 20
The 20 on Canada's website is nothing but the European 20 model & is not going to help you at all because it's really just a USA 10 with a Front DVI Input & a European Tuner & etc.

If you want to check it out go to www.panasonic.ca click "English" then "Downloads" at the top of the page then "User Manuals" & then enter "DMRES20" & it should come up.

Again, the "New" Panny 20 sounds like it's a "Really Brand New Model & Design" & Panasonic din't just take off the 2nd Rear Input & add a Front DVI Input to a 10 & call it a 20 it's probably just as much of a change as the DMR-ES10 was compared to the DMR-E55.

I also wish that Panasonic would post the owners manual & etc for the new 20 but as usual it seems to take companies forever to update their websites & Panasonic Canada will probably have it changed & up before the USA's website does.

I know on other Panasonic products a lot of times if you write to them you can get their Catalogs sent to you on new products long before they ever get up on the website. Who knows maybe the 20 & 60 already have a catalog out?
post #13 of 20
Thread Starter 
I did notice that the DVD recorder heats up significantly during operation; I will monitor a little more closely to ensure that it is not due to the satellite receiver placed on top of it.
post #14 of 20
I still think you should open up the 20 & give it a test run because if it turns out the 20 has a better picture & better editing features & etc you might be kicking yourself that you returned it & kept the 10.

And don't worry about another Best Buy customer buying your returned 20 because you opened it because Best Buy will sell it as an "Open Box" item at a Reduced Price to the next buyer.

All big outfits expect a certain % of returns & it's already figured into their retail prices anyway & they are used to handling & expect a bunch of returns so don't think your doing something different it's done everyday & they will not give you any hassle over returning the opened 20 if your not happy with it. The "Return Plolicy" is also a "Big Buying Feature" that chain's offer over the little guys & that's the big reason they do it.
post #15 of 20
If the new DMR-ES20 really does have an LSI encoder chip, then a cooling fan would be necessary. The LSI is definitely the best encoding chip, but it does get hot.
post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by luckylisp
I actually heard the new Panasonic 20 might (I stress might) have an LSI chip in it rather than Panasonics usual Panny branded DIGA one which isn't very good really.
If you can provide a link or any more info on where this "news" came from, it'll be greatly appreciated.

As far as I know, this "LSI chip in the ES20 model" first appeared in the following post:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...&&#post6237028

and I am still waiting for the poster to provide more info to substantiate it.

By comparing the French DMR-ES20 user manual from the above Canadian site to the DMR-ES10 manual, I really don't see any indication that the ES20 model using a different chipset other than the one used in the ES10. The ES20 adds a DV input but doesn't create or edit playlist functions anymore, and loses DVD-Audio playback feature, otherwise it is basically the same as the ES10 with apparently some cost reduction compromises.

As for the fan, since the Panasonic DMR-E50/E55 both had a fan inside, that alone doesn't prove anything that the ES20 used a different decoding chip. Besides, with a smaller case design for the ES20 compared the ES10, a fan is really no surprise at all. As far as I know, LP recording with D1 resolution was based on Panasonic's technology, since when did LSI Logic also acquired this technology in their 2004 product of DMN-8602?
post #17 of 20
For what it's worth.

MODEL.........WIDTH........HEIGHT.......DEPTH.........WEIGHT
DMR-E55....16 15/16"......3 1/8"......10 13/16".......7.28 lbs
DMR-ES10..16 15/16"......2 1/2"......13 5/16".........7.94 lbs
DMR-ES20..16 15/16"......2 1/2"....... 9 27/32".......5.62 lbs

Yes, On Canada's website the French 20 Owners Manual is correct & the English 20 Owners Manual is incorrect because it's the European 20 model manual.

Just guessing, as I said above, it looks like the "new" ES20 is a completely new design & Panasonic just kept the old front faceplate from the ES10 because the ES20 is the same witdh & height.

I think you'll see these before Christmas for $149.99 to compete with the $99 recorders from China.

Remember what happened with the E55 @ $399.99 when it came out & all the cheap recorders from China hit the market before Christmas you could buy the E55 for $199.99

I've seen the Cyber Home recorder for as low as $78.88 already & I'll bet Panasonic took note of that as well as the other companies & they will all maybe have new models out before Christmas (See the Pioneer thread).
post #18 of 20
Well after looking at the Owners Manual for the 20 (French version on Canada's website) I would keep the ES10.

All you have to do is take a look at the Front Display & you can tell it's a dumbed down version of the 10 & a bare bones model that's probably ment to compete with the $99 Recorders from China.

It will probably sell for around $149 before Christmas & might even have a Closeout Price of $99

QUICK THINGS THAT I NOTICED:
Poor Front Display
Only 1 Rear A/V Input
No Shorten Tile (Partial Erase)
No Divide Title
Can't create Play Lists
Can't Play DVD-Audio
2 pounds or so lighter

ADDS:
Front DVI Input
Rear Fan

Stick with the 10 & your ahead of the game ;)
post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by swallowtail
If you can provide a link or any more info on where this "news" came from, it'll be greatly appreciated.
Well, as I said, it's not a definite. I read about it on the videohelp forum. It was user "lordsmurf" that posted it in the "Panasonic DMR-ES20 debuts" thread. He just heard that it was going to have an LSI chip but he hadn't confirmed it to be a fact. It's worth noting in case it turns out to be true.

Thread is here:

http://www.videohelp.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=280172
post #20 of 20
I was looking at both the ES10 and ES20 (along with Pioneer 220/225/233) before buying the ES20. The main reason I bought the ES20 was because it was available when I was ready to buy and I could return it locally with no additional cost if it turned out to be a disaster. I would have gotten the ES10 if it was available, because it had lower risk (already been tested over and over, but I couldn't find it anywhere.

The ES10 has more features than the ES20 with the exception of DV. I guess Panasonic is borrowing a page from the Pioneer marketing book (220 --> 233) , mainly because the ES20 is planned to be at lower prices as other have speculated, perhaps even get near $100 by the end of its lifecycle. They probably think that the fewer features it has, the less confused and intimidated the average consumer will be, while pushing people who need more features towards the more expensive models. Adding the DV link draws in the camcorder DV crowd.

I have no clue whether it uses the LSI (LSI Logic I am assuming) chip that has been speculated. I am not brave enough to open it up.
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