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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just ordered my first DVDR, the "old" Pioneer 520H.


I have DirecTV and it sounds like you can't beat the line in auto record on this unit.


I hope the PQ is good. I guess I've got 30 days to find out.


I considered the 633 and the upcoming Sony RDR-HX715, but in the end I don't have time to be disabling EPG's, setting up timers on 2 machines, setting up IR blasters. I could do it, but no one else in my family could.


With this, I set one timer on my DirecTV receiver,

and set the 520 to auto record. done.


As long as the PQ passes, I think I'll be keeping this "old" recorder.
 

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I think you will be pleased. It is a thoughtfully-designed unit. Good interface with consistent commands between the various "modes." Picture quality is excellent. Some people say the newer Pioneers have better PQ at similar speeds, but my opinion is that the only really noticeable superiority in the newer units is the longer recording times for good resolution. If you don't plan on putting much more than 2 hrs. 20 min. on a single DVD, you should not be envious.


If you had DishNetwork, the satellite box could control the recorder, at least for starting and stopping recordings. Perhaps this is also true of DirecTV. Does your DirecTV receiver box have some infrared (IR) "blaster" or mouse for sending commands to a VCR? If so, just set it for controlling a Pioneer VCR and you'll only have to set the timers on the satellite box (even if you leave your satellite receiver turned on all the time as I do). The line-in method is fine as well, but requires the satellite box to be off between recordings.


Enjoy your recorder, and welcome to the forums!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Ray-


I have the RCA RDR486RH DirecTV receiver which is loaded, S-video, Component, caller ID, the works, including a VCR controller plug on the back - just gotta find the cable now, which I'm pretty sure is long gone since I never used it before.


But if I affix the end of the controller cable over the IR "eye" on the 520, won't it interfere with using the 520's remote for editing and burning? Or do you just put it on and off as needed?


As far as PQ, I'm going for maximun quality, 1 disc. Not doing 4 hours on 1 disc, etc.
 

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I have my IR "Mouse" put in a place where the recorder's IR sensor can "see" it, but where it doesn't block the sensor. On the 520 this is a little tricky, since the front panel is tilted up slightly (so putting the mouse emitter on the bottom of the same shelf or counter with the recorder may not work). I hung my mouse/emitter from the top of the enclosure holding the recorder.
 

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Hello voteforpedros -- I'm considering the Pio 520H too, as you'll see in other posts on this forum.


Where did you order yours from? What is the return policy? And how much was it?
 

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I am the proud owner of a 420 (520 w/o the DV-in) and you'll be pleasantly surprised by it.


The PQ IMHO isn't as sharp as the Sony's, and reportedly not quite as good as the new x31/x33 series, but you'll find it perfectly adequate.


The many features of this machine, particularly the editing, more than make up for the slightly soft PQ.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
bcooper-

Yea, it took me months of reading on this great board before I finally settled on the 520. It was the best choice for my particular set-up.


Got mine from audioallies *com for $405 out the door with standard shipping. Found them through Amazon *com, but ordered direct from their web site. It's amazing how the price of the 520 is hanging in there, it's alot cheaper at Good Guys, but I'd have to fly out to get it.


They are not an authorized dealer. I did pause to think about that before I ordered. But they do offer a 30 day total satisfaction guarantee. So far all is well, will give you my review of them when I get the 520.


I got standard shipping, so maybe this week?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by voteforpedros
I considered the 633 and the upcoming Sony RDR-HX715, but in the end I don't have time to be disabling EPG's, setting up timers on 2 machines, setting up IR blasters. I could do it, but no one else in my family could.
Well,

I got my 533 late Thursday afternoon. Set it up in the family room entertainment cabinet. First hookup was to my Hughes HIRD-E45 Directv receiver, and I installed it's VCR IR control in front of the 533, about an inch and a half in front of the "SR" logo, sticking it right on the shelf (how tacky !). Ran the setup on the 533 and told it "no antenna", "no cable". Told the Hughes to send Pioneer VCR signals. Picked a program from the Directv guide, and it controlled the 533 perfectly ! I won't bother reading the EPG portion of Pioneer's manual ......


What really blew me away, was the resulting hard disk recording had the correct title for the movie !!!! I was sure I'd have to add that manually, and it made me wonder what Directv is sending that the Pioneer "picked up on" ?


Laserdisc is connected now, and a Panasonic AG1980.... Both have TBC's, and Monster interconnects on all lines. (no composite connections) About as "solid" a configuration as I can whip up on short notice.


Found Sony DVD-R's at CC in bulk for 36 cents a piece (seemed like a deal to me), so I'm nearly ready to put this unit through some serious testing.


This is more fun than humans ought to be allowed to have :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Unwillyn-

Let me know how it works out - I can still change my order to the 533/633 on Monday before it ships. I know my DirecTV RCA unit can do all that too.

It seems you have about as easy a set-up as the auto record on the 520,

and you stopped the EPG before it ever started.


So why aren't more people doing this? Maybe they are . . .

but I sure read alot of EPG/533/633/"it's going back" posts.


Edit- audioalliance*com now shows "out" on the 520H
 

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Well no plans on my 633 going back. Only had it a day so far. Just reconfigured the conections between the digital box and it. Was too confusing the way I had it before. Recording was OK, but had problems with playback and the sound. Never had my inputs correct and deleted a recording I wanted to keep cause I couldn't hear the sound and thought it was fubar. :eek:


Other then that, just a mater of getting used to the way things are done with it. I could never edit out the junk (read commercials) with my old VCR, so this is all bonus! I am still straddling the fence as far as TVGOS goes. But time will tell. :p
 

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Vote..... I just went to Audio Allies after reading your 1st post. You're right...'out of stock'. Since they are no longer being made I dougt they will get any more. Maybe a good thing as my wife would kill me.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by voteforpedros
Unwillyn-

Let me know how it works out - I can still change my order to the 533/633 on Monday before it ships. I know my DirecTV RCA unit can do all that too.

It seems you have about as easy a set-up as the auto record on the 520,

and you stopped the EPG before it ever started.


So why aren't more people doing this? Maybe they are . . .

but I sure read alot of EPG/533/633/"it's going back" posts.
Vote,

I wouldn't dream of suggesting what you should buy. Everybody's needs are different. I just wanted to point out that the 533 lives with Directv quite nicely.


My Hughes receiver allows 32 events to be programmed, and any or all of them can be recurring recording events. Daily, weekly, monthly, etc. The darn thing let's you program events up to eleven months in the future. ( I have trouble thinking two days into the future !!! )


The main advantage over the Tv Guide EPG on the recorder to me, is that I use the Directv guide ALL THE TIME. News, movies, sports, whatever. It has become second nature. Why learn a second system when I still have to use the Directv guide all day long regardless?


Of course, I really won't be "time shifting" much anyway (just nice to know it works).


There are clearly two basic groups of users buying these machines. One I call the "time shifters" who use these units as a VCR replacement. The other, I'll call the "Videophiles". More interested in transcoding libraries from other high end formats, or as part of a more elaborate computer NLE system.


I am definitely in the "Videophile" category. Already ordered a pair of Pioneer 109 burners for two of my Macs to ensure maximum disc compatibility with the 533. (they also write plus (+) media) Need to brush up on my Final Cut Pro skills too.


So, what's important to me in these machines, may be less important to the "time shifters", and visa versa. And that's okay ..... DVD recorders are one of those rare electronic items that are of interest to both types of users. Who'd of thunk it? LOL
 

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The 520 is back in stock at Audio Allies. $393.?? plus shipping. Not as good as $299.00. But if you want that model visit their web site.
 
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