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Hello Everyone,


I'm looking for a DVD Recorder to convert my home movies (8mm tape) to DVD. I have the 8mm player, so the recorder doesn't need to play the tapes.


- I live in the US

- I don't need a tuner.

- I don't know if I need a HDD. If it's required to convert the movies, then yes, I need it. If I don't need the HDD for conversion, I'll consider one without the HDD.

- I don't want to spent tons of $$. I just need a simple machine that makes a decent picture so I can convert my tapes. That's all.


Suggestions ? Someone on another forum suggested the Panasonic EA-18. Is that a good fit ?


Much appreciated.

Thanks,

Jim
 

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Put it this way, its contingent on two factors: can you find an in-stock Pansonic EA-18 to buy, and if you do, what is the price?


The EA-18 has no tuner and no hard drive, yet frequently sells (when you can find one, which is rarely) at prices approaching the Magnavox H2160A, which does have a handy ATSC tuner and an incredibly useful hard drive. The hard drive feature offers three important benefits, which may or may not be crucial to you:


1) it lets you completely avoid using a computer in the process, beacause:


2) it allows you to trim unwanted bits and pieces from the tapes, re-arrange parts of the tapes into an order you prefer, and put in chapter marking points exactly where you want so that you can jump quickly to your favorite moments using the chapter skip buttons on any DVD player.


3) once everything is arranged exactly how you want on the HDD, you can then quickly easily burn multiple DVD copies from the HDD. You can also easily make custom edits for different family members by quickly changing things around on the HDD between DVD burns.


A non-HDD recorder like the EA-18 limits you to a straight-across, linear dub of the tapes to DVD. Its tricky to make custom chapter marks, impossible to edit, and if you make a mistake you have to do the whole transfer over again. Multiple copies require using a computer. Editing or changes would require ripping the DVD to a computer and doing it there (not as easy). If you have just 2-3 tapes and are only interested in making DVD backups, an EA-18 is fine. If you have 6 or more tapes, and/or you're really interested in the contents and your family wants copies, get the Magnavox H2160A via Wal*Mart online. Both recorders are in hot demand on the secondary eBay market: once your project is done, you can easily recoup nearly your entire cost by re-selling.


The trouble with Panasonic is the "good" models are never in stock anywhere, and when available they cost as much as the Magnavox which makes them a poor value since they have no HDD. The EA-18 is nearly extinct, its sister model EZ-28 is the same recorder with a tuner and slightly easier to find, costing about the same. The EA-38 is an EA-18 with a built in VHS deck. The one Panasonic to absolutely avoid is the EZ-48 with DVD, VHS and tuner: very flakey machine. Its often seen on sale much cheaper than the others: theres a good reason for that, don't be tempted.
 

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While you said you didn't need a tuner, J&R also has a Magnavox2080. At this price http://www.jr.com/magnavox/pe/MAG_H2080MW8_hy_RB/ it's a good bargain. 80gb HDD will allow for editing your 8mm tapes-you don't have to get too fancy if you don't want to. Just dub to the hdd, snip a little, then burn to disc.,
 
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