DVD Recorders in the A/V room

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thedqs
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Postby thedqs » Wed May 02, 2007 10:50 am

avskip wrote:What record time do you use for recordings? I'm thinking 2 hour format would be best as it would give the best picture.

We have a LOT of VHS machines, but only one DVD player in the Stake building. I wonder if the VHS/DVD combo would record a better picture going VHS to DVD?


It was all the 2 hour format for best compatability and since we recorded everything in VHS on the 2 hour format too.

The stake in preperation with all the new DVD videos the church produces was switching all the buildings over to DVD before we got the recorder, but they were on seperate budgets too so that buying a DVD recorder did not interfere with the stake buying the DVD players.

(As for your other question I'll get back to you once I talk with the stake tech specilist (my dad))
- David

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thedqs
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Postby thedqs » Wed May 02, 2007 10:52 am

danpass wrote:Alternatively, you could go with a PC based DVR. I haven't explored this option myself, but there are open source DVR applications available for Linux, Windows and MacOS.


My old stake looked into that option of buying a card for the stake computer (they are in the same room) but realized that it would be too much of a hassle over the DVR. The only downside is the formation of the menus. Those provided by the DVR is not that good looking as those you could create on a computer.
- David

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Postby rmrichesjr » Wed May 02, 2007 1:52 pm

In recording from satellite to DVD, one of the things that would be nice from a quailty point of view would be to record the digital bitstream to avoid repeated conversions between the digital and analog domains and also maybe avoid at least part of the compounding of compression artifacts of the satellite's MPEG 2 scheme and the DVD scheme.

Recent Church satellite programming is reported by the receiver as a 4.7Mb/s speed and a 3/4 FEC ratio. If the 4.7Mb/s is the endpoint data rate without the FEC overhead, that works out to 2.1GB/hr. If the 4.7Mb/s includes the FEC overhead, the real data stream after applying FEC would be 1.6GB/hr. (Assumes 10-based versions of 'M' and 'G'.)

The newer Wegener (Unity 500, if I remember correctly) receivers have an option for an RJ45 ethernet connector to which the digital video stream could be sent. One of my idealistic dreams is that the path for recording Church satellite programs to DVD could be done entirely in the digital domain (no analog conversions) and with at least as much as can be done in terms of directly bridging between the MPEG 2 satellite channel and the compression scheme on the DVD. With the conventional path of fully decompressing from the MPEG 2 satellite channel and then compressing the image again from scratch for the DVD, the compression artifacts compound.

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thedqs
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Postby thedqs » Wed May 02, 2007 6:39 pm

Yes I can see that, though you don't really notice it at all on any of the DVDs that were made through that process though. Unfortunately I remember that the decoders provided by the church (with the church's decryption algorithms) only have S-Video or Composite outputs.
- David

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Postby skiptaylor » Sat May 05, 2007 3:44 pm

danpass wrote:The particular unit we got is made by Panasonic and has a 60 GB hard drive which gives us 10 to 60 hours of recording time, depending on the selected recording quality. I use the 2 GB per hour setting which gives me a 30 hour storage capacity. This is the highest quality setting that I can use that will allow a recording of a conference session to fit on a single layer DVD.

I can do basic editing directly on the unit. It has a high speed DVR to DVD copy function that copies a 2 hour recording in less than 10 minutes. What I like most about it is having the ability to schedule recordings in advance and not have to worry about feeding it blank media constantly.

I believe we paid about $250 for the DVR and we bought it about 18 months ago.

Do you know what model Panasonic that is? The closest equivalent I see on their site has an 80GB drive and shows pricing of $499.95!! What do they call their editing function? This sounds like what we need!

Thanks,
Skip

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Postby danpass » Tue May 08, 2007 2:14 pm

avskip wrote:Do you know what model Panasonic that is? The closest equivalent I see on their site has an 80GB drive and shows pricing of $499.95!! What do they call their editing function? This sounds like what we need!

Thanks,
Skip


As it turns out, I was mistaken on the brand. The unit we have is a Pioneer DVR-533H[color=Black]. It is listed on their web site in their "older models" section. The only DVR that they list in their current products is the [color=Blue]DVR-640H.

I did get a really good price on our 533H, because it was a display/floor model and they no longer had the box it came in. However, they had not even plugged it in yet and was in new condition.
[/color][/color]
If you look at online discussions about Pioneer DVR's, you'll see a lot of discussion about the TV Guide download feature not working properly. We're not affected by this problem since we can't use it and don't need it. We just manually program the dates and times for recordings. I'll bet that if you were willing to buy a used DVR, you could probably find someone online, wanting to get rid of theirs, because of the above mentioned problem.

You asked about what they call their editing function. I don't think they have any special name for it. When you navigate to a recording, you have the option of going into an editing mode. The only editing that I've done with it is to trim the beginning and ending of recordings and insert chapter markers. More can be done, like inserting titles and menus, but it tends to be pretty inflexible and cumbersome. When I've wanted to get fancy, I've copied the recording to DVD and loaded it up on my computer and done it there.

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Postby skiptaylor » Thu May 10, 2007 8:57 am

danpass wrote:As it turns out, I was mistaken on the brand. The unit we have is a Pioneer DVR-533H[color=black]. It is listed on their web site in their "older models" section. The only DVR that they list in their current products is the [color=blue]DVR-640H.[/color][/color]


[color=black]Thanks for the update. I like the DVR-640H-S much better than the Panasonic version. The manual is quite a bit less cryptic as well. The problem may be in locating a new one. It may have to be an online purchase as their dealer finder locates no one for my area.

danpass wrote:I did get a really good price on our 533H, because it was a display/floor model and they no longer had the box it came in. However, they had not even plugged it in yet and was in new condition.
[/color]
danpass wrote:If you look at online discussions about Pioneer DVR's, you'll see a lot of discussion about the TV Guide download feature not working properly. We're not affected by this problem since we can't use it and don't need it. We just manually program the dates and times for recordings. I'll bet that if you were willing to buy a used DVR, you could probably find someone online, wanting to get rid of theirs, because of the above mentioned problem.


I would much prefer a new unit with warranty, even if it's a display model. You're right about the TV Guide feature, no need for that in this situation.

danpass wrote:You asked about what they call their editing function. I don't think they have any special name for it. When you navigate to a recording, you have the option of going into an editing mode. The only editing that I've done with it is to trim the beginning and ending of recordings and insert chapter markers. More can be done, like inserting titles and menus, but it tends to be pretty inflexible and cumbersome. When I've wanted to get fancy, I've copied the recording to DVD and loaded it up on my computer and done it there.

I downloaded the Pioneer and Panasonic manuals, and oddly enough the editing function is called "Editing". Who would have thought it didn't have a catchy name? I'm only interested in trimming the beginning and end of broadcasts so I am not anticipating needing fancy functions.

I've read all the comments on this thread and have come to the conclusion that getting a DVD Recorder without a DVR, either on a computer or built-in, could be a way to have new coasters and spend a lot of time trying to catch rebroadcasts. I can see the advantage of the DVR as it could be programmed to record all broadcasts, then cluster them onto DVD media and start building a library of similar talks. It seems feasible that with a large enough HDD in the DVR section, one could hold a year's broadcasts on HDD and burn as needed. I'm not sure that's practical as electronics can and do fail, so it may be wise to burn them as they are recorded so you don't lose them.

I imagine if one were so inclined they could get a printer that could print on DVD printable media or a Brother P-Touch and label these so they could be easily read and located.

I don't seem to be finding a lot of DVR/DVD Recorder combinations. So far, I've only been able to find the Panasonic and the Pioneer. Is there a good place to "shop" for these online?

Thanks for all the information!

Skip

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Postby russellhltn » Thu May 10, 2007 11:05 am

avskip wrote: I'm only interested in trimming the beginning and end of broadcasts so I am not anticipating needing fancy functions.


Your not going to index the events by talks? :D That way the teacher can advance directly to the start of each talk. :cool:

(Sometimes technology creates more work. Maybe I'll stay with VHS where expectations are low.) :p

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Postby danpass » Thu May 10, 2007 1:42 pm

avskip wrote:[color=black][/color]
I imagine if one were so inclined they could get a printer that could print on DVD printable media or a Brother P-Touch and label these so they could be easily read and located.


I use printable discs and print on them with a Casio CW-L300 printer which I got for 129.99 14 months ago. I got this printer because I thought I would use the stand-alone capability to label discs right in the equipment room, were we don't have a computer. However, I've found it much more practical to use this printer connected to a computer. The included software lets you create the label content and preview the disc. You can also save the label content to files. This helps to maintain consistency and also saves work. Since most of the events that we record are recurring, I can open the label I used last time and just change dates and catalog numbers. The printer uses thermal ribbons that last about 50 discs. You can get a 3 pack of ribbons for about $20. If I were to do it again, I would go with one of their cheaper printers that doesn't have the keyboard.

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Postby thedqs » Fri May 11, 2007 12:22 am

RussellHltn wrote:Your not going to index the events by talks? :D That way the teacher can advance directly to the start of each talk. :cool:

(Sometimes technology creates more work. Maybe I'll stay with VHS where expectations are low.) :p


Hmm, when I would get the feed from TV into my computer I would separate them into talks and create a fancy menu. But the STS would just put them all in a large single video track and the teachers didn't complain.
- David


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