The UltraPlus X-9200HD appears to be good for ease of use and reviews claim it is the best for upscaling SD. There is a lower cost driveless version (record to USB or network) which I think is a 900HD with the same performance. Both available as supported in NZ, and your laptop can access the recordings over the network. I was looking at the Vu+ Duo until I've found the UltraPlus.
JonnyCam: Off Topic - what is the interface of the Vu+ like? Is it as quick as the MySky box? (I wouldn't use it for playing media, but maybe to stream to another room) and the interface would have to be as easy to use as the current one to get wife approval.
I've wanted one for a while, but they seem expensive and now it seems hard to get.
The Vu+ interface leaves MySky for dead in pretty much every way:
- MySky seems to only use the equivalent of VGA resolution (or something like that) so you get very few lines of EPG on the screen - MySky is also not that fast when scrolling through the EPG
Vu+ has configurable skins which you can choose from. I use HD Black which runs at 1080 lines, giving a lot of EPG listings, recorded programmes or menu options on the screen. It is much faster at responding to the remote than MySky and scrolls the EPG as quickly as you can press the buttons on the remote.
Don't forget that Vu+ has configurable ad-skipping buttons too, which you don't get on MySky for commercial reasons. I have mine set to +/- 15 secs, +/- 1 min, +/- 3 mins which allows me to deal with any ad break in 2 or 3 button presses. Occasionally I get lucky and it's exactly 3 mins, but more usually it's 3.5 or 4 mins so the 15 sec buttons are handy. As a result of this, the FFWD and REW buttons on our remote are hardly ever used.
The Vu+ user interface is configurable to Simple/Intermediate/Expert modes so you can tailor it according to the other users in your household. There is also a password you can set so nobody else can mess with things. My wife has got the hang of the Vu+ without any major drama, although I did have to put sticky labels on the ad skip buttons and show her where the "Recorded Files" button was. Apart from that, no worries at all.