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7 posts

Wannabe Geek

Topic # 7953 24-May-2006 04:03
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Good (very early) morning, precious geeks. Many thanks for illuminating discussions on MySky. Much more useful than asking Sky.

I hope it's not too much of a terrible thing for an ubernewbie to start a new thread. I think I've read everything there is to read on other MySky-related threads in this folder, but my question is not quite covered in the big old thread and unrelated to the open ones.

We are trying to decide between MySky and a DVDR. Currently have Sky Digital, a DVD player, XBox 360 (that's probably completely irrelevant but it's a box with a hard drive and I'm technophobic enough to have to admit I don't know the difference), and an oldish video. MySky sounds absolutely fantastic features-wise and hopefully worth waiting a wee while for bugs- and price-wise. The idea is to use the EPG the way I've always wanted to use the hard copy. I get all excited when a new SkyWatch comes out and madly mark all the movies I'd like to catch up on, but I never re-check regularly enough to get the less technophobic in the house to record things on the video (was quite fun getting enough hints out of Sky CS to be able to do even that). Things like old classic movies and sports finals that turn out to be nailbiters worth keeping for years would, in my nirvana, end up on DVDs for better and now cheaper (media wise anyway) storage than video. But all the fabulous stuff on History, NatGeo, Arts, Discovery etc I'd mostly like to book weekly - monthly in nirvana - and this would mostly end up deleted.

My problem is that to get the good stuff from MySky onto DVDs I'd need to buy a DVDR. Seems silly when I have a DVD player and cost is an issue so it's MySky or DVDR but not both. But if it's just DVDR I'm back to finding and then forgetting SkyWatch listings. And I am developing a real crush on what MySky can reportedly do.

Any suggestions? Do I have a new justification for a new monitor for my PC, for tuner-to-burning-disks? Is Sky likely to open up to ordinary DVD players? Will the prices of DVDRs sink through the floor? Why did the chicken cross the road?

I would be pathetically grateful for your advice.

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362 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 36444 24-May-2006 07:43
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Why not just buy a dvdr with a HDD? That way you can just delete your weekly programmes off the HDD and burn the movies to DVD

676 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 36457 24-May-2006 12:23

MySky - great stuff, but...

..I bought a HDD DVDR finally (Pioneer 630H highly recommended!) with the following things in my mind:

-I paid a little bit more then MYSky, but this DVDR is MINE!
-I can easily transfer anything recorded onto HDD to DVD, no hassle, easy setup, fast copy, etc,
-If I move away from NZ, I can bring my DVDR with my, MySky stays...
-I can play any DVDs in my DVDR. Also it's region free.
-Skip commercials is a great thing you can do with DVDRs, try it with MySky...

and I could list more.

I gave up to have MySky, therefore I lost the chance of easiest recording of programs, but I won other chances as described above.

I is a kollege stoodent. Bee nice.

3000 posts

Uber Geek


  Reply # 36482 24-May-2006 19:53
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oooh,, how much did you pay for the Pioneer? My philips DVD recorder has just stopped.

I'd def say get a DVD recorder at the absolute minimum, that Pioneer unit is very nice indeed. MySky is nifty but requires pricey subscriptions to keep it active and $500+ to get it setup.. ow. I'd personally prefer to spend that one something I get to keep.

676 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 36497 24-May-2006 21:10

They have sale at Harvey Norman, so I paid a below 800NZD, around 780NZD. Well worth the price.

I have read a lot of tests and Pio and Sony DVDR's are the best.

I is a kollege stoodent. Bee nice.

187 posts

Master Geek

  Reply # 36509 24-May-2006 23:14
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Hi Hagen, and welcome to geekzone!

Your situation sounds a lot like mine. My MySky HDD is now full, maybe 45 hours from Discovery / NatGeo and History, a few movies and some other odds and ends.

My HDD/DVDR machine now mostly sits idle, slowly accumulating Star Trek Next Generation and Monk episodes to be burned to dvds.

The tendency you describe of saving everything off "in case you might want to watch it some time" rings a bell, too! I had a couple hundred VHS tapes, very few of which I ever watched again, although I did watch some and was glad I had them. Since getting the HDD/DVDR machine 3 years ago, I burned a couple hundred DVDs. Haven't watched any back yet, but there normally would be a lag of a few years before you want to watch it again.

Some observations I have made in the last year or two:

1. It WILL be on again, so you don't really need to save it off.
2. There aren't enough hours in the week to watch it all, and there's plenty of stuff on.
3. Burning DVDs takes time - time that could have been spent watching something!
4. VHS does still operate - they haven't repealed the laws of physics yet that it relies on.

Since getting MySky I have gotten a LOT more selective about what I archive and what I don't. It's just so much easier to watch it on MySky, even if it sometimes means waiting till the series or movie comes on again.

Given all the above, I'd go for MySky definitely. Then either jimmy up something to burn dvds on your computer, or just put those "must haves" on VHS. Or maybe a cheap entry-level DVD recorder without the hard drive, to allow you to record direct to dvd from MySky. Don't know if they are much cheaper than HDD/DVDR machines these days.

Bottom line (for me anyway) - the features of MySky far outweighs the ability to burn DVDs.

Hope this helps!

7 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 36552 25-May-2006 13:11
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Thanks everyone for your suggestions. Some specifics:


Paradoxsm – when you say MySky requires pricey subs to keep it active, do you mean the general sub to Sky Digital or is there a sneaky extra monthly payment for MySky on top of the $zillion for the box? My sky sub is high already because I want the pricey bits like Rialto and Arts. In fact I think I’ve got all but one of the available channels.


JohnPorter – my situation is like yours, can I have your setup too? J I like the suggestion of the non-HD recorder, if I can get a cheap one and get rid of my relatively new player-only in exchange. Ignorant question – what kind of thing would I need to burn DVDs on the PC? My non-technophobes can already burn stuff to disk, what’s required to get Sky through?


How well is MySky behaving now? The big thread kinda petered out March-ish and I’m hoping there’s a happy ending. I never watch TV1, 2 or 3 so continuing problems restricted to those aren’t a worry for me.

I'm coming to the conclusion that I just want someone who knows much more than I do to say "yeah, get MySky, you know you want it". Then I won't feel stupid for paying all that money. Until the price goes down of course.

Aloha, given that I'm rooted to the spot in NZ so don't need to move a box and don't watch channels with ads so don't need to skip them, would you still advise an HDD DVDR over MySky?

362 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 36563 25-May-2006 14:21
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I would recommend an HDD DVD recorder over mysky any day

7 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 36566 25-May-2006 14:46
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NokiaRocks: I would recommend an HDD DVD recorder over mysky any day

Particular reasons? I want the almighty Geeks to convince my plebian self one way or the other. Non-fallacious Argument from Authority, I hope. Consider it a battle for the soul of a technophobe. Maybe there are geekish Brownie points up for grabs. Wink

362 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 36570 25-May-2006 15:10
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Its cheaper and easy to upgrade for starters...

7 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 36577 25-May-2006 15:49
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NokiaRocks: Its cheaper and easy to upgrade for starters...

But I assume they're only cheaper if not HD? And probably much harder to program for someone like me. Also, am I right in thinking that if I have a DVD rec plus Sky Digital I can't watch one Sky channel while recording another? This makes me sound like more of a telebug than I am, but this issue actually came up last night. Taping a series on the history of the World Cup, which I think wasn't going to be repeated (scanning hard copy so might have missed a replay time) and wanted to watch a live event on another Sky channel. No-one watches 1, 2 or 3 in my household so the watch-one-tape-one issue with Sky will probably come up more often than for others.

Thanks for input. The upgrade question does bug me a bit, since I quickly started thinking I did the wrong thing buying my DVD player-only. On special, run-out model, tasty bargain, probably should have resisted.

362 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 36587 25-May-2006 16:17
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I got my 80GB HDD dvd recorder from Harvey Normans for $600, wouldnt exactly call that expensive.

7 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 36588 25-May-2006 16:28
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Ah. I was under the impression you just couldn't get one for anywhere near that price with HD. Thank you.

187 posts

Master Geek

  Reply # 36629 25-May-2006 21:42
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The MySky sub is exactly the same as the Sky Digital sub, so that's no deterrent.

As for getting the programs from MySky to a pc, you'd need cables running between them, like you have running to your vcr. Problem is, pc's don't normally accept that type of signal. A tv tuner card for your pc should handle it, but my experience with them (the cheaper ones) has been dismal, and good ones are probably more than a cheap dvd recorder. Also, distance may be a problem if your pc is a desktop and is in the other room.

A quick google of "dvd recorder" of pages within new zealand reveals that noel leeming has one for $350. Same brand as mine, better user interface than mine, more dvd options, just no hard drive. Cheapest HDD model they have is $770. I realise there are ones around for less than $770, but those retailers probably have dvd only models for less than $350 too. I was looking at Noel Leemings Website

MySky is well behaved now, even on TVNZ. That one little problem (regional broadcasts of TVNZ) caused a lot of problems! The little squirrels inside the box got really confused and ran amok, breaking all kinds of other things as they bumped into them. Now the squirrels are getting unambiguous information, and they are happy!

Skipping ads on MySky is exactly the same as on my HDD recorder (and VCR for that matter) - hit FF and wait a few seconds - except that MySky does it much better, easier to control.

With an HDD recorder, you have to book Sky programs (via the EPG) to change channels in addition to programming the HDDR, so it's double-booking time. Also, you have to manually enter the program name on the HDDR (extremely tediously in my experience), whereas MySky automatically records not only the program name but also the synopsis (as shown on the EPG). And of course with MySky it's point-and-click to record, whereas with an HDDR it's either G-Code and manually checking times etc, or manually entering times and channel.

You cannot record two Sky channels without MySky (or two digital decoders). You can record two programs while watching one you recorded earlier. Amazing how often that happens! With MySky, you spend more time WATCHING programs, and less time trying to get them recorded. As I timeshift everything I watch, that is important to me. Also, little things like on my HDDR you can't delete one program or change the bookings if another is recording. With MySky you can delete and change bookings while two programs are recording! Much easier.

Also, don't forget MySky records in full broadcast quality - better than at the best possible quality setting on my HDDR.

You know that problem on Sky Digital where sometimes it goes mute when you change the channel? And you end up with a recorded movie with no sound? Doesn't happen with MySky.

I honestly don't know why people have a problem with not owning the box. Why would you want to? If I owned the old Sky decoder box, what would I do with it now? Why would I want to upgrade anything? The only possible thing would be the HDD size, but 60 hours is enough for me.

Faced with a choice of a $600 HDDR or a $600 MySky, it would be MySky for me, hands down. No question!

So "Yeah, get MySky, you know you want it". :-)

[Moderator edit (TH): Altered URL description. (Exceedingly long URLs break page formatting.) Have a nice day.]

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  Reply # 36631 25-May-2006 22:09
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Interesting thread. I have a 200GB Panasonic DVD HDD Recorder. Use it LOTS. Record everything I like, even if im watching it at the normal time, then I can still pause and rewind live tv (with very little trouble or keypresses).

Like being able to burn movies to DVD to watch elsewhere.

Im interested in MySky, but I think (hope??) the next generation of DVD-HDD recorders will offer really good functionality, and access to an EPG of some sort. Either that, or a MCE PC.

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8 posts

Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 36636 25-May-2006 22:40
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tonyhughes - "Im interested in MySky, but I think (hope??) the next generation of DVD-HDD recorders will offer really good functionality, and access to an EPG of some sort."

They already have that, open a manual to a philips unit and its has the feature then a *not available in NZ note next to it. We are still stuck with G-Code. NZ really needs to catch up, electronics manufacturers dont like making different models as it costs them more money. There is usually a NZ compatible model then a international model is released, remember when we got karoke instead of RDS, now most high end stereos available here have RDS which is still not widely transmitted.

We are also still stuck with 4:3, analogue standard definition television, only a few true HD tvs are available and we recieved the xbox 360 a few months after the "world" release.
  And so ends my rant.....

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