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210 posts

Master Geek


  # 251239 28-Aug-2009 11:03
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True.  The reason I asked this was that with Sky and Freeview certified STBs thec ontent providers seem paranoid about allowing you to watch HD content over analog that they specify HDMI only so I suspect the same reasoning would prevail  with copying recored HD to Blu-ray but would only allow copying only to DVD format.


If that is the case, then you could only do SD to either DVD or BluRay, in which case the only advantage of a BluRay burner would be more SD content than standard DVD.

210 posts

Master Geek


  # 251241 28-Aug-2009 11:07
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TinyTim:
RustyViewer:
1) In the panasonic, can you set the size for playback AFTER recording? This would be particularly useful if, for instance, you recorded two shows back to back with different sizes.



Presumably it records the raw data stream so you would HAVE to set it during playback. What sbiddle siad notwithstanding.


Fantastic! Just what I want. Cool

 
 
 
 


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  # 251252 28-Aug-2009 11:32
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Yeah most recorders do not change the raw transport stream whilst recording. They simply take what ever is broadcast and capture it to disk. When you watch it back it's just the same as if you were receiving it over the air at that point in time.

There was some discussion early on where some 4:3 shows were being shown on freeview with black bars on all 4 sides which was very frustrating but I have not seen this scenario for a long time now.

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Master Geek


  # 251253 28-Aug-2009 11:34
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On analogue, alot of shows have black bars around them, such as Friends, but basically, any old SD 4:3 show.

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  # 251266 28-Aug-2009 11:53
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RustyViewer: On analogue, alot of shows have black bars around them, such as Friends, but basically, any old SD 4:3 show.


On analogue this is normal and there is nothing you can do about it. It's the compromise that analogue 4:3 viewers will have to accept since the analogue broadcasts are a 4:3 feed that's centre cut off a 16:9 broadcast. 

The aspect ratio issue you talked about is very different with digital recordings and I actually don't get what you are trying to do. There are always going to be issues with a 4:3 TV since all our broadcasts are now 16:9


210 posts

Master Geek


  # 251269 28-Aug-2009 12:07
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I noticed using a freeview box, that when you use panscan, the black lines disappear and old shows brodcast as they use to. I want to be able to have that full screen option but also letterbox where appropriate. It sounds like the panasonic does that.

If you've got a 16:9 screen, then that probably isn't a problem for you.

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  # 251272 28-Aug-2009 12:25
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RustyViewer: I noticed using a freeview box, that when you use panscan, the black lines disappear and old shows brodcast as they use to. I want to be able to have that full screen option but also letterbox where appropriate. It sounds like the panasonic does that.

If you've got a 16:9 screen, then that probably isn't a problem for you.


That's because pan & scan is a fundamentally different ratio option to 4:3 letterbox or 4:3 centre cut.

One thing (if you don't mind be being curious!) is why you'd spend $2000 on one of these rather than using the money to buy a new TV?


 
 
 
 


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  # 251284 28-Aug-2009 13:02
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sbiddle: One thing (if you don't mind be being curious!) is why you'd spend $2000 on one of these rather than using the money to buy a new TV?


You've hit it on the head here mate, I couldn't believe the price of this thing.  $2000!  It's a bluray and a standard hard drive PVR all rolled into on.  Main feature I can see is the ability to transfer recorded shows to DVD, but is this worth the difference?  Bluray is say $600 these days?  Zinwell twin tuner, with MHEG5 EPG, is about $800 now.  (Prices from the odd sale I've seen lately).  That's heaps to left to buy a harmony remote to tie them all together.

Sounds like October might still be on for the PlayTV update for the PS3.
So that's a 32" TV ($1200), a slim PS3 ($600 gives bluray player), PlayTV ($200 ish I'm guessing with twin tuner) for the same price?!  If you can get anything cheaper then upgrade the hard drive of the PS3.

It's a good point though, that if you have a CRT 4:3 TV, then you really don't need the expensive features of an HD box with Bluray right now, but it's nice to have if you do update the TV later.

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  # 251295 28-Aug-2009 13:54
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The not recording from EPG would be my main point to dissuade me from buying. Maybe I've been spoiled by my PVR, but recording direct off EPG/recordings that move with the program (within a channel, anywhere in the EPG) have meant that going back to a Time based recording slot would never happen in my house hold.

The other thing is the Playing other "things" - DVD or BluRay or USB while recording something else.

Initially I thought $2k was fair when looking at its original specs (BR Playback, BR recording, Twin Tuners), but now, not so sure.




Previously known as psycik

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Master Geek


  # 251386 28-Aug-2009 17:36
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sbiddle:
RustyViewer: I noticed using a freeview box, that when you use panscan, the black lines disappear and old shows brodcast as they use to. I want to be able to have that full screen option but also letterbox where appropriate. It sounds like the panasonic does that.

If you've got a 16:9 screen, then that probably isn't a problem for you.


That's because pan & scan is a fundamentally different ratio option to 4:3 letterbox or 4:3 centre cut.

One thing (if you don't mind be being curious!) is why you'd spend $2000 on one of these rather than using the money to buy a new TV?



Because I still prefer the old style tube TV. I have a 33 inch Mitsubishi which is virtually burgler proof BTW due to its weight. I'm still not convinced either LCD or plasma is as good a picture, though the ones with LED background lighting are getting there.

The problem with all the other PVRs out there is no direct copying ability. I might want, for instance, to copy something to play in another room or for a friend to borrow who missed a program or who asked me to record it specifically for him, or for permanent storage. And of course, with PVRs you can't skip ads or edit to the best of my knowledge.

Hopefully, as regards the EPG thing, there may be a firmware update at some point, though that's not a guarantee.

For old shows I'm getting black borders and for wide screen shows there is a compromise in analogue which means chopping off at both ends. Also, in spite of good outdoor aerials, you can still see inperfections on the screen. Digital freeview clears that up completely. A perfect picture, even if I can't take advantage of the full HD at this stage.

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Master Geek


  # 251389 28-Aug-2009 17:43
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Jaxson:
sbiddle: One thing (if you don't mind be being curious!) is why you'd spend $2000 on one of these rather than using the money to buy a new TV?


You've hit it on the head here mate, I couldn't believe the price of this thing.  $2000!  It's a bluray and a standard hard drive PVR all rolled into on.  Main feature I can see is the ability to transfer recorded shows to DVD, but is this worth the difference?  Bluray is say $600 these days?  Zinwell twin tuner, with MHEG5 EPG, is about $800 now.  (Prices from the odd sale I've seen lately).  That's heaps to left to buy a harmony remote to tie them all together.

Sounds like October might still be on for the PlayTV update for the PS3.
So that's a 32" TV ($1200), a slim PS3 ($600 gives bluray player), PlayTV ($200 ish I'm guessing with twin tuner) for the same price?!  If you can get anything cheaper then upgrade the hard drive of the PS3.

It's a good point though, that if you have a CRT 4:3 TV, then you really don't need the expensive features of an HD box with Bluray right now, but it's nice to have if you do update the TV later.


Zimwell twin tuners has bugs. If you're watching through a tuner and it starts recording, it will switch to the tuner that is recording, disrupting your viewing. There are other things as well, people have been having problems with them. There's a thread about it here isn't there?

Blueray is about $600 these days sure but that is a PLAYER ONLY. In your calculations, you are not taking into account that it is a BluRay BURNER. I haven't seen any other BluRay burners out there at all, though they might be around, I just don't know about them.

Actually, the Harvey Norman salesman (though admittedly this may be sales talk) was surprised it was so cheap. They had thought it would be about $2500! In Australia, it is $1700 Australian dollars.

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  # 251454 28-Aug-2009 23:14
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Yeah calcs were based on something that would allow you to transfer the recorded file, which admittedly is not the same as burning it to bluray media.

203 posts

Master Geek


  # 251476 29-Aug-2009 07:33
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Jaxson: Yeah calcs were based on something that would allow you to transfer the recorded file, which admittedly is not the same as burning it to bluray media.



i think you will find that the copy protection flag will allow recording to bd in original format but will erase the source copy from hdd ,  in otherwords  " copy once "

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  # 251485 29-Aug-2009 08:43
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RustyViewer:
Because I still prefer the old style tube TV. I have a 33 inch Mitsubishi which is virtually burgler proof BTW due to its weight. I'm still not convinced either LCD or plasma is as good a picture, though the ones with LED background lighting are getting there.

The problem with all the other PVRs out there is no direct copying ability. I might want, for instance, to copy something to play in another room or for a friend to borrow who missed a program or who asked me to record it specifically for him, or for permanent storage. And of course, with PVRs you can't skip ads or edit to the best of my knowledge.


The problem with wanting to copy stuff is that it's actually against the law. There is no provision for video format shifting and any storage is not supposed to be long term. As we move towards more digital content manufacturers are simply being forced to adopt these measures whether we like it or not.

If you don't like the DRM then the easiest way to avoid it is to build a PC based PVR which can bypass any of the current restrictions. It will also cost significantly less than one of these Panasonic units and give you a full EPG.

As for the quality of CRT vs LCD or Plasma debate there really are no winners. Each has pros and cons and it's really a matter of what you want to watch.

Whether or not the LCD's with LED's are better is also a matter of personal opinion. It's only delivering the same black levels that Plasma's have done for several years. If you're watching a lot of SD content then any new 1080p panel whether it be Plasma or LCD/LED is only going to deliver average results and IMHO a 720p panel will deliver better results for SD images, simply because it's only got to upscale to a 1280/1366x720 rather than full 1920x1080.

It really has to come down to convenience as well - if you're constantly battling aspect ratio issues and have to either accept you watch TV letterboxed or watch it centre cut and lose 1/4 of the picture just to get a slightly better contrast ratio or colour reproduction is it really worth it?

10 posts

Wannabe Geek


  # 251743 30-Aug-2009 15:08
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I just bought a DMR-850 on Friday. Why? Because my existing setup consisted of a Sony HDD/DVD recorder with a zinwell DVB-T plugged into it via s-video. A Vantage PVR with a 1TB drive. Plus a separate samsung bluray player. 

Add a Wii, PS3 and an xbox and I'm running out of inputs on my amp and the TV. Plus finding enough power outlets is a pain.

The panasonic means I get blu-ray, DVD and TV through one HDMI cable which leaves my component switcher free for all the other stuff. It removes a bunch of power plugs and cables and it's nowhere near as glitchy or idiosynchratic as the vantage PVR. Plus I can watch TV2 while recording TV3 without switching to another box. Main reason for keeping the Sony HDD recorder around was for recording analogue primeTV but I don't need that anymore.

Sure I could have built a PC to do it all - but I spent the 90's building and maintaining PC's and I'm over that...

The only thing I've found that isn't ideal is that I usually watch old 4x3 DVD's in "cinema" mode on the pioneer (which chops a bit off the top and bottom and slightly stretches the picture) but the HDMI input on the pioneer won't let you change the aspect. The DMR-850 can zoom 4x3 content but that chops too much off the top and bottom. But it's no problem to switch to component in these cases.



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