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Topic # 89830 8-Sep-2011 21:11
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So my girlfriend's parents' VCR is on the way out... finally... and i've been asked to give them options as an alternative. 

They have a freeview capable TV and love the fact that the reception is so clear so want to record similarly. They're also rather technically challenged at times... as per usual with people their age. As such i'm thinking a simple PVR will be best rather than anything too complex and failure prone. 

Can someone point me to a PVR solution in the cheaper end of the bracket which has worked well for them? One DVB-T tuner would be fine for them too I think. Nothing too serious. 

Anyway, thanks in advance. I just want to make them a PC like I have. That'd be overkill.

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  Reply # 518780 8-Sep-2011 21:15
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Sorry Mods, perhaps this is better suited to be in the Freeview forum. Haven't had much sleep last few days.

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  Reply # 518874 9-Sep-2011 09:04
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I don't know of any cheap ones. I tend to point friends and family at Tivos and mysky. They're not the cheapest, but the probably have the best support - as in they're designed for consumer use and no geekiness required.


Other than that, some of the magic TV units seem to be fairly popular.




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  Reply # 518878 9-Sep-2011 09:08
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+1 for TiVo, especially if you are a Telecom broadband customer, they were among some of the cheapest. Definitely non-geek suitable, my 3 year old has figured most of the remote functions out.





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  Reply # 518938 9-Sep-2011 11:27
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I got a Magic PVR for my in laws and they love it, very easy to use have a look here to learn more:

http://www.magictv.co.nz/index.html

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  Reply # 518944 9-Sep-2011 11:44
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I am a Tivo bigot (I have 3 of them) but initially they were over priced and now I'm not sure of their future.

Still, if you can still get one from Telecom at $360 I'd say it is worth a punt as long as they are not fans of Prime or Maori TV.

The specs for MagicTV look great too and it has more storage (1tb vs 320gb)



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  Reply # 518947 9-Sep-2011 11:48
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graemeh:as long as they are not fans of Prime or Maori TV.
Why can't you get those channels on the TiVo? They're part of Freeview so I just assumed they'd be available on the TiVo? I had thought the TiVo would be the ticket but they do watch a lot of Prime so it would be a deal breaker if they can't. 

Yeah, it looks like i'll be showing them the MagicTV options when they get back from their travels. They gave me the OK to buy something for them but I think they were more thinking in the ~$300 bracket, not ~$700 for the MagicTV.

Thanks for the opinions. 

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  Reply # 518955 9-Sep-2011 12:07
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You could go the Panasonic route

DVD player/recorder/dual HD freeview 250GB HDD ~$600

http://www.jbhifi.co.nz/tv-lcd-led-plasma/media-players/dvd-recorder/


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  Reply # 518972 9-Sep-2011 12:50
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I know some disagree, but I am pretty happy with the homecast HD9200DTR. Has good backup from DTVS and gets reasonably regular updates.
http://www.jbhifi.co.nz/tv-lcd-led-plasma/media-players/homecast/high-definition-recorder-sku-28001/

In the cheaper price range is the Zinwell which is no longer supported by anyone:
http://www.jbhifi.co.nz/tv-lcd-led-plasma/media-players/zinwell/250gb-freeview-digital-television-recorder-sku-23250/
My parents have one and it seems pretty good. Recording space is small, but thats ok unless you want to archive tv on the box forever.

There is also a new dishtv unit which I have no experience with for a shade under $400:
http://www.jbhifi.co.nz/tv-lcd-led-plasma/media-players/dish-tv/500gb-freeview-digital-television-recorder-sku-24182/

Both the zinwell and the homecast are very easy to operate and use. Recording from the EPG is as simple as picking your program and pushing colour coded buttons in response to prompts on screen. Really easy and clear OSD.




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  Reply # 519009 9-Sep-2011 14:06
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Looks like you are going to get a lot of options thrown your way.

Just to answer your question the EPG on TiVo goes out 2 weeks and relies on an Internet connection. It is not the same as the Freeview standard EPG. I think it works much better but it is a long standing thorn in TiVo owners' sides that the guide for Prime and Maori TV are NOT included. Prime is part of Sky and therefore the competition, and I cant recall what the Maori channels problem was...in any respect they are both being pretty pig headed about it. All that means is that you have to manually look up the program details, other than that it runs and records just the same as all the other channels.







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  Reply # 519033 9-Sep-2011 15:02
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Still loving my Panasonic xxxxxxx! 500GB, 2 tuners, Bluray thingy. Expensive, but worth it so far.

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  Reply # 519053 9-Sep-2011 15:48
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Disrespective:
graemeh:as long as they are not fans of Prime or Maori TV.
Why can't you get those channels on the TiVo? They're part of Freeview so I just assumed they'd be available on the TiVo? I had thought the TiVo would be the ticket but they do watch a lot of Prime so it would be a deal breaker if they can't. 

Yeah, it looks like i'll be showing them the MagicTV options when they get back from their travels. They gave me the OK to buy something for them but I think they were more thinking in the ~$300 bracket, not ~$700 for the MagicTV.

Thanks for the opinions. 


You do get Prime and Maori TV, you just don't get the program guide but as scwup says you can record manually and in that respect it's really no different to their current VCR setup.

I think you'll end up with a much better result in the ~700 range, the products in the ~$300 bracket look to me like they may have a lot of quirks you have to work around (but I could be wrong).

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