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Digital Video Recorders (DVR)

Updated: 14-08-2018 05:51
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Humax FVP-4000T/500GB

The FVP-4000T is the first Humax PVR equipped with Freeview Play, a new connected service that...

10 expert reviews | 979 user reviews

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TiVo Bolt

At $300 or $400, the TiVo Bolt may be one of the more expensive set-top boxes on the market, but...

6 expert reviews | 67 user reviews

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Hauppauge HD PVR 2 Gaming Edition Plus

The HD PVR 2 is a powerful video-capture device, with far more utility than simply recording...

12 expert reviews | 1697 user reviews

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Panasonic DMR-PWT550

Get TrustedReviews' award-winning reviews, opinions and advice delivered to your inbox for free!

1 expert reviews | 138 user reviews

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TiVo Roamio Plus

The speed of the menu system still has the occasional hiccup, as with any set top box with a...

3 expert reviews

alaScore 94

Panasonic DMR-BWT850

Panasonic’s Blu-ray recorder is an impressive, but expensive, box of tricks

1 expert reviews | 58 user reviews

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Panasonic DMR-BST745

Review of Blu Ray player/recorder Panasonic BMR-BST745 BEWARE! I have allocated a 3 star rating...

1 expert reviews | 10 user reviews

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TiVo Roamio OTA

TiVo's latest is the best over-the-air DVR ever made, but the $15 monthly service fee (combined...

7 expert reviews | 1 user reviews

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Humax HDR-1010S

Essentially Freesat's answer to YouView, the Free Time platform combines a backwards/forwards EPG...

5 expert reviews | 666 user reviews

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Hauppauge HD PVR

On a brighter note, however, the inclusion of Arcsoft's TotalMediaExtreme software suite, which...

14 expert reviews | 1510 user reviews

alaScore 92

Hauppauge HD PVR 2 Gaming Edition

Overall, you could do much worse than using the Hauppauge HD PVR 2, especially since it offers...

14 expert reviews | 1589 user reviews

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Arcam UDP411

Highs: Superb HD video performance; excellent multichannel performance; audiophile stereo...

4 expert reviews

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Humax HDR-FOX T2

Deluxe Freeview+ HD PVR with outstanding networking

7 expert reviews | 1151 user reviews

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Wadia 121

Very good product at a great price. This product replaced a line drive (passive preamp), and a...

3 expert reviews | 8 user reviews

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Western Digital TV HD Live Media Player

WD TV Live media player has great potential to bring all the multimedia content from across...

15 expert reviews | 152 user reviews

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Panasonic DMP-BDT230

The DMP-BDT230 hits the major points we look for in a Blu-ray player: good A/V performance, good...

3 expert reviews | 226 user reviews

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Dish Network Hopper

Although the Hopper offers some unique features you can't find anywhere else, it leaves big...

8 expert reviews | 51 user reviews

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TiVo Premiere 4 TCD750500

TiVo continues to stand head and shoulders over provider-issued DVRs, but it still falls short of...

17 expert reviews | 1660 user reviews

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Philips DR4S6B00F

Philips is an excellent brand of blank DVD's which should fill all of your needs nicely.

13 user reviews

alaScore 89

TiVo - Roamio Pro DVR - Black TCD840300 § TCD840300

The Roamio Pro is great for those of you like me that enjoy recording more than one program at a...

60 user reviews

alaScore 89

Tivo Roamio Plus 1TB DVR

After quickly growing tired with Charter's horrid cable boxes and UI, I decided to try Tivo. I...

165 user reviews

alaScore 89

Bandridge SVB7733 Commutatore video

Perfect for the new TV I bought which has only got one SCART socket. So now I have the SKY plus...

17 user reviews

alaScore 89

Voyager VYCDVD7

Stopped working after two months

25 user reviews

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Sony BDPS370

It's difficult to not be impressed by the BDP-S370. Even though it is pitched as an entry-level...

5 expert reviews | 362 user reviews

alaScore 89

Humax PVR-9200

Well equipped and easy to use, but now needs a hefty price cut to stay competitive

18 expert reviews | 1450 user reviews


    Buying Guide

    Buying Guide - Digital Video Recorders (DVR)

    Gone are the days when you had to be home at a particular time to watch the latest episode of your favourite sitcom. There are just so many options available now- you could always stream the show online but more often than not, the picture quality is terrible. If you want to sit back with a bowl of popcorn and enjoy the sitcom in high definition format, you must invest in a Digital Video Recorder or a DVR. A DVR is designed to digitally record TV content onto an internal hard drive or a DVD.

    If you are a big TV enthusiast, a DVR can be a godsend for you. Not only can you watch the serials you have missed out on, you can also pause live television, replay scenes and save yourself the trouble of watching long and irritating commercials simply by fast forwarding through them. These are just some of the perks of owning a DVR. Having said that, are there other features offered by different models? What are the basic functions that you must look for while buying a DVR?

    1. Type of DVR

    First things first, let's quickly run through the different types of DVR’s and find out how they differ from each other.

    Personal Video Recorders or PVR’s usually function as add-ons to a computer or a laptop and store the recordings onto the hard drive of the computer they are attached to. They come in the form of TV tuners and are the most basic forms of DVRs. DVD recorders are a step up in the hierarchy as they come with an in-built DVD writing mechanism. So, the content is saved on to a DVD which needs to be swapped regularly.

    Hard Drive Recorders have a lot more to offer than the above mentioned gadgets. They come with an internal hard drive with a capacity as high as 500GB which means that you can record a lot of content  in one go without worrying about swapping DVD's. Such recorders also offer advanced features like Chase Play which allows you to instantly replay a particular scene and Time Shift using which you can pause live television.

    2. Format Compatibility and Storage Capability

    It is imperative that you check the DVD format used by any DVR for recording and playing TV content. The latest models are usually equipped to be compatible with all formats and are known as universal recorders. It is always a safer bet to go for a universal recorder.

    Storage capability is again very important as it determines the amount of TV content that can be recorded by your DVR. With a PVR or a simple DVD recorder, storage capability is a bit of a limiting factor. With the latter, you can't exceed the storage space of one DVD which is usually less than 5 GB. But with a hard drive recorder, you can record as many hours of TV content as you want without any breaks in between.

    3. Audio and Video Recording Modes

    Depending on the price of the model, different DVR's offer different types and quality of audio and video recording modes. The standard mode for audio recording is Dolby Digital while for video recording, it is MPEG-2. Most DVR’s offer four types of recording modes while some advanced models offer as many as 32 recording modes. As the recording quality of these modes increases, the recording space required also increases simultaneously. So, consider your own priorities before you make a decision- How much TV do you want to record? What quality of picture and sound are you expecting and finally how much are you ready to pay for it?

    4. Connectivity

    Some DVR's come with an inbuilt mechanism which allows you to transfer the recording on to a USB drive. This means that you can watch the recorded content just about anywhere- on your laptop or iPod. This option provides you a lot of flexibility as you don’t have to be tied to your television set to watch the recorded content.

    Besides these factors, there are several other small little decisions that can make a huge difference. A lot depends on the kind of cable connection you have. If you already have an HD connection or if you are planning to upgrade to one sometime soon, then it makes sense to buy an HD DVR. Similarly, it is important to decide on a few things beforehand like how much recording would you do on a regular basis? That is the crucial question to ask really and once you have a rough estimate you can start looking for the appropriate DVR.

    The other important question is regarding the number of advanced features you are looking for. A lower end PVR or a DVD recorder does not offer any fancy features but a hard drive recorder allows to edit videos in addition to the other features already mentioned.

    There is no dearth of models or brands in the DVR sector-Panasonic, Sony, LG being the most trusted names. So, chalk out a framework in your mind, buy a DVR and watch your favourite TV shows whenever you want.

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