Can UK recorder receive digital broadcasts in USA?

Can digital DVD recorders designed for use in the UK receive digital broadcasts in USA? Specifically I’m thinking of purchasing Sony rdr-hxd870 (which is sold in UK) and is a hard drive recorder.

I do know that European digital broadcasts follow the DVB-T standard, but in USA, the standard is ATSC. Does this mean UK machines can’t tune in ATSC?

I am aware of the multiregion posts, but I believe they refer to allowing play of other region dvds.

Thank you.

Really grateful for any ideas so I’m reposting… Thanks:

Will a Sony digital DVD recorder designed for use in the UK receive digital broadcasts in USA? Specifically it’s the Sony rdr-hxd870.

European digital broadcasts follow the DVB-T standard, but in USA, the standard is ATSC. Does this mean UK machines can’t tune in ATSC? Is there a way around this problem?

Am fond of this recorder as it’s a hard drive recorder and there seem to be few hard drive recorders in the US.

Basically I wouldn’t recommend taking a UK DVB spec recorder to the US. As you’ve correctly concluded, it won’t work in the way you want.

However I’m pretty sure there are some Panasonic and Philips hard disk machines specified for the USA. I’ve transferred this to the DVD Recorder and Home Entertainment section for other opinions.

BTW just as a gentle reminder: next time it’s better to bump the same thread by replying to it, rather than creating a new one. Thanks

Will check out if Panasonic has any good current models. A while ago I tried the Philips model and thought it wasn’t well designed.

Is there no demand in the States for hard disk recording (other than subscription based Tivo?)

Thank you for the suggestion and also for the rules of the road tip.

Not sure exactly why, but Pioneer stopped selling hard disk DVD recorders in the U.S. Rumours are that it was related to U.S. copyright laws.

But they do sell them in Canada. My father-in-law and I each have a DVR-550H and really like it. I had the previous model and it had a couple of very annoying “bugs” that have been fixed in this new version. Plus, there are new features like USB keyboard and camera support. And even an audio jukebox.

Warranty could be an issue if you export it into the U.S.

What’s the digital standard in Canada? ATSC? Other? If it’s ATSC, this might be a viable option.

I’ve heard this copyright issue stuff is behind the hdd dearth too. But then how is Philips is managing to do it?

Yes, Canada sticks to the same digital standards as the U.S. NTSC for TV reception and associated video.

Alright this is looking up. Do you know of some good reliable sources in Canada for DVD hdd? (I like Amazon, but they tend to restrict such products to within country borders.)

Thank you for the lead. does not sell computers or electronics. I just checked, where I bought the two our family owns, and they don’t ship outside Canada. A very quick search of eBay turned up one, but it is a floor model and priced higher than what I paid for either of our family’s.

I’ll look around over the next few days and let you know if I find anything (or not).

For anyone reading this: I just discovered that some reputable U.S. on-line dealers are selling the Pioneer, and its bigger brother. BUT, it is the PAL/SECAM model intended for sale in Europe, Asia and Africa.


The current models are DVR-560H and DVR-660H, which you can see on

I am unable to find a Canadian retailer that exports outside Canada. One explained why: their contracts with the Canadian HQ for each of the major electronics manufacturers specifically forbid export.

I thought you might have more luck with American retailers that sell into Canada, from a Canadian warehouse. But I checked, and neither nor carry Pioneer.

Ah well it was a good idea and a valiant effort at that.

I just know there’s a lawyer someplace waking up thinking ‘Yup thanks to me America’s free of hdd dvd recorders, all except those second rate Philips can openers.’

Just saw a Sony hard disk DVD recorder on sale locally (Canada). But, when I checked, I could not find anyone in the U.S. selling it (RDRHX780), nor is it listed on the U.S. Sony site, so it is undoubtedly in the same boat as the Pioneers.

I just checked LITEON, who have a tradition for bucking authority. For example, they sold stand-alone DVD recorders that also recorded regular, not “Audio”, CDs.

But, No, they have discontinued all of their stand-alone DVD players and recorders in the U.S. now.