DVD Recorder Recommendations

Can you help me identify a good choice for a DVD recorder?

While I have used a few DVD+/-RW drives and different DVD creation software, I often find the software to be clunky at best, and the results less than satisfying due to choppy video or audio.

In addition, it seems PC-based DVD recording requires high end components to get decent results. Perhaps some of the PC-less DVD recorders may be a better option?

I came across one by Sony at Frys: the DDVDirect system. Any good?

What about some of the other recorders out there. On the low end, Samsung produces one for about $90. Is it junk? What are key features/specs I should be looking for?

What limitations do these non-PC versions suffer from?

Do you always need a TV/monitor attached to use them or do many offer LCD displays, etc?

Do they write only in one format etc?

I am mainly looking for something that works well with Digital Video cameras to transfer video recordings to DVD for internal distribution: training presentations, events, etc…

The simpler the better (as long as it is also reliable) so that novices can operate it.

Any suggestions are appreciated.

I did not want to spend a ton, so got a Panasonic DMR-ES15, which gives good quality all the way to 4 hour LP mode. It does not, however, have a hard drive, which I think would be something I perhaps should have gone for, because I’m finding that since it has 16 event programming capability, I use it more often than I thought I would.

It is menu driven, and while not as user-friendly as the Lite-On DD-A100GX I tried, it is still quite functional.

As for video cameras, I would opt for one of those that has a Hard Drive in them. I think JVC and Sony have 20 and 30 gig hard drive models. In most configs, all you need is a firewire connection on your PC and/or DVR to transfer the data over. Since it is already digital, there is no need for Analog to Digital conversion.

I prefer to work with Digital content on the PC, using Ulead VideoStudio 10 and in particular, Ulead DVD MovieFactory 5. I got interested in Ulead because they came bundled with a couple of my drives and they never crashed, unlike Pinnacle, and when I got into them, I found that DVD MovieFactory was simply more my style. If possible, I use the Multi-Trim feature within that program instead of VideoStudio, simply because I like how it works better. I don’t like that VideoStudio has to be full screen and how the interface is not very adjustable. Still, the thing just doesn’t crash on me like Pinnacle.

BTW, I’ve tried Vegas and that thing is just SOOOO far above my head I can’t even use it. I’ve tried it over and over and it is just not intuitive for me.

Anyway, there at least is some info. I hope it helps get the conversation started. :slight_smile: