First time buying DVD recorder, seeking suggestions

I still have the same DVD player that I got about 9 years ago. I am looking to buy a DVD recorder. My budget is < $280 USD.
These are the features that it must have:
-DVD+/-RW support (want to be able to use the same disc a few times)
-Hard Drive (doesn’t have to be big, 50 to 100 gigs would do)
-able to play +R, -R, +RW, -RW, ROM
-ability to watch movie from disc while recording to HD, or vice-versa

Finally, I’d prefer Toshiba. My current DVD player is a Toshiba and I’ve never had problems with it, so I don’t want to fix what’s not broken :slight_smile:
The only reason I am interested in a recorder is to replace the VCR, because I am getting fed up with it. I do NOT have a HDTV, so I’d prefer not paying for features I won’t use, but if I don’t have a choice, I’ll suck it up.
I do not know anything about progressive scan, upconverting, etc. Is it one OR the other? Or are they two totally different and unrelated things? Does it even matter for me, since I don’t have a HDTV? I assume not…

So, if anyone can offer recommendations, please do, I appreciate any help.
I hope my requirements above are not a pipe dream. :slight_smile:

one feature I forgot:
-ability to play both PAL & NTSC

(sorry, couldn’t edit post)


With an old tube-style television, odd-numbered lines are “painted” onto the screen, then the even numbered ones. Computer monitors call this “interlaced”, monitors that have to do this to display images stopped being manufactured about 1993.

Progressive scan is when all lines of the picture are “painted” at once. IIRC, all flat screens (LCD, plasma, OLED) use this method to display the image, regardless of how the DVD player sends the image to the monitor. I hope someone will correct me if I am wrong, but progressive scan is very widespread these days and doesn’t add to the cost.

Regular DVDs contain 480 scan lines of information. “Upconverting” is a process to make the 480 lines look better on modern monitors (that can display 720 and 1080 lines). Manufacturers use software routines on microchips (in the monitor or set-top player) to enhance the image “in realtime” so it will look better on the new monitors (especially the flat screen models).

Upconverting is a nice feature to have, especially if you will get a higher quality screen in the years ahead. I believe this feature is being added to more and more set-top boxes, but usually only works if your set-top box has an HDMI connection (and your monitor must have one too; only modern monitors have them).

In February 2009, the current TV stations will turn off their transmitters. People who are cheap and don’t have cable, like me, will need to get a new tuner for the new HDTV frequencies (even to display on my tiny little 13 inch color set). If you have cable or satellite TV, you might have hundreds of channels and not care about the free ones. It’s all up to you.

Sorry I couldn’t help you more.

REMEMBER: 1. Preserve Nature. 2. Always wear a helmet.
3. Ride safely. 4. Read owners manual carefully before riding.

Thank you very much for your help.
That cleared up some of the questions I had :slight_smile:

Hard to fond a quality unit that will do all. I have a Panasonic DMR ES15 sitting on top of a replaytv 5000 DVR connected to my cable box.

Hi CCRomeo! What’s a replaytv 5000 DVR? :doh: