I have two Yamakawa DVR-628 recorders, one of which I have owned for a year and its power supply died a few weeks ago. I was VERY fortunate to find another 628 on eBay -- I say "fortunate" because Yamakawa USA is no longer in business. Their main factory in Germany, however, is, but all the products they produce are for the European market. BTW, Yamakawa of Germany has a 63% market share of DVD recorders sold in Europe.
If I am able to find a replacement power supply for my first 628, I'll be putting it up for sale.
Why do I like the 628? Well, it is the ONLY dvd recorder that I have seen (and actually used) that has component inputs with NO restrictions on the material it can copy. Basically, I have never met a DVD that the 628 could not copy (and it copies them very well). The 628 write to DVD+R/RW, but can read any disk format.
However, since the 628's are no longer for sale in the US, my second choice of recorder, with low cost being a consideration, would be either the Toshiba DR-4 (which I also own), the Pioneer DVR-233S, or one of the RCA 8000 series (like the 8005N, 8040N, or 8060N. The 8060N has a Commercial Skip feature that automatically eliminates commercials from your recordings).
Inexpensive (aka, cheap) DVD recorders to avoid like the plague are those made by Lite-On, Emerson, Cyberhome, Ilo, and Phillips/Magnavox.
If you can afford to spend between $200 and $300 on a recorder, then, I would recommend one with a built-in hard drive like the Toshiba RD-XS32 can be bought on Ebay for around $180-$200. Also, I would recommend the Pioneer 531H: new units are readily available on eBay for around $275 or less.
Although some Panasonic DVD recorders are all right, I would steer clear of Panasonic DVD recorders that come with hard drives. From all that I have read, users have had more problems than the other brands.