Questions About Recording TV Programs to a DVD Recorder

I just purchased a new DVD recorder and would like to use a DVD-RW disk in the same manner I have used video tapes to record TV programs for many years. I typically record a program, watch it once and then over write it so that I can use the recording media again. The difference that I see in using a DVD-RW disk as compared to a video tape is that whatever I record is goes on to a track. If I record a 2 hour program span in SLP mode (6 hours), I create a 2 hour track. If I want to re-use the same disk by overwriting and record a 3 hour program span the next time around, the machine will only record 2 hours of the 3 hour program. Is there any way to “erase” the initial tracks on a disk before re-using it without eliminating the capability of the disk to RW?

I have also noticed that the only time my recorder allows timer recording is with a brand new disk. If there are tracks already present on the disk, I have to manually start the overwriting at the time a program starts. Is there any way to use timer programing on a disk with pre-existing tracks?

Do variously priced DVD Recorders have more capabilities as the price goes up, or do they all basically work the same way?

Comments will be appreciated.

Welcome to CDF, Steve :slight_smile:

I think you might get better help in the Newbie Forum…moving the thread there…

Thanks Arachne :flower:.

@Steve Jacoby: I think I know what the problem is, but could you please let us know what make and model of DVD recorder you are using, and also the type of rewriteable disc (DVD+RW or DVD-RW). I realise you quoted the latter, but sometimes people use that as a general term for rewriteables.

Hi Steve,
As imkidd57 said, its dif to help without that kind of info, but whatever the device you have got I’m sure you have the possibility to delete the tracks and/or re-format the disc.
It is ususal that the menu item that allows you to play the track also offers the possibility to delete it, but that depends on the menu system of your device.
By the way, recording to a track is an advantage to you as it (1) isolates each recording and (2) gives you searching flexibility to find what you want in a fast way, contrary to tape that would require you to go forward/backward until finding the desired point of the tape.

Why do you want to use the lowest quality of recording?, the DVD-RW is good for two hour of recording if you set it for 4 or 6 hours then you are compromising the quality of burnt process drastically.

This doesnt answer your question, but…

If there isnt a reason to need the shows on DVD (ie if your not going to be taking them to a friends house to watch on his DVD player, etc) I’d suggest getting a DVR. They work similar to VCRs (just as your DVD recorder does) except it saves the show to an internal (or perhapses external) hard drive. The hard drive is generally larger (the HD in my parents DVR is 80GBs vs. your 4.7GB DVD “tape”), and will last longer - DVD-RWs can only be erased & reburnt so many times before they become useless. And more likely than not you’ll get a nice on screen TV guide to schedule your recording.