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  1. After one year of intensive professional use of the Panasonic DMR-E60 DVD recorder and almost 500 happy clients without any complain about the quality of the recordings as well as the compatibility with other DVD players, I decided to share my experiences with other Panasonic owners hoping that this will help them to achieve similar results.

    Few members of our community claim that they can see “horrible macro blocs” in Panasonic recordings. My clients and I have never ever seen anything like that and I am quite sure that the poor quality (other than specific source quality or a faulty unit) is the result of using factory default settings and recording presets – something that will never give you the best performance from these machines!

    The tips that follow gave me the opportunity to make recordings up to 3 hours with a full SP resolution and minimal digital artifacts as well as full compatibility with other DVD players.

    So, lets start with the proper settings:

    1. Go to SETUP - VIDEO - Black Level Control:
    - Input level - make it "Darker".
    - Composite & SVideo Output Level - make it "Lighter".
    - Component Video Output Level - make it "Normal".
    This will assure correct black level setting on your recorder (no brighter or darker recorded images compare to the originals).

    2. While you are there go to HYBRID VBR RESOLUTION and set it to FIXED. This is very important! The default setting is “Automatic”. Many Panasonic users think that this setting allows them to turn the VBR system “on” or “off”. WRONG! Variable Bit Rate is always ON and it can’t be turn OFF. If you leave it on "Automatic" then the recording system will lower (downshift) the resolution of the image (from 704x480 to 352x480 or 352x240) if it feels that it can compress the video easier at lower resolutions. The theory behind it: it switches to a lower resolution so it can stay within the maximum bit rate. My experience with this system has proven to me that it is better if you forget about the theory and go with the practical results! If you set it to "Fixed" then the recording system will set the resolution to one setting and leave it there for the duration of the recording! Also, the “Automatic” option causes playback problems on some DVD player units, and certain computer programs cannot deal with this and when exporting to an MPEG they will create a separate file every time there is a resolution switch. This is one of the crucial settings on Panasonic DVD recorders – make it “FIXED” if you want to have the best PQ and compatibility.

    2. Never use XP mode (1Hr) recording if you have the intention to play recorded discs on other players. Some DVD players are choking (stuttering and freezing) playing DVD’s from Panasonic machines recorded with this high bit rate.

    3. For recording anything up to 2Hrs of length use the SP preset. While the FR mode will provide marginally better quality on shorter programs, it will often select a bit rate too high for some DVD players. Also, my tests shows that the SP preset yields better recording quality than a Flexible Recording set on 2Hrs. So, use the SP preset and don’t worry about the quality of the recordings.

    4. NEVER USE THE LP RECORDING PRESET! This preset should be banned for any recordings up to 3 hours! For any recording from 2 hours up to 3 hours (I made tests up to 2 hours and 55 minutes) use only the FR mode. Because of the “Fixed” setting, FR mode will give you full SP resolution of the recording up to 3 hours with a bit rate just below SP but well above LP. This is a remarkable quality achievement that I didn’t experience with any other brand of DVD recorders. All of them will “die” at 2 hours and 20-30 minutes. People who complain about Panasonic’s recording quality at these lengths didn’t have proper settings and (or) they were using the LP recording preset.

    5. If you need recordings longer then 3 hors, use the SP preset and two DVD’s! Anything else is not serious.

    6. Don’t be shy of using S-Video input instead of DV (if your model has one). You will be surprised to find that an analog input gives better recordings than the DV-in. Something that bothers me the most is the fact that a DV input will give you a slightly brighter picture (like the recordings of the JVC DR-M10S) than the original image.

    7. Always use the best quality DVD-R’s.

    I hope that these tips will be helpful and I am encouraging other owners of the Panasonic DVD recorders to feel free to add any other tips or suggestions for getting better results from these machines.

    Zoran


    Screenshot from 2Hr and 55 min FR recording:

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  2. Member Bodyslide's Avatar
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    Good info Thanks.
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  3. I wanted to insert two screenshots that shows the picture resolution of 704x480 at 2Hrs and 55 Min, but for some reason it is not working.
    Sorry.
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  4. Thanks for an excellent summary of Panasonic recorders' info. I think the most important one is to set "Hybrid VBR Resolution" to "Fixed", which will definitely improve playback and editing software compatibility.

    4. NEVER USE THE LP RECORDING PRESET!
    I think Panasonic is well aware of this problem, that's why they addressed it on their upcoming product lineup, probably by adding 2/3 D1 resolution (480x480) and other tweaking.
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  5. Member ejai's Avatar
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    I've been doing what you wrote here for over a year now and it works great. Thanks for helping others get better acquainted with the features of this recorder.

    Great job.
    Do unto others....with a vengeance!
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  6. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    ........ important 2010 update ...............

    NOTE TO ANYBODY READING THIS


    in 2010 or later



    The information found in this thread was written for the early "E" series Panasonic machines made from 2002 to early 2005,

    It DOES NOT APPLY to the ES, EZ and EA series machines made and sold from late 2005 to 2010.



    These later-generation recorders have an all-new set of flaws.
    - However, you still should not record with 4-hour mode, LP mode. It's a noisy/crappy quality mode. That flaw has been continued over into the latter generations of Panasonic machines.

    General recording advice now applies:
    - Black Level should already be set correctly.
    - XP mode is fine.
    - Use DV input for DV input.
    - S-Video is better than composite input.
    - Never record more than 4 hours on a DVD, pretend those silly 6+ hour modes are not there.
    - Use good blank DVDs.
    - This machine is best used for making XP or SP mode DVDs, and that's it.


    ......... end update ................


    Originally Posted by zorankarapancev
    1. Go to SETUP - VIDEO - Black Level Control: ..This will assure correct black level setting on your recorder (no brighter or darker recorded images compare to the originals).
    ...
    2. While you are there go to HYBRID VBR RESOLUTION and set it to FIXED. This is very important!
    ...
    2 () . Never use XP mode (1Hr) recording if you have the intention to play recorded discs on other players
    ...
    3. For recording anything up to 2Hrs of length use the SP preset
    ....
    4. NEVER USE THE LP RECORDING PRESET! This preset should be banned
    ...
    5. If you need recordings longer ..., use the SP preset and two DVD’s!
    ...
    6. Don’t be shy of using S-Video input instead of DV
    ...
    7. Always use the best quality DVD-R’s.
    On all the quoted things shown here, 100% total agreement from me.

    If you ONLY use a Panasonic recorder in it's "cherry" settings, you'll love it. Pretty much 2-hour SP mode (and maybe FR for an extra half hour or so if you must). The flaws are nominal at these settings, nobody will really notice them without some serious searching.

    Obligatory dissenting viewpoint: MPEG and the DVD format, however, are more versatile had DO HAVE the ability for high quality recordings at other settings. You can easily fit 3-4 hours of high quality video onto a DVD, should the encoders cooperate. And that's the problem... Panasonic chipsets DO NOT cooperate. Luckily, for us that expect a higher amount of options, WHILE RETAINING the high quality output, we have recorders like JVC and Pioneer that cater to our desires.


    EDIT: After talking with another mod, we've made this a sticky in the DVD recorder forum. Some good info here, let's try to keep it a clean thread.
    Last edited by lordsmurf; 5th Apr 2010 at 20:33. Reason: 2010 updates
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  7. Member
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    [quote="zorankarapancev"]After one year of intensive professional use of the Panasonic DMR-E60 DVD recorder and almost 500 happy clients without any complain about the quality of the recordings as well as the compatibility with other DVD players, I decided to share my experiences with other Panasonic owners hoping that this will help them to achieve similar results..................

    Zoran


    As usual, you are the top reviewer on this forum.
    Many thanks,

    Yvon
    N 45° 31' .949" L 73° 41' .047"
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  8. Member
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    zorankarapancev,
    Great info, thanks for putting this together. As a user of a DMR-HS2, I don't think I can take advantage of your 1st point, unfortunately. I think I'm stuck with the black level bug (guess I'll just have to upgrade to a new Panasonic )
    Also, based on your advice it looks like I use LP more than I should so I'll have to start taking better advantage of the FR mode.
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  9. Member
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    I've had my Panny E80 since October 2003 and have found very few (if any) players that freeze on recordings that are set to the max of 10Mb/s (XP speed). Those discs either came out of the recorder itself or were authored by me with Womble Mpeg Video Wizard and TMPGEnc DVD Author. The only recordings I do these days are in XP or FR modes, expecially for fast motion and heavy CGI (cartoons generally get SP though I make some exceptions and sometimes go to FR or XP). I've played these discs on players from Liteon, LG, Panasonic, Sony, Nova, Apex, PS2, Pioneer, Daytek, Memorex, JVC, RCA, Symphonic (Funai), Philips and a number more and haven't heard a complaint from anyone that the discs don't play. Practically any player built within the past 3 years plays them without a hiccup. What players don't the discs play in at high bit rates??
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  10. Some players have problems playing high bit rates not only from Panasonic DVD recorders, but also from other brands. I can mention two of them that I personally have: Daytek and Malata. They have occasional hiccups also playing XP recordings from the Sony DVD recorders.
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  11. Member
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    My Bud's Daytek DP-30 loves the material I supply him with and that recorder's player section is somewhat lacking...

    I also have a Malata DVP-393 that plays everything I put into it. See my review of that unit...
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  12. The models that I have are Daytek P871 and Malata DVP-500P.
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    [quote="zorankarapancev"]
    ..............3. For recording anything up to 2Hrs of length use the SP preset. While the FR mode will provide marginally better quality on shorter programs, it will often select a bit rate too high for some DVD players. Also, my tests shows that the SP preset yields better recording quality than a Flexible Recording set on 2Hrs. So, use the SP preset and don’t worry about the quality of the recordings.............

    Zoran
    __________________________________________________ ___________

    Hi Zoran,

    There seems to be kind of a contradiction in your statement about the FR mode. You once said that you would never buy a DVD recorder without a FR mode option (as mentioned about the new Sony DVD recorder) and now, you recommend to stay away from the FR option (in a practical way) because of problems that might occur with other DVD readers, for recording anything up to 2Hrs of length.

    Accordingly, I conclude that the FR option is not so important. Do you have a commentary to make about the importance of RF recording?

    Thanks,

    Yvon
    N 45° 31' .949" L 73° 41' .047"
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  14. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    @Yvon
    This is merely a quirk of Panasonic.

    For a machine like a JVC or Pioneer, FR modes are hugely valuable. I'm not sure I could survive without a FR these days, not unless it came with more presets at every hour or half hour.
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  15. Interesting info although Id add that Ive never had problems with discs recorded in XP mode AND XP mode is the only mode that allows you a choice of audio recorded in LPCM Stereo or Dolby Digital 2.0, I havnt realy ever sat down n compared the two but it may be of interest if you wish to record some music TV programs.
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  16. Member Marvingj's Avatar
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    Great Post!
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  17. Hi Zoran,

    There seems to be kind of a contradiction in your statement about the FR mode. You once said that you would never buy a DVD recorder without a FR mode option (as mentioned about the new Sony DVD recorder) and now, you recommend to stay away from the FR option (in a practical way) because of problems that might occur with other DVD readers, for recording anything up to 2Hrs of length.

    Accordingly, I conclude that the FR option is not so important. Do you have a commentary to make about the importance of RF recording?
    Yvon,

    I am sorry if I was not clear enough in my post about the FR and SP recording modes. I will take this opportunity to say a few more words about this matter.

    - If your intention is to play the recorded discs exclusively on the recorder that you are using to make them or on a high quality player that you have already tested, then whatever I said before is not important for you. In my business, I have to make sure that EVERY recorded DVD disc will play on ANY player, from the refurbished el-chipo models with questionable quality to the state of the art masterpieces that cost many times more than our DVD recorders.

    - The FR recording is definitely the most important recording mode. Having said that, I have to clarify something. If you compare this mode to SP preset you will notice some improvement in the recording quality in the lengths of up to 90 minutes. After that, the quality is pretty much the same as the SP preset. Just out of curiosity, I made two test recordings: one with FR mode set exactly on 2 Hrs and the other one with the SP preset mode. As I stated before, I found the SP recording just a notch better. I doubt that many people will notice that difference, but the point is that at that length you will not be able to have any quality advantage from the FR mode. The reason why the SP recording is better is because this setting is optimized in any aspect for maximizing the quality at 2 hours. For the FR mode EACH time setting for EACH recording is a guessing game. The best analogy that I can give you is like traveling to your work place. You have done that for a thousand times but for me, for example, traveling to your work place would be for the first time ever. We will both get there, but the difference is that your ride will be smoother and more certain than mine.

    - Panasonic’s FR mode is designed to always use the highest bit rate at any moment of the recording. In that perspective, it is very opportunistic and it will even change the resolution momentarily if it will help it to raise the bit rate. Unfortunately, some players are not able to handle high beat surges and resolution changes from the recordings done this way and they will choke and stutter. For me personally, there is only one option: ensuring full compatibility at the expense of the marginal quality difference (that nobody will notice anyway).

    - The FR mode shines in the lengths between 2 and 3 hours! It is easily understandable when we know that the next recording preset is the 4 hour mode. With a fixed SP resolution you can make very good FR recordings up to the full length of 180 minutes.

    - Panasonic has a notch higher bit rate than Sony, but Sony has better picture quality because it uses 12 bit analog/digital converter and better filters. Sony’s hill of Achilles is the lack of the FR mode in order to maximize its potential at the full SP resolution at recordings longer then 2 hours. For a better understanding of what that means, see the wonderful example provided by our friend tommyoz:
    http://www.videohelp.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=245761&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=30

    Panasonic is well aware of these weaknesses and that is why the newest DVD recorders are completely redesigned with a higher resolution LP recording mode and a new 12-bit A/D converter.

    http://www2.panasonic.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ModelDetail?displayTab=O&storeId=1...02004011220505
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  18. Member
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    [quote="zorankarapancev"][quote]

    Yvon,

    I am sorry if I was not clear enough in my post about the FR and SP recording modes. I will take this opportunity to say a few more words about this matter.....

    Thanks Zoran,

    It could'nt be clearer.

    Yvon
    N 45° 31' .949" L 73° 41' .047"
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  19. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Another Panasonic issue to deal with is the fact that it's discs have long been constrained to only 4GB worth of data, while most others go to 4.25-4.30GB of data. This affects various visual/audio settings. I'm not sure if this was fixed in the most recent models. Something to note. It may seem small, but 250-300MB can mean a lot.
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  20. Member
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    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    Another Panasonic issue to deal with is the fact that it's discs have long been constrained to only 4GB worth of data, while most others go to 4.25-4.30GB of data. This affects various visual/audio settings. I'm not sure if this was fixed in the most recent models. Something to note. It may seem small, but 250-300MB can mean a lot.
    I noticed something "odd" about this actually when I was looking at some Disc's in OSX on my G4 Laptop. When I clicked "Get Info" the Mac quickly pointed out that anything burned in FR Mode was dead set at 4GB. However, if I looked underneath the "File Size in GB" to where it shows the size in plain old "bytes" I was clearly seeing files that came off around 4.01-4.2GB -- I don't know if this is OSX not reading the Disc correctly, or Panasonic "faking" the size of the DVD to 4GB using some proprietary Variant of the UDF format. Any help would be appreciated. (All Windows machines I've used show 4GB max; I'm assuming that's strictly due to the FAT32 file system. I haven't done anything with WinXP and I'm about to play around with the DMR-E500HS after making the suggested tweaks -- I'll put another report in here if I notice a differance in size entirely.)


    A couple of Comments/Suggestions Zoran:

    1. You seem to have already addressed my comment about FR Recording modes. My Dad's friend in the UK wanted to see a US Broadcast of a Cowboys Game on ABC (Yes, the one with the T. O./Desperate Housewives controversey, and I've still saved that opening!) to compare to what they get on Sky Digital. (He doesn't like the Brittish announcers.) Since, my father said he didn't care too much about quality other than that of the sound, I recorded the game in SP Mode onto my HDD, and moved it to a DVD using FR Mode. The end result apparently looked fine despite re-encoding and I didn't notice an issue. I checked it on my Mac and there was no noticable downshift in quality although regular Digital Cable issues were a factor. (That's fixed though, I got DISH Network.)

    Likewise I had to convert a friend's Japanese VHS tapes to DVD for him, again I dumped everything onto the HDD of my HS2 and split/trimmed the show, (Tapes had some junk noise between episodes) then used FR mode to dump them onto 4GB DVD's. He had no problems with them on the cheapo unit and of course GI=GO (Garbage In = Garbage Out) applies, but the result was what, to me; looked like a better quality picture and a more reliable DVD. -- I had issues with SP Recording for conversions. Since the shows were originally shot in NTSC-J I don't believe there was any IRE Issue at the time.

    2. This one's more of a question, but should I set the Dolby Digital/DTS Audio settings to "PCM" (Pulse Coded Modulation) which is uncompressed IIRC, or to Bitstream" which I'm assuming is a compressed audio format, am I right? I have everything set to "PCM" right now but suggestions would be welcome.

    3. This is a comment/question, but should I turn the "Attenuator" on or off on the Panasonic DMR-E500HS. As far as I can tell this tries to "normalize" the Volume of what's recorded to one level, but I can't be sure and I don't know if it carries over onto recorded Disc's yet. The manual has virtually no information on it, but it seems to be nice to use it if you have a program thats very quiet and then one that's EXTREMELY LOUD! -- I'm guessing this is purely asthetic taste, but it annoys me enough when a CD is recorded and the tracks all have different Volumes, if this prevents it on a DVD I'd be very happy. I do occasionally have someone send me their home movies and of course, everything's recorded at a different level for Volume and it sounds crazy.

    4. For 16:9 Letterbox recordings should I choose letterbox or Pan & Scan? I know it's all coming out at 4:3 anyway or more accurately 4:3 "Fake Widescreen" after a downconversion, so I have it set to Letterbox, should I change this to Pan & Scan?

    5. This is a comment: Don't even bother ATTEMPTING to use EP Mode unless you're archiving old VCD's in garbage quality adn want to save Disc space. If you're recording anything worth viewing avoid EP Mode, especially the new 8-Hour EP Mode. (Garbage In = Nothing out is more accurate here.)

    6. Another Comment: I noticed the DMR-HS2 has horrid LP mode, this is pretty much SP VHS to me, with minor pixelation on occasion. I used LP Mode (4-Hours) on the DMR-E500HS though and the quality improvement was signifigant, it's not SP Mode but there's far less macroblocking and if you really want to pinch space and don't care about quality, it's passable on newer machines, but it's pretty much somewhere between VCD and DVD Quality.

    7. Comment: If you're going to trim chunks of Video (e.g. Commercials) on the recorder and then edit on the PC, leave a little "Garbage Video" intact, although it's far less noticable on the E500HS, the HS2 and some older units show a blatant audio drop where the show was cut. So if you really want to be safe, trim on the HDD and record to DVD, then edit the DVD on your PC. This is the best meathod for me.

    I should also note, that I've converted videos for people who have units ranging from Apex trash to Home-theater set-ups and have only had a problem when I use crappy media. (E.g. Memorex DVD-R's are nothing but a problem for me.) I have never recived a complaint about Maxell, BeAll or other "durable" brands. I only have issues with bizzaro models.


    I have an idea to get around that Camcorder issue on the DV Input as well: When you plug it into the DV Input, crank up the Contrast and lower the brightness setting, that could get around the washed out look described in the guide, I'll have to try it eventually when my Uncle brings videos again.
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  21. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Cyrax9
    Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    Another Panasonic issue to deal with is the fact that it's discs have long been constrained to only 4GB worth of data, while most others go to 4.25-4.30GB of data. This affects various visual/audio settings. I'm not sure if this was fixed in the most recent models. Something to note. It may seem small, but 250-300MB can mean a lot.
    I noticed something "odd" about this actually when I was looking at some Disc's in OSX on my G4 Laptop. When I clicked "Get Info" the Mac quickly pointed out that anything burned in FR Mode was dead set at 4GB. However, if I looked underneath the "File Size in GB" to where it shows the size in plain old "bytes" I was clearly seeing files that came off around 4.01-4.2GB -- I don't know if this is OSX not reading the Disc correctly, or Panasonic "faking" the size of the DVD to 4GB using some proprietary Variant of the UDF format. Any help would be appreciated.
    4.38 computer GB = 4,700,000 bytes.
    So 4GB would be about 4,200,000 bytes, as you saw.
    No mystery here. The recorders simply do not use all of the disc.
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  22. "- Panasonic’s FR mode is designed to always use the highest bit rate at any moment of the recording. In that perspective, it is very opportunistic and it will even change the resolution momentarily if it will help it to raise the bit rate. Unfortunately, some players are not able to handle high beat surges and resolution changes from the recordings done this way and they will choke and stutter."

    Zoran,

    So does this mean the Panasonic FR mode will "change the resolution momentarily" even if you have set the HYBRID VBR RESOLUTION to FIXED as suggested at the beginning of this thread?

    Also you wrote:
    "Panasonic's newest DVD recorders are completely redesigned with a higher resolution LP recording mode and a new 12-bit A/D converter."


    As an experienced Panasonic DVD recorder user, how do you feel these changes will improve the recorders from what is available now? What bit A/D converter does the E55 have? Does using a higher bit converter have any negative effects such as lowering the bit rate? I am wondering if it will be worth the wait for the new recorders, my primary uses will be SP and occasionally past 2 hours for those longer movies, but probably not past 3 hours. Do you think SP mode PQ will benefit from the 12 bit converter, or is all the benefit for the LP mode. I am also wondering if a redesigned model will have a new set of bugs to be worked out.

    -Dan R.
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  23. Dan,

    If you leave the Hybrid Variable Bit Rate on "Automatic" then the recording system will lower the resolution so it can stay within the maximum bit rate. If you set it to "Fixed" then the recording system will set the resolution to one setting and leave it there for the duration of the recording.

    The Panasonic DVD recorders have 10-bit/54Mhz AD converters, as the rest of the DVD recorders today. Sony is the only manufacturer that uses the new 12-bit/108Mhz AD converter making the difference in the picture quality evident to everybody. PQ is smoother with less digital artifacts and more natural colors and texture at any recording speed. The new 12-bit converter will elevate the picture quality of Panasonic’s DVD recorders to new levels and together with the excellent FR recording mode it will make the Panasonic the most serious contender for the leading position in the DVD recorders world.

    So, if you are not in a hurry, wait a few monts and get a new model. If you have to make the purchase now, look for the discounts on the existing models.
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  24. Member
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    @ Lordsmurf: This is due to the whole 1024/1000 bits = a byte= a megabyte = a gigabyte disaster, right? I honestly wish that computer makers would fix that "mistake" of labeling drives in 1000's when they're all 1024 at code-level, when I was studying programming this was responsible for many flaws.

    @ zorankarapancev: Are any of those new recorders comperable to my "hulking" DMR-E500HS unit? It's a pretty nice machine (ST: Enterprise comes out well on it, and LP mode seems to have been improved; good for low-quality one time recordings.) and I don't want to upgrade unless there's a unit with the same features, namely the 400GB HDD that's become a solution for an archival procrastinator. I have a Panny DMR-HS2 and a DMR-E500HS -- got both when they were the "Top of the line" Models. I was wondering what the differances were aside from the obvious like IRE Control and of course the extra zero on the E500HS's HDD at the end there.

    I should mention I had a neighboor who worked for Panasonic (Too bad he moved right around the time I met him.) and mentioned that Sony and Panasonic are "Mortal Enemies" so expect Sony to juice something out quickly to stay ahead, this is ironicaly a key reason Matsushita did the Nintendo GameCube optical drive -- they DESPISE Sony. It's also a driving factor for them to make a comperable product to Sony and win over their customers, with similar proprietary formats even. Think Microsoft vs. Apple here.

    My family has a friend in NYC who's sister works for Sony, he mentioned to me that she had told him Sony underestimated DVD Recorders and had been pllaqying catch-up for awhile, it's understandable that they're trying to get the absolute best unit out, especially when Panasonic has several consumer-grade models. The only real competitor is JVC but they charge an arm and a leg which is why I don't have all JVC equipment. (They wanted $500 more for a TV that was identical to a Sony with the exception of theirs being HD-Ready, but then it's a small price for their quality I guess.)

    I wonder if the Panasonic 4GB "Cap" is so the Disc will play in any player? I ran into some chipster no-names that wouldn't read disc's over 4GB, might be a "Dummy protocol" to make sure the Disc's read in any unit.

    Also here are my three Panasonic gripes:

    1. 704x480 res, why can't they do 720x480? This is a nitpick but still, it's a bit irksome to upconvert every video I record.

    2. Random remote designs; seriously Sony used the same shells for 20 years, why can't Panasonic do the same thing? My Sony remote from a 13 year old TV works on my set from 2k2 as well, this is just an irk overall about 50 remote variants.

    3. Why doesn't Panasonic sell "upgrade discs" for people with older recorders? Something to add in the new "features" that new units have such as filters or bitrate setting upgrades. HDD Units could benefit from a new HDD and firmware upgrade as well.

    I noticed FR Mode seems indistinquishable from SP Mode on my Mac, I have to squint to see a differance an if I'm recording 3 Hours it's a great idea. The E500HS has an improved LP Mode compared to the HS2, but it's still barely above SVCD Quality.

    If they ever make a unit that's comperable to the E500HS w/the new features please let me know, I'll sell my E500HS and grab the new unit as I really didn't want to upgrade but my HS2 died and I needed a new recorder by Feb 5. 2005 -- long story.

    Also can anybody answer my audio questions for correct settings?
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  25. Cyrax9,

    I don’t work for Panasonic, so I can only guess the answers for most of your questions. Probably they would be connected with marketing and making profits.
    Slightly lower resolution of 704x480 instead of 720x480 definitely helps the system to go with higher bit-rate.
    Panasonic, Sony and a few other well-known brands don’t sell their product to us to be beta tested. That is why they don’t “upgrade” their products with “upgrade discs”. You don’t upgrade anything that is properly made. The difference in the price that we are paying for these brands compare to the other ones go for factory beta testing and trouble shooting before the products are introduced on the market, for the higher grade materials used in their products and for better technical support.
    Regarding the upgrade of the bit-rate setting: you can’t upgrade the AD converters with the “upgrade disc”. You can only replace them with new converters.
    Make no mistake, the new DVD recorders, using the latest 12 bit/108Mhz AD converter, will give you better quality recording. That doesn’t mean that you have to sell your machine if you are happy with it.
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  26. What is this 4gb cap you guys are talking about?
    Is it when burning to DVD-R?

    I've never burned to DVD-R before so I wouldn't know if that is the case
    I burn everything to DVD-RAM and do my stuff on the computer and the most I can get out of the disc as reported in Windows Explorer is around 4,442,874 = 4.23

    For the stuff I'm recording it's just right, leaving me around 130-140 mb that I need for title and chapter motion menus in TDA
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  27. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
    Join Date: Jun 2003
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  28. Member
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    Originally Posted by zorankarapancev
    Slightly lower resolution of 704x480 instead of 720x480 definitely helps the system to go with higher bit-rate.
    You know, I had considered that but I saw that Pioneer was recording at 720x480, and then dismissed it as bad R&D for awhile. However, this would explain why Disc's I burn look better than the ones coming off of a friends Pioneer unit when we compared them. Then again I don't know if they've gotten their act together but everything I bought from Pioneer between 2001-2003 fell apart within a matter of days and on occasion weeks if I was lucky. That's actually the reason I'm wary of buying anything from Pioneer again until I hear they've improved QA.


    Originally Posted by zorankarapancev
    Panasonic, Sony and a few other well-known brands don’t sell their product to us to be beta tested. That is why they don’t “upgrade” their products with “upgrade discs”. You don’t upgrade anything that is properly made. The difference in the price that we are paying for these brands compare to the other ones go for factory beta testing and trouble shooting before the products are introduced on the market, for the higher grade materials used in their products and for better technical support.
    That actually makes alot of sense now that I think about it, but I remember Panasonic talking about "upgrade discs" for my DMR-HS2 when it was new. I honestly thought it was a bad idea if they weren't going to follow through with them to mention that they were doing this, but I guess they realized when a machine is done, it's done unless it's going to burn holes through peoples faces from a laser that's too powerful. (/bad joke about early high-speed PC Recorders)

    Originally Posted by zorankarapancev
    Regarding the upgrade of the bit-rate setting: you can’t upgrade the AD converters with the “upgrade disc”. You can only replace them with new converters.
    Maybe I was using the wrong term here so please correct me if I was. I know the A/D Converters can only be replaced, not upgraded unless they did it at a factory swapping out parts which could be considered "replaced" as well I suppose. What I meant was changing the bit-rate settings much the way one changes them on a PC/Mac before they author a DVD. For instance if the unit has a setting with a 3000k/bps setting and it's "safe" to push out 5000k/bps wouldn't that be something that could be changed with a firmware Disc? Panasonic has HDD recorders as well that make me wonder why they don't store some code on the HDD to allow for upgrades over time much the way you can upgrade Windows or OSX. Perhaps I should say "update" for just a particular setting like the IRE issue on the HS2 but I think you get the idea. However I can understand why Panasonic would rather push out new recorders than upgrade existing ones from a Business standpoint.

    Originally Posted by zorankarapancev
    Make no mistake, the new DVD recorders, using the latest 12 bit/108Mhz AD converter, will give you better quality recording. That doesn’t mean that you have to sell your machine if you are happy with it.
    I'm quite happy with my two Panasonic units, but if I can get a better quality recording on the new units I'd like to consider an upgrade. I was also wondering why they didn't mention any of these units having DL Disc capabilities which I would expect fairly soon, ahh well... it seems like DL is being reserved for the PC as of now.
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  29. Does it work out well if you record to the hardrive from SVHS and digital cable in XP mode and then copy to _R in SP mode?
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  30. From the SVHS VCR you can use S-video cable, not digital (DV) cable… and the transfer from the hard drive(XP) to DVD-R(SP) works quite well.
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