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  1. That ES10 frame grab looks about like the Lite-On s-video frame (as far as image detail and sharpness), except that it is 704x480 with cropped left and right edges. In fact, I think the Lite-On might even look a little better. Funny that a low-buck recorder like the Lite-On rivals the Panasonic (with all it's marketing hype and 12 bit A/D converter). Of course, it could be that the S-35 source player may not have quite as good of a picture as the Pioneer 320 does.
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  2. Your comment about the quality of the DVR-320 as a source made me go back and try to figure out why the DVR-531H used as the source for the ES10 gave such a bad result.

    The problem was the TV(CRT) preset. It uses 25% YNR, 25% BNR, and 25% Detail in the preset. Professional is the same except the above are set to 0%. I bypassed the ES10 and looked at the 531 output directly on the monitor and it looked bad. Professional seemed to give the best image.

    Panasonic ES10 capture with Pioneer 531H as source with output preset set to "Professional"



    Experimenting directly with YNR, BNR, and Detail, it is the 25% BNR that does most of the damage. Notice that the resolution looks quite good but the text at the bottom looks poor. That is not the ES10, the text looks that way on the monitor with the ES10 removed. Strange.
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  3. Using my DVR-533H as the source player, I did a quick recording with my DVR-320. Here's the result...


    Pioneer DVR-320, s-video input, SP mode:
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  4. The DVR-320 does a better job recording than the 533. I tried all sorts of output adjustments using "memory 1" and tweaking with the 531 connected directly to the monitor to try to improve that text at the bottom but no luck so far. Your capture to the 320 shows your 533 has no issues with the text.
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  5. Here's that frame from the Ice Age clip...

    Pioneer DVR-320, s-video input, SP mode:
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  6. It is much harder to tell a difference with the test clip image even when looking at the detail areas like the lips or hair on the head.

    I found the issue with the text was caused by the the ICE AGE test pattern going from "Play" to "Still" mode in the 531. Still image mode in set up was set to "Auto". Changing to "Frame" eliminated the problem.

    ES10 capture with 531H as source.


    The 320 is the firewire version of the popular 220 is it not?
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  7. Yes, the 320 is identical to the 220 and 225, except it has the firewire input/output port.

    That ES10 test frame looks very good now. Sharp and detailed.
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  8. The following tests are to show the max adjustment range of some of the input settings. For reference is the image captured using the LDP preset which uses the following settings.

    3D Y/C: centered between motion and still
    YNR: 12.5%
    CNR: 0%
    Detail: 0%
    White AGC: off
    White level: centered between min and max
    Black level: centered between min and max
    Black setup: 7.5 IRE
    Gamma: centered between - and +
    Hue: centered between red and green
    Chroma: centered between min. and max.

    Reference image


    3D Y/C set to all the way to "Still"


    3D Y/C set to all the way to "Motion"


    YNR max


    CNR max


    Detail max


    Hue set to Green max


    Hue set to Red max


    Chroma set to max


    IRE set to 0


    Most adjustments are pretty subtle with the stronger ones being the red, green hue and IRE settings.

    P.S. I think the ES10 capture with the 531 as a source looks a bit better than the S-35.
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  9. How about this... I have another Lite-On DVD recorder on hand - the much maligned LVW-5007 (which has the TV Guide on screen program listing feature which so many people gripe about). Anyway, I believe it has the same LSI encoding chips as the 5005 and the 5006, but with an updated user interface. It only records to DVD+R/RW discs, and apparently does not have the "DoMiNo fx" video noise reduction/picture enhancement circuit that the 5005/5006 has. Using the Pioneer DVR-320-S as the source player again, I captured the THX test disc through the DV input and the s-video input. Here's the result -


    Lite-On LVW-5007, DV input, SP mode:



    Lite-On LVW-5007, s-video input, SP mode:




    And here's those "Sid" frames from the Ice Age clip...

    Lite-On LVW-5007, DV input, SP mode:



    Lite-On LVW-5007, s-video input, SP mode:




    Pretty impressive for a bargain basement unit that routinely sells on eBay for less than $100... including the shipping! That s-video test pattern frame capture is the best of the bunch so far. It looks nearly as good as the DV to DVD conversion.
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  10. That is truly impressive. It easily takes first place for replicating the resolution chart. Is there a hard drive version?
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  11. Yes, Lite-On (and ilo) both have hard drive versions of their machines. Biggest downside... no input video black level or other picture controls. Of course, you could try passing through that Panasonic ES10 in order to properly compensate the black level, stabilize the signal, etc.
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  12. I will look into those units. You might consider starting another thread with complete tests of the Lite-On's. They seem surprising good from the tests posted so far.
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  13. Lots has been posted about Lite-On and ilo machines, but primarily concerning the fact they are easily hacked region-free and MV-free.

    There are a couple of concerns with them. The front panel analog A/V inputs on some units seem to pick up interference. Their built-in TV tuners are mono, and kind of crappy. They apparently use a form of CBR to encode, rather than hybrid VBR. You can only set the recording quality by the hour... that is, 1 hour, 2 hour, 3 hour, etc. Nothing in between.

    However, used strictly as a MPEG2 capturing device... there's no doubt the image quality is competitive with more expensive "name brand" machines.
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  14. It looks like you just sold your Pioneer DVR-531H on eBay.

    These tests were done with the new MN12 mode which allows the DVR-531H to record 3 1/2 hours at full 720 by 480 resolution.

    Matrix sequence captured at MN12 setting with S-video and input preset set to LDP.
    mn12.vob

    Stlll frame from the above sequence captured using VirtualDubMod converted from png to jpg format without resize.


    As expected the macroblocks are worse.
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  15. That 531 was another one I acquired specifically for the purpose of re-selling... I still have the first one I got. I've made some very good looking VHS transfers with it and will probably keep it. I'm selling the 533, though. I'm going to use other machines for DV to DVD conversion.

    BTW, that frame looks pretty decent for 3.5 hour full D1... I would have expected more artifacts.
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  16. I do not blame you for selling the 533. The DV input performance is definitely subpar.

    Here is an XP+ to MN12 test. Still not much improvement over just straight MN12.

    Matrix fast sequence, captured XP+ and copied to MN12 real time.
    xpplusmn12.vob

    Still frame from the above sequence.
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  17. I've got a Toshiba D-R4, a Panasonic DMR-E65, and a Panasonic DMR-E60 headed my way. I'm interested in how they compare recording to both s-video and DV inputs. The last time I had a Toshiba on hand, I thought it did a pretty good job... I didn't do any objective testing, though.
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  18. Hay guys, your enthusiasm is contagious!
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  19. I have been testing the "one touch copy" function of the 531. I thought it would create an exact copy of the disk to be copied to the hard drive and then burn the exact copy on the hard drive to a new disk with no generation loss.

    It does not. It re-encodes the original disk in the manual mode selected in the initial set up menu. I was testing with MN12 mode ( 3.5 hour full D1 ) recently so my first "one touch copy" resulted in a noticeably lesser copy. The 531 re-encodes to the hard drive but does not re-encode to the new disk, unless it is set up for XP+ mode. If it copies to the hard drive in XP+ mode, it will re-encode twice, once to the hard drive and again to the new disk in MN32 mode.

    I tried "one touch copy" with manual mode off with similar results to the above. A call to Pioneer technical support confirmed this is happening.
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  20. So, it does not just transfer the disc to the hard drive? That seems odd. Is there a way to do a simple transfer?

    BTW, received the Panasonic DMR-E65. It does not have a DV input like the E60 did (but still has the card readers). So, it is just an E55 with digital still camera card readers and the TV Guide system. WTF?
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  21. Originally Posted by trhouse
    I have been testing the "one touch copy" function of the 531. I thought it would create an exact copy of the disk to be copied to the hard drive and then burn the exact copy on the hard drive to a new disk with no generation loss.

    It does not. It re-encodes the original disk in the manual mode selected in the initial set up menu. I was testing with MN12 mode ( 3.5 hour full D1 ) recently so my first "one touch copy" resulted in a noticeably lesser copy. The 531 re-encodes to the hard drive but does not re-encode to the new disk, unless it is set up for XP+ mode. If it copies to the hard drive in XP+ mode, it will re-encode twice, once to the hard drive and again to the new disk in MN32 mode.

    I tried "one touch copy" with manual mode off with similar results to the above. A call to Pioneer technical support confirmed this is happening.
    I am not sure what exactly are you saying but this is how it works...

    Originally Posted by Manual for 630H page 71
    2 During playback, press ONE TOUCH COPY tocopy the current title.
    The front panel display indicates that the title is being
    copied.

    High-speed copying is used when copying from the
    HDD to DVD. Playback continues while copying.

    Real-time copying is used when copying from DVD to
    the HDD. Playback restarts from the beginning of the
    title.
    Manual is very clear on this so it is no news....
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  22. [quote="gshelley61"]That 531 was another one I acquired specifically for the purpose of re-selling... I still have the first one I got. I've made some very good looking VHS transfers with it and will probably keep it. I'm selling the 533, though. I'm going to use other machines for DV to DVD conversion."

    what kind is your VCR by have way?
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  23. The function that should make copy without reencoding is "disc back-up".

    Using disc back-up
    This feature offers a simple way to make a back-up copy
    of a finalized Video mode disc. The data is copied first to
    the hard disk drive 1, then on to another recordable DVD
    disc.
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  24. The Toshiba D-R4 arrived today. Unlike the D-R2 it replaced, it has no DV input. It seems the manufacturers are dropping this feature on their entry level units more often than not. Anyway, it is thinner and a bit lighter than the D-R2. The main thing is that they did add an input video black level adjustment. "Standard" for 7.5 IRE sources, "Enhanced" for 0 IRE sources. The only other adjustment there is on the recording side is something they call "Mode 1, Mode 2, Mode 3", etc. which appears to be a sort of overall black level/white level adjustment. That's it, though. No recording DNR, no color adjustments, nothing. There are lots of adjustments on the playback side, though.

    Here are the THX test frames - same method as before...


    Toshiba D-R4, s-video input, SP mode:










    So, the new Toshiba makes a fairly sharp and detailed recording... and can handle 7.5 IRE black level sources properly now. Their hard drive equipped XS34 model adds input video DNR and Y/C separation filter adjustments, along with a DV input.
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  25. I should have explained the reason for the "one touch copy" tests. I had hoped to use the 531 to do simple edits to existing family dvd's. Only "one touch copy" results in a hard disk file which shows up in the Disc Navigator and can be edited. The manual does not indicate that this will cause a re-encode to occur. The "Disc Back-up" function does work well and makes an exact copy but the backup files do not appear in the Disc Navigator providing no opportunity to make changes.

    Those Toshiba tests look good. How does it do on the DV input?

    I saw a new Panasonic DMR-ES20 at Circuit City tonight. It does have a DV input. The salesperson said they did it to be more competitive with Sony.
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  26. Originally Posted by trhouse
    Those Toshiba tests look good. How does it do on the DV input?

    I saw a new Panasonic DMR-ES20 at Circuit City tonight. It does have a DV input. The salesperson said they did it to be more competitive with Sony.
    The D-R4 does not have a DV input like the D-R2 did.

    I'd like to check out the new Sony RDR-GX315, which does have a DV input (the RDR-GX300 did not).
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  27. Originally Posted by MJA
    what kind is your VCR by have way?
    I have a JVC SR-W5U (W-VHS format) analog high-def VCR that has a built-in full frame TBC. It is also a studio quality VHS and S-VHS machine.

    My second VCR is a JVC BR-S378U, which is a professional S-VHS editing recorder. No TBC in that one, but it has built-in chroma and I/Q white balance controls.

    I lucked into both of them on eBay for a fraction of what they are worth.
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  28. lol dude. The JVC SR-W5U cost $4,299.95 .waaaaay too much for my blood.

    http://focuscamera.com/sc/main_item.asp?id=964588755&rf=dt&dfdate=09_23_2005

    but I found the JVC BR-S378U on ebay for $100 (10 years old.lol)with shipping

    I just need to trans 4 wedding tapes thats all
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  29. Originally Posted by trhouse
    I have been testing the "one touch copy" function of the 531. I thought it would create an exact copy of the disk to be copied to the hard drive and then burn the exact copy on the hard drive to a new disk with no generation loss.

    It does not. It re-encodes the original disk in the manual mode selected in the initial set up menu. I was testing with MN12 mode ( 3.5 hour full D1 ) recently so my first "one touch copy" resulted in a noticeably lesser copy. The 531 re-encodes to the hard drive but does not re-encode to the new disk, unless it is set up for XP+ mode. If it copies to the hard drive in XP+ mode, it will re-encode twice, once to the hard drive and again to the new disk in MN32 mode.

    I tried "one touch copy" with manual mode off with similar results to the above. A call to Pioneer technical support confirmed this is happening.
    Hmmm...

    I wonder how well this works as an alternative to DVD Dhrink for backing up DVD9 to DVD-R? It is possible that the Pioneer may output a better disk than shrink if 50 to 70% compression is needed. Need to test this and see if it works better, or if I can see a difference. Hmmm... I have a Dual layer disk I was gonna shrink, Maybe I can do both and see how they look when I get the time free.

    BTW I have tested the 531h with Dual Layer +R and it seemed to play fine. It could also be that as the test discs were Episodic disks with 4 episodes each? OTOH a 5 episode disk played Ok too. I believe that one was recorded where the second layer starts at the outside and polays to the inside. DVD Decryptert used to rip & burn. The Memorex +R DL are junk themselves tho... going past 7 to 7.5gigs and it may have a bad second layer. Defeats the purpose of buying a 8.5Gig blank! BB had Verbatim +R DL but they were made in Singapore, the Memorex were MIT Ritek.

    Edit: Oops, never mind, now that I've finished my morning coffee I see the problem. Copy protection. I may still do a test with a Dual layer master to +R DL and then into the Pioneer just from curiousity.
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  30. Member BrainStorm69's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by TBoneit
    Hmmm...

    I wonder how well this works as an alternative to DVD Dhrink for backing up DVD9 to DVD-R?
    I have found that I generally get better results than DVD Shrink by capturing to AVI with my EZ DVD Maker (no copy protection issues at all with this card) and then encoding with TMPG. Less macroblocking.

    Could also just use a TBC between DVD player and DVD recorder and possibly do better. Haven't tried that yet.
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