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  1. Here's how the Pioneer DVR-320 does recording with the DV input (I used a Pioneer DVR-520H as the source player, DV out)... definitely much sharper and more detailed than the 531/533. I would expect the DVR-520H to perform the same way, since it is basically a 320 with a hard drive.








    I do see a bit of faint edge ghosting in the "Sid" frame. I've seen this before with Pioneer 10 and 20 series recorders. Not a big deal, but the LSI encoder chip based machines (JVC, Lite-On) do not have this artifact.
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  2. Originally Posted by trhouse
    The manual does not indicate that this will cause a re-encode to occur.
    Not sure about your manual but in mine it is very clear. See couple of posts earlier (Posted: Sep 23, 2005)... page 71 in my manual.
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  3. Those 320 captures from DV look much more like one would expect from a DV input.

    Here is an oddity discovered this weekend. I have the 531 set up to record daily, but it skipped the weekend and shows the timer set to record Monday. Looks like "daily" means weekdays. It must assume most people are recording daily TV which unfortunately I am not.

    donpedro,

    I have had this unit a short time, but I think I see what you are saying. Any time the recorder does a recording "realtime" it is either encoding or re-encoding. Is this correct?

    [edit] the manuals must be different, page 71 is about "Title Name", "Erase Section", and "Move" functions for the 531.
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  4. Originally Posted by trhouse
    I have had this unit a short time, but I think I see what you are saying. Any time the recorder does a recording "realtime" it is either encoding or re-encoding. Is this correct?
    Yes. And lets make it more simple. It is encoding no matter what is the source. HDD, DVD...

    Originally Posted by trhouse
    the manuals must be different, page 71 is about "Title Name", "Erase Section", and "Move" functions for the 531.
    Yes they are... mine is from EU version of 630. I took some time and downloaded correct manual. Please check page 66 on the right bottom side. Or just find it in your... Copy that I have is from
    http://www.pioneerelectronics.ca/poc/product/manual/0,,32171715_32253025,00.html

    DVR-533H-S (Owner's Manual) (8129 KB, 1162 sec @56k)

    It must be in your too... you just need to find it
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  5. I found similar information to what you described in your earlier post. It describes when it does a "high speed" copy vs "realtime" but there is no reference that "realtime" means encoding, but we now know it does. What it does specifically mention is realtime being used for preserving frame accurate edits and chapters.

    Unfortunately, all that aside, it will not do what I was trying to accomplish which was to do some trimming without re-encode and without having to go back to the computer.

    I do like the editing features of the 531 and the multiple menu choices so it would have been very convenient.
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  6. Member
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    I'm looking into getting one of these models but have a couple quick questions. I've used search to look for the answers already but have not found them.

    1. Are there any required firmware updates I will need to do?

    2. Is it possible with this player to get around any future problems with the broadcast flag I've been trying to read about?

    Thanks in advance.
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  7. Member
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    Originally Posted by trhouse
    Unfortunately, all that aside, it will not do what I was trying to accomplish which was to do some trimming without re-encode and without having to go back to the computer. .
    That is not the fault of the Pioneer recorder but the nature of MPEG encoding. You can't do frame accurate edits on MPEGs because such cuts can only be done on I-frames (click the Glossary link at the top of this page for information about I-frames). When you choose to edit on something other than an I-frame and insist on frame-accurate results the video around that edit must be re-encoded.

    With the new Pioneer 533/633 you can record your original video at XP+ mode, do your frame-accurate editing and re-encode at the lower bit-rate you want for your DVD with such little picture quality loss (compared with encoding at the lower bit rate in the first place) that you likely won't be able to see any difference.

    If frame-accurate editing without any picture quality loss is vital to you then stay with DV video editing on a computer. Personally, I wouldn't let this small issue keep me from enjoying the many benefits of my Pioneer recorder.
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  8. I do not need frame accurate editing so video mode was used. The re-encode occurs going from dvd-r to the hard drive. At this point no editing has occurred. I have looked into whether other hard drive recorders can do it, but it looks like this is not unique to Pioneer. As you suggest, I would not worry too much about it.
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  9. After seeing the capture abilities of so many dvd recorders, I decided to go back and have a look at one of the very first capture devices I owned. This is an old Adaptec AVC-2200 USB2 capture device. I used Movie Mill software for capturing to the computer.

    For these tests, Movie Mill was set to capture at a 720 by 480 resolution, VBR with a peak bit rate of 7.5 MBs, and all input video filters turned off. I used the Pioneer DVR-531H as the S-video source.

    AVC2200 contrast


    AVC2200 black level


    AVC2200 color bar


    AVC2200 test clip


    It does surprising well for what I recall is a Conexant 8 bit chip. I may hang onto this little box after all just to provide an alternative to the recorders.
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  10. Here's some captures made with the Sony RDR-HX900. It's a very well built (and heavy) machine with a 160GB hard drive. It has the HQ+ (15 Mbps) recording feature, with re-encoding to the recording mode of your choice. It also is one of the only recorders that has a component video input (480i only). It is set up to handle 7.5 IRE sources by default through the composite and s-video inputs, and 0 IRE sources through the component video input. It also has a IEEE 1394 DV input.

    I used my DVR-520H as the source player for DV, s-video and component outputs.

    The results of these tests are very good (they should be considering how expensive this unit is!)


    Sony RDR-HX900, DV input, SP mode:



    Sony RDR-HX900, DV input, SP mode:



    Sony RDR-HX900, s-video input, SP mode:



    Sony RDR-HX900, s-video input, SP mode:



    Sony RDR-HX900, component video input, SP mode:



    Sony RDR-HX900, component video input, SP mode:




    Here's how the unit does recrding at 15Mbps (HQ+ mode) to the hard drive, then re-encoding to SP mode to disc... Sony's adaptation of two-pass encoding:


    Sony RDR-HX900, DV input, HQ+ to SP mode:



    Sony RDR-HX900, DV input, HQ+ to SP mode:




    Just for reference, heres the same two frames captured with the JVC DR-M10 via the DV input, SP mode...

    JVC DR-M10, DV input, SP mode:



    JVC DR-M10, DV input, SP mode:




    And here are the original THX test disc frames...

    THX test disc, multi-purpose pattern:



    THX test disc, Ice Age clip, "Sid":



    It appears to me that the JVC still does a better job with DV to DVD conversion than the Sony. The Sony SP encodes have artifacts around some of the edges. The JVC encode looks closer to the original, with very few artifacts. However, the Sony HQ+ to SP "two-pass" encodes look real good. I'll have to do some high motion sequence testing using that method to see how they turn out.
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  11. Member DVWannaB's Avatar
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    Gshelly61,

    anything new to report with high motion scenes (XP+, XP, SP etc.) on the Sony HX900, as you promised? Thinking of picking one up. Thanks.
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  12. Originally Posted by DVWannaB
    Gshelly61,

    anything new to report with high motion scenes (XP+, XP, SP etc.) on the Sony HX900, as you promised? Thinking of picking one up. Thanks.
    Yeah, I did check that out... I couldn't see that much difference between that method and simply recording in SP mode to start with, although there were fewer artifacts during motion sequences. Nothing to get really excited about, though. It's still an overpriced machine.
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  13. Member DVWannaB's Avatar
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    Thanks. I am intersted in the HX715 to go with my new HDTV sometime during the x-mas / early new year.
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  14. Here are some photos inside the Pioneer DVR-420.





    The hard drive


    The tuner


    The dvd drive


    The power supply


    Underneath the hard drive


    The encoder chip. Anyone recognize it? The numbers are line 1) M65673WG, line 2) 41109. The logo is followed by capital TS.


    The heatsink for the encoder chip. The little square on the shiny metal heat sink is a thermal pad similar to that used in JVC M10's.


    Rear panel
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  15. do u think adding Thermal paste like Arctic Silver 5 to the heatsink will help?

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16835100007
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  16. Member BrainStorm69's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by trhouse
    The encoder chip. Anyone recognize it? The numbers are line 1) M65673WG, line 2) 41109. The logo is followed by capital TS.
    If you go the this Microsoft link, it has a list of "platforms" (read "chips") to which Windows Media Technologies (WMA, WMV) have been ported. The M65673WG shows up as a Mitsubishi Electric device.

    http://wmlicense.smdisp.net/ic_approved/
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  17. This information was found on a Japanese language site,



    with this block diagram,




    [edit]

    MJA,

    I think a larger thermal pad would help. The one used is pretty small compared to the size of the chip, but there are no reported problems with these units involving heat.
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  18. I managed to get a Sony RDR GX315 for some testing. Here are some photos first.

    Front


    Rear


    Top


    Encoder board. The Cirrus chips do not have heatsinks and there are no vent holes on that side of the box. They are hot. The top chip CS98202-CMZ measures 57 degrees C. ( not comfortable to touch ), the CS92686-CMZ measures 49 degrees C.


    The dvd drive, designed by Toshiba Samsung,



    The power supply. I measured the temperatures on the heatsinks going left to right, then up. The temperatures were 43, 44, 40, 39, and 63 degrees C. The power supply has the fan blowing accross it but it is cooler than the encoder.


    Video tests coming.
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  19. The inside looks about like a Lite-On in terms of layout and build quality. Note the light duty plastic case DVD burner - it looks very similar to the drives used in Lite-On units. I read somewhere that the Sony 315 is actually a re-branded Chinese made Samsung machine... although I don't know for sure.
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  20. After I read your comment, I called a friend who bought an OEM Samsung dvd drive. He confirmed it has the same kind of label indicating it is designed by Toshiba Samsung. I looked the unit over a bit more and discovered the tuner is also Samsung. Looks like the encoder board might be made by TDK.

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  21. These tests were done as follows,

    Test patterns: THX file from "ICE AGE" video.
    Source player: Panasonic S35 dvd player
    RDR GX315 connections and settings: The S-35 composite output was sent to the GX315 L1 composite input with video default settings.

    The GX315 has output playback black level adjustment but no input adjustment.

    Note: This post has been updated. The original post had the Panasonic S35 output IRE set to 7.5. The images produced looked too light. The current images below were retaken with the S35 output IRE set to 0. The black level tests show captures with the source set for both IRE=0 and 7.5 for reference.

    GX315 contrast HQ mode ( equivalent to XP )


    GX315 contrast SP mode


    GX315 contrast LP mode ( LP mode has been resized to 720 by 480 )


    GX315 black level HQ mode, IRE=0


    GX315 black level HQ mode, IRE=7.5


    GX315 black level SP mode, IRE=0


    GX315 black level SP mode, IRE=7.5


    GX315 black level LP mode, IRE=0 ( LP mode has been resized to 720 by 480 )


    GX315 black level LP mode, IRE=7.5 ( LP mode has been resized to 720 by 480 )


    GX315 multipurpose test pattern HQ mode


    GX315 multipurpose test pattern SP mode


    GX315 multipurpose test pattern LP mode ( LP mode has been resized to 720 by 480 )


    GX315 ICE AGE test clip HQ mode


    GX315 ICE AGE test clip SP mode


    GX315 ICE AGE test clip LP mode ( LP mode has been resized to 720 by 480 )


    A few problems were encountered doing these tests. The GX315 does not like dvd-rw's that have been formatted by the computer. It would not accept such a disk and would eject it with the message "The disc can be neither played nor recorded". The disk would work if it is first formatted on the Panasonic ES10 in video mode. The Sony will still display the above message but this time it will not eject it. It can then be formatted on the Sony.

    Also noticed that there are some strange blank areas at the top and sides of the captures. They are visible in playback in PowerDVD as well as VirtualDubMod. At first it was attributed to using a Panasonic ES30V for playback but then I switched to the S35 with the same result. These are most noticeable in the images of the cartoon characters.

    The Sony does not have flexible record modes or chasing playback.

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  22. Photos of the Panasonic DMR-ES35V

    Front panel. Changes from the ES30V include, no door for IN2 and a door for the DV input on the right. The ES30V did not have the "Drive" button so it had duplicated controls for the VCR and DVD.


    Rear panel. Almost identical to the ES30V but the fan is larger with more cutouts for airflow.


    Top view inside. The dvd drive is not just bolted in position. It is suspended in a cradle with shock mounts. The sheet metal for the cradle is sharp. I found out by getting cut.


    The encoder is underneath the the dvd drive. The heatsink is firmly held down with a spring clip against a thermal pad which is sandwiched between the encoder and the heatsink.


    Back side of the encoder board.


    Is the encoder LSI? It is not. It runs hot like the LSI but the name on it is Panasonic. p/n MN2DS0015DB, next line is 548A7006. It also has the Dolby, DTS symbols and the word Firewire on the chip. If other posts are correct only the DMR-ES20 and ES40V have and LSI processor.
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  23. Panasonic DMR ES35V tests.

    Source media: ICE AGE dvd
    Source player: Panasonic DMR ES30V with s-video to ES35V IN1

    Images are updated with ES30V mpeg DNR off and ES35V line in NR off

    ES35V contrast XP mode


    ES35V contrast SP mode


    ES35V contrast LP mode ( still full D1, 720 by 480 )


    ES35V black level XP mode


    ES35V black level SP mode


    ES35V black level LP mode


    ES35V XP mode multipurpose test pattern


    ES35V SP mode multipurpose test pattern


    ES35V LP mode multipurpose test pattern


    ES35V ICE AGE test clip XP mode


    ES35V ICE AGE test clip SP mode


    ES35V ICE AGE test clip LP mode
    [/img]
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  24. If the ES35 encodes at 720x480, it must be a new Panasonic chip (or maybe a re-branded LSI chip?).

    It looks like the ES35's Line-In NR (and/or the ES30's playback MPEG DNR) was left on for those caps, too.
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  25. You are right. I will repost with both off. Rebranding is always possible. Does the ES20 chip look the same as this one?

    There are few ways to determine more about the encoder. I have the JVC service manuals for the MV1 and M10 which show the pin outs for the LSI chips. I could also do some action captures from The Matrix and compare the blocks for the ES10 and the ES35V.

    One other test I plan to do regards the ES10's ability to stablize some VHS sources that other methods could not. If the ES35V can do it, that may mean it really is a Panasonic part. My understanding is that this stabilzation was absent in the LSI equipped ES20.
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  26. Yes, the stabilization is more robust in the ES10 than it is in the ES20. Also, the digital sampling and processing "looks" different, too. Hard to explain, but video signals run through the ES10 have a certain processed look to them sometimes, from my experience with it. I have both an ES10 and an ES20 on hand.

    To be honest, in terms of pass-through image quality I think the Toshiba D-R4 and RD-XS34 are superior to the Panasonics... a more transparent appearance (not as processed looking), plus they offer active proc amp type picture adjustments on the output side of the units that work during pass-through. In fact, the two levels of line input video noise reduction in the XS34 work during pass-through, as well. I don't know if the Toshiba's image stabilization and TBC functions are as good as the Panasonic ES10, though. I mostly deal with higher quality sources and don't convert many challenging tapes.
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  27. The problem for me with the Toshiba's is that my relatives for whom I am doing 95% of my recording want me to move on to using dual or double layer media. Toshiba so far supports neither. They are paying for all the media I use and do not seem to mind $2-3 per disk for those important memories. It is one of the reasons for the recent Sony GX315 tests.

    Tonight I tested both the Panasonic DMR-ES30V and ES35V with a bad tape that rolled vertically at least seven times. These recorders have nearly identical rear panels. I connected the common VCR/DVD composite output to video input 1 on the TV and the DVD only output ( which is directly below the other output ) to video input 2 of the TV. That way I could switch back and forth between VCR output and the pass through image.

    These recorders behave remarkably the same. Neither one showed any vertical rolling at the pass though output. Instead a semi-transparent horizontal line scrolls slowly down the screen without any vertical motion in the image itself. The ES10 does the same.

    This is only one test, but it shows the ES30V encoder and the ES35V encoder behave identically in stabilizing ability which tends indicate the two encoders are really Panasonic designs. I was told that the reason for the ES20 was to prevent Sony from capturing more market share since Sony's have DV inputs and the ES10, ES30V did not. It may be that the LSI was an interim solution until their own new chip was ready. That of course is all conjecture.

    P.S. The ES15 non-combo is on BestBuy shelves as of tonight for $159.
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  28. Member FulciLives's Avatar
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    Some of the Pioneer models support recording to DVD-R Dual Layer discs.

    In fact I think all the current models do except for the most basic unit. For instance I know the following models support DVD-R DL

    DVR-531H-s
    DVR-533H-s
    DVR-633H-s

    Of course these are all very hard to come by now because Pioneer has the next batch of models in the works so stock levels on the current models are low as I think the next batch is due "sometime" soon.

    As far as I know the next batch of Pioneer models will also support DVD-R DL

    I have the Pioneer DVR-531H-s and I am very happy with it although I must say that I have never tried to record to a DVD-R DL disc ... yet.

    I just wanted to point out that there are other machines out there with DL recording capability.

    Another thought ... record in the 1 hour mode on the Toshiba to 2 separate DVD-RW discs for a total of 2 hours across the 2 discs ... rip to your computer ... and make a Dual Layer DVD disc using your computer's DVD authoring software and DVD burner. Just be carefull though because a DL disc is not exactly double the capacity of a Single Layer disc so using the 1 hour mode you will not be able to fit a full 2 hours on a DL disc but it should be close like 1 hour and 50 or 55 minutes or something like that.

    - John "FulciLives" Coleman
    "The eyes are the first thing that you have to destroy ... because they have seen too many bad things" - Lucio Fulci
    EXPLORE THE FILMS OF LUCIO FULCI - THE MAESTRO OF GORE
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  29. Yes, my new Pioneer 433 supports DL minus R discs, but they need to be "version 3".
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  30. Thanks for the thoughts regarding the Toshiba. I am trying to avoid the computer at the moment so I can get my nephew to help out with all this. He is not very computer savvy.

    I would think that Panasonic's support on all their new machines for DVD-R DL should give Pioneer a boost or at least give -DL sales a boost so that the price gap narrows.

    I have recaptured all the images with the ES30V mpeg DNR off ( playback ) and the ES35V Line In NR off. Not much difference that I can see. I will try to compare the blocking with an action clip between these two units tonight. If it is LSI, I would expect to see a more subtle gradation in color between blocks which seems characteristic of an LSI capture.
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