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  1. Member
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    I opened it up last night and cleaned the lens -- slight improvement, but it's still not reading some discs. I'm willing to do the surgery, but how would I replace the burner? In other words, where would I get that part, and approximately how much does it cost? (Is this a logical repair, or would I be better off just cutting my losses and buying a whole new unit?) I wonder if Walmart would exchange it -- it's past the 90 day warrenty period, and I don't think I even still have the receipt or the box.
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    to grantsoo,
    you're on the money about the 2hr YesDVD. Compatibility with my other player is crucial to me. So I did a short test, recorded about 5min to DVD+RW, YesDVD worked great. But when I left it alone to record the full 2-hr show to DVD+RW, YesDVD played ok on the Polaroid. Took it to the other player and nothing! Just a blank screen. But...

    to starflier23,
    Had the same problem a you (read what I just said). Popped my YesDVD on the other player and nothing. The thing would just cycle for a long time on a blank screen and do nothing. Pressing Menu button did more of the same. However, Play and/or NextChapter got it going ok. So I can still play it by skipping to next chapter or searching to a specific chapter.

    Having said that, I had done a home VHS at Walmart with the YesDVD format and everyone in my family loved the resulting 'navigation' feature to see the DVD contents at a glance. So that was the primary reason I bought this thing. Not seeing the thumbnail index is a bummer!
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    From reading the previous posts on this thread I have a question. I currently have a SA 8000 cable box. With this box you can't record any on demand programming or record live TV directly to a DVD.

    I was hoping to run the component cables through the polaroid to the TV so I could do these things, but it sounds like I would have to change the output of the box to 480i each time I did this?

    I guessit kind of makes sense that the polaroid would not be able to downscale 1080i but I just want to confirm.
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  4. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    My local Walmart just restocked the shelves with a dozen units.

    That said, however, there seem to be too many problems with these units. I've seen a pretty big volume of dud burners and other screwball issues going on. Some people ignore or accept them, but many are just returning them. A lucky few seem to have a good experience.

    I found the RCA to be an acceptable albeit imperfect alternative. A Toshiba XS-series would be the best choice in the USA, or a JVC DR-MH300/M300H in Europe.
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  5. The RCA 8030N is a nice compact, hdd recorder with a friendly navigation scheme. Unfortunately, its video capture performance is subpar. Black and white levels are both off. The black level is neither IRE=0 nor 7.5 but someplace in between. Colors are shifted towards the yellow. Its mono tuner suffers from internal interference resulting in subtle horizontal bars best seen in dark scenes. This is all documented on this thread,

    https://forum.videohelp.com/viewtopic.php?t=279460&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=102

    The 2001G by comparison has accurate color reproduction as well as black and white levels as tested here,

    https://forum.videohelp.com/viewtopic.php?t=279460&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=97

    It is best to keep in mind that these are two of the most inexpensive hdd recorders on the market. Compromises must be made to reach this price point. They are almost mirror images of each other. One has a well layed out remote and friendly interface but the video is subpar, the other has a poor remote ( which you can fix yourself ) and a less intuitive interface but the video is more accurate.
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  6. Member
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    How do I figure out when this machine was mfg? Is it built into the serial number? Mine begins with a K
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  7. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    trhouse, I've not seen any lines in the tuner. But I avoid the tuner because of the audio whine. When recording directly from composite, the image is quite clean.

    The signals on the RCA play back much worse from the recording deck than they do from a normal DVD player. The RCA plays darker, luma shifted.

    I actually found the Polaroid to have too much contrast, and the mosquito noise in the MPEG was unacceptable. Some colors were washed, darks lacked hues.

    Agree, these are bottom-feeder units, end of the quality totem. I just think the Polaroid is more towards dead last than an RCA is.
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  8. My experience is more in line with what trhouse has reported and what was reported here:

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=7671266&&#post7671266

    lordsmurf - you seemed to have some trouble with the one you were testing. Perhaps it was a less than ideal unit.
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  9. Originally Posted by lordsmurf
    A Toshiba XS-series would be the best choice in the USA
    Bingo
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  10. Member
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    Ok, the Polaroid that I have a "K" unit has the following problem - I plug it in the red light comes on. I press the power button, 25 % of the time the machine turns on, 75% everything goes dark. I have to unplug and plug in again. Even if it works, once i turn it off, I can't turn it on again.

    Which Toshiba model is the recommended one as far as you are concerned - this unit will probably have to go back and it was the last one. I did not like the RCA.
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  11. Member FulciLives's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ajcstr
    Ok, the Polaroid that I have a "K" unit has the following problem - I plug it in the red light comes on. I press the power button, 25 % of the time the machine turns on, 75% everything goes dark. I have to unplug and plug in again. Even if it works, once i turn it off, I can't turn it on again.

    Which Toshiba model is the recommended one as far as you are concerned - this unit will probably have to go back and it was the last one. I did not like the RCA.
    You want either the Toshiba RD-XS35 or if you can still find it the Pioneer DVR-640H-s ... both are excellent models.

    Use something like PRICEGRABBER.COM to find the best (lowest) on-line price.

    - 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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  12. Member
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    Thanks, but I really don't want to spend 300+. Want to stay under $250 so I may just go with a plain old recorder with no HD.
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  13. Member FulciLives's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ajcstr
    Thanks, but I really don't want to spend 300+. Want to stay under $250 so I may just go with a plain old recorder with no HD.
    If you will be using a stand alone DVD recorder often ... especially for recording from cable/satellite TV ... then you will get very frustrated with a non-HDD model.

    I paid $338 + Tax at WALMART for my Pioneer DVR-531H-s (80GB HDD built-in) and I have never regretted it.

    Also bear in mind that the Toshiba and Pioneer HDD models have features not often found on other non-HDD modes like selectable bitrate so you can set a bitrate for a specific running time to maximize your quality instead of fixed times like 1 hour, 2 hour, 3 hour, etc.

    The Panasonic units (wihout a HDD) have selectable bitrate but the Panasonics kinda suck for other reasons and all the other non HDD models (by other companies) only have fixed recording times.

    What to record a move that is 2 hours and 10 minutes long? On some recorders that means using a 2 1/2 hour mode if you are LUCKY but with most it means using the 3 hour if not 4 hour mode (some go straight from 2 hours to 4 hours with nothing in-between).

    Just do it right and get one of the Toshiba or Pioneer models I mentioned.

    - 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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  14. Member
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    I currently have a comcast box with a HD so I was really going to use the HD in whatever I got as additional storage which I why I can't see paying that much.
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  15. Originally Posted by Lordsmurf
    trhouse, I've not seen any lines in the tuner. But I avoid the tuner because of the audio whine. When recording directly from composite, the image is quite clean.
    It would be nice if it were possible to test more than one of these. I have seen reported problems that I did not see including the audio issue you mentioned. Unfortunately, I only had the one from a neighbor available to test. If I do come across another RCA available for testing, I will do so and post the results.
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    FYI: The led upgrade is a great mod. Thanks to whomever submitted. I think it was lordsmurf, but I may be wrong. Anyway, just wanted to let you know that the reason the radio shack was only a slight improvement is because it's operational angle is only 6 deg even though it is high power. Why not get an led with a 40 deg angle of operation instead? Actually what I did was pull one of the led's from an unused/broken dish net remote. Wow, hugh difference, and it didn't cost me a cent. Just make sure you use the larger of the two, if it is a remote with two led's. Good luck.
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    Originally Posted by mdspiro
    I opened it up last night and cleaned the lens -- slight improvement, but it's still not reading some discs. I'm willing to do the surgery, but how would I replace the burner? In other words, where would I get that part, and approximately how much does it cost? (Is this a logical repair, or would I be better off just cutting my losses and buying a whole new unit?) I wonder if Walmart would exchange it -- it's past the 90 day warrenty period, and I don't think I even still have the receipt or the box.

    Here's what you can do: Go to wallymart and get yourself another unit. Put the defective unit back in the box and return for a refund.
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    Ok i need some major help w/ this damn dvd player my friends was playing w/ the setup and now we cant see crap nothing just is there away to reset the dvd player ?? cuz i cant see nothing just plane black Screen w/ a little white i can hear audio
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    oh boy - he probably changed the TV Type from NTSC to PAL. I did the same thing right before I returned it (I was having other problems) and I was dead in the water.

    maybe someone knows how to reset this, but you are right - you just get a blank screen.
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  20. Member
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    Did u get to fix it ?? cuz damn im getting pist ticked off
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  21. Member
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    no, as I say I did that literally 2 minutes before I packed it up and took it back - you may have to have someone in the forum go through the buttons you would have to press on the remote to either change it back or restore factory defaults. You are basically flying blind at this point.

    Maybe you can follow the manual (page 12-13) slowly and luck out.
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    o well if not i will try and Try till i get it
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  23. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    Or plug it into a capture card on a computer that can accept PAL. Many can.
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  24. Member
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    I fixed it !!! Thanks guys was easy just setup down(5) then right then ok ok
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    Originally Posted by mabulok
    Here's what you can do: Go to wallymart and get yourself another unit. Put the defective unit back in the box and return for a refund.
    Thanks. I already did exactly that, and I've been using a new "K" Polaroid unit for about a 3 weeks now. So far, so good! I did have an initial problem with what I thought was another failing optical drive (lots of coasters) and loosing the ability to use the "YesDVD" feature on DVD's burned from my home video tapes. What I discovered is that I was using garbage media bought on sale (TDK DVD-R's) which was the source of all my problems. First of all, the YesDVD feature only works on +R/+RW disks, not -R. More importantly, high quality blank media is essential for the Polaroid, or any other DVR unit to produce good results. I went out and bought a pack of Sony DVD+R's, and it's been working perfectly ever since. If anyone is interested, check out this website for great information on DVD Media Quality: www.digitalfaq.com/media/dvdmedia.htm What I learned is that it's not the brand on a blank DVD that matters -- it's the media ID that is important, as it reveals the manufacturer.
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  26. Member Brain's Avatar
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    Anyone have a problem with the Chapter Editing feature? I recorded a Billy Idol concert on RaveHD and after burning the DVD I edited the chapter marks to have the chapters set at just before the begginning of each song. On the unit it works fine. Each chapter goes to just the begginning of each song but when I play it in my JVC Player it will only recognize the first chapter. I use Verbatim DVD+R media and tried it on several DVDs and the same thing. Even when I just use the 10 minute or whatever auto setting the JVC recognizes the chapters on some discs but not others. Anyone run across this prob?

    Btw, the recording quality on the HDD and the DVD was incredible! So was the concert. I got on my knees and worshipped IDOL.

    Update: I think I've pretty much had it with this unit. The recording to hdd and DVD+R disc (playing the disc in itself) is superb, no problems at all. But the bloody DVDs won't play properly in anything else. Chapters don't work right, fast forward doesn't work right, it'll play the first and last chapters only, sometimes play all the way through if I don't touch anything, it won't make "Compatible" a DVD+RW so it won't even play it in itself unless I was in editing mode (constantly freezes at 98% when trying to make DVD+RWs "Compatible"-without running "Compatibility" it won't play either) and that doesn't matter since the quality dropped to crap burning to a DVD+RW disc, even though title 1 is playing (only 1 title on disc) it always says Title 2 on the player, etc. I've tried several DVD+R and DVD+RWs and get the same thing. If the DVDs won't play properly and consistantly on other players then this thing is pretty much useless. Even if I didn't plan on making any DVDs for anyone or using it on another player, sooner or later I'll get another player/recorder and I'll have a bunch of DVDs that won't play properly. Good thing I got it at Walmart. They'll take it back. I wonder if their Philips DVDR3455 w/160gig hdd is any good. I hate to buy anywhere else so as not to have return hassles.
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  27. A long relevant note,,but I have a Curtis dvd recorder and RJTech thats identical to this Polaroid.
    PAL/NTSC problem solver.
    USED TO BE A UK Equipment owner., NOW FINISHED WITH VHS CONVERSIONS-THANKS
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  28. Member Brain's Avatar
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    My unit just fried last night. Now it won't even turn on. Plug it in and the fan spins but no lights, no response, no worky. Took it back to Walmart today and I noticed several new price tags on the display model shelf. One was the price tag for the new Polaroid model with 160Gig drive, USB, HDMI and a bunch new features at $258. Another was for the new Philips 160Gig model #3575 with a bunch new features at $298. They didn't have any yet but the bloke said probably in the next several days they should be receiving them. I guess I'll give Polar another try.
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  29. Member
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    I lock one of the titles on my player by accident and was wondering if Polaroid set a password since I hadn't set one yet
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    Default I believe is 3308. No idea how to change it, not explained in my manual.
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