Is this a good dvd-recorder for the price of around 25dollars? Does this recorder have the option like the Pioneer 540-H when you mark a recorded Tv-program then it plays a little preview of the video?
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The Samsung dvd recorders are among the most problematic ever sold, nowhere near as solid as similar Pioneer, Panasonic, Sony or even Phillips. But for only $25, I'd certainly experiment with one- just don't count on it as your primary recorder.
Not sure what you mean by "a little preview of the video"? If you're thinking of the Pioneer HDD navigation screen, which shows four smallish thumbnails at a time in a scrolling list with text names next to each thumbnail, and starts playing the video/audio in the thumbnail of whichever title you move the cursor onto (while the other three are static): no, the Samsung interface is not the same. Samsung uses the more common display of four scrolling text titles on the right, with a large thumbnail of only the currently highlighted title on the left. That large thumbnail changes as you scroll down the title list, but you can't view more than one thumbnail at a time. Not sure if Samsung's thumbnail offers a motion preview or not: I would guess yes, since most DVD/HDD recorders offer this. The instruction manual gives no indication the unit allows choosing a custom thumbnail for either the HDD recordings or finalized dvds: presumably,like a Phillips, it auto-selects one of the first frames from each recording as a thumbnail.
If you prefer the familiar, customizable interface of your Pioneer 540, I'd suggest spending a little more and just buying another used Pioneer. Alternatively, look for a near-identical Sony RDR-HX680, 780 or 880 (between 2006-2008, Sony and Pioneer co-produced the same DVD/HDD recorder design that used the same interface). The Sony RDR-x70 and RDR-HXx90 also use the Pioneer 540 interface. Only significant difference between Sony and Pioneer is the Sony versions don't offer DVD-RAM recording. The final model series Pioneer 550 & 560, and Sony x80 & x90, include HDMI connection for HDTVs that was not available on the older Pioneer 540 series of 2006.
Bear in mind all these units are now 7 to 10 years old or more: near their end-of-life. The hard drives can be replaced fairly easily, but it is now impossible to get worn out dvd drives replaced or repaired. Don't overpay for a used recorder, and make sure the seller lets you test it. Of course, if you only care about the HDD part of the recorder, a dying dvd drive won't bother you.
Thank you for your very detailed answer, that made my mind more clear. Yes i certainly want the interface when a video is played in a small picture window to the left in Pioneer, as you know my old one went broken so i can't check. But i remember it played the video as long as you had the video title marked, i really liked that function. I got one offer on a Pioneer DVR-940HX-S he wanted 1250kr which is in dollar 141,86. It was not used much.
FWIW Panasonic DVDRs('04 and on??) had the same preview thumbnail too and while maybe not as hard to find as old Pioneers, Panasonics are getting harder and harder to find.
Does the SONY RDR-HX650 & SONY RDR-HX510 has the same Pioneer interface as well? I been offered one of these and a 250Gb Pioneer dvr-630H with remotes for only around 20-30 dollars. They should be working and it's a bargain.
I have the offer of buying two of these 4 cheap: Pioneer dvr-630H, LG RH387 (DVFXchip for improved recording quality), Sony RDR-GX350, RDR-HX650. And i suspect the Pioneer and the LG is best?
Last edited by OldSchool297; 3rd Apr 2017 at 18:33.
Sony RDR-HX650 has very similar interface to Pioneer 540 (90% the same, very small differences in setting timer, etc).
I've never seen a Sony RDR-HX model as low as 350 (they usually start with RDR-HX5xx), but if you find a HX350 it should be same as HX550 interface.
RDR-HX510 is much too old. Interface is different, and you will have problems burning today's blank dvds. Avoid this one unless it is working perfect and you get it VERY cheap.
Pioneer DVR-630 is a 2005 model. Getting a bit old, and sometimes they have problems with Guide+ timer system or burning new blank dvds. Good recorder if it is working OK, and cheap.
The LG RH387 is nice if you get a good price. Again, test that it will burn the blank discs you like to use before buying.
Yes the Sony RDR-GX350 must be very old but it has a very nice design, but i don't think this recorder has a HDD? I have check several pages on the web but none of them mentions any HDD. Do you know if the LG RH387 provides better quality than the Pioneer 540 on burned discs? I like to try and experimental with these recorders, and if you don't like them they are very easy to resell in Sweden, often around 50-80dollars for the low price marked models.
You are lucky that DVD/HDD recorders now sell so inexpensive in Sweden. Here in USA there isn't much choice, and the good ones are still expensive used.
Yes RDR-HX510 is beautiful design to look at on a shelf, but electronically is too old. The RDR-HX models ending in "10" have too many problems with the dvd drive that cannot be fixed.
The RDR-HX350 seems to be a mis-print in the sller listing? Sonys with "RDR-HX" always have an HDD, but there is no such model in Sony service literature, only RDR-GX350. The GX models do not have HDD, only DVD recording. The GX models have a much worse rating and reliability than the HX, so theres no point in buying a GX when HX is so affordable in Sweden. Sony was much better with the HX models than GX or VX.
The LG RH387 should make at least as good recordings as your Pioneer 540, perhaps better. The 540 video encoder is good, but a little bit soft and fuzzy sometimes. The earlier 530/630 were sharper, and the later 550/560/LX were excellent (also Sony 780 and 790 etc).