Australia's first standalone Blu-ray writer
- 500GB hard drive, dual high definition tuners, Blu-ray writer, Viera link
- Costly, minor bugs in the EPG
If you can afford it, the Panasonic DMR-BW500 is a wonderful addition to any high definition home entertainment setup. It offers dual HD tuners, a 500GB hard disk and Blu-ray writing capabilities making it a perfect all purpose device.
Price$ 2,299.00 (AUD)
Announced just moments ago, Panasonic's DMR-BW500 is Australia's first standalone Blu-ray recorder. Featuring a drive that both reads and writes Blu-ray discs, as well as a 500GB hard disk and two high-definition digital tuners this device is well suited to becoming the centrepiece of high-definition lounge rooms across the country. Although it carries a hefty price tag, it fulfils several roles at once and is a great option for users looking to make the jump to Blu-ray.
The pairing of the 500GB hard drive with the Blu-ray writer is really the key selling point of this unit. Allowing users to record content then back it up to high capacity media is a big boon, as it makes it basically impossible to run out of space. There are several recording modes. DR is the main one: it records in the same quality as the broadcast (be it SD or HD) and you can get up to 62 hours of footage at this setting on the hard disk (three hours on a 25GB BD-R). Then there are an array of others such as XP, SP and EP that range from 110 hours to 887 hours on the HDD and five hours to 42 hours on a BD-R. Users can also write footage at these three quality levels to a variety of DVD formats such as DVD-RAM and DVD-R.
In our tests the quality of the recorded footage was excellent. Even when capturing the HD broadcast television channels everything looked clear and sharp when recorded in DR. As mentioned earlier, footage that has been written to the HDD can be subsequently copied to a disc to make more space. Our test recording was 11 minutes of footage that occupied 2.8GB on the HDD. It copied across in a little over five and a half minutes, which isn't fast by normal standards, but is fine considering the quantity of data involved.
As two high-definition digital tuners are included, you can record two programs at once. If running an aerial connection through your television as well, you could even watch a third while recording the other two. You can also split the recordings, writing one to the HDD and one to BD-R.
The DMR-BW500 comes with a built in seven-day electronic program guide (EPG) that makes scheduling recordings a breeze. Functioning much like a media centre guide, you can see a grid outlining what is on right now and what is coming up and pick programs to record. You can also do nifty things like setting it up to record a particular program each week. The EPG worked relatively well but not perfectly; at times we could only browse a few hours ahead on the schedule and it seemed fickle when updating.
Another cool feature of this unit is Viera Link, which lets you use your television remote control to access most of the player's functions, assuming you have a Viera television. It works pretty well for the most part and allows for one particularly awesome function: pausing live TV. Activating this feature will automatically switch on your DMR-BW500, flick it to the appropriate channel, change your TV over to the player and then pause the tuner effectively letting you pause, rewind and fast forward television.
All the standard connectivity options you'd expect are there, including HDMI, component RCA, optical and co-axial. The output when running a Blu-ray film through the HMDI 1.3 connection was stunning; this unit definitely produces some of the best image quality we've seen. It also supports all the latest sound formats including Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD.
The design of the DMR-BW500 is a pretty standard for a home entertainment device, with a relatively slim boxy design that looks quite stylish. It has a small flip-down panel at the front that hides some basic controls, as well as an SD card slot and USB port.
Join the newsletter!
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Apple iPhone X
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
cloudandco Smart Cane
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
Toys for Boys
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Bose SoundLink Micro
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Xbox One X
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 LG 65E7T Ultra HD OLED TV review: The South Korean thoroughbred is still first past the post
- 2 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 3 Sony's latest Ultra HD OLED debuts in Australia
- 4 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
- 5 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
Latest News Articles
- JBL join smart speaker arena with the portable, waterproof and (Google-powered) JBL Link range
- BenQ Debuts True 4K UHD HDR Home Cinema Projector Designed for Modern Families
- Foxtel Now's new streaming device launched weeks after TelstraTV
- Logitech announce new MX Sound speakers
- Telstra looks to solve 'Entertainment Exasperation' with new 4K Telstra TV
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- CES 2018: Belkin go big on wearables accessories and wireless charging
- OPPO Load Up A73 Smartphone With Flagship Features
- CES 2018
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCSecurity Operations SpecialistQLD
- TPSystem AnalystACT
- FTVarious DevelopersACT
- FTProgram CoordinatorOther
- FTSenior Solution Architect - Data CentreACT
- FTNetwork Technical Specialist L3 x 2 ? Large Telco ? 6 month contract initiallyNSW
- CCHR/Payroll Solution ArchitectQLD
- CCSenior Test Coordinator - (ieMR/ IMR) BrisbaneSA
- FTChange Lead - 12 Month Contract!Other
- CCProject ManagerQLD
- CCIteration Lead - Telco - Melbourne CBDVIC
- FTLead Data Engineer - Greenfield projectQLD
- FTTeam Leader - Service Desk (Internal Customers)SA
- FTCyber Security Threat Management SpecialistOther
- CCGraduate Reporting/Monitoring AnalystQLD
- FT.Net Full-stack DeveloperOther
- CCScrum MasterNSW
- CCProgram SchedulerQLD
- CCApplication DeveloperNSW
- FTSenior Front End Developer - ReactOther
- CCFront-End DeveloperNSW
- FTSolution Architect- SAP S/4 HANA - Orange NSWOther
- FTJnr Project Manager/Business Analyst - Software ImplementationOther
- CCUser Interface DeveloperACT
- FTNetwork Administrator - HP SwitchesOther