- DVD-recorder, easy to use, tons of features
- Poor JPG and MP3 handling
Brilliant. If it weren't for the poor handling of JPG and MP3 discs, this DVD-recorder and VHS combo would get the perfect rating.
Price$ 659.00 (AUD)
With the DMR-ES30V, Panasonic has come as close as anything in this category to a perfect rating. It's an excellently designed combo device, incorporating a powerful DVD recorder and a no-expensive-spared VCR, with a user interface that is second to none. Its output from both DVD and VHS was flawless; the remote is well designed, with responsive buttons, a handy layout and a full set of functions; and even the LCD on the front of the player shows evidence of well-thought-out design.
There isn't a writable DVD disc format that the player doesn't support. It supports DVD-RAM (without the need to remove it from the cartridge), DVD-R/RW and DVD+R/RW. DVD+RW and DVD-RAM are the preferred rewritable formats, since it can better handle incremental writes and video editing on these discs.
We were most impressed with the drive's responsiveness during DVD recording. It kicked in very quickly, required little pause at the end of writing a file to a write-once or DVD-RW disc in DVD-video ("V") format, and delivered the kind of response we've come to expect from VHS. It supports five modes, from 1 hour per disc to 8 hours. The quality of encoding was good--we wouldn't recommend the 8 hours settings for fast-motion shows, since there would be considerable evidence of compression artefacts. At the 4 hours per disc (LP mode) or better, however, there's little to distinguish the recording from free-to-air analog TV (although if you're using progressive scan component output and are a quality Nazi, the SP mode--two hours per disc--may suit you better).
As with most DVD recorders, you can "finalise" recordings on DVD-R/+R and DVD-RW discs to make them playable on other standalone DVD video players.
If you're willing to spend the time, you can actually perform some serious editing functions on rewritable media. In addition to giving the recorded videos names, you can split videos, truncate them, erase chunks, set the thumbnail (for the DVD menu), set chapters and create playlists. The editing interface is as good as you can get using a remote control, although it can not, of course, match PC-based editing tools.
The DVD recording also has a few other neat touches: a timeshift-like function that allows you to watch a program that you're recording from the beginning; automatic quality rate settings in order to fit a scheduled recording onto a disc; one-touch dubbing to VHS (and vice versa) and a "Time Slip" feature that jumps you back 30 seconds from the current recording position (again, like timeshifting).
What's more, the Panasonic has two tuners, and it's perfectly possible to record one show (on either DVD or VHS) while watching another. You can also record two shows at once--one on DVD and one on VHS. We tested it out, and it managed to record on both a VHS tape and a DVD-RAM while simultaneously timeshifting the DVD-RAM recording. Very cool.
Join the newsletter!
Samsung QLED 8K TV
Bang and Olufsen Beoplay A9 Speaker
Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB 3000
Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver Watch
Ballistix Sport AT
Apple iMac Pro
Toys for Boys
Little Bits DROID Inventor Kit
Tivoli PAL BT
Nix Pro Colour Sensor
ESET Internet Security
ESET Smart Security Premium
Oregon Pro WMR500 Weather Station
Osmo Coding Awbie Game
ESET Cyber Security Pro for Mac
SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3
TimeFlip Magnet Simple Time Tracking Device
Naztech Xtra Drive Mini + 256GB microSD Card
Ikea RIGGAD work lamp with wireless charging
Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker
Ransomware has been one of the most prolific malware families for years, generating financial losses for targeted users and organizations, as well as significant revenue for cybercriminals.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Galaxy Watch review: Brilliant but not quite a breakthrough
- 2 HP Omen 15 (2018): Full, in-depth review
- 3 HP Envy x360 13 (Ryzen): Full, in-depth review
- 4 Dell G5 review: Easy to live with
- 5 Nokia 6 (2018) review: Simple. Solid. Supreme.
Latest News Articles
- Telstra customers can now add the Kayo app to their account
- Streaming service delivers over 50 sports live and on demand for Aussie fans
- JBL introduces JRPOP Ultra Portable Speaker
- Turtle Beach’s Elite Pro 2 + SuperAmp is now available
- Hisense's first OLED TV finally gets Australian pricing and availability
PCW Evaluation Team
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
- Razer Phone 2 review: One for the fans
- Oppo R17 Pro review: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Google Pixel 3 XL review: Ghost in the machine
- 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