130 of 131 people found the following review helpful
on 16 July 2007
I just sent back a faulty Sony RDRGXD360S recorder to replace with this one..yes, it cost a ton more, but worth it.(see my other review for trouble I had with the Sony one). This one has got a very easy to use menu, and a 160gb hard drive. The set up is straightforward, and it feels like a machine that's built to last... 1080P up conversion is a bonus, as is the fact that it will record onto all formats DVD +R/RW/-R/-RW/RAM. I would wholeheartedly recommend this machine any day, it's worth it for trouble-free, versatile useage.
87 of 88 people found the following review helpful
on 7 September 2007
After two failed PVRs of a similiar spec bought from Philips, the previous review tempted me to try the Panasonic DMR-EX77. I wasn't disappointed, in fact ecstatically pleased. The set up is simplicity in itself, operation is intuitive and picture quality is awesome.
I will be very surprised if anyone purchasing one of these will be disappointed.
60 of 61 people found the following review helpful
on 25 October 2007
Bought this to replace a very noisy Sony RDRGXD360S in the bedroom and it is well worth the extra. Very quiet machine, totally silent in standby mode - the Sony was giving us sleepless nights with the fan noise.
The HDD means no searching for disks and the EPG makes it very easy to program your recordings. You can even do a slide show from your SD card with it.
Add in 'pause live TV' and 'chasing playback', and what more could you want ?
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on 7 December 2007
After spending weeks reading reviews on hard drive DVD recorders I selected the Panasonic DMR-EX77 as not only did it get great reviews but it was also reasonably priced and connecting it up to my Panasonic TX-32LXD700 TV would allow me to use the Viera link functionality.
As usual, Amazon's order handling was great and the unit turnd up within a couple of days. Unfortunately, the unit refused to tune in to any digital channels (no problem with the TV on the same aerial though) so back it went to Amazon (courier collection and no return postage costs - hats off to Amazon for great customer service).
The replacement unit duly arrived and was easy peasy to set up. Since then I've recorded loads of stuff onto the hard drive and copied it across to dvd. Editing programs on the hard drive is simple so it only takes a minute or so to remove those annoying adverts. Using the EPG to record stuff is also incredibly easy although I'd like to have seen the option to automatically add a few minutes to the start and end of a recording to allow for slight broadcast delays (the Humax PVR that I use has got this kind of thing well sorted).
It's still early days so I may find a few niggles with the unit at some time in the future but so far I'm very impressed with the overall package. My only criticisms to date are the rather cheap dvd tray that looks and feels like it would break if a feather dropped on it and the fact that it doesn't seem to be able to record onto DVD+R discs (the manual is a bit confusing when it comes to media compatibility but my unit definitely doesn't want to record to DVD+R).
All in all a great product from my favourite online supplier.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 29 December 2007
This is a pure delight to use and the picture quality in SP mode is superb. Recording is easy either to DVD or HDD and it's pretty simple to navigate through the HDD once you've recorded a lot of programmes. The only negative for me so far is that you can't see the programme number you are recording once timed recording has started. The unit was delivered via the Home Delivery Service a few days after I ordered it and arrived on the Amazon estimated delivery date. Highly recommended.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 18 January 2008
After checking the reviews of other HDD recorders I opted for this model, arrived in a couple of days, set up in a less than 10mins, connected to my Panasonic LCD TV with an HDMI cable, great picture quality from the instant recording mode, only gripe at the moment is it is very slow during the warm up when it has been in stand by mode, would recommend the EX77 anytime.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
"What Home Cinema" magazine gave the DMR-EX77 a rating of 90% in their August 2007 issue, and it's easy to see why. It's a stylish, well-made, reliable, fully featured machine, that you really WILL use on a daily basis. The three main features that I continually use are:
- Recording live TV Shows to HDD
- Archiving TV Shows from HDD to DVD-R
- Playing DVD and DVD-R discs
Recording live Freeview TV Shows to the internal Hard Disk Drive (HDD) is super easy. If you want to record what you're currently watching, just press the REC button on the remote. If you want to set a Timer Recording, you can do it in literally 3 presses of the remote, starting with the GUIDE button. Once a Timer Recording is set, it is guaranteed to record reliably. I've never had it fail on me once. Just set it and forget it. It doesn't matter if you leave the machine turned on or off. If it's off, it will automatically turn itself on, execute the Timer Recording, then turn itself off again.
With the 160 GB HDD, you can record for 36 hours in XP Mode. What this means is, you can make technically flawless, perfect recordings, indistinguishable from the original broadcast. If you want to record for longer than 36 hours, you can drop the quality down to SP Mode. But I challenge you to find more than 36 hours of content worth recording on Freeview!
To see all the TV Shows you've recorded, just press the DIRECT NAVIGATOR button on the remote. This takes you to a list of all your recordings, presented in date order. You can Play any recording, you can Delete any recording, and you can Edit any recording.
The Edit feature is very useful. It enables you to tidy up your recordings, by trimming the start and stop points and cutting out the adverts. While the technicality of this isn't for Gran, it's pretty quick and easy to do. The Divide Title option lets you split one recording into two; perfect for choosing the very first frame of your recording. You can repeat the same procedure for the end frame of your recording, so that it finishes exactly where you want it, such as on a solid black. Finally, the Partial Delete option lets you cut chunks of video out of the middle of your recording; perfect for seamlessly removing adverts.
Even though the HDD can store 36 hours of TV Shows, it's best to think of this storage as temporary and archive anything you want to keep safe onto a DVD-R disc. And this is where having both an HDD and DVD drive in the same machine is extremely useful. You don't have to worry about cables, or connecting two separate devices (e.g. Sky+ Box and DVD Recorder) together. Everything's already set up and ready to go. By using the Advanced Copy feature, you can automatically copy an entire list of TV Recordings to a DVD-R disc in one go, without having to record them one by one. This saves a ton of time.
Finally, DVDs played on the EX77 look very clear. They're automatically upscaled to 1080p and output via HDMI, making the difference in quality between DVDs and Blu-ray Discs less obvious. To be honest, your ability to appreciate High Definition all depends on how large your TV is, what resolution it supports, and how close you sit to watch it. For a lot of home users, there won't be any discernible difference in detail between a DVD played on this machine, or a Blu-ray Disc in a Blu-ray Player. That's not what companies selling Blu-ray Players want you to hear, but it's true.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 18 February 2008
Received this machine Friday (less than a week since order) and now (Monday)am very happy with it.
Instruction Manual - Complicated in places - but I am getting to grips with it. The terminology is not the greatest, and I am confused at parts, but overall I now have a good grip on most features.
Freeview - I am in deepest darkest Dorset and as a result I cannot receive Freeview and this DOES NOT have a Analogue Tuner - I did know this when I bought it and accept that for the time being I am losing out on its functionality. I am therefore limited to Sky freeview through its AV2 input.
Pause Live TV - You can watch what you record and pause it whilst it is still recording only. Therefore no quick buttons to press to set this instantly if the telephone rings etc - unless you are anticipating it.
Recording - To offset my disapointment with the Freeview, I have worked out now that I can set my Sky freeview Planner (with Autoview) and if you have things configured correctly with the unit set to 'External Link', then the unit will automatically record those programmes - this gives me the same functionality as the Guide recording planner from freeview on the unit - but did take me most of the weekend to figure out how.
Overall - I am still learning, but got exactly what I wanted, whilst still remembering I am missing some of the functions. Very Pleased...
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 22 December 2008
Just to add an extra note after my previous review some years back. I tried upgrading to one of the new Panasonic twin HD models (they keep changing the model numbers!) - big mistake. The latest machines (2011) should be avoided like the plague. The big trouble is that they now record in direct mode, this means your hard drive recordings are not ready to be put onto DVD at high-speed until they go through a further process which runs REAL TIME. The other thing is that the modern hard drive recorders from Panasonic have an incredibly slow and clunk menu system, slow startup time that you wouldn't believe, and an awkward and limited EPG that tries to be too clever for its own good. Worse you can't edit radio recordings - not at all, ever! Just to be clear, what I'm saying is how wonderful the EX77 is in comparison - and if you read this Panasonic, go back to THIS machine's design, and then move forward from there, keeping IN the functionality and performance - I suspect you need to sack some dead weight engineers first who have written the new machine's firmware in some airy-fairy high-level language (like Java?).... here's my old review...>
I've had various hard drive machines from Panasonic over the years, starting from the E80 in the pre-freeview days. Their similarity in usage is helpful because you're already prepared for the best way to use them.
Generally this machine seems better than my previous one, which was an EX75, and the menu bug pressing -24 hours in the EPG has been fixed in this model. Also it seems to handle the menus quicker - it zips through the EPG now. One down side is that the titling options are missing - if someone from Panasonic reads this- please put them back and issue an over-the-air update! On previous machines you could store a title for use later, and this made it fast to enter names where for whatever reason you had none (for instance recording from AV2). The whole titling section has now been replaced with the simple, slow, way of entering text for each title, with no memory of favourite names. It also seems more solid at handling different DVDs - the EX75's writing capability went the same way as previous models, descending to only working with DVD-RWs and DVD-RAMs. The recommendation I'd make is no cheapo generic discs, because although they might work for a while, they might be causing damage - stick to certified verbatim, genuine panasonic (hard to find with whitetops) or TDK, and ALWAYS use 16x media.
One thing I've noticed, and this is true of the EX75 too - these machines require a SCART for operation - they don't modulate the signal out onto UHF any more. Of course there are very few of us using non-SCART tellies - but just for a while I wanted to use an old portable with no SCART, and had to find another way. Of course you can use some other video device to provide a workround, and it hardly affects many people.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 11 January 2008
This DVD recorder is superb. We have found the picture quality is better from a recording onto the HDD than the actual picture on the tv.
In answer to one of the reviewers that you cannot see the channel number while recording, all you have to do is to switch the unit on while it is recording and you will see the information you need, even an elapsed time counter. This does not interfere with the recording.
Another review stated that you cannot record one digital channel whilst watching another. This is untrue. Because we have both a digital tv and a digital recorder, you can do it. We tried it and it worked.
I would highly recommend this dvd recorder.