Talk:Digital video recorder

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DVD Recorders are DVRs?[edit]

I disagree with this entry that DVD Recorders should be considered DVRs. No manufacturer of DVD Recorders ever advertises or names their machines as DVRs. What does one call a hard drive DVR system that also has a built-in DVD recorder? A DVR DVR?

To me, DVRs strictly means recording video to hard disk. DVD Recorders needs it own entry.

Furthermore, the industry seems to have dropped the whole PVR name. All set-top-boxes and PC-based systems are called DVRs by their own manufacturers. The only products even remotely considered PVR would be a handheld device that performs DVR functions (like an Archos). "Personal" denotes handheld — like PDA.

The term PVR is still usually nearly solely in the UK and Ireland - I have never, ever seen "DVR" used in marketing here. And DVD-RAM recorders are usually sold as being PVRs (my JVC DVD-RAM/VHS unit, for instance, was sold as a PVR; as was my 160GB HDD PVR) --Kiand 13:45, 4 June 2006 (UTC)
Additionally, Humax, who are Korean, use the term "PVR" in the model numbers of their PVRs still. --Kiand 13:49, 4 June 2006 (UTC)

The term PVR was standard in the US from 1999 to about 2003, when one by one all the manufacturers switched over to DVR. Turns out DVR tested better for marketing, although in surveys it confuses people partly because they think it means the same as a DVD-recorder. PVR is common in Europe, although the devices themselves are mostly available only in the US, Canada, and the UK as of this writing.--Thinkwrite 21:12, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

a question[edit]

i have an old dvr that i want to pull videos from, but i dont have the software. where can i get opensource or free mac software for a cannon ZR 200? I've tried all over the place, and official website has software that doesnt work anymore, so i'm flummoxed OB-rad 02:41, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

"Digital recording?"[edit]

>The first DVR was tested on July 8, 1965, when CBS explored the possibilities of instant freeze-frame and rewind for sporting event broadcasts. Ampex released the first commercial hard disk video recorder in 1967. The HS-100 recorded analog video onto a digital hard disk and could store a maximum of only 30 seconds.

That machine was not digital at all, Ampex just replaced analog magnetic-tape media with hard disk, with signals still in analog form.

-- 11:07, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Commercial on DVR's[edit]

For those who have DVR, once you have a program recorded do you what any commercial? If your answer is no, do you sometimes stop forwarding to watch any? Why, what make you stop? One more question: can you see at least the brand when you are forwarding? Opiniao 18:47, 24 February 2007 (UTC)


It has also become the main way for CCTV companies to record their surveillance, as it provides far longer recording times than the old VCRs.

I suspect another key advantage is the ability to 'record over' existing recordings with no difference in quality unlike with analog VCRs where the tapes obviously degrade over time Nil Einne 06:17, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

DVR systems do prevent the quality problems associated with old tapes that have been reused too many times, but do not necessarily provide better video quality. Digital compression can introduce artifacts, and can make enhancement impossible... there just isn't as much data to enhance as what is stored on an analog VHS tape. Wyoskier 01:39, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

Depends how hard you compress it. It's at least got a fighting chance of being better than a nasty old composite camera allied to a VHS recorder with worn-out heads operating in quarter-screen mode and effectively EP speed (further dropped by 2 to get 24 hours on one E240 cassette, and any more than 4 cameras necessitating framerate drops below that 12-15fps maximum as the images are interleaved onto the tape... oh, and of course, you'll need a specialist VCR to play the tapes back if your own breaks down), where the image recovered to put on Crimewatch or to use as the source of a photofit was so blurred as to be nearly useless. Merely because it's analogue, doesn't mean it's necessarily got inifinite resolution, otherwise we'd never have bothered switching to DVD; a reduced-pitch 5-inch laserdisc would have been just fine. Plus there's the noise issue. Besides, as hard disk sizes and available transmitting/processing/recording bandwidth both increase ever upwards (and reduce in price), the equivalent of very many cassettes can be stored losslessly or even completely uncompressed without difficulty. Surveillance operatives are unlikely to use, or appreciate, typical DVB-T/iPlayer/Youtube/VCD quality, or even DVD. Some recent systems I've seen allow recording of 24 Hi-Def quality streams simultaneously, and all you have to decide on is the framerate (60/sec down to 6 or so, aka the typical rate of an 8-camera VHS system) and optionally the compression... because that determines how many _days_ of recording you get into your desktop-PC-sized box before it starts automatically overwriting. Hmm!
(Maths: 24 hours of broadcast-quality 720x576x25fps (x16bit, in YUV mode) progressive-scan video takes 1792Gb (base 10) to store, plus a minor amount (15Gb) for the soundtrack if it were CD quality stereo, easily fitting into the space provided by a commodity ~£120 2Tb hard disk. Minimal compression (ie maximum DVD rate) brings this down to 122Gb per camera (15x reduction) with excellent reproduction quality, allowing more than 16 camera-days on that one disk; or four cameras for a week and a day with a three-disk RAID-5 type setup at a continual 5.5mb/sec recording rate (or 2.75 per disk; trivial for a 21st century model or even a camera memory card). Thirty two cameras could be supported by the same system at 12fps (or 15 for 480-line NTSC), with a slight reduction in resolution (eg to 540x384, still effectively better than typical FULL screen VHS) and a doubling of effective compression to that of typical DVD standard (which may still look better if an MPG4 codec or techniques such as VBR are employed). Alternatively the lower framerate and improved compression could be used to support an increase in resolution above SD broadcast standard (EG to 960x720p) with a similar number of cameras). A similar analogue system would require, to match the 4-camera, 3x2Tb setup on image quality and running time, nearly 200 tapes with someone on hand to change them every 4 hours (or once an hour in a staggered changeover), space to store them, great discipline in the filing/sequential reuse/replacement of failed cassettes (the RAID units needing one disc to be hot-swapped, and a few hours of harder work for all three whilst the existing data is re-mirrored) and a much more difficult extraction and analysis process if their footage was required as part of a criminal investigation. (talk) 13:40, 14 October 2009 (UTC)


If you use inline references in an article, you still need to list the reference in the References section. Please see Wikipedia:Footnotes for how to use refererence tags to generate a reference list. --SueHay 03:22, 7 June 2007 (UTC)


Question to Americans: do you have any non-subscription DVRs on the market? I just checked Best Buy and Circuit City websites and they only had subscription DVRs. To me it seems weird to have to pay a monthly fee for what is essentially a digital VCR. You didn't have monthly fees for VCRs did you? In Finland none of the DVRs (made by such manufacturers as Kaon, Topfield, Humax, Samsung, and Philips) you can buy have a subscription fee. Of course you can rent a set-top-box (choices probably include DVRs) from a satellite provider if you don't want to buy one. Totsugeki 09:32, 29 July 2007 (UTC)

We used to. Apparently, Canada still has them. MMetro (talk) 10:11, 4 January 2008 (UTC)

DVRs (hard drive)sold in the U.S.A. include Magnavox (Wal-Mart branding mfd. by Funai, and I think designed by Philips) model H2160MW9 is currently available through the Wal-Mart Web site. There are some Philips models, e.g., the Philips DVDR3575H.--T. Lee —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:46, 1 February 2009 (UTC)

I live in Canada and I (1) can't afford a subscription service as I'm on disability (2) have free cable TV in my apartment so I can't use a satellite system DVR (3) I do need a DVR that can record cable TV programs. So what do I buy? They're phasing out VCR's. The last VCR I bought packed it in after only 2 months! All I want is a DIGITAL "VCR" is that too much to ask for? A DVR that records up to 8 events and more than one channel, JUST LIKE A VCR Why are cable/satellite companies allowed to monopolize the technology?

I think it should be PVR because security companies call theirs PVR's and that gets confusing when doing a Google search. And Vivitar is calling some of their camcorders PVR's!!?? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:29, 23 August 2012 (UTC)

See also[edit]

I've removed Comcast from the See Also section. Comcast is already mentioned several times in the text and doesn't need a wikilink in See also since the Comcast article does nothing to further the understanding of DVR's. In fact, just like nearly every cable company in the world, Comcast doesn't even make DVR's - they only lease or resell them. There is nothing particularly unique about their DVR's either (which is not the case with TiVO). —Mrand T-C 01:42, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

No one has time to go through an entire article looking for Comcast. And I don't see how a distributer of a product is any less importiant than the producer. Production vs resale does not contribute to the importiance of the company. --TheWikiLoner 09:59, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
Howdy WikiLoner, Perhaps I wasn't clear... it has nothing to do with the importance of the company itself. Comcast is indeed a very important company in general, just not in terms of understanding DVR's. It is the same reason that Time Warner, Charter, Cox, Dish Network, and literally dozens of other cable and Sat companies don't need to be listed either. The Wikipedia Manual of Style points out that "Items in Wikipedia articles can be linked to other Wikipedia articles that provide information that significantly adds to readers' understanding of the topic." The topic here is DVR's, and I don't see how linking to the Comcast article does that - especially when the Comcast article makes absolutely no mention of DVR's, much less a mention that furthers ones understanding of DVR's. To give an example in a different context, it would be like having CarMax in the See also section of car. Let me know if you have any other questions about it. Have fun! —Mrand T-C 12:05, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
Hmmmm...I have a compromise. Prehaps a list of companies that offer DVR would work? --TheWikiLoner 20:13, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
Howdy WikiLoner, I'm all for compromises, but Wikipedia actually actively discourages lists of things (again, how would significantly further a readers understanding of DVR's?). Raw lists are better handled by a different project: the ODP. Have a good weekend! —Mrand T-C 21:05, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
Aw, dammit, stop adressing me by "Howdy"! What's an ODP? --TheWikiLoner 21:41, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
ODP: Open directory project, aka dmoz [1]. Howdy is a standard greeting at my alma mater, Texas_A&M_University.No offense intended.—Mrand T-C 13:34, 8 September 2007 (UTC)
Oh, I see! Sorry, just thougght "TheWikiLoner" may have sounded like "The Lone Star State". Sorry. Nice talking to you! --TheWikiLoner 15:57, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

DVR are PVR?[edit]

I disagree with this, an PVR is a DVR that contains a program guide. And instead of setting recordings using date/time you can just pick the programs from the guide that you what to record. The difference is that if the program guide is updated with new program times then the times used by the PVR changes to match the new program guide info.--TimSSG 01:13, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

Š>Indeed, their box, which links the hard recorder and their own EPG and is already in over a million UK >homes, has become so successful that the verb 'to Sky Plus' (meaning to have recorded it on to PVR) has >entered contemporary English phraseology in the same way as 'to hoover' did decades earlier. > >:I've never heard "Sky Plus" used as a verb in my life, either in conversation, in print, online, on TV, >or on Radio. Has anyone? >::I just came here to say the same thing. I'm going to remove it because it really sounds like everyone >in the UK has heard of that used as a verb. The reality is I hadn't seen or heard the words "sky plus" >anywhere for a year or two, until I decided to look up TiVo in the wiki. - Goatboy > >No - not 'Sky Plus' - but have seen and used "TiVo'd" - "Yeah, I TiVo'd that last night'- meaning I used >my TiVo DVR to record a show - or "I plan to TiVo that show tonight"

I agree that I've never heard anyone use the phrase "to Sky Plus" used, but by the same token, I've not heard any variation on "Tivo'ed" or "to Tivo" either (I doubt very much that many in the UK even know what Tivo is, given the dismal job Tivo & Thomson did of marketing it).

I think I have to disagree with DVR and PVR being considered to be the same thing.

I'd class a DVR as something that allows you to record onto a hard disc by selecting programmes from an EPG and has the trick play functions such as pausing and re-winding live TV.

A PVR I'd say was something that encompasses the functions of a DVR but also personalised itself to the user, in the way that Tivo does by recording programmes featuring actors, directors you have told it you like, or that are suggested by the Tivo based on programmes you have watched in the past.

On that basis I'd say that Sky+ is a DVR, since the only dhey!!!!!!!!istinguishing feature it has over products like the Freeview DVR's is the series link feature, which is really only a smarter timer (although not that smart) for a single season of a series. It's nowhere near as sophisticated as Tivo which is surely the definition of a true PVR

Note that TIVO trademarked Personal Video Recorder, although not PVR. And they suggested that others use the more generic Digital Video Recorder. So many other companies that were building PVR's have usually simply been calling them DVR's. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:03, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

The first disk-based recorder was in the 1930s[edit]

This article claims the first disk recorder dates to CBS in 1965, but that's not true. The BBC experimented with disc based recording in the 1930s, capturing 25-line transmissions onto plastic platters. - Theaveng 11:57, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

You mean gramophone acetates, I assume? I remember seeing a webpage somewhere dedicated to finding and recovering the video tracks from such things, with mixed but definite success... However I don't quite believe the overall *concept* of the thing was that close; the result would have been something closer to Laserdisc or VHS (purely linear/non-instant-skippable - or only skippable with difficulty and innaccuracy, single-purpose per disc, and of course not eraseable/re-recordable) vs Selectavision/DVD or hard drives/(CD|DVD)RW, flash etc (talk) 13:11, 14 October 2009 (UTC)

First DVR tied to a video service[edit]

Dish Network was made less prominent in the Hard drive DVR section. Not sure why it lead off with Dish- possibly motivated by earlier misconceptions initiated by propaganda surrounding the Dish vs. Tivo lawsuit last year. The previous wording and prominence suggested that Dish was offering a full DVR prior to Replay or Tivo. They didn't have this capability until late in 1999. Replay and Tivo were selling in quantity in March. I documented this fact by reference to a SatelliteGuys BBS- a BBS recognized as authoritative on such obscure details. The post was made by a founding member, so is a high quality source. However, if someone has a reference to a print publication reference, the fact would be better supported.

I considered deleting the trivia but didn't. The facts concerning Dish's entry are meaningful because they were the first to tie a dvr to a video service. Mak (talk) 17:19, 10 January 2008 (UTC)


I don't think it's correct to have kaffeine here. It's a media player, not a PVR. What do you think? Diego-- (talk) 12:05, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Someone must have added it because it allows the recording of streams. I don't believe that qualifies it as a PVR/DVR, so I've removed it from the list. Thank you.—Mrand TalkC 13:19, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

I disagree with the History listing ANALOG video recorders[edit]

"The HS-100 recorded composite analog video onto a 14" diameter hard disk." That's interesting, but what does it have to do with digital recorders? When we read the Compact Disc article, we don't read a discussion about analog records providing the "underpinning" of the CD. Records and CDs are not the same thing; one is analog and the other digital. Similarly, analog recorders from the 60s have no relevance to digital DVRs. ---- Theaveng (talk) 18:47, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

I beg to differ. Although there is no detailed discussion of vinyl on there (as it's obviously a much more common thing than analogue PVRs, it has it's own article...), there are scattered mentions of CD being descended from Laserdiscs and the replacement for LPs, some of the differences between them (running time, condensing double albums to single discs etc), so on and so forth. P'raps you want to double check your sources next time. There IS relevance in that it shows the idea of a disk-based, personal video recording system is not simply the product of the late 90s but has a longer family tree instead. And what of sheer historical interest surrounding such an unexpect curio? (talk) 13:04, 14 October 2009 (UTC)

dvr is working but i am unable to access through net[edit]

actually we are having a laters DVR of 2008 model it is working but i am unable to access through net . we have a static ip seperately for our DVR.

I have accessed it through that is i can see my camera views from any in this world using my ip . but it not working now what could be the solution for the solution for the problem that i am facing now —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:41, 11 July 2008 (UTC)

Recording TV over the internet[edit]

The article doesn't seem to mention recording of tv stations broadcast over the internet (IPTV). It would be good to clarify the relationship with Video on demand and NPVR. pgr94 (talk) 13:57, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

"Concerns with DVR" section doesn't seem to make sense[edit]

Why only 59%? True, it's the majority, but that as many as 41% watch the adverts amazes me. It makes me wonder if 82% of this 59% were lying. Or maybe we should just accept that 69% of all statistics are made up on the spot....

And what has it to do with DVRs? People have been fast-forwarding through adverts ever since VCRs have been around. Somebody who never fast-forwarded through the adverts with a VCR isn't going to suddenly start doing it on getting a DVR. So claiming it as a DVR concern is nonsense.

It's true that there's a related DVR-specific concern, that of a minute-skip control, but that's another matter. -- Smjg (talk) 17:26, 1 December 2008 (UTC)

What is the concern anyway? Almost all the people who have DVR's set up are paying for the TV connection. This is not free TV-- it's cable or satellite. They should have the right to not be bothered with commercials. The question that should be asked is how advertising made its way into subscription TV in the first place. --Ekac (talk) 20:40, 5 March 2009 (UTC)ekac (talk) 15:38, 5 March 2009 (UTC)
"Almost all the people who have DVR's set up are paying for the TV connection." Source please. And even if it's the case now, ISTM it isn't likely to be for much longer. -- Smjg (talk) 20:49, 6 March 2009 (UTC)

Copyvio history paragraph[edit]

I removed the first history paragraph, which was a straight copy from Digital Storage in Consumer Electronics; probably we should paraphrase it and cite that book instead. Dicklyon (talk) 19:40, 21 February 2009 (UTC)

Future credit[edit]

This article refers to something called "future credit", but does not make it clear what that is, nor is there any link to get more information on the subject. It mentions something about "skipped recordings", but I have no idea what that is supposed to mean. Segin (talk) 01:47, 15 April 2009 (UTC)

Also, I have no idea what the sentence that refers to gaining "additional future credit from service providers" is even supposed to mean, and I'm reasonably well up on AV tech. I expect casual browsers to be _completely_ baffled. Can whoever wrote that section rework it into plain english, if it's not just random babble made up by an edit troll? (talk) 12:57, 14 October 2009 (UTC)
Since this has been questioned since April and nothing has been done to explain what it means, I have deleted the entire section. (talk) 15:41, 17 December 2009 (UTC)


The section on VESA is unclear. My first question was "what is VESA"? So I went to the VESA page. There are a number of standards there and it is not obvious which standard or standards are applicable to the VESA compatible DVR. (talk) 10:19, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

FCC ruling[edit]

I disagree with this statement, concerning the FCC ruling in the US: "The overall net effect on DVRs and related technology is unlikely to be substantial as standalone DVRs are currently readily available on the open market." What standalone DVRs are you talking about? TiVO? That is the only one I've been able to find for the past five years or so that I've been searching. Tivo has a monopoly on the standalone DVR market here in the US -- and requires a substantial subscription fee. [unsigned]

Because that comment was unsigned/undated, I can't be sure of the situation at the time it was posted; however, there is a Magnavox-branded DVR manufactured by Funai and sold exclusively through Walmart. It's been around for years. It's a standalone DVR. It has its own tuner, or you can hook it up to a cable box. There may be other models as well, but I admit that they're difficult to find. -- (talk) 15:03, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

PlayStation 3[edit]

Are there any video recording tools, any ata all, that work with the PS3? Provide links if you can, please.


Following the banners, I paste here the infoboxes extracted from the article text:

Integrated LCD DVR
Integrated LCD DVR.jpg
Front view: Looks like a typical LCD monitor
Media type LCD DVR
Integrated LCD DVR
Intergrated LCD DVR2.JPG
Rear view: DVR connectors are at the bottom, the HDD is at the top left.
Media type LCD DVR

USB Digital video player[edit]

What about USB digital video players?. They can play video (DivX, Xvid, AVI, MPG, ISO, VOB), audio (MP3, WMA, OGG) and pictures (JPEG, BMP, GIF, PNG).--Diamondland (talk) 11:30, 8 November 2010 (UTC)

USB Software[edit]

My DVR integrated in a DVB-T receiver (in a SCART), includes Sunplus Box TV 1.20 software. Is this an standard?. It looks like Linux (by filesystem names when records).--Diamondland (talk) 13:09, 9 November 2010 (UTC)

Legality in different contries ?[edit]

I've read that due to the "Betamax-case" during the 70's, in the US recording of TV-programmes (and film) is only permitted for a brief while, in order to watch the programme at a more convinient time. Permanent storage, like recording a film on DVD, is not legal. True or not ? In Sweden, during the first decade of the new millenium DVD-recorders with or without harddrives became available. And as I understand it, it is legal to record films, edit commercials and then make DVD's (several viewing qualities are also available) and through scart recording from digital boxes is also possible and legal (although many channels block recording if a HDMI cable is used). All this is legal for private use only. That such "building of a DVD library" is legal is even stated at the so called "Anti pirate bureau"'s webbsite. However many films are american (with swedish "hard-subtiteling"). At a UK-webbsite it seemed like the UK-laws follows the "Betamax-case" and that permanent storage of isn't legal. But hasn't DVD-recorders with harddrives been sold in the UK, I wonder ? Further the UK-website (a kind of discussion site) states that the UK-laws in this area is about the same as for other countries whithin the EU. But if the latter is true it must be legal to legally build up private DVD-libraries (from TV-recordings) also in the UK (??). Else swedish laws differs from "EU-standard". Perhaps the article could clarify these kind of issues, concerning laws in different countries ?. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:13, 12 May 2012 (UTC) (talk) 01:15, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

Far as I know, Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc. does not distinguish between temporary and permanent storage. Jim.henderson (talk) 13:41, 20 February 2014 (UTC)

Privacy section grossly out of date[edit]

The section on privacy lists only one source, from 13 years ago. Industry hearsay leads me to believe that tracking has become the default nowadays, making the section not just out of date, but also wrong. Rad314 (talk) 10:42, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

Split between TV-watching DVR and security DVR?[edit]

It's clear that some people come to this article wanting to know about DVRs for watching TV shows, while others hope to read about the technology in general, or are looking for information about other DVR applications (such as security) unrelated to time-shifting of TV programming.

These are very different audiences, and I am not sure that this article is adequate to serve them in its current form. It may not be obvious to some consumers, for example, if certain parts of the article have nothing to do with the DVR they are renting from their cable company. And a person who wants to read about security DVRs must find it frustrating to have to wade through all of the (mostly US-centric) TiVo/cable material interspersed throughout this article.

It seems to me that these specific applications (entertainment and security) of DVR/PVR technology should be spun off into separate articles that link to a main DVR article that focuses on the technology itself and its history. Has this already been discussed and rejected? Alternatively, perhaps it is possible to restructure the article so that it is easier to navigate? -- (talk) 15:21, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

I agree. I came here looking for information about embeddable DVRs, which obviously are not "consumer electronic" devices at all -- contrary to what is claimed in the lead. Lambtron (talk) 14:23, 11 January 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Question? Archived sources still need to be checked

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Catch-Up play[edit]

How can I tell whether a DVR is able to do playback with 1.5 times the original speed (including audio time-scale/pitch modification), which is semetimes called catch-up play ? Which other names are in use for this feature ? -- Juergen (talk) 03:57, 20 December 2015 (UTC)

Drones and the like[edit]

In applications I think it's appropriate to include a mention of DVR's in machine vision. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:47, 4 May 2016 (UTC)