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DVR solutions?

A couple of our projects need the ability to record standard rate video as MPEG2 or equilavlent. I'm looking around for a solution which is relatively low cost, and serial or ethernet controllable.

On-screen navigation would not be visible to the end-user, so I need to come up with something bulletprooof.

If it had to be IR, it would need at least "one touch recording" from an s-video input (I don't like to count on IR for blind menu navigation)

We've looked at things like Tivo, and ReplayTV, but these don't seem to have sufficient control, as I only find them to be controlled via IR and they have no ethernet API. We've also considered using a Mac Mini, and elGato DVR, but I don't think it is ideal either, again no readily available API.

Anything you guys can suggest to look at? Anything good to say about the stuff I've mentioned? Thanks for the thoughts.


  • DHawthorneDHawthorne Posts: 4,584
    I'd be interested in this too. So far, I have mostly done DirectTV and Tivo - with all the inherent limitations of IR control (mainly, no real feedback). I have also messed with a Toshiba unit that was a non-subscription DVDR/DVR, but that was also IR. I would be greatly interested in a solution with better control, but DirectTV seems to dominate the market and we may just be stuck with it, and all their paradigms.
  • sethollesetholle Posts: 66
    Dvr Solution

    I have used different products for dvrs. I recently started using security dvrs that have clean 30fps resolution at a high resolution. I ordered a JVC-VR510U. It records 14 hours. Is completely serial controlled and is very easy to use with a touch panel. Plus because it is an older model you can find them for a very reasonable price online.
  • TryllTryll Posts: 33
    Yes, I've been looking into some of the security oriented stuff as well. These look like possible solutions, but almost all of them are 9-16 channels, while I only need one. The JVC model identified seems like it might fit the bill, though it does look discontinued. I'm not sure I can sell the purchasers on using out-of-date models, since they won't be able to get them through normal channels and a hardware failure or replacement would mean reprogramming the system if they couldn't find more like it.

    I'm now mostly looking at designing my own based on a Mac or Linux box. At least that way I know it would do what it needs to do.
  • samossamos Posts: 106
    Have you used VBrick

    I ahve used a Sonic Foundry PC based DVR that has serial control. It is more expensive thatn the Tivo and doesnot have a tv tuner, but it is a windows based PC and is full of usable features. the device is called Mediasite
  • TryllTryll Posts: 33
    Thanks, we were looking at that too. Does it have a serial or ethernet API which isn't too much of a pain to get connected up with AMX?
  • TryllTryll Posts: 33
    Sorry, I was asking about the Sony.

    Regarding VBrick, yes we've used it, but we've had some bad experiences with that company... I'm mostly OK with VBrick, but the boss doesn't want it used at all.
  • samossamos Posts: 106
    I meant to say sonic foundy mediasite

    I messed up my heading I was tlaking about the sonic foundy media site
  • TryllTryll Posts: 33
    OK, that's cool. So the Sony, how do you control it? Serial? Ethernet?
  • samossamos Posts: 106
    Sonic foundry

    You can use either or AMx has a module for it on website
  • TryllTryll Posts: 33
    Great. Thanks for the info. We'll get one in and play with it. Sounds like it might be just the thing we need.
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