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Gadget Syndrome

I hate buying gadgets. As much as I adore the concept of technological advancement bringing entertainment and convenience to the household, I abhor the process of buying technology myself.

The reason is simple. Technology moves so fast, in order to be confident you have made a sound purchase you either have to 1) know exactly what you want or 2) have researched to high heaven and back to ensure you have got yourself the best deal in terms of features, quality, longevity and reliability - and that takes a heck of a lot of effort.

My regular Gadget Friday slot was an attempt to share my research into various things with the public, in the hope that it would improve others' ability to purchase wisely.

But this weekend has proven that even I need to revisit my strategies. You see, I wanted a VCR. Well in the old days you'd call it a VCR, nowadays, as I learnt, it went from VCR to DVDR to HDDR in a matter of months. So instead of recording to VHS tapes, and instead of recording direct to DVD discs, you record onto a hard disk and then burn onto a DVD at your leisure (after carefully editing out the adverts of course!)

The bottom line became this - I needed to get a HDD recorder since the VHS paradigm is over. I toyed with various things along the way. I've a large investment in VHS movies, so I still want a VHS player. So I figured a combination VHS/DVD recorder would help - I looked at this JVC and this Hitachi. I then twigged that any DVD recorder should be multiregion, so that I can see the films I bought whilst in the states. This proved difficult. Plus I found that these combo units are large, and wouldn't fit into our lovely tv stand anyway. So scratch that idea. Then came the dedicated HDD recorder only. Couldn't find anything like that. So it was back to a DVD recorder with a HDD in it. I found a lovely Sony, 80G HDD, great reviews and multiregion. Ordered it, knowing in the back of my mind that 80G put pressure on me to get things archived quickly before space ran out.

As chance would have it, the people I ordered it from have run out of stock. So they sent me an email that said if I didn't reply, they'd cancel the order. I then started looking again.

This time I was focusing in on 160G. Each time I read more, the more I discovered that I knew NOTHING, NADA, ZILCH about the various formats these buggers recorded on. DVDR, R+, dual layer, it was all greek to me. I just wanted to record Match of the Day for goodness sake!

So after buying a copy of What Hi-Fi and Video from WHSmith at Padders, I saw that Sony were releasing a 160G version of the unit I thought I had purchased earlier. A dizzy heights 500 quids worth of technology from a great brand. So what did I do?

I went and bought a Panasonic 400G whopper for a massive 600 smackaroonies, and its multiregion too! What on earth am I going to do with SD/CF slots? What am I going to do with 400G of space other than lazily let it fill up with enough football (AND CRICKET) to make me weep ;-) The latter is why I thought it was a splendid Idea.

  1. Final Test Match
  2. World Cup 2006

You see, with 400G, I can record the compulsory 2 footy matches a day that the World Cup brings and not worry about archiving so quickly.

Luck, as they say, favours the idiot.
--
dp

Comments:

  1. Blogger changeofhart says @ 11:10 am
    and I, my friend, shall take your advice also. however, perhaps inducing a little green envy, I shall wait until about march, and then buy the same model (assuming you give it the thumbs up after a few months of use), and buy it for half the price...!

    ding dang doo!
  2. Blogger Crucifer says @ 1:38 pm
    I, personally, am glad you didn't buy from that lying giant, Sony.

    Another blow to their monopoly on gadgets.

    Besides, Panasonic have been my VCR brand now for years. They may not be integral components for a nuclear missile, but they do last the rigours of time.
  3. Blogger Damo says @ 5:07 pm
    >I, personally, am glad you didn't buy from that lying giant, Sony.

    Heh. I actually quite want a PSP. Haven't got much time to mess about playing games but hey! It does DVDs (purchased or uploaded yourself), acts as an MP3 player... and unique to the UK one, wireless Internet access out of the box. A bit more fiddly than a laptop but a lot more portable...
  4. Blogger Crucifer says @ 7:31 pm
    What's the wireless internet access for? Can't be for playing games because they have no real internet-based game.

    Actually, that's a lie. You *can* get the PSP onto an internet based game but you need xlink kai to do it (via an ethernet connection from a pc/mac with wireless connectivity).

    Although why you wouldn't just play from the computer is anyones guess. :/

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