Don't things move quickly nowadays? It seems only yesterday that
the first VCRs became available and changed the way that we used
our TVs forever. Now it seems that you will soon have to replace
all your old analog TV equipment including your VCR with digital
TV receivers and digital video recorders (DVR) if you haven't done
Analog satellite TV, cable and terrestrial TV transmissions
will soon be turned off and when that happens you will need digital
TV equipment if you plan to continue to watch TV.
If you don't want to change your VCR at this time you will still
be able to record digital TV from the analog AV output of your digital
receiver but you won't be able to take advantage of all the new
features on offer. In fact you will have fewer options available
to you than before unless you upgrade to a Personal Video Recorder
(PVR) or a DVR.
Digital Video Recorder or DVR Explained?
A DVR captures digital video or digital TV and records
it onto a hard drive like the one in your computer. In fact a DVR
is a computer dedicated to the task of recording and playing back
digital video. All a computer needs to be able to do this over and
above all the usual stuff is a digital TV tuner.
Your DVR tuner has to be able to receive and decode
signals from your chosen provider so there are different types available
depending on whether you use digital satellite TV, cable or terrestrial
Some systems that provide premium pay for channels will insist
that you use their own equipment to receive their programming and
you may have to pay even more to use their PVR or DVR equipment.
What does a DVR Do For You?
With a DVR you can capture and record digital TV programs onto
a hard drive that's inside the unit. You can typically record up
to about 40 hours of video onto the internal hard drive.
A DVR makes it possible to record a live transmission
while you are watching a recording and if you have a DVR with two
digital tuners then you can watch one channel while you are recording
another or record 2 programs from different channels while watching
a recording made earlier.
Your DVR will also pause live TV if you want it to and restart
it later. It turns live transmissions into recordings on the fly.
Personal Video Recorder or PVR Explained?
A PVR or Personal Video Recorder is a DVR with some advanced features.
For instance with a PVR you might find that it can learn what programs
you watch and automatically record them for you if you forget to
set the recorder. You can also use a PVR to create a recording playback
list and have it record only the best programs and then watch them
as if it were your own personal TV channel.