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Television Data Storage Media Hardware

The VHS is Dead 470

Posted by michael
from the long-live-the-VHS dept.
Ronnie Coote writes "The UK's largest retailer of electronics is phasing out VHS VCRs. Sales of DVD players have outstripped VCRs by 40-to-1 recently. So how long until the mass market will be saying goodbye to the DVD player?" A few historical links to commemorate the occasion: Sony Kills Betamax, Why VHS Was Better, and How to Preserve VHS Recordings. For the future, maybe we'll have Digital VHS, but I suspect it will mostly be hard drive-based recorders.
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The VHS is Dead

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  • by michael path (94586) * on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:47PM (#10904065) Homepage Journal
  • Please.. (Score:4, Funny)

    by russint (793669) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:48PM (#10904076) Homepage
    Please, spare us the netcraft jokes.
    • Re:Please.. (Score:5, Funny)

      by Tackhead (54550) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:57PM (#10904184)
      russint (793669) writes:
      > Please, spare us the netcraft jokes.

      Russint confirms... Netcraft jokes are dead.

      One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered Netcraft joke community when Slashdotter russint confirmed that Netcraft joke market share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all Slashdot posts...

  • sad (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:48PM (#10904082)
    Digital killed the video star...
    • Re:sad (Score:5, Funny)

      by Yorrike (322502) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @09:58PM (#10905816) Homepage Journal
      I saw you on my TV back in '92
      Lying on the counch just staring there at you
      If I was young it didn't stop you coming through

      They took the bandwidth and sold it for low cost you see
      The internet burst in with and gave me kickass p2p
      And now my TV suffers it's redundancy

      I blog my life, bro. Why do I share so?

      Digital killed the video star
      Digital killed the video star
      In my mind, and in my car
      We outdo rewind with our PVRs

      You're not the first one. You're not the last one.

      Digital killed the video star
      Digital killed the video star

      In my mind, and in my car
      We outdo rewind with our PVRs
      The web it came, and copyrights it bent
      So get all your media through a bittorrent.

  • No it ain't dead. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by waxmop (195319) <waxmop@WELTYover ... net minus author> on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:50PM (#10904101)
    I've rented so many scratched DVDs that at this point I rent the VHS tape before I rent the DVD.
    • by SoCalChris (573049) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:57PM (#10904183) Journal
      Not to mention if you have kids...

      If I have a tape for my kids in the VCR, I can stop and start it right away, without having to wait for the disc to spin up, sit through advertisements, fast forward to where the video ended last, etc...

      Toddlers don't have patience for DVDs.
      • Not only that, a videocassette can withstand a toddler playing with it, standing on it, etc. Toddler gets ahold of a DVD for any length of time and usually it won't play any more.
      • I can stop and start it right away, without having to wait for the disc to spin up, sit through advertisements, fast forward to where the video ended last, etc...

        You should seriously consider a different model or brand of DVD player, even my old '98 Toshiba has a "Last Play" button that goes directly from where the stop button was pressed. Some DVD players will even ignore the "stop" command that is prevalant on WB or Universal DVDs.

        If you are concerned about stopping a disc and putting it back on the she

      • The fast rule in our house is that kids get to play with the backups, and the adults keep the originals stored away safely. This applies to video games, CDs, and DVDs. It's annoying when my kid scratches a Veggie Tales copy, but I'd be pretty peaved if he destroyed a Disney ("We're So Special We Only Release Every Seven Years!") movie.

        Seriously, make backups of everything. Blank media is dirt cheap these days, and in our household at least $cost_of_movie * %likelihood_of_destruction is far greater than

      • Toddlers and DVDs (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Rebar (110559) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @09:37PM (#10905651)
        Counterpoint: scene selection is almost invisible to toddlers I have been around. That means that when it is nearly bedtime, you can skip past the majority of Finding Nemo directly to the fun bits at The End, and have it look like The End. Toddlers know what that means, and off we happily go to brush our teeth and put on jammies.

        Ahh... scene selection. Nemo is MUCH more watchable the 20th time if you go from school to turtles to reunion to THE END.

    • I've rented so many scratched DVDs that at this point I rent the VHS tape before I rent the DVD
      A machine with a good laser and mechanism can play disks from a hire shop with decent standards, no VCR could play strecthed, creased tape properly... I don't miss those black and white lines crawling down the screen!
  • by DurendalMac (736637) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:50PM (#10904106)
    Maybe in the early days of the video wars, but Beta turned out to be a far superior format than VHS. The quality was better, less quality was lost when copying, the tapes were a bit smaller, Beta tapes last longer, etc. The reason VHS won was because a Beta would only hold one hour and a VHS would hold two when they were released. Later Beta tapes would hold 5 hours in an extended play format, and they'd lose less quality in the extended format as well. Sucks that VHS had to win.
    • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland@y[ ]o.com ['aho' in gap]> on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:54PM (#10904143) Homepage Journal
      actually, Sony killed Betamax in the consumer market because they expected everyone to pay them a license just to distribute movies on the tapes.
      • >> Sony killed Betamax That is simply not so. Sony's only license was on the shell. The studios made a business decision that the dual inventory of Beta and VHS was not supported by the low volume of sales in Beta. However the conventional wisdom about the market being driven by the T-120 VHS is absolutely true. Sony thought that users wanted to timeshift broadcast programs. They wanted that, but they wanted movies more. The longer lengths available on VHS opened the door for movies.
  • Uhm (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Ninjy (828167) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:51PM (#10904112) Homepage
    Just because something isn't used as much anymore by the majority of the people as it used to be, doesn't necessarily mean it's dead. A group at college that I'm in was designing a database for some rental place. We purposely included because we were certain that a lot of these places would still actually have tapes. And, after a quick check at a local place called Video Land, I confirmed our thoughts. Sure, it might be phasing out. But that doesn't mean it's dead.
  • TiVo's the killer (Score:3, Insightful)

    by BlueThunderArmy (751258) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:52PM (#10904121) Homepage
    Yep, hard drive-based recorders pretty much put the nail in the coffin. Easy to use, better features-TiVo and its ilk removed the last viable argument for keeping the VHS format alive.

    I, of course, still have mine around. I already pay enough for TV services without a monthly DVR bill... (grumble, grumble)

    • how tivo does me one whit of good? since I don't have cable or satalite?
      we only watch monies and childrens shows in my house.
      How do I get a movie from my library and play it on a TiVo?
    • by Dogtanian (588974) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:26PM (#10904502) Homepage
      This announcement by Dixons smacks of not telling the whole story.

      I don't know how popular PVRs are in the US market (in absolute terms; yes, I know TiVo has a cult following, but what are *most* people using?), but they have *not* yet taken off that much in Britain.

      TiVo was introduced to the UK, then subsequently withdrawn (*1). Although Murdoch's Sky have since launched "Sky Plus", that only works with Sky satellite TV.

      Basically, I am convinced that PVRs will be phenomenally successful (even more so than DVD players) in the UK *once* you can get a decent 80Gb model for less than UKP 100, and the Freeview (Digital Terrestial TV) electronic program guide provides a full 7-day service.

      However.... this hasn't happened yet! I was considering getting a basic PVR for UKP 150.00 in February, but it was very limited, so I got a 50 quid VCR with 12-hour recording capacity instead (as a stopgap). My guess back then, and one I still hold, is that Christmas 2005 will see massive PVR sales in the UK, and the swift death of VHS.

      Until then, what are people buying?

      I can now buy a DVD recorder for 200 pounds, but I don't see this as a replacement for the VCR. Put simply, most VCRs were used either for watching pre-recorded films (DVD players now have this market) or time-shifting. Sure, a DVD recorder looks like a direct replacement for the VCR, but the PVR is actually a better choice for what they are actually *doing*- time shifting!

      Anyway, this is beside the point. VCR sales may be falling, but I don't see recordable DVD, nor PVR sales filling the gap just yet.

      Maybe I'm wrong, but it's notable that it's only the Dixons stores (which tend to be smaller and based in the city-centre) are discontinuing them, and the sibling Currys stores (larger, based mainly in retail parks) are not.

      In short, I think the Dixons group are trying to improve the profit margins in their smaller stores. They just finished closing down a large number of them (good riddance).

      (*1) Possibly due to bad publicity they got when they automatically uploaded a BBC program without prior notification, or maybe just bad marketing in the first place. They pushed the 'pause live video' selling-point over everything else, and.... maybe that wasn't enough to convince people to shell out.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:52PM (#10904128)
    Why buy a new one?

    DVD players are new(ish), so of course they're gonna outstrip VCR's in sales!

    DUH!
  • Not for me. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Neil Blender (555885) <neilblender@gmail.com> on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:53PM (#10904132)
    Not as long as I have my original, unLucasfuckedup Star Wars tapes.
    • by fireboy1919 (257783) <rustyp&freeshell,org> on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:57PM (#10904792) Homepage Journal
      Just wait. In twenty years or so, Industrial L&M will put out "Star Wars Ultra Special Edition," which will be just the original version released again. Included will be dialog by other people involved in the creative process who were excluded from the "improvements" when Lucas became a megalomaniac.

      This will be just after Lucas' death, and will be shortly be followed by a series of Star Wars universe movies and cartoons that result from Lucasfilms finally selling creative rights to other interested parties.

      Not that television will be worth watching anymore. As commercial avoidance becomes more rampant, advertisers will switch to product placement to sell their wares. At this point, the major demographic in the US will still be the baby boomers, but they'll be elderly. At the beginning of the Star Wars TV-show, Obi-wan will mention to Luke how Metamucil keeps him regular, while also mentioning that he can still eat corn thanks to Fix-o-Dent. Vader will be shown putting on his mask, but not before they show the last stages of putting on his Depends.
  • phasing out (Score:3, Funny)

    by MyOrangeJulius (823267) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:53PM (#10904136)
    VHS still has its uses, much like the audio-cassette tape. For instance, when I need a chuck in place of my Taurus' poor brakes, I just tape together three or four. Advantages over wood: -light weight -portability -fun for the family (depending on the tapes' content.)
  • by Magickcat (768797) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:54PM (#10904138)
    The number of scratched DVDs that I get from my video store, I think perhaps VHS was actually better. These DVD movies are just crap with their pausing and skipping. I bought a retail Lord of the Rings - Two Towers, and the quality and pausing on a new disc half way through were so bad, that I'm lkeaning towards thinking that we were better off with magnetic tapes. Perhaps Betamax gets the last laugh - it seems that it was better than DVD too. Add the problems with legal Linux distro DVD players, and I think the consumer has lost out.
    • by NeoSkandranon (515696) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:57PM (#10904177)
      If a new disk is skipping it may well be your player not the media.
    • The number of scratched DVDs that I get from my video store, I think perhaps VHS was actually better. These DVD movies are just crap with their pausing and skipping.

      I used to think the same thing, then I got a decent player. Haven't seen a DVD skip since then.
    • Try cleaning your DVD player. If that doesn't help and brand new discs still skip, try replacing it.

      Your experience is pretty atypical.

    • Betamax gets the last laugh - it seems that it was better than DVD too.

      Soooory, not even close. I once did a technical comparison and Betamax [wikipedia.org] is about 5% better than VHS (10%, maybe). It has a few more lines of resolution (220 vs 200, IIRC) and cleaner chroma recording. It definately does not even touch DVD for quality.

      You might be talking about BetaCam [wikipedia.org], which does compete with DVD for quality (although, again, doesn't match). However, it doesn't compete on price; a decent BetaCam VTR usually being i
  • Buy a VCR... Now! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nmoog (701216) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:55PM (#10904153) Homepage Journal
    If you've got a half decent video collection, then do your self a favour and buy a top-o-the-line VCR now... and treat it good. You'll never be able to replace ALL the vids in your collection. (And ripping them to 'puter is ok, but you'll find this weird vid at a car boot sale in 2014 and think back to this slashdot story...)

    You can still buy a good record player thanks to them bieng the tool of choice for DJs and hardcore classic moosic lovers, but if you want to replace your Betamax, thats harder... I think VCRs are more likely to go the Betamax route, than the record player route.

    • I suppose this isn't exactly on topic (read: complete tangent), but you mention a "car boot sale," which I assume means someone selling used junk from the trunk (US vernacular) of their car. Are such boot sales common? I don't recall ever seeing one in Tennessee, though yard sales/garage (carhole) sales are common around here. Is it a UK peculiarity, or maybe just more common in areas more densely populated than TN suburbs?
      • It's sort of like a swap meet. You can load up your car/pickup full of stuff you want to sell, then go to the place. You pay some amount of money ($20 or so), and then you get a designated spot and you can sell stuff to the other people who come. People who come to buy stuff either pay nothing to get in or they pay only a nominal fee ($3 or so).

    • but you'll find this weird vid at a car boot sale in 2014

      Why would I buy boots for my car? And why would I buy a video from a place that sold car boots?

      Sorry, couldn't resist. I'm assuming a "car boot sale" is a retail outlet being operated from the boot/trunk of a car, and that lots of weird, unrelated things are sold, including strange old videos.

    • They'll still be for sale, the high end ones that is. I can stil buy Betamax/Betacam semi-pro and pro units. It'll be a long time before high end ones go away.

      If you do want to get one to last though, do get a semi-pro unit. The consumer units are all pretty cheaply made. Spend $300-$500 and you can get one that'll last for 10-20 years, even with quite a bit of use. It'll also produce a much better picture.

      Personally, I'd say it's cheaper and better to just convert the movies to another, digital, format.
    • What manufacturer/model do you recommend for a quality VCR?

      "bieng the tool of choice for DJs..." And what the hell are DJs doing with a VCR?

      • by Sycraft-fu (314770)
        JVC or Panasonic semi-pro units are the best idea, assuming you want one that is high quality both in terms of make and in terms of output. If you like you can even get DVD or MiniDV combo units so you can record from (S)VHS to those formats.

        Expect to pay at least $200 and $300 is a more realistic minimum though. As with anything, you pay for quality. If you want a real pro unit same people apply though Sony also has some good ones. Expect to pay $1000+.
      • by zakezuke (229119)
        What manufacturer/model do you recommend for a quality VCR?

        I can not recommend a Sony because the warranty is only 3months on labor on VCRs. I have a few friends who bought DVD/VCRs with flakey DVD players. Their warranty has expired.

        Been very happy with my JVC though. Mine is still going strong after 7 years.

        And what the hell are DJs doing with a VCR?

        Every DJ needs a mix tape to pop in while he takes a break. It's a fact of life and nature, it calls and you don't want to answer it in the booth.
    • (And ripping them to 'puter is ok, but you'll find this weird vid at a car boot sale in 2014 and think back to this slashdot story...)

      Yeah right, like we'll all be driving cars in the future! ;-P
    • Not to mention, real movie buffs only watch movies on analog tape decks, because digital players strip out all the warmth from the sound and video. Too harsh looking.
  • Not Too Soon (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ggeezz (100957) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:55PM (#10904164)
    Remember some people still have large collections of movies in VHS format. I don't think they are going to rush out to re-buy all of these movies on DVD. Also DVD Recorders are starting to gain in popularity, but they are still a lot more expensive than VHS decks. VHS is still the most economical way to record.

    Dying yes, but not dead yet.
  • by IronChefMorimoto (691038) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:56PM (#10904169)
    I can honestly say that I won't miss VHS. I stopped recording stuff to my VCR almost 2 years ago when TiVOs, recordable DVDs, etc. starting coming out. I've just been too poor to plunk down and pay the lifetime fee for a TiVO or build my own PVR.

    However, when I started to craft this reply -- something struck me -- VHS doesn't have DRM that prevents it from recording stuff. Or being passed around with friends. Etc., etc., etc.

    Yes, you can't use a VCR to decode a DirecTV signal without a DirecTV receiver, and that might be poor man's DRM. I don't know -- were there ever VCR + sat. receivers?

    And popping the write protection tab on a tape isn't so much DRM as "honey, don't you even think about taping that football game over our wedding video."

    VHS was mainstream, you could record most anything that you could get a signal into the VCR, and you could pass it around at leisure. There was talk about digital VCRs coming out in the future that would tag copyrighted broadcasts, I think, and would basically introduce VHS DRM, but for the most part, it's been DRM free, right?

    Now, we have TiVOs that are getting more and more restrictive or control happy (for the average consumer -- maybe not /. TiVO mavens), DVDs that can't be copied to preserve a copy, and homebuilt PVRs that may become illegal to use to skip commercials or obsolete if content providers start ramping up DRM efforts on the signal level.

    I hated using VHS tapes, but they were pretty no-nonsense. Ahhh...the good ol' days. Now I must go back to finding some money to build a PVR, buy a TiVO, pay off my wife when I get an HDTV for the living room, etc.

    IronChefMorimoto
  • by HangingChad (677530) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:57PM (#10904180) Homepage
    It will never be completely dead. I'm planning to stash a couple decks for the future when people want their grandparents old VHS tapes duped to whatever storage medium is popular then.
  • And about time too (Score:3, Interesting)

    by e6003 (552415) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:57PM (#10904192) Homepage
    VHS was kind of good for the 1980s - but now it's rather showing its age. If S-VHS (and S-VHS ET, which allows you to record S-VHS standard recordings on decent high-grade VHS tapes) had come earlier to market we might have been a bit better off. It seems that electronic picture enhancement systems from Betamax could have been applied to VHS as well (but weren't [wikipedia.org]). There is still something very clunky about using cassettes the size of paperback books to record on, when recordable disc technology exists. Even though you can still buy brand-name VCRs (like Sony), they aren't made by Sony any more.
  • by ragingtory (833483) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @06:58PM (#10904198)
    The primary use of a VCR is no longer watching videos - but recording things. DVD Recorders are not yet at a price point that makes it affordable for consumers - nor do we have a standard in place for the type of DVD to be recording to. Until DVD recorders reach a price point that is affordable for the average consumers, there will still be considerable demand for VHS to record television. I don't see digital recorders (Tivo, etc) at that point yet either.
  • Still use it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DarkBlackFox (643814) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:00PM (#10904216)
    Once in a while, there will be a show on TV I'd like to watch, but am too occupied with other things to pay enough attention. If I know this will happen, I'll pop a trusty old VHS tape into my trusty old VCR, hit record, and forget about it until the end of the show. Later that evening/day/week, I hit rewind, wait a minute or so, and watch what I missed.

    I know PVRs are capable of this as well, and yes, I have a computer with an All-in-Wonder 9700 that I use extensively for video capture, but

    1) I'm in linux 95% of the time I'm on my computer, and Rage Theater II chips aren't supported yet. (Yes, I can get some decent capture cards supported under linux but at present my VCR just works without tweaking drivers or anything)

    2) In Windows, I take a noticeable performance hit capturing video, and if I do anything to put pressure on the CPU, I'll get dropped frames. (When was the last time you got dropped frames on a VCR?)

    and 3) I'd have to go through another step in burning the file to DVD/CD to make it portable/archivable. (Just pop the tape out and take it to a friends house right after recording)

    While the format of VHS may be phased out in terms of new product releases, the relative quality (with decent quality tapes) and reliability of the machinery has earned a place in my room. I've never had dropped frames, codec/compressor incompatibilities, or my TV lock up while I'm recording with a VCR. Yes, I know I can buy a tivo, but I don't feel like spending that money when I have something that works fine at the moment. I don't plan to buy any new release movies on VHS, but I do occasionally pick up a few blanks in case something comes on I'd like to watch, without buying any new equipment.
  • VHS is dead (Score:5, Funny)

    by k4_pacific (736911) <k4_pacific AT yahoo DOT com> on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:01PM (#10904242) Homepage Journal
    Fans of the VHS video format have been gathering outside the home of VHS for over an hour, forming an impromptu vigil for this fallen hero of home entertainment which was found dead of Degaussclerosis in its home yesterday.

    One woman, sobbing, pleaded, "But how will I record American Idol now?"

    A memorial service is planned for next week. At the ceremony, the casket containing VHS's earthly remains will be inserted into a slot on the front of a specially constructed burial vault and lowered into the ground.
  • by deragon (112986) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:01PM (#10904250) Homepage Journal
    I do not have a DVD player. I do not rent much movies. I do however record a lot of TV shows. My old VHS does the job well. Alternative recording devices are still way to expensive for my taste to replace my VHS and VHS offers "good enough" quality for my needs (when I record a TV show, it is for its content, not the quality of the images).

    I bet because of the recording needs, VHS will still be with us for a while. Yes, other technologies are comming and gaining market share, but they still have a lot to go (in price) for VHS to disapear from households.
  • I remember the last VHS VCR I bought in Seattle in 1996, I got the cheapest model for 119.00

    I remember the latest DVD player I bought in San Jose @ Target in 2004, I got the cheapest model for 39.99

    The DVD player I got plays VCD DVD MP3 JPG and some other things I dont use it for...
  • VHS is not dead (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Eudial (590661) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:03PM (#10904274)
    Here's the deal. I've got this GPU with TV-in, but it doesen't have a TV-tuner. So, what do i do? I hook up my VCR to my puter so i can watch TV on my puter without a TV tuner card. It's cheap and works in Linux.

    A run of the mill DVD player doesen't have TV tuning capability, therefore it sucks and is nothing that will replace my VHS and DVD drive on my puter anytime soon.
    • Re:VHS is not dead (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Eudial (590661) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:07PM (#10904319)
      Here's the deal. I've got this GPU with TV-in, but it doesen't have a TV-tuner. So, what do i do? I hook up my VCR to my puter so i can watch TV on my puter without a TV tuner card. It's cheap and works in Linux.

      A run of the mill DVD player doesen't have TV tuning capability, therefore it sucks and is nothing that will replace my VHS and DVD drive on my puter anytime soon.


      Eh, that was a mess. That'll teach me not to post drunk.

      What i meant is, why discard your VCR when you can tune TV with it? And when you /do/ want to watch DVD 99% of the computers around have DVD players. With a descent screen it makes a TV completely redudnant!
  • by SuperKendall (25149) * on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:05PM (#10904294)
    As popular as Tivo and its ilk are, I really doubt it has risen to majority use for video recording.

    I'm a little surprised no-one would be buying a VCR, as they are still handy to record things...
  • by minus_273 (174041)
    I have actually never owned a vhs system. I dont know anyone who does. Even all of my non techie freinds exclusively use DVDs now.
    • Re:hmm (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:13PM (#10904376)
      I have actually never owned a vhs system. I dont know anyone who does. Even all of my non techie freinds exclusively use DVDs now.

      You must be 16.

  • My buddy has a large collection of VHS tapes, and he wants to get them on DVD to preserve them and make the content more accessible. I tried to convince him to go for a file server box with a large hard drive, possibly a RAID array.

    How do slashdotters recommend the preservation of tapes?

  • I still use it to record TV shows. I don't have a PVR/DVR due to the high cost. I will retire using VHS tapes is when my VCR breaks to get a PVR/DVR. The VCR is only like 3-4 years old so it has a while.
  • What I want... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Rufus88 (748752) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:11PM (#10904357)
    I want a TiVo/Replay-type device that has no subscription service associated with it. I want to program it the way I program my VCR. No fancy schmancy "Record all occurrences of Seinfeld, and phone home to find out when they occur". Just a simple "Record Wednesdays on Channel 4 at 9:00PM for 1 hour", like a normal VHS VCR. I want recording quality, storage capacity, the ability to pause live TV, and the ability to watch something I recorded earlier while the system is recording something else. And I don't want to build a dedicated PC to do the job. If I can get that, I may even forego the ability to pop out the tape I recorded in the living room VCR and bring it up to the bedroom VCR to watch the rest of the show in bed. Maybe. I'll think about it. Can I get that anywhere? If not, I'm sticking with my VCR.
  • by Jason1729 (561790) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @07:15PM (#10904404)
    I read that article yesterday. It basically says the DVD player has replaced the VCR. They aren't directly comparable products. The VCR's main selling point is it allows you to record TV content to watch at another time. The DVD's main selling point is it allows you to watch pre-recorded content.

    The VCR originally beat the laserdisc (and destroyed RCA in the process) because people wanted the ability to record. PVRs or set-top DVD-Rs might be the eventual downfall of the VCR but the current DVD players sure aren't.

    The article even has a summary of the VCR that talks about how people loved the ability to record. Apparently, the author's microscopic mind couldn't make the connection that DVD players don't have that ability yet.

    The CD player also didn't replace the cassette deck. They lived as complimentry products for many years until mass CD-Rs and mp3 players took over the cassette's market. Jason
    ProfQuotes [profquotes.com]
  • "VHS is dead." - Ronnie Coote

    "Ronnie Coote is dead." - VHS
  • by Supurcell (834022) on Tuesday November 23, 2004 @08:17PM (#10904970)
    I've seen a lot of people complaining about DVDs getting scratched. So why not make a DVD with a protective case on like a floppy? It would never leave its shell so it would never get scratched.

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