I always considered pioneer as a reliable company and since I was really satisfied with the specifications of this product I made up my mind and bought it.
The pioneer DVR-810HS is the ideal recorder for those who wish to combine simple DVD recording with some basic TIVO features at a reasonable price range. This device features an 80gb build in hard drive, which is capable of recording up to 80 hours of video - depending on the quality settings – and offers some very useful basic TIVO capabilities. With Tivo basic you get program information for up to 3 days, broadband connectivity, flexible parental controls and live tv control. For example, you can actually control the live tv and pause , reverse or even play in slow motion any live program while you are watching. The only thing that I don’t like about Tivo, is that you cannot edit the commercials. Other than that it’s a pure joy. Please not that a free trial of Tivo plus is included but If you want TIVO plus features after the trial then you will have to purchase this separately with some extra cost.
While it was very easy to setup and provided a wide range of connectivity, I did have to go through the manual in order to discover each and every function. The manual however is very simple and informative and it does not take long to find out how to use every feature.
I was really disappointed when I used the low quality settings for recording, but medium and extra fine settings produces excellent video without any pixilation even on my 42 inch LCD. After a little research I found out that low quality and medium quality setting are better suited only for animated programs. Extra fine settings produced absolutely perfect quality in all programs but its worth noting that you can only record 15 hours on those settings. After that you have to archive your video to a DVD to free up some space on the hard disk. I recorded my favorite movie to the DVR HD and then to DVD and the quality was excellent. I use cheap DVD-R/RW for DVD recording and so far I don’t have any problems. One of the reasons I don’t prefer Sony DVD recorders is because once you record a DVD with a sony, you cant edit it on your computer. With pioneer you don’t have this kind of problem. You can use the DVD in any way that you want without any limitations.
Read my previous Review: What is the Difference Between a DVD Recorder and TiVo?
What I really love about this device is its multitasking capabilities. For example I am able to record a DVD while at the same time I am watching or recording another program to the DVR HD. Also, I can watch my favorite movie from the beginning even if it started earlier and it’s not yet finished. I find this feature amazing.
During the recording the unit is actually very quite and I really don’t understand why some people complain about the noise. I was able to hear some minor noise only when I was right next to it. I do love my pioneer DVR-810HS, but since I don’t usually hold it in my arms when I am recording I don’t consider the noise to as a problem.
All in all I really happy with my purchase and I highly recommend this pioneer DVD recorder, it is a very decent recorder with excellent picture and sound quality and it offers a very wide range of useful features including basic TIVO.