Toshiba RS-TX TiVo/DVD recorders

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Toshiba's $699 RS-TX20 combines a 120GB TiVo hard disk digital video recorder (DVR) and a DVD recorder in one unit. At its highest quality setting, the RS-TX20 will be able to record about 40 hours of programming to its internal hard drive (at its lowest video quality, that capacity jumps to 140 hours). The RS-TX60, which features a larger 200-hour maximum capacity, sells for $100 more.

Upside: Unlike with Toshiba's earlier SD-H400 , anything recorded on the RS-TX20's hard drive can be archived to a DVD-R at the touch of a button. And while the RS-TX20 will function almost identically to the Pioneer DVR-810H , the Toshiba includes some notable enhancements: a FireWire input will allow easy transfer of home movies from any DV camcorder, and a larger hard drive will let the unit store 50 percent more video than the Pioneer can.

Downside: Unfortunately for hard-core archivists, commercials can't be edited out before burning a DVD. Toshiba teases you with a 45-day free preview of the TiVo Plus service, but maintaining access to that full range of TiVo conveniences--such as 14-day programming guides, Season Pass recording options, WishList keyword searches, and the cool Home Media Option--will cost you either $13 per month or $300 for the lifetime of the unit. Otherwise, the stripped-down (but free) TiVo Basic service will have to suffice.

Outlook: The Pioneer DVR-810H is CNET's highest-rated combo DVD recorder, and the Toshiba RS-TX20 adds a larger hard drive and easy camcorder connectivity for a lower price. We'll have to reserve judgment until we get our hands on one, but the "ToshiVo" looks promising indeed.

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Toshiba RS-TX20 (140-hour TiVo)

Part Number: RS-TX20
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Quick Specifications See All

  • Type DVD recorder
  • Sound Output Mode Stereo
  • Media Type CD
    CD-R
    CD-RW
    DVD
    DVD-R
    DVD-RW
    Video CD
  • Color Gray
  • Type universal remote control