DVR Reviews

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Humax PVR-9150T

The Humax PVR-9150T is a no-frills, standard-definition Freeview recorder for those still enslaved by Scart. It's dull, but it's quiet and it does what it says on the tin.

Humax Foxsat-HD freesat

The Humax Foxsat-HD is a top class high-definition receiver and gets the freesat service off to a great start. All that's needed now is more freesat HD channels to truly make the most of its high definition capabilities

Toshiba HDR5010

Toshiba's HDR5010 does everything a Freeview HD digital TV recorder should do, without fuss or fanfare. It's intuitive to use, has a generous hard drive and is well priced at around £200. It's just the ticket if you want a box to record dramas, not create them.

Panasonic DMR-EX75

Panasonic's DMR-EX75 is a hybrid recorder with an impressive specification and superb functionality. Recordings using either the 160GB hard drive or universal disc formats offer flexible control. And both recording and playback performance is excellent

Panasonic DMR-ES10

Panasonic's budget DVD recorder shows the manufacturer at the top of its game, reaping the benefits of the company's history in the market. It can record to various -R/+R/RAM DVD media and is one of the few models that can offer quality recordings at the 4-hours-per-disc setting. And with component outputs providing a very good AV performance to a flat-screen TV, this is the budget DVD recorder of the future

Pioneer DV-989

Pioneer's DV-989 is a top-of-the-range DVD player featuring cutting-edge technology and connectivity. The price will rule it out for many but, as a partner for a compatible high-end system, very few players offer the same performance with both movies and music

Sky SkyQ

The UK broadcaster has debuted a 4K-ready upgrade to its set-top box, which also sports a new interface and the power to watch recorded TV on your tablet.

Virgin Media TiVo

TiVo is a must-have upgrade if you currently get your TV through Virgin Media and want to continue doing so, or if you want the most powerful PVR on the market. For everyone else, there's still much work to be done on the software before we can recommend it as a reason to switch TV providers.

Panasonic DMR-XW380

The Panasonic DMR-XW380 is a sleek PVR, and one that we think everyone will enjoy using. The problem is the hard drive is too small, it's too expensive and you can't save HD recordings to DVD.

Humax PVR-9200T

The Humax PVR-9200T is the Rolls Royce of Freeview recording, with every feature we could possibly ask of a recorder in addition to a massive hard drive. It's a winner against Panasonic's recorder on price, plus it's pure simplicity to use. If you need a recorder suited to the demands of a power user and the rest of the family, this is it

TVonics DTR-Z500HD

The TVonics DTR-Z500HD is a fast and funky Freeview HD digital recorder. Supremely easy to use, it's an ideal choice if you're upgrading from analogue TV. While there are some standard-definition recording-quality issues, its hi-def performance is terrific.

Denon DVD-1930

Denon's DVD-1930 features video upscaling using all hi-def resolutions, including the latest 1080p signals. It's ideal if you want to improve the performance of your existing DVDs without spending too much on a next-generation player

Panasonic TUCTH100

Panasonic's hard-drive Freeview recorder is the first of its kind from the major manufacturers, resulting in a solidly built machine that's slightly too expensive when compared to the competition. It's still the reference Freeview box, with features such as simple DVD dubbing, but we'd like a larger hard drive

Humax HD-FOX T2

If high-definition viewing is a must for you, but you can't afford or don't want Sky+HD or Virgin HD, then the Humax HD-FOX T2 might be the piece of hardware you're looking for. HD pictures can look stunning given the right input, but there isn't much material out there at the moment, making the asking price of £180 quite steep. Still, the box itself can't really be faulted, apart from a few tiny bugs, and it gets our seal of approval for those who yearn for Freeview HD

Humax Foxsat-HDR

As the first freesat PVR on the market, the Humax Foxsat-HDR would have sold even if it was utter rubbish. Luckily, it's brilliant and anyone who buys one will have a sturdy, easy-to-use machine that looks fantastic under their TV and boasts impressive picture quality

YouView

It's taken an age to arrive, but the Humax DTR-T1000 shows that YouView was worth the wait. Its excellent user interface seamlessly combines on-demand and broadcast TV, while digital TV recording features are first class. It's pricey and is missing a few bells and whistles that would make it perfect, but it's still easy to recommend.

Philips DVDR3305

This is the best budget DVD recorder on the market by some margin. It offers excellent quality recordings straight from TV, impressive playback of shop-bought discs and is incredibly easy to use

Editors' Choice

Sky+HD

If you love TV, then it's quite likely that getting a Sky+HD box will be the best decision of your life. Sports fans will find more than they could ever watch while holding down a job, and movie lovers are pretty well catered for too. The hardware is also easy to use and rarely breaks down. There are dozens of useful extra services too, like remote-recording capability. Even if you just take into account the core TV channels, though, Sky is the market leader, offering a very compelling service