Wednesday, April 12, 2006
The reputation of the DVR has been built upon the control it gives viewers over live television. The DVR has capabilities that were once unheard of: viewers can pause live TV shows; they can fast forward through a live show, go into slow motion or rewind live TV. Suffering through annoying commercials is no longer a problem with a DVR, as viewers can skip them altogether. Certain models of DVRs, known as dual tuner DVRs, allow viewers to watch one show and record another at the same time. With a single tuner model, viewers can only record the show that they're currently watching, although they can watch a pre-recorded show while another show is being recorded. Additionally, most DVRs support Dolby Digital surround sound - a definite bonus for home theater lovers.
Is there anything this great gadget can't do? Well, some DVRs have small hard drives, which means a small storage capacity for recorded content. Once the hard drive gets full, a viewer must transfer the content to a videotape or a DVD. Popular DVR brands like TiVO and ReplayTV necessitate a TV subscription in order for viewers to use them. These brands require landline phone jacks, which make it possible for the electronic program guide to be downloaded each day.
Overall, the benefits of this device are remarkable. DVRs can be purchased now for less than $200, and prices are sure to drop as more consumers buy them.