JVC Announces HDTV Recorder
JVC has introduced a Digital-VHS recorder that can put a full four hours of HD recording on a single cassette. The HM-DH300000U operates at A data transfer rate of 28.2 Mbps, by far surpassing the ATSC 19.3 Mbps standard for HDTV broadcasts. Each D-VHS cassette has a 50 GigaByte capacity, allowing up to 4 hours of full HD recording on a single tape. Unlike hard-disk based digital video recorders, cassette tape has the benefit of portability.
The HM-DH300000U also has a D-VHS STD mode with a 14.1 Mbps transfer rate for standard-definition digital recording in MPEG2 format, and an LS3 mode with a 4.7 Mbps transfer rate, allowing 24 hours of MPEG2 digital video on a single cassette. The machine is also compatible with the analog VHS system, and can play and record in standard VHS, Super VHS, and Super VHS ET, in addition to digital D-VHS.
The recorder's ATSC format compatibility insures digital-to-digital recording of 1080i, 720p, 480p and 480I formats when connected to a digital set-top box via an iLink (IEEE 1394) terminal. A built-in MPEG2 CODEC (encoder/decoder) allows digital recording from NTSC analog sources as well as digital sources such as camcorder footage in the popular MiniDV format, to D-VHS with MPEG2 digital conversion. "This will give people the ability to archive everything digitally, from TV programs to camcorder footage. And when dubbing from an external analog source such as a camcorder or VCR, JVC's Frame Synchronizer eliminates jitter and noise from the input signal to produce high quality dubs that can actually appear to surpass the quality of the original," stated a September 7 announcement.
JVC admits that there is little available HD programming that viewers might wish to archive, but states that there is plenty coming soon. "EchoStar's DISH Network is committed to offering the most satellite TV-delivered high definition channel choices in the U.S. and to that end, we plan to offer a wide set of compatible formats for viewing," said Mark Jackson, senior v.p. of EchoStar. "We are developing a set top box featuring DVI outputs as well as 1394 (5C) DTCP outputs. A 1394 connection can allow customers to record HD broadcasts in original form on a peripheral D-VHS device. We believe that D-VHS is an ideal and affordable recording and archiving solution for HD broadcasts and should accelerate the overall demand for digital broadcasts."
Timeshifting HDTV programming will make recorders like the HM-DH30000U as popular with the next generation of TV fans as VHS recorders were with the previous one, JVC executives believe. "D-VHS will provide the ideal means for people to record HD content for personal enjoyment," said Jerry C. Barbera, Vice President, Consumer Video Division of JVC Company of America. "D-VHS is the ultimate timeshifting and archive solution for the HDTV era. The VHS format has continually evolved to meet the need of the consumer and D-VHS is clearly the best solution for the HDTV customers of yesterday, today and tomorrow."