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In the market for DVD burner & Software

Discussion in 'DVDR' started by prasmesur, Apr 20, 2005.

  1. prasmesur

    prasmesur Member

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    I am a newby to this DVD technology. I am seriously interested in buying an External DVD Burner and a Software that lets me literally copy any DVD. I live in a very remote area and the only means of entertainment is movies. I need to go several miles to rent a DVD and it is not feasible to make the trip everyday. Could you please suggest which DVD software will let me copy the DVD before I return the rented DVD. Do I need to buy a dual layer burner and dual layer blank DVDs. Which software will let me overcome the copyright protection. Any pros/cons of an External burner. I have a laptop and it is easier to hookup thru the USB if the burner is external. Thanks.
     
  2. Nephilim

    Nephilim Moderator Staff Member

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    My best advice when buying an external drive is to get a purpose-built external and not an internal drive in an aftermarket enclosure. I've seen more folks have problems with the enclosures than purpose built externals. You'll also want to make sure your laptop supports USB 2.0 since the 1.1 spec isn't fgast enough to ensure top performance when burning DVDs. Here's a link that'll show you what to look for when identifying 2.0 controllers (basically you look for ones that are listed as "enhanced" in Device manager):


    http://www.computerhope.com/issues/ch000602.htm


    As far as software is concerned your best bet is to start off with DVD Shrink and DVD Decrypter which are both excellent apps and totally free. Here're some great guides to using both:

    http://www.dvdplusvideo.com/

    There's nothing wrong with getting a DL burner since they're becoming the norm but keep in mind that the media is very expensive at $7 apiece and most films turn out great when using Shrink. It's also best to start out with the less expensive rewritable SL media until you get the hang of things. That way you avoid a pile of useless coasters during the learning process.

    If you have any more questions feel free to ask :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2005
  3. prasmesur

    prasmesur Member

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    Thank you very much for the response. Yes, my laptop has USB 2.0. I was not clear on the "purpose built externals". Could you please elaborate. If you were in the market looking for a external DVD burner, which one would you go with that is both good and economical. As far as the software goes, am I all set with DVD Shrink and DVD Decrypter? Do I need to buy any additional software? Your help in making me select the right burner is highly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  4. Nephilim

    Nephilim Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry for the confusion. When I referred to a purpose built external drive I meant one that is made from the ground up to be an external drive where as external enclosures allow you to install an internal drive in them and use them as an external drive. The quality and performace of the enclosure seem to vary quite a bit.

    Keep in mind that the purpose built externals are more expensive than internal ones. I'm extremely picky when it comes to drives so if I was in the market for an external drive the first two I'd look at would be Plextor's PX-716UF and Pioneer's DVR-S806:

    http://www2.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16827131347

    http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/pna/product/detail/0,,2076_103674852_226022417,00.html


    Asus, Sony and Benq also make externals that I'm sure are decent enough but if I was going to spend the money for an external I'd pay a little more for the quality of the two I listed above. Here's a selection of different externals for your browsing pleasure :)

    http://www2.newegg.com/ProductSort/SubCategory.asp?SubCategory=420



    And for the sake of clarity here's an example of an external enclosure:

    http://www.meritline.com/firewire-usb-external-enclosure-5-25-cd-dvd-drive-hdd.html


    DVD Decrypter and DVD Shrink will do everything you need to back up your movies so there's no immediate need to buy or use any other software. Once you get the hang of things and want to try other softwares then go for it because it can be a treat to mess around with other apps. CloneDVD2 and AnyDVD are two of my favorite pay-for apps :)

    [edited several times because I'm a horrible typist]
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2005

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