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CyberHome DVR-1600 DVD Recorder

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Epinions Product Rating: Disappointing
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Cyberhome DVR 1200 - Problems! Frustration! Returned!

Nov 27, 2005 (Updated Nov 27, 2005)
Review by  
Rated a Flagged Review
  • User Rating: Disappointing

  • Sound:
  • Ease of Use:
  • Picture Quality:
  • Durability:

Pros:Price

Cons:Everything. Just doesn't work. Unknown Disc, Disc Error are more common than successful DVD creation.

The Bottom Line: Doesn't work. Won't format, won't finalize. Works 10% of the time. Frustrating, disappointing.


There isn't a category for the 1200, but it looks similar to the 1600, minus the firewire port.

This review is not on the specs/features of the unit - but rather my experience - as a warning to anyone thinking of buying a Cyberhome DVR 1200.

I thought I'd finally try a dvd recorder, and even though I didn't think Cyberhome was a great brand, I figured it would AT LEAST work, for a while anyway. Well right from that first assumption I was wrong.

I took it home, hooked it up and read the instructions. I formatted the 1st disc successfully, recorded 5 minutes of video from a camera, and everything seemed to be going well...until I tried to edit the title. When it was in the updating mode it simply froze. I waited a while, didn't touch anything on the remote - and the player switched itself off. So I turned it back on to receive the UNKNOWN DISC error. Unknown? All of a sudden it didn't know the disc that was just in there recording away. But alas - the disc was now unknown :( Taking it out and putting it back in didn't change the status - the machine still had no idea what this disc was.

So I put in my 2nd blank DVD+R. Would you like to format? Yes. I waited...waited..."Disc Error". Sorry - apparently the player cannot format this particular disc? Perhaps it's a bad disc.

So I put in my 3rd blank DVD+R. Would you like to format? Yes. Again, Disc Error.

So I put in my 4th blank DVD+R. Would you like to format? Yes. Disk Error! Ugh!

By this time I had pretty much decided this thing was going back to the store. But I thought I'd try it one more time...I put in my 5th blank DVD+R. Would you like to format? Yes. Success! What? This thing is messing with me I just know it.

I proceed to record about 20 minutes of video - stopping here and there. Editing the titles? No way! I didn't even try it this time...I thought I'd be lucky to get the thing created - I didn't care what the titles said. When I was done recording, I selected "Finalize" and crossed my fingers. And it worked! Now if it always went smoothly like this the thing would be wonderful. So - let's try again! Maybe I had 4 bad discs (yeah right!).

Inserted the 6th blank DVD+R. Nope - back to not recognizing the disc. I hate this thing! Turned it off.

Seems turning it off for a while and back on is some kind of secret. In my many stubborn attempts, I found that a disc would successfully format more often if I turned it off, waited a few minutes and then turned it back on. The little snot actually says "hello" when you turn it on - like it's all friendly. Yeah - ain't buyin' it!

This morning I successfully formatted a disc and immediately celebrated "Yes!" I exclaimed...in disbelief that a disc actually formatted! Whoo hoo! I then spent some time recording off my TiVo. I used both the stop and the pause features...everything was going well.

Then - when the remote was safely on the table at my side and nowhere near my fingers...in the middle of a recording, "pause" appeared on the screen. Pause? I didn't hit the pause button??? So I stopped the recording and started over. When the time came to stop - I pressed stop. "Please Wait" appeared as it always does when you press stop - but this time it stayed on screen much longer than usual, and the unit made a lot of noise. "Disc Error" it said. Boo! However, it let me continue to record. Seemed ok. Well - until I got to the end and selected "Finalize". It tried and tried and tried - and then told me - "Unknown Disc". Again the stupid thing decided it didn't know the disc it has just formatted and recorded on. The disc won't play and is unrecognized when I try to re-insert it. An hour of my morning is wasted. Thanks Cyberhome!

That was pretty much the last straw. I returned it - and of course will never buy a Cyberhome product again. But I'm also weary of DVD recorders in general. Are they not quite ready yet? Do name brands work much much much better than this? I would hope so but I'm going to wait a while before trying this again.

Avoid this unit! Even at $79 is isn't worth it. After reading other reviews on Cyberhome DVD recorders, I don't think I got a random lemon. I'm disappointed as I would really use a DVD recorder...but this one was virtually unusable. You get what you pay for. Lesson learned.


Recommend this product? No


Amount Paid (US$): 79

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