Pros: Make your own CDs!
Cons: Slow on recording and the price tag!
It is a beautiful looking unit that measures 17-1/8 inches wide x 5-5/8 inches in height x 15-3/8 inches deep. There are two trays in the front of it, one holds 3 CDs and the other one holds one blank CD for recording.
There are several controls and buttons on the front with a nice LED display that lists the titles and the artist. You can name all of your titles for your recordings. A simple but useful control comes with the unit.
You can use the unit as a CD player as well as a CD recorder.
The Philips CDR785 comes with a one-year warranty.
The Philips CDR785 plays CDs, CDRs and CDRWs
It records to CDRs and CDRWs
3-disc CD changer and a single record well with random and repeat.
A Remote control
CD Text writing and naming
For input connections you have one optical Digital, (Fiber Optic Cable) one Coaxial Digital and one set of Analog inputs. (RCA Jacks)
For the output connections there is one Coaxial Digital and one set of Analog outputs.
In the front of the unit you have one headphone jack output and one microphone input.
What comes with the player/recorder?
A wireless remote
A three-foot coaxial cable
Two 4.5-foot RCA stereo audio patch cords
A Blank 74-minute CD-R
CDRW promo by Philips
A VHS tape on how to make your own CD
Two AA batteries
Make your own personal CDs
You can record on CDR and CDRW discs.
You can connect with a digital cable to a DAT (Digital Audio Tape) or DBS (Digital Satellite TV) and record digital music and sounds
SCMS (Serial Copy Management System) will prevent you from making an exact digital copy from a digital CD. You can place your digital CD in to be copied and it will copy it in analog only. In other words any copy protected CD can only be copied in analog.
You must use the blank CDs for Digital Audio, the blanks must have the words Digital Audio on them. The Blank CDs for your computer burner will not work! Cost for the Digital Audio Blank Discs is $18.95 for 10 discs.
Recording a 74-minute CD takes about 37 minutes to complete.
The price of about $400 plus is a little steep.
What is the unit good for?
You can make copies of your own music if you are a musician.
You can place three different CDs in the unit and pick out the songs you want to make your own custom CD.
My personal Experience with the Philips CDR785
Hooking it up was easy I connected the analog ins and outs to my receiver and it was ready to go.
The tray that holds your blank CD in it opens fairly quick and the tray that holds the three CDs is a little slower, both are a little noisy when opening.
You can look at the players LED display and see three button labeling CD1, CD2 and CD3. When you press one of the buttons it will display the artist in a nice light blue color letting you know who it is.
When labeling your titles you will need the remote, press the Text Edit Button, now you will be going through the numbers to pick out your lettering. Number #1 has ABC on it, #2 has DEF and so on like telephone numbers. This process it time consuming and will be hard for some to use.
The LED display shows you step by step on what songs you pick from the three CDs in the recorder when making a single CD from them. This process will take some time unless you already know what songs you want and the order you want them in.
Time for me making a CD from three CDs is about 30 minutes getting them in order and then 37 minutes to burn it. Making a duplicate copy is just indicating which of the three to copy and then the 37 minutes of recording time.
Out of 10 CDs copied I had one that kicks a song into what seems a high-speed mode for just a few seconds. Could have been caused by some dust on the CD when recording it.
My Final Thoughts!
If you don?t have a computer then you are probably reading this review from a friends computer and this recorder maybe right for you.
If you have a computer then the investment of about a $100 CD burner is a better prospect than the Philips CDR785 3 CD + 1-CD-R/RW recorder/changer. The CD burner in the computer still only records another CD in analog because you do not have a digital connection between your burner and the source that you record from. You must have a digital connection to get a digital copy.
Another advantage of a Computer and CD burner is that you can use a program like Nero that will convert your MP3 files into the CD format so you can play them in any CD player. The Philips will not read or convert MP3 files.
So why spend around $400 plus for something that records at a 2x speed and takes 37 minutes to record with special Digital Audio Discs. When a $100 CD-Burner will record the cheaper CDs at a 8x speed and record it in about 10 minutes with almost the same quality. I know it is advised to burn music at a 2x speed but I have burned it at a 12x speed and had no problems.
The recorder does record good and the CDs sound pretty good even if they are in analog. I used the recorder for about a week and decided it was time to take it back for a full refund because I wasn?t satisfied with it.
My Decisions on taking it back!
When I got the Philips CDR785 I was looking at making my own CDs from the CDs I have in my collection of over 200. There are so many CDs that have only a few songs that I really like to listen to on a regular basis so I was wanting to take them and combine them with other artists and create CDs that my wife and I can play in our vehicles all the time.
1.Decision # 1 for taking it back was it would only copy the music in analog and not the digital quality I was looking for. Since I have a CD burner on my computer and it does the same thing, I didn?t see then need in having both.
2.My sales person lied to me about copying the CDs in it?s digital format.
3.The cost of the Digital CDs are much higher than compared to the blank CDs for the computer CDR-Burner.
The reason I do not recommend the Philips CDR785 or any like it is because to the consumer it is a big rip off in price since you can do the same thing plus more on your computer with a CD-Burner. This type of recording device has only an advantage if you don?t own a computer.