Datavideo VDR-3000 review

Self Help | The Magazine | Downloads | Links | Tips & Advice | Help! I'm new | Contact Us | Subscribe | Home  

Inside the magazine
Self-help message board
Article reprints
How to contact us
Web links directory
Software downloads
Tips and advice
Fire-wire campaign
Subscribe today
Help Me, I'm new!
Fair pricing petition

In Software Downloads:
Adobe Premiere 6 (trial)
Paint Shop Pro 7 (trial)

Tips and Advice:
How to get started with computer video editing

Fire-wire Campaign:
Join our ongoing campaign

Datavideo VDR-3000

Here at Computer Video Towers, we've spent a good deal of time looking at Video CD creation, as well as the format's high-quality, MPEG-2 counterpart, Super VCD. Even with dedicated software at hand, there'`s a lot to take in, and Mac users especially will feel left out in the cold, thanks to the limited range of software applications for their systems. To the rescue comes Datavideo's VDR-3000, a set-top recorder capable of recording audio and video to disc in a wide variety of formats - VCD, HQ-VCD, SVCD, CD-DVD and standard audio CD.

VideoCD uses MPEG-1 files, and over an hour of video can be stored on a single 650Mbyte CD. SVCD is MPEG-2 based, and sports far better picture quality, but a 650MByte is good for only around 30 minutes of footage. CD-DVD is a DVD disc image stored on a Compact Disc. One format we hadn't encountered before was HQ-VCD, which uses an MPEG-1 stream at the same resolution as VCD, but at twice the bitrate. CD-DVD and SVCD appear to use constant bitrate encoding, rather than a variable bitrate - with CD-DVDs being encoded at 0.6 MBytes per second, and SVCD being encoded at 0.3 MBytes per second.

The VDR-3000 has overcome some of the hassle associated with putting video on little shiny discs, but it really only takes us part of the way there. One of the joys of video CD is the ability to create menus and present video in a non-linear format - a benefit not offered by discs created with Datavideo's machine. Also, the many compatibility issues we have encountered in the past regarding DVD players, formats and the discs themselves still apply. If you have a PC-based video editing system, then it's still a more versatile and cost-effective bet to invest in a CD writer and VCD authoring software. However, where the VDR-3000 scores is for no-fuss transfer of video to CD - and if that's what you want, the VDR-3000 is currently one of a kind.

More in the May 2001 issue of Computer Video Magazine

Recent features...
View The Archive

Reviewed in May's issue:
Pinnacle DV200
Datavideo VDR-3000
Adaptec 4300
CeQuadrant WinOnCD 3.8

In this month's news:
Panasonic returns to top
Real-time Mac editing
Mac OS X at last but...
Easy CD Creator 5 Platinum
Alarm DV
Canon reaches for bottom

Contact Us | Subscribe | Home (c) WVIP. Designed by Mark Newman.