Tivo, the most well known name in digital video recorders (DVR), has some new competition from computer giant Microsoft and consumer electronics company LG Electronics. The two recently teamed to announce the LG LRM-519 Digital Media Recorder, a DVR/DVD-recorder hybrid product which gets its television guide information from a special pay-for Microsoft service.
The LRM-519 looks much like any other consumer electronics product designed to fit into your home entertainment setup, measuring 16.9? x 2.3? x 11.8?, weighing 11.2 pounds and sporting a blue fluorescent display. It has a variety of outputs and inputs on the back panel, including RF, digital audio, composite video, component video, standard audio, s-video, telephone, Ethernet, USB, IR controller and serial controller. It comes with a universal remote control and various cables.
Image Courtesy of LG US
The primary focus of the LRM-519 is to serve as a digital video recorder to store television programs recorded from the listings of the Microsoft Program Service. It has a 160 GB hard drive which is designed to hold the up to 160 hours of video. Like a Tivo, the LRM-519 can pause and rewind up to 90 minutes of live television as well as fast forwarding and rewinding recorded programs. This programming can be burned onto a DVD via the LRM-519?s load tray and supports DVD+R, DVD-R, DVD+RW, DVD-RW and DVD+R Double Layer. LG?s device can also playback DVD movies as it is a progressive scan player.
The Microsoft Program Service, which the LRM-519 downloads in increments of 14 days worth of listings from an Internet connection, covers satellite, cable and terrestrial television channels. Features of this service, whose GUI is based upon Windows XP Media Center Edition, allow users to schedule recordings of TV shows or series via the remote ? one button touch for an individual show or two touches for all episodes, view detailed information about individual shows, search for shows and movies using a keyword, title or subject and block shows based on ratings.
The LRM-519 can also serve as a digital media hub by allowing devices which have USB connections, such as digital cameras and MP3 players, to connect so their content can be accessed through the DVR. Media file formats supported through this method include WMA, JPEG and MP3. External USB hard drives can also be attached to expand storage memory options for recorded television programming. Through the LRM-519?s Ethernet port, the DVR can connect to a home network, wired or wirelessly, to access and share TV shows, photos and music with a Windows XP-based PC.
More information on the LG LRM-519 Digital Media Recorder, which is priced at $599.95 for the device and different fees for monthly access to the Microsoft Program Service, can be found at LG USA and Microsoft.
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