Introduction Although the VCR player is becoming a thing of the past, with the arrival of the DVD player, it's not dead and buried yet. There is still a high demand for films and documentaries on the VHS format. Some people feel that their video player is of a good enough quality so they don't wish to upgrade to a DVD player. Our family, won this VCR in a raffle. We bought ten tickets at fifty pence a piece and we won two prizes! You may be thinking to yourself, a video player so what. Well as a matter of fact, we were chuffed with this and couldn't wait to get it home. We do have a Philips DVD player, as some of you will know, and any of our new movie purchases are bought in DVD format. However, we have around 100 VHS tapes, with numerous films that we regularly watch. It would be too expensive and quite frankly stupid to replace them all with the DVD versions. Our old video player was pretty knackered and the control didn't work any longer. Aesthetics The player itself, looks really smart. It comes in a silver metallic finish. There are black plastic semi-transparent covers for the digital display and also the 'flap'. It would match any modern 'silver' television very well. It looks really high quality and expensive so you won't be ashamed to have on in your living room or bedroom. It isn't too hefty in size, as it is just under 10cm tall and 22.3cm across. It is only 44cm deep so it should fit in well among your other entertainment equipment. Picture Playback The picture quality is very good, and this coupled with the excellent quality of the television, you get really great images. Compared with DVD quality, there is no contest, but for playing your video collection it is a more than acceptable machine. Also. compared with our old video player, this seems like the best VCR ever. Sound Quality The sound quality is very good, as
the player has NICAM on it. The stereo sound is very clear and crisp so it doesn't distract your viewing of films or documentaries. When you play recorded footage, the sound is very good. My mum's VCR, has very poor sound quality on playback. This is really annoying and the volume seems to leap up and down for no apparent reason. This VCR is very good so I would reccomend this if you do a lot of recording. Ease of Use There is nothing special about this DVD player and it is really easy to use. There are no extra functions that you wouldn't find on other VCR's. You can either operate the machine through the remote or the buttons on the machine itself. The VCR does eject much quicker than most I have used so you aren't waiting for ages to swap over the tapes. Ease of Installation Installing the player is easy. You have to simply plug the SCART lead into the back of the VCR and then the other end into your television. You then plug the power socket into the wall. The video player, should install itself automatically on most televisions. However, on older television models, you may have to tune in the VCR. Having looked through the manual, it appears pretty straight forward as long as you follow the guidelines. The pictures and menus's show how to do it in a very clear and ordered fashion. Remote Control We tend not to use the control, as we can operate both the VCR and DVD player, via the main television control. The control has all of the buttons that you need to perform the various functions, but it is a little annoying and sometimes confusuing. For the lesser 'technically gifted' user, this would become annoying after a while. If you read the instructions, however, you should easily pick up how to use it. Instructions As with the other Philips instructions I have dealt with, these are again very good. They are clear and precise, as they don't bomba
rd you with blocks and blocks of complicated text. The pictures and diagrams are very clear and the annotations clearly labelled. Even an old 'anti-technology' person would be able to set the machine up and use its various functions with relative ease. Range of Features The range of different features on the machine isn't any different from other VCR machines. It has all of the standard modes including: play, pause, stop, fast forward, rewind and of course the record button. You can do all of the standard things that other VCR's do and there is no additional functions available. I cannot say that the range of features is good, because everything is standard, and for the same reason I can't say that it is poor. Durability The VCR, looks really well put together and is made from a strong material. It would be hard to dent the outer casing unless you gave it a real whack. The shell is one complete piece of metal so this gives it added strenght. I expect this product to last us for a number of years. It should be very efficient because it is made by Philips. There shouldn't be any faults with it, but just in case you are given a one year manufacturers warranty. You will get a lot of continuous usage out of this and will probably last for 20 years if you really care for it. Value for Money I think that for just under £100, from Comet online, it may just be a little too expensive for some people. You do get a good range of features and a very neat looking item for your money, as well as the very reliable Philips brand name. You should be able to find products that are of a similar standard to this so it may be worth having a good look around before you buy. You can buy DVD players for under £100 now so this is probably too expensive for a VCR. Summing Up If you win this at a raffle, then fair enough it's great. The only reasons that I would reccomend this video player
to anyone, are as follows: ---you need a new VCR because your old one is completely knackered ---you have other Philips entertainment equipment ---you want a reliable brand name If none of these criteria apply to you then don't buy it. The VCR is a very good product but given that VCR's will die out soon and the price tag of £100, steer clear of this.