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Depends on what you want it for!
i highly recommend this unit. for
- time shifting programs from free to air tv
- for watching live free to air tv
- as an optical disk player
The unit is also useful as a:
- dlna player
- dlna server
Not recommended at all.... apps!
- the app library is simply not up to date, and almost any tv will have better apps...
Purchased in June 2021.
I'd give a negative score if I could
Panasonic still sell this quite expensive and seemingly high featured dvr, but they have not updated its now very old network apps. The browser does not support the https protocols used almost exclusively now on the internet. This means you can not even update to a different browser using play store as play store will not accept login from an insecure, ie http, browser. So I can't get any of the catch up tv channels that want a user login because they too want https . This expensive pvr has other bad features. I regret ever buying this pvr and will never buy another Panasonic product again, and I'm happy to tell everyone what I think of Panasonic's contempt for its customers. The are many cheaper, better pvrs.
Purchased in July 2021 for $750.00.
- Verified purchase
Sometimes when I set it to record programs it just flashes the red "rec1" constantly rather than actually records but the really annoying thing is the blu-ray player will not put out any volume on blu-ray series. No problem on blu-ray movies but nothing for the series. Picture, no sound. I've called Panasonic about this and they "helpfully" got me to turn the unit off and on about a dozen times and then suggested I take it to a Panasonic tech who is miles away from me. Useless! So, yeah, one of the main reasons I bought this unit and it doesn't even work. Won't be buying Panasonic again.
Disappointed in this unit especially as it cost so much and it's only two weeks old.
The most annoying feature on this unit, (apart from the cost) is that when you are using YouTube, ABC iView and other internet streams the picture appears to be shrunken or cropped with a surrounding black border of 2-3 cm depending on the size of TV screen. Mine is 40"/100cm. My $50 Roku box works so much better and I'll probably keep using it.
Hopeless for managing a video library
First the good - high capacity, multi-tuner recording, network connectivity, blu-ray.
USB-HDD additional storage was promising, but unreadable by a PC.
All of our recording comes via AV from a STB, but there is no way of categorising the recordings, like FTA recordings. But even for FTA, you are stuck with the Program Guide category - the category can't be edited!
When naming a recording, the older Pan. PVR had a user list of 20 titles we used for Series titles. For a new recording you selected from the saved list, then just add ep. no. and ...sub-title. The 955 doesn't have this functionality any more. The older Pan PVR allowed sorting the list of recorded titles, which made it a bit easier to find a title. The 955 doesn't have this functionality any more. In fact finding a title amongst 100 pages (700 titles) stored in order of date/time recorded is pathetic. It really needs some form of search function. What's the point of very large storage if its unmanageable?
- Verified purchase
Steep Learning Curve!
I decided to purchase a new unit for the BluRay facility. However, it seemed sensible to buy a "combo" unit that included three HD tuners and of course the DVD/CD player too. To put it bluntly, it is one of the most complicated PVR/CD/DVD/BluRay machines I have encountered. Playing discs is easy of course, but I was disappointed to discover the DVD player was locked to Region 4. I understand that units still under warranty can be sent/taken to a Panasonic Service Centre and they will convert it to multi-zone, but I live in the country, near...ly four hours away from the nearest city. Why couldn't they just make all Australian units multi-zone out of the factory? Anyway, I still have an excellent Pioneer multi-zoned DVD player connected to the TV to play discs from overseas! The PVR functions are not too complicated if you select the program you wish to record from the Electronic Guide, but remember to edit the schedule to add at least another 30 minutes on the end. We all know of the commercial channels being pre-disposed to running all their program schedules late! The extra buffer time at the end of the recording isn't an issue because there is a 2TB HDD with plenty of space for unwanted finales from The Batchelor/ette, Survivor, The Block, Masterchef, et al. I believe, if I could read through the instruction manual a couple of times, without glazing over, or nodding off, I could probably discover all sorts of facilities and tricks to enhance the pleasure of using this unit, but I've more or less got it to do what I want it for, so best to leave the menus and all those tick boxes well alone. I'm not a technophobe and have always been happy to embrace new gadgets as and when they come on the market, but as you get older in retirement years, you need to pick your battles! I would recommend this unit to a younger generation who enjoys the challenges built in this box of electronics.
Purchased in April 2021.
Updated from my old Panasonic SD Twin Tuner
I bought this two weeks ago to replace my trusted Panasonic SD Twin Tuner because I wanted to record programs in high definition. So easy to set up and has the same style remote control as my previous one which makes life easier. I installed the updated firmware as this often corrects any bugs that may have existed. It also gives you the option of switching off network connection. I love the new look menu list which is comparable to all the the latest new tvs. Recording two programs at the same time went without any hitches from the tv guide. H...aven't used any other of the fancy options like pausing live tv yet. Very happy the unit starts up quicker than my previous Panasonic recorder which was a little frustrating if you want to record something at the last minute. Overall, very happy with it so far. 25/6/2019 Another week has passed and I had the opportunity of taping three programs at once. Once I choose the three programs through the TV guide, I switched off the recorder and watched something else on my tv. All three programs played back perfectly the next day. So pleased with my purchase. Thanks Panasonic for a great product.
Good Performer but slightly Over Priced by some retailers.
This Unit has replaced an older TOPFIELD DVB and the Panasonic is equivalent in all aspects and can handle the New Formats of HD TV and the Differing Digital Sound Outputs of each Station, MPEG, AAC, Dolby Surround. The Only problems encountered initially were that the Unit Initially produced bad picture jitter on the connected TV but after I did a software Update as per the Operating Instruction Book, Page 92,95 the jitter reduced on the cheap 10yr old BAUHN 47" 100hz HD TV. The DVB Operating Menu takes awhile to get used to after a TOPFIELD ...unit but it all works quite well, with a few minor problem areas such as trying to re designate recorded programs and the fast forward function on recorded programs isn't as good as Topfield because this unit doesn't show how much more of a program is left. Netflix and UTube works well via WiFi and that is better than TopField. The Programming and Recording of Channels is very good in both SD and HD TV. Overall the Unit is quite Good but you need to shop around to get the right price.
Advertising Agencies Hate This Device
Given the frequency, length and inane content of TV commercials it is impossible to watch commercial TV in Australia without one of these devices. We record all programmes on commercial TV that we want to watch and, the moment the ad break looms, we hit forward to the next chapter mark and you're back with the show having skipped the dog food / nappies / shampoo etc. etc.
We bought this Panasonic to replace our aging Sony unit which did not receive all the HD channels in the new format. Never really bought much Panasonic gear before but am r...eally pleased with this unit. The set-up is easy and all menus are intuitive. Given it's advanced features I am able to watch recorded shows remotely via my smart phone due to the units interface with my home wifi network. I am also able to set up record, delete programmes etc in a similar method. I can also use Windows Explorer to drag and drop recorded shows from the Panasonic to my PC for archiving purposes if required. Although in tts format they can be watched via VLC player or converted to a more common format with Handbrake or similar software.
A great recorder, but some Manual info a bit sketchy
The straight forward stuff is well explained and easy to follow. I love it. However some instructions are a little hard to find or follow. Recording a programme on every Monday to Friday I know is possible, but have yet to discover how to set it. For the moment I'm working around that and my overall impression is favorable.
- Verified purchase
Three Tuners: the Way to Go
Panasonic's DMR-BWT955GL is a powerful and versatile home entertainment hub. Its standout feature is its three tuners, which enable recordings of three free-to-air programmes at the same time.
Keyword Recording is a new feature, which supplements Timer Recording, giving users a range of recording options.
Because BWT955 is a Blu-ray disc recorder it can copy shows and movies from its HDD (hard disc drive) to blank BD-Rs and DVD-Rs for archiving. But it can also playback Blu-ray discs, DVDs and CDs, a boon for those of us who have built a library of pre-recorded discs.
Picture reproduction is excellent.
Operations in BWT955 are snappier than in some previous Panasonic models.
- Verified purchase
It works but overall disappointing for a premium priced product
I got the DMR-BWT599GL as a replacement for my old Humax 4Tune which gave up the ghost. The Humax had 4 Tuners and with it's 3 tuners, this Pana was the nearest thing easily available. Based on past brand experience, I was prepared to be blown away by the refinement of the Panasonic, compared to the Humax. Well, that didn't happen!!
General sound and picture quality is good but I keep seeing this comb pattern at quick changes of video content (reminiscent of badly done bob & weave deinterlacing). C'mon, Panasonic!
But surely, the Panasonic re...
Near perfection. Without something like this, watching commercial TV is plain impossible.
Quality speaks for itself, this is why I have Panasonic.
First I had the DMR-XW480 (2 channel DVD recorder w/o blue-ray). Already great.
But since it could not play blue-ray, and since the DMR-BWT955GL's HD is way bigger, I bought that one, too.
The remote controls of both units are identical, and on the same frequency, thus I had to design a "high-tech"-solution ;) ... to be able to control one but not the other at any one time: A bit of cardboard in front of the infrared-receiver of the recorder, which I do not use at the moment...
Gr...eat huge storage space! Great quality of the recordings. Unit does not miss a beat, i.e. always works. Can't remember which of the 2 recorders plays up once in a blue moon. Solution: Pull the plug, wait 30 sec. and plug in again (just like in IT-Crowd... ;)
Coming to terms with losing Tivo.
I read reviews of a number of PVR's that I initially found from Choice magazine. This Panasonic did seem to have some difficulties for some reviewers here on ieatwords.com.au, but overall did seem to be the best.
I'm happy to say it has worked flawlessly for us in the 3 or so weeks we have had it now. It was easy to set up and has not been hard to learn how to control and run from the remote.
So far the only criticism I can make is that the volume control on the remote does not work on our Samsung TV. We have to use the Samsung r...emote to change the volume. Our Tivo was hard to beat. Even though this Panasonic is not a perfect replacement in terms of exact function for function, the 3 tuners instead of the 2 on the Tivo is a great improvement. The extra storage so we can opt to record HD programmes is good too.
Great when it works
I love this recorder when it works. With 3 HD tuners I never miss a show and can watch all my catch up without adds. I don't know if it's just my one but every few months I've had to reset it as it's stopped recording. As I said I love it but could work better.
Panasonic fantastic recorder.
This Panasonic DMR-BWT955 GL Blu-Ray Recorder is just great,it has 3 tuners which allows for more recording options, the editing feature is so good and easy to use, the up-scaling to 4K is also great, it produces a great 4K like picture. You can also set serial recording and so easy to setup from the TV guide feature.
This machine is almost perfect
Fantastic quality recordings, huge amount of recording space (2GB), plays Blu-Rays and region free DVDs. Recording through the Guide is so easy even Mon-Fri recordings. Can record three programmes at once. Be sure to update the firmware immediately on purchase, this solves a few problems recording through the Guide. Haven't tried 4K as my TV is not capable.
- Verified purchase
If only it worked the way it should
The recorder does not always record the TV program from the TV guide. Selecting a TV program to record every week the unit will not record the TV programme if it does not obtain the information from the TV guide, which is often. The recorder has a problem obtaining (reading) current TV guide from the various TV channels. Also beware the recorder only up-scales to 4k which means it will not play 4k dvd's
Excellent unit and has not missed a beat so far
I recently purchased this unit as a newly acquired last gen Samsung Plasma had horrible problems with recording via the freeview EPG.
I am really impressed as usual with the quality and user friendliness of Panasonic devices.
The reliability so far with timing recordings has been superb and the triple tuner is great-Amazing how often the best programs of the day are scheduled at the same time.
Setup was extremely intuitive and fast-probably took me 15 minutes to connect the unit to the TV and tune in the channels and connect to the network. ...
Unable to do basic things
NOT a TIVO alternative. Can not pause live tv unless you are recording it. Can not pause a recording and watch another channel. Very bad control. To many basic hic ups to list. I believe that all the great reviews are submitted by Panasonic staff. Third Panasonic purchase. Tv is ok. Home theatre product the worst I have ever bought.
Questions & Answers
I have just replaced my old panasonic with the new DMR-BWT955 and there is no longer any way to sort recorded titles or to change prog. type. How do you organise the hard drive? I cannot live with this chaos.
I am finding the recorder is recording double ups. You can't delete the 2nd one. Also when select record single time from the guide it is recording series.
I have used these machines for years, never had so many glitches. Please help.
Panasonic Australia C.Panasonic
Hi KK, best to start with a factory reset. If you still have further problems, please contact our customer service team on 132600
If i do a factory reset do i loose all my settings and storage
I've only done it once and from memory all I had to was to re-scan the TV channels and I think set the automatic program timer again for future recordings. Again from memory, none of the existing recordings were lost.
Panasonic Australia C.Panasonic
Ian is correct, you won't lose what is already on the hard drive, just any future recordings you have already input.
You will lose the settings yes,
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