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Pros and Cons: DVD-Recorder vs VCR vs DVR


All video recording devices are similar in that they make it possible to delay watching television until a later date. But, they each have subtle differences. Ideally, every person would find room next to their television for each device as they each have their own advantages. Of course, they also have their disadvantages, which is the purpose of this list.



  • Programming can be recorded onto a lifelong, virtually indestructible disc
  • Discs are relatively inexpensive
  • Can use disc over and over when recording to a Re-Writable disc
  • Easy to connect to VCR for VHS to DVD conversion or to DVR for permanent storage
  • DVD quality is hard to beat


  • Misuse of discs can lead to damage that can't be repaired
  • Labeling discs is imperative for storage
  • Discs have limited space
  • Recording on non re-writable discs can get expensive
  • Compatibility between DVD types (+R/-R) is not 100-percent right now



  • Over 20 years of people using on a frequent basis makes it difficult for the technology to completely disappear
  • Over 20 years of video tape collections compiled, which make it expensive to replace with DVDs
  • Easy to use
  • Blank or Recorded tapes are inexpensive
  • VHS tapes can be reused with little difficulty


  • Tracking issues between different players
  • Picture quality can degrade on tapes being used over and over
  • Outdated technology - recording in digital not possible with older VCRs


A PVR or Personal Video Recorder is another term for DVR.


  • All recording is self-contained inside the unit - no external media required
  • When sudden situations arise (like water boiling over the pot or turning off the sprinklers) a person can pause live television and watch it moments after handling the situation
  • Money saved in buying VHS cassettes and DVDs is endless
  • Possibility to record in HD
  • Dual tuner models make it possible to record on one channel while watching another when connected to a digital cable/satellite service provider


  • Limited hard drive space
  • Hard drive is not meant for permanent storage
  • Hard drive could crash causing all info on drive to be lost
  • Many DVRs require monthly subscriptions for advance recording of shows

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