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on June 30, 2011
I bought this unit to replace a failed 7 year old Sony RDR GX-300 DVD recorder. After reading all the comments, I had mixed feelings. Upon receiving the unit and setting it up, here's what I found.

The Toshiba DR430 DVD Recorder is a solid DVD recorder. It records and plays all formats you'll ever need (+R, +RW, -R, -RW, and others I never came across). If you're over 40, your eyes may have a hard time with the remote, but some squinting will overcome this. This remote is like all other black remotes with gray buttons.

In regards to comments that this unit loads and formats disks slowly, that's a bunch of nonsense. All DVD recorders take a bit of time, period. Your not playing a store bought movie.

You can record in SP, LP and EP. You'll get different recording capacities per disk depending on quality wanted. Longer time = lower quality, less time = higher quality. Just like on the old VHS VCR recorders. It's a no brainer. You set that up easily with the RECORD MODE button on the remote. I never use the timer, I always use the ONE STEP RECORD button. Each push gives you 30 minutes of recording time, then the recording stops. Want to record a 90 minute movie off your Tivo, then press the record button 3 times, its that simple.

Paid $113 with free shipping and had it in 4 days...in good condition. No dents in the box. It isn't repacked in a larger box though, but I received mine just fine.

The video and audio inputs and outputs are on the back You can use RCA or S cable. I'm using both and it doesn't care. There an input on the front, behind a small door, for recording (downloading) from a camcorder (or any other device).

The manual covers everything, but you have to read it to understand it. I got going in 15 minutes with the QUICK START sheet (4 pgs). One important thing to remember, after you make your recording on a disk, you have to FINALIZE it, so it will play on other DVD players. Remember to read up on FINALIZE in the manual, and you should have no problems.

The menus are very basic, especially the TITLE EDIT button, but simple is good. My earlier Sony DVD recorder took some time to get familiar with. This one is alot easier. A recommended buy.
639 helpful votes
640 helpful votes
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on July 18, 2016
I just bought my second Toshiba DR-430. I got my first about 7 or 8 years ago and it has performed flawlessly.
However recently when recording the playback would freeze up in places. I'm pretty sure this is due to a worn
out lazer. Because I have recorded probably thousands of hours of movies, tv shows you name it and have never
had a problem. Some gave it a bad rating simply because it had no manuel. Really? Come on It's a DVD recorder
not Brain surgery. This is as good a recorder as you are going to find for the price or I wouldn't be getting another one.
I record off Direc tv and Roku streaming player and the results is near HD quality. I have to give this one 5 stars.
These people giving 1 and 2 stars? I don't know if they are Stupid or maby they got a bad one. All I know is the one
I got was excellent. I recommend this DVD Recorder/Player.
3 helpful votes
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on February 21, 2011
Had this a few weeks now and it is still working fine. It replaced a pansonic which only lasted for about a dozen recordings, unfortunately it died after the warrenty. Seldom used the panasonic and never put "library" dish in it. The Toshiba makes it so much easier to label segments that I am glad that I had to replace the panasonic. I only miss being able to change the clip index image (and the wasted money for the panasonic).
I thought that I would replace the panasonic with JVC or Sony but was surprised with all their negative reviews and the positive reviews for this Toshiba. It is important to read the manual carefully because it is poorly written and those tiny DVD icons are worthless and need to be annotated with a magic marker.
Also wonder why equipment designers use no common sense and insist on making equipment with tiny buttons and then making them black on a black panel but then having chrome trim where it is least needed.
25 helpful votes
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on November 20, 2013
I bought this refurbished and it works perfectly! It's my first DVR and I'm so glad I went with the positive reviews, there were so many reviews for this product that all the people who gave it a great rating couldn't be wrong! This DVR is VERY easy to use. Being refurbished it didn't come with a manual. I've made a few mistakes with settings but have always been able to see what I did wrong and I haven't had any problems using the machine at all. I'm a housewife, not an electronics geek, so if you want a reliable easy-to-use machine I recommend it highly! The only "drawback" is that you can't just change discs to begin a recording at the last minute, the discs take time to load (a couple of minutes). They also take some time to "configure" when you stop recording a show. Finalizing a recording takes about 10 minutes. But the recordings are clear at any speed and I don't see these things as drawbacks at all, just plan for them when you record! Oh, and the Maxell DVD-R pack I ordered never arrived so I picked some up at Target and they work great, in a pack of 15 I've had 1 disc that wouldn't load.
3 helpful votes
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on June 29, 2016
I have owned and frequently used this recorder for almost a year and it is still working well. These DVD recorders are starting to get very hard to find.So far,I am quite satisfied with my Toshiba purchase. I also own an excellent old Samsung DVD/VCR recorder combo but Samsung stopped making them.By the way, my old clunky 65" Toshiba TV is 18 years old after heavy daily use, and still refusing to give up the ghost which is why I purchased this Toshiba recorder.Staples has frequent DVD sales at half price so my extensive home made DVD collection is growing. The Toshiba DVD recorder records good quality DVDs +R.
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on September 19, 2011
For the last 3 years I had been using a Panasonic DMR-EZ28. The Panasonic just died and I needed a new one. I had paid almost $300 for the Panasonic and got this one for about $100. This Toshiba seems like a much better deal.

I have only had this Toshiba for about a week, but I can already tell you it is much easier than the cumbersome Panasonic. I will never buy a Panasonic DVD Recorder again. They constantly fail to turn on and do not record when you tell them to. This Toshiba records immediately after you press record (no annoying Panasonic delay) and are a lot easier to use.

The one drawback to this DVD Recorder (and why I didn't give it all 5 stars) is it doesn't feature a DVD thumbnail on a finalized disc. The Panasonic one I had did and you got to pick what image you wanted displayed on your DVD menu after you finalized. This one just has text.

Overall, I would say this Toshiba is an improvement in terms of DVD Recorders. It is easier to use than the ones I've dealt with in the past and it is quick. The design is also sleeker and it is smaller than the usual models.
14 helpful votes
15 helpful votes
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on January 20, 2011
I'm very pleased with the Toshiba DR430 performance. One major reason for the selection is the inclusion of S-video connectors for input and output. So many of the new recorders have HDMI or video only. I wanted to convert a number of my VHS tapes to disc and the S-video capability of the DR430 was one of the very few on the current market that still have the S-video feature, so common on VHS players. I also appreciate the ability to pause during record (to bypass commercials or other material) unwanted on the disc. All-in-all, a great choice for me and everything works as specified.
25 helpful votes
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on June 10, 2014
I don't know why, but I seem to have overlooked writing a review of this DVD recorder. I bought it to replace a combo VCR/DVD recorder from Panasonic that suddenly stopped working. I had bought the combo unit to transfer my home movie tapes to DVD. It's a good thing I did, as the oldest one was just about 20 years old, the supposed shelf life of video tape, and was starting to degenerate. So, my transfer was just in time. Turns out the VCR section of that unit wasn't so hot and I ended up connecting another VCR to it, anyway. Using the Panasonic, I finished the home movie transfer and was just using it to copy movies from Cable TV. Now as to this unit. I was considering giving it 4 stars as it lacked one great feature of the Panasonic. The Panasonic had a variable record mode, which would maximize the quality of any length of movie you wanted to copy. In other words, if a movie were an hour and a half, you would set the variable speed accordingly and get the best quality you could for that time, and not settle for the two hour (LP) speed. This unit doesn't have that. However, after months of recording with this unit, I have decided to give it the full 5 stars. Granted, I don't have a flat screen TV (not that I don't covet them - just no space for one). So I can't attest to the quality of the upconverting to near-HD. I also have not, as yet, tried reusing DVD+/-RW's. I've just recorded movies from cable that I wanted to keep on DVD-R. But I have to say that this was the best $100 I've spent in a long time. First of all, there are very few DVD recorders being made, anymore. The top reviews I've read on this are back from 2011 - quite a long time ago. Panasonic has stopped making them. Still, I couldn't have been happier with my purchase, unless it happened to have the variable speed mode, as well. That said, the quality of the recording is excellent. That includes the XP, SP and LP modes. I believe I copied one long program at the EP (6 hour) mode and found it lacking in quality. But I rarely use that speed, mostly copying movies for my video library. I never bother with the timer, finding the one-touch recording very simple to use. Just press record and it records for 30 minutes. Each additional time you press the record button, it adds another 30 minutes. So press record 3 times and you get an hour and a half. And so on. Very simple. I do have to say that the Panasonic was faster in loading and in finalizing (to play a movie on another machine you always have to finalize the disc - a procedure that is simple to do). This is a bit slower. But that is quibbling. You can set the auto chapter to various time durations, the default being 10 minutes, which is what I prefer. The Panasonic had only 2 to 3 minute chapters - far too short a time interval. I've never bothered naming chapters, so I can't comment on that, but with a little playing around, that shouldn't be hard to figure out. I just never cared to. Bottom line is for a hundred dollars you can't go wrong with this unit and I would suggest getting it before DVD recorders stop being made altogether, in favor of DVR's (unless you're waiting for Blue-ray recorders).
3 helpful votes
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on October 8, 2011
When I bought this, I wanted something which would basically replace my old, dead VCR, but do it all with DVD media, not outdated VHS tapes, and that meant a DVD recorder. After doing my research and noting that this item seemed to fit my needs and wants, and while I can surely say that I had some early connection problems, after a short time of owning and using this, it is basically just about (but not completely) everything I wanted out of an old VCR replacement, but utilizing DVD discs, not VHS tape tech.

And that is a good thing, since of course, magnetic tapes deteriorate much faster than DVD discs ever will. As for "time-shifting" various programs for later viewing, this is even easier to program than my old VHS recorder. In other words, using a DVD-RW or DVD+RW disc, I can record a lot of stuff for later (at my convenience) viewing. And using DVDRW discs, erasing and recording over temporary stuff dozens of times seems easy, depending on the brand of RW media used. Most brand RW DVD disks will work, but some may not at all or quirky, so I'd recommend sticking to Memorex and Maxell DVD RW media. With other brands, and incompatible DVD - WRITE speed discs, problems can occur, so my advice is to stick to the two mentions. Sony and some other brands of DVDRW disks might have problems. Recommended brand RW disks are mentioned in the manual however, and are your best bet.

Aside from some early connection difficulties, and a few minor, easily solved problems here and there, this seems to do exactly what I wanted it to do, and does so on DVD discs. Programming this unit is easy, and with DVD's not VHS, there is no more need for searching via fast forward or reverse for what you recorded or want to play, just go to the DVD menu, find what you want, in chapters (10 min. long and other preset time periods), hit enter, and you're there, and then fast forward or backwards to get precisely where you want to. Various settings are endless. And this has so many, including zoom, frame by frame advance, various slow and fast motion speeds, and so many more.

This product records and mostly plays DVD's (DVD-RW, DVD-R, DVD+RW, DVD+R), and plays CD's (normal audio ones, and/or ones full of burned audio MP3's and/or JPEG picture files), but is also an "upconverting" player (up to 1080p Hi-Def). Which means this will make most modern, purchased non-HD DVD's look close to Blu-Ray upon playback. Assuming one has an HD TV and can play back HD. This is NOT a blu-ray recorder, and can only record standard resolution, but the upconverting feature looks great for most commercial disks. IMHO, most of your purchased DVD's will look great on this (and with an HDTV of course), so no need to scrap your standard DVD collection for now.

This has no tuner. Therefore, be aware you will NEED a cable and/or satellite service with multiple channels available, to use this fully, but if you're near a big city, and can pick up a lot of over-air stations with a simple antenna, that'll work. Hooking this up to cable (including on-demand) or satellite renders and engenders best and more numerous results however.

Do not place this on top of your TV and/or cable/dish box, as overheating of the unit can result in poor results and endless error messages. This needs space to breathe, so when setting it up, have this unit well-ventilated and away from the rest of your equipment.

The digital sound here is excellent, as is the quality of recorded media, even on an EP setting (where you can get 6 hours of stuff on one disc). There is also a front panel connection which you can use for gaming systems and/or digital cameras and videocameras (and even an old VCR if you have a working one and want to transfer VHS to DVD format). Overall, while I stumbled a bit along the way in setting all of this up to do what I wanted it to do, the simple fact is that this really is, as others have said, pretty much a perfect replacement for an old, outdated VHS recorder. It works much better with one-time use one time recordable DVD media than it does with RW disks, but the price of the former is so cheap these days, that shouldn't be a main concern.

I had some initial connection and overheating problems (simply solved by moving this away from nearness to a TV, cable/satellite box, game system, and/or other heat source), but since then, this has all worked really well. Old DVD's you might own (or had recorded on VHS/old TV's and/or had old VHS/DVD's transferred to DVD), might not playback in upconverted DVD but this is a bargain for now for what it does, and until actual blu-ray recorders become widely available and a lot cheaper, this is a very good buy. Comes with many available audio'visual inputs/outputs, in various formats. I'd suggest one have an HDMI cable for best connection to a HD display, but red, white, yellow connections are possible as well as RGB and "optical audio," so no matter what set up you might have/need, this will do the trick. Again, this does not create HD/Blu-Ray discs, but with upconversion, if you're trying to play in near HD most recently released standard definition DVD's, this works great. Actually, this unit does so many things and has so many great features, and settings, it would be near impossible to address them all here. Playing audio CD's and burned JPEG picture CD's are icing on the cake. Overall, this product offers much more than worth its price.

Finally, the manual included is very detailed and at over 100 pages, very complete AND easy to understand. Whatever your set up, I can't see anyone having any major problems with getting this to perform nicely. Plain one-time recording DVD's work best with this, re-recordable ones less so, but I have no major complaints. Why pay for nonthly DVR service on cable or satellite fees however, and not be able to save such to permanent or temporary hard DVD discs, when this will do the trick quite nicely?
233 helpful votes
234 helpful votes
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on October 13, 2011
I purchased this a few months ago to replace an old DVD/VCR recorder that was wearing out, and so far I am happy with it. It has a few little glitches or things I would have liked to be different, but overall it seems like a good reliable product.

Pros: 1. The recording and playback quality is great (have it connected w HDMI output and RYW input from satellite receiver), even on the lowest-quality recording settings. 2. After a little initial confusion with the menu setup and location of the remote buttons it's simple to use. 3. If you hit the record button once it will start recording, but pressing it multiple times sets the unit to automatically stop recording after 30, 60, 90, ... minutes, which is really convenient for recording a TV show or other standard-length event. 4. The user's manual is very detailed (~100 pages) but was straightforward enough that I (with very limited experience with this sort of thing) had the unit set up, figured out and running/recording in less than 15 minutes. 5. While the finalized DVD menus are basic, they have much more space for longer titles than my old Panasonic did, and show the complete title without truncating it. 6. It also lets you change the placement of chapter marks, but only with DVD+/-RW and DVD+R disks. I haven't used this feature because I record on DVD-R, but it seems like a great option. 7. And it's a heck of a lot cheaper than most of the other comparable models out there.

Cons: 1. It takes FOREVER to read a disk when first inserted, finish writing a recording to the disk, and finalize the disk. My old recorder would take a few seconds to do the first two and maybe 30-60 seconds to finalize, but this one seems to take much longer. Thankfully it hasn't happened to me yet, but if you ever decide to record something on short notice and don't have a disk in already you will probably miss the first minute or two of your program. 2. The finalized DVD menu is very basic, with just the text titles in rows. 3. It doesn't have a built-in tuner, so you will need to hook it up to an antenna, satellite, cable, or other video feed. 4. The DVD tray is fairly loud when it opens/closes and I'm not sure how good the quality of its motor is. 5. Last and probably least, the unit doesn't show the clock when it's turned on, just the input source (or at least I can't figure out how to make it show the clock instead).

To summarize, this might not be the newest or greatest DVD recorder, but if you're looking for a good recorder at a decent price with some neat features, look no further.
25 helpful votes
26 helpful votes
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