Ok, this might get a little long so bear with me.
My intention is to enter the Tivo world with the Humax DRT-800. I want to make sure I am clear on some of the features and drawbacks of the DVD based systems compared to the non-DVD series 2 tivo's.
Here are some of my questions I couldn't competely answer after my searches.
1) Video output. I noticed the DRT-800 has component out and optical digi audio. I also noticed that it doesn't record HD (duh) and that the best audio is composite and s-video for the video. For the record, I will always prefer digi audio.
Here is my question. Is there any point to using the component video out since the best input is s-video? Is there any advantage or video quality increase by using component that would make this feature valuable other than for DVD playback use?
2) Optical digital audio. I have a 5.1 system that allows optical digi input. I would like to know and clarify the benefits and drawbacks of optical out.
I think I read that the DVD playback, live and recorded audio will pass through the RCA outputs and the optical digital output. I also read about some latency issues that I couldn't quite stick. My setup will be the cable box to the Humax for audio and video, then to the tv for the video and the audio to the 5.1 system.
My question is: When viewing the live or recorded programming, will the optical output just send in digital stereo compared to analog composite stereo since it doesn't have a digital audio input for 5.1 decoding? Basically will I be listening to Pro Logic on my 5.1 system regardless of which output I use, the only difference being digital/analog output?
3) Video Quality. I have read that the video on standard is noticably degraded compared to the standard series 2. I read that it's something to do with the resolution to disk for DVD purposes.
My question is, can you record higher quality video on the highest settings on the non-DVD series 2 tivos compared to the DVD based? Is it just a matter of stepping up one quality setting on the DVD systems to match the non-DVD systems? I plan to upgrade the drive and would like to record as high as possible as I don't plan to burn to dvd other than to transfer faster to a comp. Might use it a few times for shows to DVD.
4) System differences. Other than DVD burning compatability and playback, what are if any, the differences between the systems? I am very curious about the video quality difference. I also need a new DVD player so take that into account as well.
Sorry for the novel and thanks in advance and any other random info regarding this topic is welcome. Thanks!