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This Hard Disk Drive DVD Recorder with Integrated digital and analog tuner, features BRAVIA Sync and 1080p upscaling via HDMI.

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Review of "Sony RDRHXD890B.CEK"

published 23/11/2008 | derek-j-a
Member since : 26/04/2005
Reviews : 95
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Thanks to everyone for reading/rating my reviews - I will always reciprocate as soon as I can. For those interested, I am very much into Zen, and my Zen blog is at..
Pro Record to hard drive, DVD drive, watch and record at the same time.
Cons I needed to read the instruction manual!
very helpful
Picture Playback
Sound Level
Ease of Use
Ease of Installation
Remote Control

"Sony RDR-HXD-890 Hard Drive & DVD Recorder"

Last weekend our old video-recorder started chewing tapes, so it was about time that we upgraded. We already had a DVD recorder, but had been using it in tandem with our video recorder through an aerial booster that split the signal between the two machines without loss of quality.

When it comes to such gadgets, being the sort of person that likes to see what I am buying, I went off to Comet's to see what was available. Being a Sony lover I was impressed by the RDR-HXD-890, one of the latest hard disk drive/DVD recorders from Sony's Range. It seems that black is back in vogue which I have always preferred; when I bought the last recorder, all I could get was silver, but there is a choice of black or silver with the RDR-HXD-890.

When I got the machine home, I discovered that there were so many options on this machine that I had to sit down and study the manual closely. Not that it was complicated, but just a lot different to my last Sony machine.

The RDR-HXD-890 has a built in digital tuner for freeview, and an analogue connector for those who cannot yet receive a digital signal. It has two scart lead connections and HDMI output to connect to a high definition television.

The machine has a 160GB hard disk drive and a DVD Recorder. The hard drive will store a maximum recording of up to 455hours and 23hours in HQ+ recording mode. There is a button on the handset you need to push to select the hard drive, and then record as you watch, record by timer manually, or use the EPG menu, by pressing the guide button on the handset and simply select the program you want recording. With the press of the "enter" button, the machine will then tell you the timer is set and the program will be recorded.

Whilst you are recording to the hard drive, you can watch DVD or vice-versa (i.e. whilst recording to DVD, you can watch a program on your hard drive). Also whilst on the hard drive, you can playback your stored programs while new ones are being recorded and it is capable of freezing, rewinding and fast-forwarding real-time television, should your viewing be disturbed by a phone call or visitors.

If there are programs you want to keep, you can transfer them from the hard drive to a DVD disk. I have not tried this, but according to the handbook, due to copyright laws, a recording can only be transferred once and is removed from the hard drive once on a DVD disk.

HQ stands for Highest Quality
EPG stands for Electronic Program Guide.

If you have other Sony products (we also own a Sony Bravia TV), the RDR-HXD-890 is designed to work seamlessly with all other Sony home cinema products, so that they can be controlled by just the one handset. However, I am still using separate handsets so that my brain can cope with what I am recording and where I am recording it, and what I am watching until I fully familiarize myself with the machine's capabilities.

What I have noticed but not yet attempted to use on the machine…

*A Series Link: With the touch of a button you can record automatically all episodes of your favourite soaps or series so that you will not miss anything during the season.

*PictBridge: This is a socket that I can connect to my printer that also has a PictBridge facility. That would be useful whilst viewing photos with friends that are stored on the hard drive or DVD. If they fancied having a copy of one, you can print it for them there and then without having to power up your computer.

*Enhanced Photo Slide Show: This is a feature that provides transition effects from one photo to another, and then there's the option to put frames around your photos and burn them later onto a DVD for sharing.

*USB and iLink Connection: There is a USB connection if you have a hard drive camcorder or camera that uses USB, or an iLink (firewire) connection if your camcorder uses this form of connection. This way your home videos and pictures can be copied over to DVD or the hard drive in the machine.

*Digital Music Jukebox: This is where you can store and playback up to 999 of your favourite songs.

I have only owned this machine for a short while so cannot comment on its durability, but I expect it to be like other Sony products that I have owned in the past. They may be a little more expensive than other makes, but I find them to be reliable and of a good build quality.

But having said that Sony products tend to be on the expensive side, I thought the price reduced from £250 to £230 for this machine was quite reasonable considering what its capabilities are. I did need though, to spend another £30 for a HDMI connection cable so that I could view in HD format where available. If you are prepared to buy from an Internet source, I should imagine there would be even better deals out there.

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Comments on this review

  • happysh2009 published 29/04/2012
    Sony is one of my favorite. Great info. x
  • liolia79 published 25/06/2010
    Well reviewed!
  • Essexgirl2006 published 03/05/2010
    I think my parents have this, or a very similar model. They like it so it must be simple to use!
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Product Information : Sony RDRHXD890B.CEK

Manufacturer's product description

This Hard Disk Drive DVD Recorder with Integrated digital and analog tuner, features BRAVIA Sync and 1080p upscaling via HDMI.

Product Details


EAN: 4905524484403, 5013493107373, 4905524484427, 4905524484434, 4905524484458

Manufacturer: Sony

Table / Portable: not Portable

DVD Player / Recorder: DVD Recorder, with DVD Recorder

Integrated VCR: without Integrated VCR

Hard Disk Capacity in GB: 160





IPTV (Internet Protocol Television): No

Show View: with Show View

Electronic Program Guide (EPG): GUIDE Plus+

DVD-R Playback: DVD-R Player

DVD+R Playback: DVD+R Player

DVD-RW Playback: DVD-RW Player

DVD+RW Playback: with DVD+RW Playback

DVD-RAM Playback: DVD-RAM Player

DivX Playback: With DivX Playback, DivX Player

Super Video CD / Video CD Playback: Yes

HD-DVD Playback: No

DVD Audio Playback: without DVD Audio Playback

Super Audio CD Playback: without Super Audio CD Playback

DVD-R Recording: Yes

DVD+R Recording: Yes

DVD-RW Recording: Yes

DVD+RW Recording: Yes

DVD-RAM Recording: No

MPEG4 Recording: No

Blu-ray Recording: No

HD-DVD Recording: No

MP3 Encoding: No

DTS Decoder: with DTS Decoder

Real Dolby: Dolby Digital Plus

Progressive Scan: Yes

1080p Upscaling: Yes

DVI Interface: Without DVI Connection

Ethernet: No

USB Interface: Yes

Type of Memory Stick Interface: No

Type of SD Card Interface: No

Firewire IEEE-1394 Interface: Yes

Number of Scart interfaces: 2


DLNA certified: No

BD Live: No

3D: No

PC Streaming: No

Width in mm: 430

Height in mm: 75, 76.5

Depth in mm: 288

Weight in Grams: 4400

WiFi Connectivity: No

Number of Discs: 1

RDS/EON: without RDS/EON


Network Music System: No

Dolby / DTS: with Dolby Digital + DTS

Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB): without Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB)

Number of Output Channels: 2 + Subwoofer (2.1)

iPod Control: No

Width of Front Speaker in mm: 95

Height of Front Speaker in mm: 215

Depth of Front Speaker in mm: 105

Internet Radio: No

MP3 Playback: with MP3 Playback

RMS Wattage: 50

Wireless Speakers: Wired Speakers

CD Player / Recorder: CD Player

Number of Speakers: 3 Speakers

Sound Projector: No

Home Theatre System (Digital Dolby and DVD Player): Yes

Internal Storage: Hard disc drive - 160 GB

TV Tuner: Standard

Remote Control: Remote control - infrared

Audio: Stereo

Digital Player (Recorder): Digital player

DVD: DVD recorder

Colour: Silver, Black

Weight: 4.7 kg

Dimensions (WxDxH): 43 cm x 28.8 cm x 7.7 cm

Product Type: DVD recorder / HDD recorder with digital TV tuner

Product Description: Sony RDR-HXD890S - DVD recorder / HDD recorder with digital TV tuner, Sony RDR-HXD890B - DVD recorder / HDD recorder with digital TV tuner

MP3 Recording: No

W-LAN Connection: No

Double Layer Recording: Yes


Power Consumption Operational: 47 Watt

Type: Internal


Cables Included: Antenna cable

Included Accessories: IR blaster


Connector Type: 1 x USB ( 4 PIN USB Type A ) - front ¦ 1 x USB ( 4 PIN USB Type B ) - front ¦ 1 x IEEE 1394 (FireWire/i.LINK) ( 4 PIN FireWire ) - front ¦ 1 x S-Video input ( 4 PIN mini-DIN ) - front ¦ 1 x composite video/audio input ( RCA phono x 3 ) - front ¦ 2 x SCART ( 21 PIN SCART ) - rear ¦ 1 x HDMI output ( 19 pin HDMI Type A ) - rear ¦ 1 x component video output ( RCA phono x 3 ) - rear ¦ 1 x composite video/audio output ( RCA phono x 3 ) - rear ¦ 1 x S-Video output ( 4 PIN mini-DIN ) - rear ¦ 1 x SPDIF output ( RCA phono ) - rear ¦ 1 x G-Link Interface - rear

Remote Control

Technology: Infrared

Type: Remote control

Clock & Alarm

Clock: Yes (digital)

Digital TV Tuner

Tuner Qty: 1

Digital TV Tuner Type: DVB-T

Video Features

Electronic Programme Guide: Digital EPG, GUIDE Plus+

TV Tuner

Reception System: PAL, SECAM

Tuner Qty: 1

Type: Standard

Recording Features

High Speed Dubbing: Yes

Digital Player (Recorder)

Internal Storage: Hard disc drive - 160 GB

Supported Digital Audio Standards: MP3

Device Type: Digital player

Features: JPEG photo playback

DVD Features

DVD Additional Features: JPEG photo playback


Supported Digital Audio Standards: PCM, MP3

Supported Digital Video Standards: DivX, MPEG-1, MPEG-2

Media Load Type: Tray

Programmability: 32 events / 1 month

Video D/A Converter: 10bit / 108MHz

Recordable Media: DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD+RW, DVD+R, DVD+R DL, DVD-R DL


Type: DVD recorder

Upscaling: Yes


Coaxial Digital Output: Yes

Audio System

Digital Audio Format: Dolby Digital output

Output Mode: Stereo


Features: Progressive scanning (line doubling), simultaneous recording and playback, chasing playback, USB 2.0 compatibility, PictBridge compatible

A/V System Recommended Use: Home


Enclosure Colour: Silver, Black

Weight: 4.7 kg

Height: 7.7 cm

Depth: 28.8 cm

Width: 43 cm

Product Type: DVD recorder / HDD recorder with digital TV tuner



Listed on Ciao since: 24/06/2008