I can vouch for the stand alone DVR.
I use a stand alone DVD recorder bought from Wallmart. One a Funai SV2000, I also use a Magnavox ZC320MW8. Both are almost identical. I have absolutely no problems burning home movies from, VHS, analog camcorders, or HBO movies, TV shows. from satellite. (Dish network has an agreement with the MPAA, one DVD copy per customer). These DVD's (VOB) are MPEG 2 files. (Not AVI) and can then be copied to your PC as an ISO image for storage, or, imported to your favorite video editor by copying the VOB files from the DVD to the PC, for further editing, Such as removing the DVR's crappy menu's and replacing them with something a little more professional. Or cutting out the commercials. I've done hundreds this way. With very little loss in quality, (as far as I can tell).
I use either DVD-R or DVD-RW. With the DVD-RW you get the option to cut titles, and un- finalize to use them again. (DVD+R's won't work in either)
You can record up to 6 hours of video, at pretty good quality. The recorder has 6 record modes. HQ=1 hour, SP=2 hours, SPP=2.5 hours, LP=3 hours, EP=4 hours, SLP=6 hours.
No more capture cards for me.
I have also used a Dazzle external capture device for my PC that gave horrible results.
Edited by 12x48y, 02 March 2009 - 12:22 PM.