Basic VCR: Buy by price
Basic VCR: Buy by price

Basic VCR

No major manufacturers are currently making VCRs anymore, so your choice in stores will amount mainly to inexpensive off-brand players. These are no longer reviewed. Be aware that most VCRs nowadays do not have tuners -- that's important if you get your TV from an antenna or basic cable (with no cable box), since you will not be able to record TV shows. In that case, try to find a VCR with an analog tuner. But, keep in mind that analog tuners will be useless after Feb. 2009 when all TV signals will be digital. If you get your TV from a cable box or satellite receiver, you don't have to worry about this issue. A more future-proof solution is to go with a DVD recorder/VHS combo unit, covered in our separate report on DVD recorders.
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*Est. $30 and up Estimated Price
Sony SLV-D380P
Sony SLV-D380P

DVD player/VCR combo

It's easier to find VCRs included with a DVD player in one unit. But keep in mind that these units do not usually come with a tuner -- that's fine if you get your TV from a cable box or satellite receiver, but if you get your TV from an antenna, you will not be able to record TV shows with a tunerless DVD player/VCR. (You will, however, still be able to playback your existing tapes and DVDs.) The Sony SLV-D380P gets good reviews overall. The main complaint is the lack of a tuner. A more future-proof solution to recording TV shows is to go with a DVD recorder or DVR, both covered in separate reports.
See our full review

*Est. $100 Estimated Price
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