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LG Shows Digital Media Recorder

LG Electronics will use CEDIA Expo to show a combination DVR/DVD recorder employing a new Microsoft Program Guide.

The company will also unveil a 71W-inch LCoS-based microdisplay rear-projection HDTV set with full 1,080p resolution.

The Digital Media Recorder, model LG LRM-519, includes a 160GB hard drive and is powered by Windows Media Center technology. The unit is compatible with over-the-air broadcasts, as well as both cable and satellite TV services, and will store up to 160 hours of content at one time.

The unit performs all the functions of a DVR; can burn DVDs; and integrates into a home network to share video, audio and photos with Windows XP and Windows SP Media Center Edition-based PCs.

The LRM-519 will ship in October at a $599 suggested retail price. The Microsoft Program Guide service subscription is available for a $249 one-time fee, $99.99 for a one-year subscription or $9.99 for a one-month subscription.

The program guide, which is the first EPG service from Microsoft since its ill-fated UltimateTV that was briefly offered in select RCA and Sony DirecTV DVRs, will search up to 14 days of programs by title, keyword, actor, director or category to view or record selected television shows.

The Digital Media Recorder’s two USB ports will allow connection to a compatible external hard drive of any size to expand storage capacity beyond the standard 160 hours.

The unit’s DVD recorder is compatible with major recordable DVD disc formats, including DVD+R dual layer discs. Hard-drive recordings can be quickly transferred to DVD for playback on the go.

The unit can be easily added to a home network via wired Ethernet or an 802.11a/b/g wireless connection. A home network connection can be used to send recordings to a home office for viewing or archiving on Windows XP or Media Center Edition PCs.

In addition, the Digital Media Recorder will play on TV screens or home theater systems, JPEG photo files, MP3 and WMA music files stored on PCs, portable digital music players, digital cameras and USB thumb drives, among other things.

LG’s new 71W-inch LCoS rear-projection model 71SA1D will be available this fall at a price to be announced later. The unit will deliver full 1,920 by 1,080p resolution and will incorporate ATSC tuning and a digital CableCARD slot.

The HDTV includes LG’s proprietary XD Engine technology that takes low-resolution analog signals to near high-definition levels.