DMR-BWT955GL versus DMR-UBT1GL-K — a re-evaluation (updated 6 April 2022)
In the nearly four years I've been using the triple tuner BWT955, certain perspectives have come to the fore.
BWT955's three tuners are fantastic if your primary viewing experience is confined to free-to-air TV. You can record three TV programmes simultaneously. Furthermore, you can store up to 2TB of movies and shows within BWT955's hard-disk-drive (HDD), which programmes can then be transferred to blank Blu-ray discs and DVDs for a nigh-endless collection of terrific films and wonderful shows.
However, in the nearly four years since I've wr...itten the first review, streaming services have grown astronomically: not only can one now subscribe to Netflix, Stan and some, but a dozen others. And the number of subscribers has also grown astronomically. The difference between then and now is that one no longer has to create one's own collection ... streaming services provide instant libraries for you — in many, if not most, cases, for a small monthly fee. If you're into streaming, but still wish to record the occasional free-to-air film or show, then UBT1GL-K, with its two tuners and true 4K, may just be the trick (if you don't have a smart TV, UBT1GL-K enables streaming). This perspective may explain why Panasonic has given UBT1GL-K, its latest model, only two tuners. Panasonic picked up on the trend towards streaming and did away with a third tuner. So what was a shock for some of us four years ago — the reduction from 3 tuners to 2 — may now possibly be justified. When Netflix can budget $12 billion for content creation (films and series), one perhaps need look no further for evidence of the enormous success many streaming services are having. So it comes down to this ... If you are happy with the content provided by free-to-air TV stations and are happy with DVD and Blu-ray playback and recording, then BWT955 is an incredible machine to have (once you have it, you'll truly wonder how you could have done without it). On the other hand, if you subscribe to a streaming service or two and desire 4K playback and recording, but nevertheless still wish to copy on occasions, to the HDD, worthy films and shows from free-to-air TV stations, than UBT1GL-K may just be all you need.
Purchased in April 2018 at JB Hi-Fi Retail Stores for $643.
Panasonic DMR BWT955GL i have has a few issues after about 2 months no sound when playing disc on 4 occasions 3 of these blu ray disc were new this is the main concern have been using another player for disc but has a few little problems like menu pops up at times settings also change randomly for some reason so it's a $750.00 machine best suited to record tv programs only
Purchased in February 2021 for $750.
Not reliable playing blu ray disc
This Panasonic DMR BWT955GL blu ray player on 5 occasions has played a disc but has no sound you only have sound if you play it on x1 speed 3 of the 5 disc have been new rang jb hi twice not helpful lot of money for something that's only good for recording tv
Purchased in October 2020 at JB Hi-Fi Retail Stores for $759.
I have 3 three Panasonic PVR's...ranging from 500g - 1T - 2T (3 Tuners)
My progressive buying has been from $2000 - $900 whilst the weight and build quality has changed...my love of these machines hasn't wavered. The 3T machine (around 5years old) the first of its kind, is used everyday...wonderful friend! It has 'Never' let me down...
Purchased at Harvey Norman.
ABSOLUTE RUBBISH!! DO NOY BUY PANASONIC!!!
Useless piece of crap and no answers from Panasonic technicians having reached out several times...avoid all all costs!!! Save time, money and your personal mental well-being and buy a different “reputable” brand with aftercare!!!
Purchased in December 2018 at JB Hi-Fi for $895.
I'd give a negative score if I could
Panasonic still sell this quite expensive and seemingly high featured dvr, but they have not updated its now very old network apps. The browser does not support the https protocols used almost exclusively now on the internet. This means you can not even update to a different browser using play store as play store will not accept login from an insecure, ie http, browser. So I can't get any of the catch up tv channels that want a user login because they too want https . This expensive pvr has other bad features. I regret ever buying this pvr and will never buy another Panasonic product again, and I'm happy to tell everyone what I think of Panasonic's contempt for its customers. The are many cheaper, better pvrs.
Purchased in July 2018 for $750.
Sometimes when I set it to record programs it just flashes the red "rec1" constantly rather than actually records but the really annoying thing is the blu-ray player will not put out any volume on blu-ray series. No problem on blu-ray movies but nothing for the series. Picture, no sound. I've called Panasonic about this and they "helpfully" got me to turn the unit off and on about a dozen times and then suggested I take it to a Panasonic tech who is miles away from me. Useless! So, yeah, one of the main reasons I bought this unit and it doesn't even work. Won't be buying Panasonic again.
Purchased in May 2019 at eBay for $549.
Updated from my old Panasonic SD Twin Tuner
I bought this two weeks ago to replace my trusted Panasonic SD Twin Tuner because I wanted to record programs in high definition. So easy to set up and has the same style remote control as my previous one which makes life easier. I installed the updated firmware as this often corrects any bugs that may have existed. It also gives you the option of switching off network connection. I love the new look menu list which is comparable to all the the latest new tvs. Recording two programs at the same time went without any hitches from the tv guide. H...aven't used any other of the fancy options like pausing live tv yet. Very happy the unit starts up quicker than my previous Panasonic recorder which was a little frustrating if you want to record something at the last minute. Overall, very happy with it so far. 25/6/2019 Another week has passed and I had the opportunity of taping three programs at once. Once I choose the three programs through the TV guide, I switched off the recorder and watched something else on my tv. All three programs played back perfectly the next day. So pleased with my purchase. Thanks Panasonic for a great product.
Purchased in June 2019 at Harvey Norman for $467.
Good Performer but slightly Over Priced by some retailers.
This Unit has replaced an older TOPFIELD DVB and the Panasonic is equivalent in all aspects and can handle the New Formats of HD TV and the Differing Digital Sound Outputs of each Station, MPEG, AAC, Dolby Surround. The Only problems encountered initially were that the Unit Initially produced bad picture jitter on the connected TV but after I did a software Update as per the Operating Instruction Book, Page 92,95 the jitter reduced on the cheap 10yr old BAUHN 47" 100hz HD TV. The DVB Operating Menu takes awhile to get used to after a TOPFIELD ...unit but it all works quite well, with a few minor problem areas such as trying to re designate recorded programs and the fast forward function on recorded programs isn't as good as Topfield because this unit doesn't show how much more of a program is left. Netflix and UTube works well via WiFi and that is better than TopField. The Programming and Recording of Channels is very good in both SD and HD TV. Overall the Unit is quite Good but you need to shop around to get the right price.
Advertising Agencies Hate This Device
Given the frequency, length and inane content of TV commercials it is impossible to watch commercial TV in Australia without one of these devices. We record all programmes on commercial TV that we want to watch and, the moment the ad break looms, we hit forward to the next chapter mark and you're back with the show having skipped the dog food / nappies / shampoo etc. etc.
We bought this Panasonic to replace our aging Sony unit which did not receive all the HD channels in the new format. Never really bought much Panasonic gear before but am r...eally pleased with this unit. The set-up is easy and all menus are intuitive. Given it's advanced features I am able to watch recorded shows remotely via my smart phone due to the units interface with my home wifi network. I am also able to set up record, delete programmes etc in a similar method. I can also use Windows Explorer to drag and drop recorded shows from the Panasonic to my PC for archiving purposes if required. Although in tts format they can be watched via VLC player or converted to a more common format with Handbrake or similar software.
It works but overall disappointing for a premium priced product
I got the DMR-BWT599GL as a replacement for my old Humax 4Tune which gave up the ghost. The Humax had 4 Tuners and with it's 3 tuners, this Pana was the nearest thing easily available. Based on past brand experience, I was prepared to be blown away by the refinement of the Panasonic, compared to the Humax. Well, that didn't happen!!
General sound and picture quality is good but I keep seeing this comb pattern at quick changes of video content (reminiscent of badly done bob & weave deinterlacing). C'mon, Panasonic!
But surely, the Panasonic re...
Near perfection. Without something like this, watching commercial TV is plain impossible.
Quality speaks for itself, this is why I have Panasonic.
First I had the DMR-XW480 (2 channel DVD recorder w/o blue-ray). Already great.
But since it could not play blue-ray, and since the DMR-BWT955GL's HD is way bigger, I bought that one, too.
The remote controls of both units are identical, and on the same frequency, thus I had to design a "high-tech"-solution ;) ... to be able to control one but not the other at any one time: A bit of cardboard in front of the infrared-receiver of the recorder, which I do not use at the moment...
Gr...eat huge storage space! Great quality of the recordings. Unit does not miss a beat, i.e. always works. Can't remember which of the 2 recorders plays up once in a blue moon. Solution: Pull the plug, wait 30 sec. and plug in again (just like in IT-Crowd... ;)
Coming to terms with losing Tivo.
I read reviews of a number of PVR's that I initially found from Choice magazine. This Panasonic did seem to have some difficulties for some reviewers here on productreview.com.au, but overall did seem to be the best.
I'm happy to say it has worked flawlessly for us in the 3 or so weeks we have had it now. It was easy to set up and has not been hard to learn how to control and run from the remote.
So far the only criticism I can make is that the volume control on the remote does not work on our Samsung TV. We have to use the Samsung r...emote to change the volume. Our Tivo was hard to beat. Even though this Panasonic is not a perfect replacement in terms of exact function for function, the 3 tuners instead of the 2 on the Tivo is a great improvement. The extra storage so we can opt to record HD programmes is good too.
Panasonic fantastic recorder.
This Panasonic DMR-BWT955 GL Blu-Ray Recorder is just great,it has 3 tuners which allows for more recording options, the editing feature is so good and easy to use, the up-scaling to 4K is also great, it produces a great 4K like picture. You can also set serial recording and so easy to setup from the TV guide feature.
This machine is almost perfect
Fantastic quality recordings, huge amount of recording space (2GB), plays Blu-Rays and region free DVDs. Recording through the Guide is so easy even Mon-Fri recordings. Can record three programmes at once. Be sure to update the firmware immediately on purchase, this solves a few problems recording through the Guide. Haven't tried 4K as my TV is not capable.
Questions & Answers
The original remote for our DMR BWT 955 is not working well, bought an universal remote and want to know the code.
Hi Christine, Please give our customer service team a call on 132600 and they will assist your further and help you.
Have just bought a Panasonic DMR-BWT955 recorder. When prerecording, it the preceding program is recorded. Is this a fault of the recorder & should it be replaced as it was bought only 3 days ago?
Hi Helen, Please give our customer service team a call on 132600 and they can assist you.
Thank for getting back to me. We have sorted out the problem.
How long does the please wait recovery typically take?
Hi John, Its best to give our customer service team a call on 132600 and they will assist you further.
Get an answer from our members and Panasonic representatives
ProductReview.com.au has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence our content moderation policies in any way, though ProductReview.com.au may earn commissions for products/services purchased via affiliate links.