LG RH200MH review

A big hard disk and recording versatility won us over

The LG RH200MH is a great option

TechRadar Verdict

You get what you pay for and this is well worth the money


  • +

    250Gb hard disk

  • +

    Easy to use


  • -

    No digital tuner

  • -


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The RH200MH is LG's most advanced DVD/HDD recorder yet, boasting a massive 250GB hard disk, the ability to record onto every DVD format going, two memory card slots and an HDMI output with video upscaling.

The RH200MH also sports a fetching half black, half silver fascia, the lower section of which drops down to reveal AV inputs and two memory card slots.

One accommodates Compact Flash and Micro Drive cards, while the other houses SD, MMC, xD and Memory Stick. These let you play music and view photos, or copy them to the hard disk and turn this LG into a media jukebox.

The rear panel sports HDMI output, Scart input and output (both RGB enabled), component output, plus electrical and optical digital audio outputs. When using HDMI, yo u can choose to output video in standard definition (576i or 576p) or up-convert it to 720p or 1080i so it suits the resolution of your flatpanel TV or projector.

Despite its lengthy features list, the RH200MH does have one glaring omission - a digital tuner. This is unforgivable with digital TV switchover looming and hands a big advantage to Freeview-equipped rivals from the likes of Sony, Panasonic and Toshiba.

The only type of disc the deck won't record onto is DVD-R Dual Layer, but every other format is fair game. There's a choice of four recording quality presets, offering up to 356hrs of recording time on the hard-disk.

Hard-disk editing is surprisingly basic - you can only delete parts of a recording, combine recordings or divide them.

Strangely, better editing is available on DVD-RAM or DVD-RW (VR mode) discs, where you can piece together playlists from various recordings without affecting the original. In operation the RH200MH is slick: well laid out menus dissolve into each other and the onscreen graphics are easy on the eye.

Recording quality is top notch. XP mode recordings made from a Freeview receiver match the source without introducing any undue noise. The powerful primary colours on BBC News 24 broadcasts look rich and clean, while fast moving footage remains impressively smooth and stable.

SP mode shows very little picture degradation, but when you drop down to LP and EP, images look softer and more pixellated but stay on the right side of watchable.

DVD playback using Scart or component is not as impressive - skin tones are a little on the red side, but it's nothing we can't live with. Generally, pictures are sharp and free from noise. Switch to HDMI and pictures look marginally cleaner, but we can see no improvement in detail with 720p or 1080i output activated.

It's not cheap, but the RH200MH does give you a lot for your money. The lack of a digital tuner and HDD playlist editing stop it getting top marks but there's much to admire about this multi-talented machine.

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