LG DRT389H DVD Recorder - LG DRT389H

By Danny Phillips



Our Score:


You won't be stuck for places to stick your cables thanks to the extensive range of sockets on the rear panel. We start, as ever, with the HDMI output, which is specified as v1.3 and lets you watch upscaled pictures on suitably equipped TVs. The deck offers 720p, 1080i and 1080p output and will upscale everything, including pictures from the built-in Freeview and analogue tuners.

The HDMI port is ably assisted by prog-scan capable component video output, RGB-capable SCART output and S-video output, while a second SCART socket accepts RGB, composite and S-video signals from external sources. For audio, there's a choice of optical and coaxial digital audio and analogue stereo outputs.

The aforementioned Freeview tuner brings with it Freeview+ support, including Series Recording and alternate instance recording, which alerts you when programmes clash and suggests other times when they're being shown.

There's also an 8-day EPG, which is neatly laid out and easy to navigate using the colour-coded keys on the remote, plus it's superimposed over live TV so you can keep track of what you're watching. Despite its friendly layout, setting the timer from the EPG is a bit odd, just as we found on the RHT399H. Highlight the desired programme, hit the red button to record and four options appear written in pidgin English (‘It can be recorded as series' being the best example). It's an annoying niggle in what is an otherwise impressive EPG, and LG should really sort this out on next year's models.

The rest of the onscreen graphics are fantastic, making it easy to find recordings and media files stored on disc, but what we like most is the way the screens dissolve when you exit. Press the Home menu button on the remote and a bar appears at the top of the screen, listing movie, music, photo submenus, each illustrated by a charming animated icon. You'll also find the Setup and Recording Mode menus, but annoyingly the latter offers the only way to alter the recording quality as there isn't a dedicated button for it on the remote.

The remote itself isn't great, sporting a cluttered layout and burying the important programme change and EPG keys at the bottom, but the Home menu button is easy to spot and the menu controls are intuitively placed.

dave doubledecks

October 16, 2008, 3:40 pm

Hi, nice review. The quick start recording you mentioned - can you give us an indication of how long it takes to start recording from power-up? With my current Sony DVD recorder, I have to wait over 2 minutes for it to "boot up" before I can do a thing which is so frustrating. Are we talking seconds or minutes to record from power-up with the LG?

Also, FWIW I thought it was pidgin english, not pigeon?!

Danny P

October 17, 2008, 4:25 pm

Not sure of the exact time but it's certainly less than two minutes, under a minute in fact. In the review I was actually talking about how quickly it starts recording when it's already on, but in both cases it's pretty slick. And yes it is pidgin not pigeon, my brain needs a firmware update.


October 26, 2008, 11:27 am

I have an American camcorder. I tried to connect it before to an old LG DVD recorder that have VHS too. But it wasn't working because the recorder doesn't allow NTSC as an input.

Can I use my camcorder to transfer the NTSC movie with this device?


November 17, 2008, 11:59 pm

Hi - good review. I am looking for another DVD recorder having had a Philips DVDR3597H DVD/HDD but this seemed to have some compatibility issues with an InFocus X10 projector which meant you couldn't connect via HDMI. Do you know if I am likely to have similar issues with this unit?


August 31, 2013, 8:08 pm

I have made a great mistake buying this DVD player. So much goodies that seems to offer but the biggest one is a BIG HEADACHE.

Guys, I swear don't get into this. It's a trick. I had in the past a Sony that I paid in 2002 100pounds and I had working super great for nearly 9 years. Then, it got off broken. So I thought let me find something new in the market with freeview and a few goodies and a nice and good looking style. I thought was my next big step and it was my next BIG HEADACHE. Not to The LG DRT389H.

Reasons: It struggles very much 90% of the time to read DVDs and CDs.

This is enough to don't buying it. What's the point of a DVD player? To play easily DVDs and if it doesn't what is the point of having it. I put mine in the bin after three a year of headache. I didn't that before because I have other things where I can play a dvd otherwise my patience would've last even less.


January 26, 2014, 7:59 pm

I made the same mistake twice had the first one for 13months did nothing but play up finally it would not recognise brand new disks, so went out and bought another one after a year it did the same I wonder if this would come under the trading standards law of not fit for purpose,

Kevin Meechan

February 4, 2014, 11:25 am

Hi there, I was wandering if anyone has got a spare or old remote control for the DRT389H digital video recorder they don't need or don't use anymore, I have just moved house and have lost my remote control, I don't want to go out and get another recorder.

Geoff Richards

February 4, 2014, 12:53 pm

Hi Kevin. If you can't find an original replacement, your other option is a Universal Remote Control. Just don't go for the cheapest ones, which can only learn from another remote (you can use these to learn from your TV, DVD player etc so you only have one remote)

You need one that uses codes or software profiles so you can select your device and the remote will work as the original. The Logitech Harmony range do this, for example. This one might work for you:

Gillian McRobbie

April 14, 2014, 2:55 pm

Hi does this model LG DRT389H DVD Recorder have freeview built in


October 30, 2016, 2:00 pm

I bought a DRT389H new and it is the WORST piece of equipment I have ever bought.
It simply spends literally 15 minutes before it realises there is no DVD - who programmed the software for this - nothing seems to do as you want - AVOID~ at all costs!

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