Don't despair. You didn't make a bad choice. Recording in the field to a dedicated digital video recorder that uses a hard disk rather than using a optical disk (DVD) recorder is a much better way to go. Optical media doesn't "do the outdoors" very well. Dust, etc. cause problems. I take my ARCHOS devices down into the bottom of trenches, manholes, etc. all the time. I can't imagine wrestling with blank DVD's in places like that.
The issue, which is completely ignored by the manual for your GVision unit, is that ARCHOS DVR's record to MPEG4 video format, which is not the format used by DVD-Video. The "unsupported" directions for burning the file to an optical disk do just that - copy the file. You can't play it on a DVD player unless it supports playback of MPEG4 (not all do). Actually making a DVD that will play on most all DVD players requires video editing software, a MPEG2 encoder, a DVD authoring package and disc burning software.
To view MPEG4 video on a PC if it complains that you're trying to play an unsupported video format (try it first), download & install xVid:
rather than DivX as suggested by the GVision manual. Less chance of getting adware on your machine.
Here's what I do to make DVD's from ARCHOS video clips:
1. Record the inspection to one or more video clips. I often STOP the ARCHOS rather than PAUSE it if I'm going to be spending some minutes away locating the camera head so I wind up with multiple clips.
2. Use the free video editor VirtualDub:
to append all the video clips in order to create one long clip.
3. Use the not free MPEG2 encoder TMPGEnc:
to create MPEG2 files that are compatible with DVD authoring software.
4. Use the also not free DVD Author from the same site to assemble the MPEG2 files + add titles and or indexes to the files.
5. Use Nero to burn the files to create a DVD-Video compliant disc.
Now, I know this seems like a lot to do. But after you learn the software, it's no big deal. There is probably software that is simpler to use, but I put a premium on video quality, and for me that means a "hands-on" procedure. You always sacrifice quality when you embrace simplicity. When you take the time to tweak, you can really make a difference.
I have never had a customer who minded waiting a couple days to get his disc. I give them one disc free, and I'm sure that helps. Discs can be had for 19 cents +/- and I can do the above procedure in my sleep, so I don't mind giving one away. I always include company info on the disc itself, the same printed on the disc, a business card, and a flyer in the mailer. I figure it's worth it for the advertising.
If you found a big problem during the inspection, you have already located & marked it and the customer is going to want to get started digging ASAP. Having a DVD "in hand" doesn't really make a difference at that point. Besides, you risk embarrassing yourself trying to burn DVD's at the site - you can make mistakes with the software which makes you look dumb while you're cursing & swearing trying to fix it. Far better to do it at the shop with nobody watching.
Additionally, off-line encoding allows you to use two-pass MPEG2 compression which will be highly optimized for the bitrate - you can't do this in real-time recording directly to a DVD. The video will look better.
Anyway, I am sure your eyes have glazed over by now. I know it's a lot to absorb. You just need to capture some video with your setup and start manipulating it. I learned how just by doing (and making lots of mistakes - just make sure you don't deliver those "mistakes" to your customers) and I have never really stopped learning - I continue to pick up little tricks here & there.
If I were you, I would try this:
Get in touch with the GVision folks and tell them you need to make DVD's out of the video you record with their unit and see if they recommend anything. You certainly aren't going to be the first to ask them. EVERYONE wants to burn to DVD as a final product. See what they will do for you. You spent $3K with them - they at least owe you some guidelines, IMO.