Another option is to get a Tivo. It records in SD and is basically idiot proof for the most part. Even if you accidentally delete some recordings for a period of time you can get them back and the interface is fairly intuitive and easy to navigate. Our family has got one for my parents this year and my brother that gets confused with electronics easily has one and hasn't had any problems for over a year.
The one big drawback is that there is a monthly/yearly subscription that takes care of the software updates, tagging of programs, and the scheduling information. It is $12.95 U.S. /month or $129 U.S./year or you can get a lifetime subscription.