DVD Players Buying Guide

The Digital Versatile Disc (DVD) has revolutionized the storage media technology. Now being the top and most popular optical disc storage, the DVD is used to store music and movie files that have qualities that can rival those of digital surround systems and picture qualities in top cinemas.

Of course, what good is the DVD without the DVD player? There are many different DVD player brands and models with varying prices and you may get confused about which one to get.

To many people, all DVD players are the same. After all, this is about playing bits of data from a digital source.

Generally, if you are thinking of a basic system - and by this we mean just a DVD player connected to a 21-inch CRT TV - then, by all means, get the cheaper DVD brand. You will probably get the same quality as the expensive ones but the varying factor would be physical durability (and brand name, if you care).

If you are buying a digital home theater system - a Plasma or LCD TV with digital surround speaker system - by all means choose the appropriate brands.

How is that? Well, although the DVD is a digital media, your video output may not be. A CRT television is an analog output so an analog to digital conversion can occur which may result in data loss and picture degradation can become very apparent with bigger screens.

Hence, here are some guides before you buy your own DVD player, especially if you intend to use it in a high end home entertainment system.

Compatible Media

You may play other disc media on your home entertainment system. Many DVD players can play other compatible media such as Video CDs, audio CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, High Definition Compatible Digital (HDCD) and Super Audio CD (SACD).

Single Disc or Multi Disc DVD Player

The main advantage with having a multi disc DVD player is you can place at least DVDs on the player so that one when finishes playing, you do not need to get up to change but you simply click the remote control. Multi Disc DVD players can accommodate from 2, 3, 6 even 403 discs (with Kenwood Sovereign DV-5050M).

Remote Controls

You definitely need a remote control so that you won't need to get up from your couch to change DVD or you can easily jump from one movie or scene to the next anytime you want. Some remote controls have keypads that glow in the dark.

Video Processing

Most DVD players that give decent video quality uses 10-bit video digital-to-analog converters (DAC) running at 27 MHz. The Sony ES DVP-NS999ES 14-bit DAC and runs at 108 MHz.

Zoom Feature

You can magnify the picture on your display with the zoom function. This is useful if you want to adjust the display based on different TV aspect ratios. You can also use the zoom if you want to study scene details. Other DVD players allow you to pan and enlarge specific screen areas.

Special Effects

While almost all DVD players can pause, fast scan, slow motion and play frame-by-frame, it is how clear the picture display still is when done in these special effects that you can determine the quality of the player. So far, the Sony DVD player is known to have the smoothest and clearest picture quality during frame by frame, slow motion and other special effects.

Progressive Scan

The problem with CD players is that they are bulky and the minimum size of the player you can is a little bigger than the CD size.

Cellular Phones MP3 Players

Adjusting the way digital display (as in plasma or LCD TV) with progressive scanning can greatly enhance quality. Motion artifacts on screen can be reduced significantly with 2:3 pulldown feature of progressive scanning.

Component video

If you can find component video inputs usually found in new and high end TVs, match it with a DVD player that has component video outputs and you will get the best picture quality around.

Sound System

Your sound system is very important for a truly remarkable DVD player experience. You may consider buying a surround sound system as all DVD players include Dolby Digital surround sound support.

Portable DVD Player

You can buy small and lightweight DVD players which can easily fit inside your bag. With portable DVD players, you can easily listen to your favorite music using an earplug or you can easily find a large TV and connect the DVD player to instantly watch you favorite show. Many portable DVD players come with LCD screens so you can directly watch your favorite movies wherever you are.

Portable DVD Player Batteries

You need to get batteries with long life if you don't want to be disrupted in the middle of an engaging movie scene. Buy rechargeable batteries because you are not only being environment friendly, you can also save money in the long run.

Battery Charger

You need this if you primarily use rechargeable batteries for your portable DVD player. This is also useful for your DVD remote controls.

Ear Plugs

When you are watching your favorite movie on your portable DVD in a public place like a train, you will want ear plugs so that you don't disturb other people with the sound from the DVD player and at the same time you don't get distracted by other people and the sounds they make.

Audio Outputs

It is nice to have a flexible home theater system so make sure your DVD players have cables to support both digital and analog audio outputs.

Find DVD Player reviews on Bush, Nextbase, Philips, Sony and Toshiba DVD Players at dvdplayerreviews.org.uk.