Advantages Excellent picture and sound quality, five hour battery life on one charge
Disadvantages No SD card slot
|Ease of Use|
|Ease of Installation|
|Range of Features|
I bought a portable DVD player about five years ago for my daughter. Back then they were quite the novelty and I bought a Shinco one from the Firebox website for £150. I picked it because it got great reviews at the time and because in comparison to better brands it was actually quite cheap. I spent an extra £50 on a spare battery for this machine as external Li-on batteries were de rigeur in 2004.
The Shinco player served us well but had some downsides. It was heavy, it required external batteries which only gave just over 2 hours of battery life and each battery had to be charged separately – and over time the charging time was getting longer and longer with the battery life itself paradoxically getting shorter.
The thought of a couple of near 5 hour train journeys with my daughter without a DVD player to keep her amused was a concern to me – never mind a forthcoming trip to the USA, so I decided something would have to be done.
* DVD player* “Bolt” DVD
* Remote Control* Instruction Manual
* Mains Charger Lead* Car Charger Lead
* Audio/video leads to enable you to connect the DVD player to your TV.
My daughter was only temporarily depressed at having to get the white one, with red being her preference, as the promise of the “Bolt” DVD inside the box seemed a fair pay off for this minor cosmetic problem.
The Sony DVP-FX730 has a massive five hours battery life, which is absolutely perfect for train journeys to London or for medium haul flights. This was the clincher for me when factoring in the pluses and minuses of various players and making my final decision.
Charging time was about 5 hours so it’s best to charge this overnight really.
Powering up has to be done via the switch on the DVD player.
It can also play CDs and VCDs and you can play MP3s, view JPEG photos and play videos via the USB socket which will handle data files on a memory stick.
The screen is the same size as the Shinco player at 7”, and this is perfect for one person to watch. The screen is widescreen.
The control buttons are very easy to operate whether they be on the DVD player itself or via the remote control. This really is a simple to operate product and I think Sony are particularly good at producing easy to use devices.
Reading files from the USB stick is a bit clunky and I have so far only got it to read MP3 files – and even then some don’t always work. I haven’t been able to navigate fully around what is on the stick because for some reason I find I can’t go back to the main index once I have viewed one folder.
To access these files you have to press the “input” button on the DVD player, then your memory stick will be easily read.
The casing seems reasonably durable too, although it is made from plastic rather than metal.
I think the player looks pretty good too - in spite of my daughter's complaints about it being white. Once you open the player up all you see is black so even if you don't like white it's not going to blind you.
For the money, it’s currently hard to beat this Sony portable DVD player. Cheaper portable DVD players are available but you will be hard pushed to find one which has a battery lasting anything more than 3 hours per charge and that can be limiting.
Picture quality, sound quality, battery life and sheer portability make for an excellent buy – for the money you really would be hard pushed to find something better.
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