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On the hunt for a dvd player, I wandered into my local retailer to be confronted by a vast array of prices, models, technical terms, abbreviations... you know what I mean. I'd heard of most of the features dvd players should have but how do you know you're getting the right one? There were really cheap ones with brand names you've never heard of. Or hugely expensive ones that were undoubtedly some of the best you could get. But all I wanted was something I could afford and that did the job well.
My search was narrowed down to three. A Sony, a Panasonic, and this one. In the end, it was brand familiarity that decided it. I own a Panasonic hi-fi. I own a car stereo from Sony. But what made me think Toshiba was a better bet was the fact that I owned a trouble free Toshiba laptop. A little vague, I know... but my vague intuition has proved right. So right, in fact, that I bought one for my girlfriend that Christmas!
So, what's it like? Straight out of the box, I was impressed at it's size. It isn't the smallest, or the largest, but it's comfortably slim. It looks and feels right. OK, so I may be a little wierd, but I'm one of those who holds onto first impressions and so far it was good. Installing it was easy, too. Scart and phono leads to the tv and that was it. Well, in my case, it did require a little more thought what with video recorders, Sky satellite boxes and a Playstation, but that's nothing to do with this piece of kit.
It's also simple to use. Most of the time I use it, I simply use 3 buttons... Enter, Stop, and Eject. I could get complicated and use fast forward, etc. And the remote has plenty on it for the twiddle factor. But if all you want to do is watch a film, why worry about such things? Only little feature I liked a lot is if you press pause to answer the phone or something, it'll pause... obviously. After a few minutes, it'll switch on a screen saver. A few minutes more and it will go into standby. But power up again and it'll remember where it left off. I forgot it one night, powered it up the next right back to where I stopped the film the night before.
So what else can it do? I've had it playing audio cd's and MP3's before now. I believe you can view jpeg's and suchlike on it, but I haven't tried that yet. With the Scart and phono leads you can plug it into your hi-fi system if you wish. I don't know if it will plug into a 5:1 cinema system... but I don't care. The television speakers are enough for me, after all.
Exercising the twiddle factor a bit and playing with the odd button, I had a decent picture quality on the extensive zoom feature (note to self: settle that bet about Basic Instinct sometime!?!). Skipping chapters in films works well, too.
The only gripe I've found so far is the little jumps it has as it changes layers on the disc. I believe that's something all players do, but it's there nonetheless. However, it's only a split second thing and hardly noticeable.
Other than that, for the price I paid (twice if you include the one I bought for the missus) I think this is an excellent piece of kit if you like watching films but are not too bothered about loads of extra features you'll never use. It fulfills my needs to a tee - I can afford it, and it does the job superbly!
It sounds like a good machine, very slimline too. Lynne x
MAFARRIMOND 09.08.2004 00:20
Sounds and looks good. Maureen
eljefe 21.02.2004 18:59
see thats the thing one thing I HATE is when manufacturers put a wealth of extras on a sub standard system so that it looks better. A DVD player should be measured on 3 things 1. picture quality and sound quality 2. relaibility and 3. ease of use flashy lights and gizmos to make it fly are only useful to idiots...