Portable DVD players
Confining your multimedia to your house is so 2006. With video cell phones, media players and wireless internet access everywhere, it’s a good possibility that your DVDs are gathering dust. Break them out, and bring them along for the ride.
Portable multimedia players don’t get much nicer than this. Created by iLuv, the iLuv 1155 not only plays DVDs and CDs, but will also play music and videos from your iPod. Retailing at $250, the picture quality is top notch, and of the three models we tested, the iLuv 1155 has the best sound quality at low and higher volumes. An extensive remote lets you control a DVD or iPod from across the room, and the docking station will charge your iPod while it is playing. The 8.4-inch LCD widescreen can handle special effects-laden films whether it’s situated right in front of you or a few feet away. A rather large device is made stylish with a sleek black and red design complete with a touch pad to manually control your iPod. However you will have to use the full-sized remote to work your DVDs. An included car adapter is a good idea for long car trips because the battery life will get you through about two movies before sending you scrambling for a book. Heaven forbid.
Slightly smaller than the iLuv 1155, the Panasonic LS82 is an 8.5-inch widescreen player that also sells for $250. Without a remote, you’re left with a small set of simple buttons on the device itself. At higher levels, the volume can become tinny when there is too much sound for the speakers to handle, but at reasonable volumes or when using a headset, everything works great. The advertised 12-hour battery life fell short during continuous play. Still running for over four hours, this is the longest lasting DVD player we tested. Included is a headrest mount, making this the only player in the lot to turn your car into a movie theater.
Coby Portable DVD Player
Remember portable CD players? Well this should bring back memories. Compact and lightweight, Coby’s Portable DVD Player resembles a personal CD player in size and shape. With a simple remote and enough battery life to get you through a couple of movies or CDs, this player, available at HammacherSchlemmer.com, is perfect for airplane travel and your wallet—costing only $150. Headphones are preferable because the speakers can’t handle too much volume, but the picture quality is quite impressive for a 3.5-inch screen.