Selecting a Portable Yamada DVD Player
By Jason Flowers
Consumers in general seem to be increasingly looking for mobility in any gadget that they buy. Everyone is aware of the potential for entertainment that a DVD player can afford. Just imagine the possibilities if you have a portable one at your disposal! You get to watch a movie while travelling in a car, or even while relaxing in the park. A portable DVD player has all the functions of a regular one, with some added advantages. Because there are now so many models competing for market share, the array of features and options can appear bewildering.
What are the Key Features?
Is it just the mobility aspect that you are looking for in a portable player, or do you also want one that is compatible with your home entertainment system? Selecting a player has much to do with individual preferences. The following are some basic features to be considered when selecting a portable DVD player.
What about the Screen Size?
Players with screen size greater than 7 inches tend to be heavier and more costly but of course offer greater viewing resolution. You need to decide where the trade-off is.
How about the Weight?
Portable models that weigh more than 3 to 4 lbs are a little too heavy to comfortably carry around. All things considered, if portability is the main issue, you might settle on a lightweight model that is less than 2 lbs in weight.
Which is the Best Audio-Video Output?
Most portable players are fitted with audio and video outputs to connect to a TV or home theatre system. If you are likely to want to do this, in order to enjoy the best picture and sound performance, the portable DVD player must be equipped with the best video and audio outputs. Optical audio output and S-video output are generally the best choices. If you are a frequent traveller, may also be able to connect the player to the TV in your hotel room this way.
What is a Video Input?
The latest portable DVD players can even be connected to devices such as camcorders and game consoles. You can turn the player into a game display by simply plugging the game console into the device. You can also plug in your digital camera or video camera to view your photos and video files.
What is Progressive Scan?
Progressive scan is a technology used for ensuring good picture quality. This is achieved by scanning the image one frame at a time. The technology used is different from that found in regular TVs, which is called interlaced scanning. The progressive scan output will really be effective and useful only if your player will be required to act as a home DVD player as the effect is barely discernable on the portable screen itself.
What are the Supported Formats?
Some players can support multiple format discs. The supported formats depend on the sophistication of the player. Some players support DVD, DVD+R/RW, DVD-R/RW, CD, CD-R/RW, MPEG4, DivX, MP3, JPEG DVD/CD, picture CD, Kodak and many more.
What is the Life Expectancy of a Battery?
The life of the built-in rechargeable battery is usually less than 3 hours, which is not always adequate for longer journeys. Charging a portable DVD player is as simple as charging your mobile phone: you have to just plug in your player. For longer playing time, consider a model which allows you to connect to your car's power supply if this is the intended use, or indeed allows you to add a set of conventional batteries to extend viewing time.
What are the Connectivity Options?
The connectivity options differ from one player to another. There are models offering coaxial or optical outputs and S-video or component video outputs, which enable you to connect to other equipment such a your home theatre system if this is likely to be important. You should also choose your model, based upon on whether you require a single headphone jack or multiple ones.
Can a Laptop be Used Instead of a Portable DVD Player?
Laptops can rarely be a decent substitute for a portable DVD player. On many flights there are now restrictions as to the use of laptops; they are usually far heavier and more cumbersome than today's portable DVD players; battery life on a laptop is usually far shorter; viewing angles on the laptop's screen are generally more restrictive as they are designed for single person use; and there is usually less in the way of supported media formats.
Yamada is the official name of Umax, who manufacture budget portable DVD players. They offer the convenience of widescreen format LCD screens with a range of supported media formats and connectivity options. There is a wide range of models to choose from. With the PDiX-770 model, you can also watch DVD's in MPEG4 formats with a good image quality and a security cover to protect the display. The PVD-740 is designed for in-car use by mounting the player on the headrests. It includes all the major features you would expect in a portable DVD player including the multi-region DVD support. The PTV-707 is a high definition model with integrated DVB-T digital tuner, providing freeview TV wherever you want it. The Chili DVD-760X has many of the latest features such as Divx movie support, CDA and MP3 playback, remote control, multi-region out of the box and many other features.
Given the wide range of portable DVD players now available, it is not an easy task to select the ideal one. The choice will ultimately hinge entirely on your plans for the player. If you need to connect it to other equipment for home or hotel use, make sure you have the right audio and video outputs. If you want to use it in the car, make sure there is a power adaptor and mounting straps. Also be sure that the weight and size are truly appropriate for your portable needs.
About the Author
Jason Flowers is Managing Director of 3 Wise Monkeys
With e-tailers like 3wisemonkeys.co.uk you get the best of both worlds with a guide to buying portable DVD players. As well as producing quick guides, we are always happy to give detailed buying advice over the phone with no pressure to purchase.
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