Portable DVD player recommendations (mainly the Panasonic DVD-LA95)

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by MichaelPe, May 7, 2002.

  1. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

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    I'm looking to buy a portable DVD player under $800 US, and I came across this baby. I have a few questions, and I was wondering how it compared to other players.

    I've read some reviews that state that the battery duration is only 2 hours, so is there another optional battery pack available?

    Also, how is the playback for MP3, VCD and SVCD discs? Does it play MP3s on DVD-R discs?
     
  2. bruce townley

    bruce townley Stunt Coordinator

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    I have had the same question, and have been looking for a little while. I just noticed that onecall is offering a new item from Toshiba (sdp2000) that has an 8.9 inch screen, progressive output, and dvd-audio for $799. Anyone know about this new item? Onecall says "coming soon"
     
  3. Michael TLV

    Michael TLV THX Video Instructor/Calibrator

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    Greetings

    The Panny portable with the 7" screen has a battery pack that lasts 6 hours ... although they say 5 hours ..

    I'm getting 6 out of it.

    The Toshiba SDP-1000 portable 480P unit with 5.8" screen gets 2 hours on its pack.

    Regards
     
  4. KevinMorrell

    KevinMorrell Auditioning

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    Hi Michael,
    I have the Panasonic LA-95, and I love it!
    [​IMG] I have had it since just after christmas and I use it pretty much on a daily basis. To answer your first question: The LA-95's internal battery pack lasts about 2.5 hours, but the optional battery pack that hooks under the unit gives it another 5.5 to 6 hours. I usually get about eight hours total play time when I use both battery packs. On to your other question: The unit plays DVD-R's, MP3's, VCD's. DVD-Ram's, CD's, CD-R/RW's, and DVD Audio's and Videos. It does not, however play SVCD's or MP3's on DVD-R's, only video DVD-R's. I mainly use this player for DVD-A/V's, so I can't tell you about MP3 or VCD playback. I cannot rave about this unit enough. Post if you have any more questions. Panasonic has the manual for this player online if you have any more questions about feautures, etc. My rating: [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. ArnaudP

    ArnaudP Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the LV70 and it works great. The PQ is much better than expected. I get about 4 1/2 - 5 hours battery life.
     
  6. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

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    Thanks for all your help (especially Kevin)! I'm really hesitating, now that Bruce has told me about the Toshiba SDP-2000 that's coming soon.
    It looks almost too good to be true:
    Toshiba SDP2000 Progressive Scan Portable DVD Player with 8.9-Inch Display
    [​IMG]
    • 8.9" Widescreen, Active Matrix Screen
      16:9 Polysilicon TFT display is perfect for viewing standard, letterbox, and anamorphic DVD movies.
    • Super ColorStream Pro®
      Component Video Outputs Because the digital filter enables eight times oversampling of the component video signal, Super ColorStream Pro players deliver the highest quality video signal to be sent from the DVD player to a component video equipped analog or digital TV. When this connection is utilized, typical NTSC artifacts - like video noise, dot crawl, and flicker - are virtually eliminated, resulting in a low-noise, highly detailed picture with unequaled color purity.
    • Video Black Level Expansion and PLUGE (output)
      Grayscale in video is measured and tracked on a scale of 0 (black) to 100 (white) IRE units. In NTSC video we have traditionally assigned the 7.5 IRE value as being the black cutoff in a picture. The EXPANDED mode in the "Video Black Level Setting" menu enables Toshiba DVD players to output a 0 IRE signal for richer, deeper black tones in every image.
    • Parallel Video Output
      This highly convenient feature lets you connect your Toshiba DVD player via Composite, S-Video, and/or Interlaced Component Video Outputs and watch simultaneous images from each connected TV. Ideal for multi-room applications.
    • DVD-Audio Compatibility
      Enjoy 2-channel playback of high-resolution DVD-Audio titles. This 'total immersion' experience can include text (song lyrics), still pictures (slide show), and moving visuals (music video).
    • Coaxial Digital Audio Output
      Sends the audio signal to an audio/video receiver in its digital form allowing access to the Dolby Digital/DTS® track encoded on the DVD disc.
    • MP3 Audio Compatibility
      Expands the players' functionality to include playback of custom music collections encoded via MP3 digital audio format onto CD-R or CD-RW media. Spatializer ® N-2-2 TM Virtual Surround Sound Provides a simulated surround sound effect from multi-channel sources. Ideal for headphone operation.
    • Picture Zoom
      This interactive feature allows you to select an area of the picture you want to zoom in on and magnify it.
      Enhanced digital processing during moving video or freeze-frame playback produces superior color fidelity and resolution, even when you're zoomed in. Also can be used to expand letterbox-only films to increase the
      viewable area on-screen.
    • Specifications
      1 Disc Quantity
      DVD/VCD/CD-r/CD/DVD-R/CD-RW
      2 Channel DVD-Audio
      10bit/54mHz Video D/A Converter
      Super ColorStream Pro Video Output
      540 Lines Resolution
      1024 x 600 LCD Pixel Resolution
      Black Level Expansion and PLUGEŠoutput only
      24 bit/192kHz Audio D/A Converter
      Dolby Digital/DTS Output
      MP3 Audio
      Spatializer N-2-2
      Dynamic Range Control
      Icon-Based OSD
      Picture Zoom
      Front Ops
      First Setup Menu
      Credit Card Remote
      Terminals: D-Connector Y/Pr/Pb out
      1 S-Video
      1 RCA-Video
      1 Coaxial Out
      1 pair L-R Audio
      Monitor Input (Composite Video)
      x2/x8/x30/x100 Scan
      1/8, 1/4, 1/2, Slo-Motion
      Parental Lock
      Multi-Camera Angle Select
      Multi-Language Select
      Multi-Subtitle Select
      8-1/4" x 5-11/16" x 1-1/8"
    The LCD pixel resolution, component outputs, and progressive scan, etc... - all of this in one unit definitely makes it worth the wait.
     
  7. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    The specs on the Toshiba sound great at that price. I have a Pioneer LC-10 portable with a 7-inch screen, and I would still like a bigger screen at times.

    If you have a lot of non-anamorphic widescreen discs in your collection, you may want to check out how well the different units zoom the picture. This is one area that my Pioneer comes up short. I avoid taking any non-anamorphic titles on trips for this reason.
     
  8. KevinMorrell

    KevinMorrell Auditioning

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    Hi Michael,
    I'm glad I could help you out. That new Toshiba sounds sweet. If you have any more questions let me know. Good luck![​IMG]
     
  9. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

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    Thanks. I think I'm going to wait for the Toshiba SPD-2000, even though it doesn't fully decode DVD-Audio.
    Ideally, I would've wanted a unit that plays SVCDs and MP3s on DVD-R discs, but I guess I'm just asking for too much. [​IMG]
     
  10. David Tolsky

    David Tolsky Supporting Actor

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    Michael,
    Here's another product you might want to be on the lookout for: the Samsung DVD L-100. Saw this baby at CES in Vegas last January and played some of my own dvd's on it. This baby boasts a huge 10" screen (biggest in it's class)and also has a memory stick slot on it for digital stills and MP3 music. I played an old Technicolor movie, The Ten Commandments, and the picture was gorgeous. I wanted to take one home right then and there! This unit is supposed to be shipping right about now. Check out Samsung's website and read about it.
    www.samsungusa.com. There is a comparison chart that Samsung has on the site that compares the unit to the SDP-2000 Toshiba. I've been in the market for one of these for a while. Personally, the picture looks much better to me than the picture on the LA-95. I've never been a big Samsung enthusiast, but I think this product is a winner.
     
  11. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

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    Wow... the Samsung unit looks impressive as well. I think I should wait until mid-summer before making a decision, because all the companies seem to be releasing their new line of products around this time. I'm guessing Pioneer will also be releasing a new product soon (I'd heard that the LC20's picture quality was poor.)
    Anyway, thanks for all your help... I'm glad I asked you guys before buying the Panasonic. [​IMG]
     
  12. Oswald Pascual

    Oswald Pascual Second Unit

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    Is the Samsung unit Progressive scan? If not I would lean more to that new toshiba. An 8.9 inch progressive scan image should rock! Cant wait to actually see this in action.

    Also the Toshiba specs donot mention if it has any video inputs. I would like to watch DSS on it using my 2.4 GHz sender.
     
  13. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

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    I believe that the Samsung unit is progressive scan. In the comparison table on their website, it says "Progressive Scan: Faroudja". However, it isn't listed anywhere else in the specs or features.

    But, at this point, the Toshiba still looks like the most feature-packed unit of the three (Samsung DVD-L100, Panasonic DVD-LA95, Toshiba SDP-2000).
     
  14. David Tolsky

    David Tolsky Supporting Actor

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    I'm going for the Samsung mainly because of the 10" progressive scan beautiful picture, component and s video out, dd and dts, 3-hour battery (with option for 6 hour) and the memory stick slot which is a cool bonus. The 10" 16 x 9 screen looked awesome with the dvd's I put on it at CES.

    Also, if the line doubler is indeed a Farouja, it's a no-brainer for me.
     
  15. David Ren

    David Ren Stunt Coordinator

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    I was leaning towards the Samsung for the huge screen but in that comparison chart on the Samsung website, the Toshiba has 1.84M pixels while the Samsung only has 1.15M (in comparison, the Panasonic only has 0.34! WTF?).

    Will the extra pixel count actually make a difference in picture quality?

    Dave
     
  16. David Tolsky

    David Tolsky Supporting Actor

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    Last Sunday's newspapers had a Best Buy insert for mobile electronics only. On it was the new Samsung so it will be here in a matter of a few weeks. The picture on this baby is awesome and it is definately progressive scan. That 10" 16 x 9 looked beautiful at CES in January. Plus it also has two headphone outlets I believe so you and your significant other can watch a movie on a long plane trip. I'm still giving the edge to the BIG progressive scan screen.
     
  17. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    On the very inexpensive side, I saw an add in this week's Best Buy flyer for a Minitek portable with a 7-inch screen for $299. While I doubt this unit is anywhere near the quality of Panasonic, Pioneer or Toshiba, this may be an indication of an overall reduction in the prices of portable DVD players. Portables may become a more mainstream product, ala portable CD players.
     
  18. AlbertH

    AlbertH Stunt Coordinator

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    the samsungs are supposed to be drop shipped to best buy stores by June 16th.
     
  19. David Tolsky

    David Tolsky Supporting Actor

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    I was in Best Buy today and the guy told me June 6th. The Best Buy website says "the end of May". I even called Samsung Customer Service and they said beginning of June. Whatever, it can't be soon enough for me. It probably won't make my 5 hour plane trip to Chicago but it might be shipped by the time I have to fly home!
     
  20. David J

    David J Auditioning

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    Anyone seen one of these in Best Buy yet?

    If so, what was their pricing?

    And how does it compare to the Panasonic LA 95 or Toshiba sd p2000 if you've seen them?

    Thanks!
     

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