Under $200 DVD player recommendations

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Fred Turner, Nov 15, 2001.

  1. Fred Turner

    Fred Turner Auditioning

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    Hi.
    I have an early-model Toshiba 3108, and last night got fed up with the fact that I can't watch my recently-purchased Sopranos Season One collection on this player, along with another 10 DVDs in my collection. Because I live in Mexico, the firmware upgrade is a logistical nightmare that I'd rather not pursue. And with new player prices continually dropping, it sounds like a good time to upgrade to a new player.
    I've been out of the market for DVD playeys since this buying the 3108 in 1998, so I don't even know where to start. From scanning current discussions, it appears that there is a cant toward prog-scan players right now, but I don't think I'll go there until I build my dedicated home theater with front projection, 3-5 years down the road, so the feature is probably superfluous at this point.
    Could you kind folks please recommend high-quality sub-$200 DVD players for me? What are the current favorites of the forum?
    Thanks in advance,
    Fred.
     
  2. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    How about a high quality $250 player? I like my Panasonic DVD CV51. Its a 5 disc DVD carousel that also plays CDR and CDRW and decodes MP3's. If you really want a sub $200.00 player, I think you can find a Panasonic RV-31 for $200 or less. Same as the CV51, but its a single disc player.
     
  3. Ches Campbell

    Ches Campbell Stunt Coordinator

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    I think the Panasonic dvd-RV31 is the best one under 200. I got mine for 169. It can play CD-r and CD-rw discs, has component out, has many cool features, and is very reliable. PLaus it is very classy looking.
    Check it out.
     
  4. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

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    For around $230 you can get the Panasonic RA60 which handles CD-R, CD-RW, MP3 and best of all, DVD-Audio.
     
  5. Fred Turner

    Fred Turner Auditioning

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    Thanks for the responses so far.
    How reliable have these Panasonics been? I particularly want to avoid any incompatibility problems such as those I experienced with the Toshiba, and I'd like a faster response rate from the player as well (the Toshiba is slooooowwww...).
    I hope there are some more responses...
    Thanks,
    Fred.
     
  6. Brian O

    Brian O Second Unit

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    Fred,
    Check out the new Toshiba 4700. Progressive scan, DVD-Audio, plays CD-R. Onecall.com has them for $224.
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  7. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Brian, some people here have said the new Toshiba players (SD-4700 and SD-5700) experience problems with playback of MP3-encoded CDs. Something worth considering.
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    My:
    HT Pics ; Equipment List ; DVD Collection ; LD Collection
    KeithH: Saving the Home Theater World Before Bedtime
    [Edited last by KeithH on November 16, 2001 at 09:35 AM]
     
  8. Kendal Kirk

    Kendal Kirk Stunt Coordinator

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    Fred:
    I would like to address your question as asked, "Under $200 . . ." This too was my requirement when considering my purchases. I wanted to get the best bang for the buck, and with the many players at discounters in this price range, you can price shop, but not get valuable research info on most of these players.
    I considered the Pannys mentioned above. They are great players, but didn't provide the symplistic styling that I was looking for. Sonys in that price range had a number of reliability concerns. I didn't consider Apex(quality issues), RCA or Toshiba(look low budget and IMO the names implied also).
    I loved the look of the JVC 40b/45gd and 60b/65gd (40 & 60 are black, 45 & 65 are gold). They were slim lined, sylish, with a minimum of face-plate options (kids and wife just want to load and play). The 60/65 is a progressive scan that can be had on the internet for under $200. IMO this is one of the best progressive players on the market under $300. There is a thread comparing this player with others, search for it.
    The 40/45 is the non-progressive option. I purchased mine on the internet for $137. It has some very unique features, and IMO is the best 'discount priced' player that provides solid performance and sleek styling. If I was going to buy today, I would have gotten the 65 for an extra $45 and not used the prog.
    Others may disagree with my choice, but it was the best for me in my situation.
    Good luck . . .
     
  9. Brian O

    Brian O Second Unit

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    I havent really shopped DVD players in a couple of years. I have a Toshiba 3109 which has been great with around 300 discs.
    Before that I tried a few including the JVC 501. It was a good looking unit. I have always liked JVC (I have two JVC TVs), but the 501 locked up tight after two weeks, so it went back. The remote dpad went bad too. It did not have the picture or features that the Toshibas had back then.
    Has JVC improved in the DVD market now? Back then, it was a bad choice.
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  10. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    Panasonic CV51:
    5 Disk DVD Changer that plays CD,CD-R,CD-RW,MP3,Video Disk
    and of course DVD Video.
    $205.00 @ http://www.etronics.com
    Brett DiMichele
    My Home Theater Site!
    [email protected]
     
  11. Kendal Kirk

    Kendal Kirk Stunt Coordinator

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    JVC has improved their DVD units considerably with their latest models. The 65GD got a very favorable review in S&V about three months ago. They were doing a head to head on entry level progressive players, and $ for $ they picked it as the best bargain. Prior to reading that review, I wouldn't have considered JVC either.
     
  12. Justin Doring

    Justin Doring Screenwriter

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    Best Buy is selling the new Toshiba 3750 for $189, but I don't know what that means to you being in Mexico. Regardless, the Toshiba 3750 appears to be a great player with progressive-scan, improved downcoversion, CD-R and CD-RW capability, great build quality for the price, and some of the units are even made in Japan, a rarity at this price.
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    "Home is where the theater is!"
     
  13. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    Reliability of Panasonic DVD players is ok so far as i can tell.
    A 5 disc carousel is the best. Just imagine having an SE DVD of a long movie and you are able to have both of the DVD discs in the player with the movie on them AND the extra 3rd DVD with the extra's. OK, I don't even know if there are any DVD movies with 3 discs, but still, even in the case of just having 2 discs in there, its handy. You don't have to get up. Or what about watching a couple movies, the first one and then the sequel? I think it leaves room for flexibility. Plus you can have a CDRW in there with like 150 MP3's ready to go before or after watching a DVD. Say whn friends are over. Yeah, you can use a CD player for that, but its a nice feature anyways.
     
  14. Fred Turner

    Fred Turner Auditioning

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    Thanks for all the great recommendations.
    Brian O:
    For the time being, I would like to stay as far away as possible from Toshiba, as evidenced by Keith's posting.
    Everyone:
    What's the benefit of a progressive scan player if I don't have or will have a digital TV in the near future? Does it offer better playback on ordinary NTSC monitor?
    Kendal:
    OK, I may be showing a double standard here, but I'm concerned about how good/durable a $137 player could be. The price is right, but what kind of track record are we talking about here?
    I really haven't considered a carousel player, as I'm really using this for DVDs, and have a dedicated CD player carousel that I use for music. Playback of MP3's appeals to me, conceptually, but I hadn't considered it yet.
    Are there any other suggestions I should take into account?
    Thanks,
    Fred.
     

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