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167 of 172 people found the following review helpful
on December 26, 2003
This is a great machine for the price. The screen is a good size and the picture quality is good even when viewed from the side. The small overall size, even with the battery attached (the battery effectively doubles the thickness) makes it very portable. It also comes with a couple of accessories not found with the more expensive machines, like a car adapter as well as a 110 plug, and a splitter that allows you to plug 2 sets of headphones in. The sound is the only place were this machine falls short. The sound is okay at best with the built in speakers, but any background noise makes it nearly impossible to hear anything from them even with the volume all the way up. Not surprising since due to the size of the player the speakers are only a little bigger then headphone speakers, but with headphones or portable plug-in speakers the sound is superb. Besides the sound the only 2 complaints are that you can not control the volume with the remote and that the power switch is too easily turned on by accident (do not travel with the battery attached or you will find you have no charge when it comes time to watch a movie). The battery lasts 3.5 to 4 hours, long enough for 2 short movies or 1 long one. So if you are looking not to spend a fortune, nothing else come close in in the under $300 range.
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100 of 105 people found the following review helpful
on December 11, 2003
Polaroid's portable DVD player PDV-0700 is a sharp looking, lightweight answer for trips in the car or long waits in an office. It has a very crisp picture, even when the picture is very dark. Many players can't handle this and the screen blacks out, but this player still shows all details.
The machine comes with Dolby speakers which sound good, but a little weak. When you plug in a set of headphones, however, the sound in them is great. The player will handle just about any format, from DVD to VCD to MP3 to CD-RW. It comes with a rechargeable battery which connects to the bottom of the machine. This powers the player for about 4 hours of constant playing. Of course, this player can also be used as the main DVD player in a house, with inputs to a TV and sound system. The remote is small and thin, and handles most features, but you have to go through a few hoops to do some things, like choose a chapter in a movie.
The only minor complaints I have about this machine are that the picture is not as good as some of the better machines I have seen, and the speakers could be a little better. However, these other machines also cost much more than the 300 dollars you would invest in this one. For the money, you won't do much better.
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62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
on December 30, 2003
The report is edited again mainly to highlight a few issues. Despite my lengthy review, people do not read carefully. As I spend more time with this machine, the more I am impressed with it. Therefore, the rating is changed from a 4 to a 5 stars. There are few good reasons to pick this portable DVD player over others. First, let's talk about the good points. All DVD players made in China are actually made to view DVD's from all regions. They use programmable software to make it region specific. Polaroid is no exception. To make it region-free, all you have to do is to press Setup on the remote and advance to "Preferences". Then, you simply enter "1379" and then use the arrow keys to change to Region "0" and press enter. (This is confirmed in the online manual and it also works for the 8"). Potentially, you can do the same with other brands from China but the code may not be availabe at present. Those from Japan with big names, such as Sony, Panasonic, etc., are truly regional specific except for the older models. They cannot be "hecked" except with powerful software on a dvd or one actually has to open the case and remove the "chip". There is always a risk of rendering the machine less functional or not usable. Seven inches screen is a must. Don't settle for anything less or you will have eye strain. The Polaroid screen has a very wide angle so having 2 or 3 people watching at the same time is not a problem. The quality is impressive only AFTER adusting the contrast, color and brightness. A larger screen gives you a better view but will likely drain out the battery much faster. For the Polaroid PDV-0700, it will up to 4 hours starting new, enough to watch one long or two short movies with the build-in speakers at normal volume. It will be frustrating if you have a bigger screen but the battery pack only last less than 2 hours. The PDV-0700 comes with almost everying you need. The AC adapter works for 110 to 240 volts. A car adapter is included, along with AV cable for both output and input. You have to buy you own earjacks. It also plays VCD's. So far, I have not tried any othe format except DVD and VCD. You have to set the unit to Region 0 to play VCD. At one time, I connected the machine to a 47" big screen TV to play a region 2 dvd in Pal format. It worked great and the video output is excellent. Of course, it does not have progressive screen and sometimes you may be able to tell the difference. In addition, The electronic shock protection (ESP) is a very important feature. Don't buy any portable player without one. At one time, I ran the unit for more than 6 hours and the unit did NOT overheat. It has other build-in features such as zoom, normal/wide view, multiple angle view, screen saver, password, parental control and other ordinary DVD features.
Now, for the bad sides, like all brands made in China, quality control is always a concern. When I got my first unit, the door lid did not close properly and the player would stop almost everytime I touched the lid. I had to exchange for another one the next day and the second one has been working well so far. Polaroid is still a bigger name than other brands from China. Sound is adequate but I have not tried the earjack. The case is not very robust so you have to handle it with care. I also don't like the manual color and brightness controls. They do not give you any indication what levels the machine is set but there is better than nothing in other dvd playes. With the battery pack, the unit will become quite thick, but all parts fit well together. The battery can be OVERCHARGED so you have to watch out. The remote unit works fine but there is no volume control.
In summary, in terms of the overall quality, it is only slightly below other big Japanese players but the price is very attractive. Besides, if you really need it as a portable unit, why pay big bucks for a better one? You are alreay paying a premium for the smaller size. If you insist in having better quality, then settle with an ordinary size DVD player, why a portable? This machine, PDV-0700, is adequate to meet all your need. In addition, this is actually a "toy", not an investment. With time, the price will drop and there will always a better machine out on the market. So, you should consider only buying those that fill your need. Finally, due to the lack of consistent quality control, you should test the brand new unit extensively for the first two weeks to ensure that there is no manufacturer defect. For example, if the lid does not seem to close properly, change it or ask for a refund. Second, NEVER buy a used or refurished product. The factory is in China, not in North America. The defective machine can never be repaired up to the factory standard. Edited on June 30th 2004.

UPDATE (November 26th 2004): If you own this unit, eventually you will encounter this problem with "lid open". This is actually a mechanical failure due to poor design. I consider it as a manufacture defect since it will not last through normal wear and tear. If you open the lid and look at the inside edge, you will find a very tiny button at 11' o'clock. When you close the lid, the button should be and has to be pushed down for the unit to function. When the dvd player is brand new, the closed lid just barely pushed the button down enough to allow the unit to function. The hinge is made of the soft plastic of the case. The left side is further stressed with the spring. So, with routine use, no matter how careful you are, the left side hinge will become loose. All it takes is 0.5 to 1 mm movement and your unit will remain permanently in the "open" position. If your brand new unit occasionally stops playing because the lid suddenly goes "open", the problem will get worse. There is nothing you can do. There is no access to the hinge and therefore you cannot fix it. One SOLUTION is to glue a small piece of thick tape or thin rubber underneath the lid and directly above the small button. So, when the lid is close, the button will be pushed down. Despite my previous biased view favoring this unit, I can no longer able to recommend it to anyone. I brought it in the first place because it allows me to play DVD's from other regions. Polaroid should have cancelled this particular model and redesign a new now. For those who want to buy this model, DON'T. For those who just bought it, RETURN it if possible. For those who can't, use it extensively within the warranty period. If it breaks down, at least, you can get a replacement. For those who get struck with the unit, PRAY that it will last for as long as possible.
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
on October 17, 2004
This player has impressed me over and over again. I've had problems with the (JVC) DVD player in my home entertainment system playing the DVD movies I have burned to DVD-/+R discs. It would pause or get glitchy. The Polaroid has no problem playing these discs, which is a big hit with me.

So far I have been able to play:
DVD-/+R -- especially the ones that my home unit won't play!
Burned audio CDs
.jpg discs (pictures)
.mp3 discs (audio)
and, of course, all commercially produced CD/DVD

I haven't tried playing any DVD/CD product from out of country, but am curious to see if they work as well.

The only problem I saw was that you can't fast-forward through a disc if you don't have the remote. The buttons on the player are limited, and it would be nicer if they had just two more for fast-forward/scan (and of course the other way.)

The battery lasts for about 3 full-length movies played at full volume (with headphones). The battery is removable, which is nice if you want to reduce the weight by almost half, and the size by almost a third in thickness. (The book recommends that you NOT leave the battery plugged in to the wall for more than 3-4 hours at a time.)

The screen is well built and solid feeling. My only gripe is that you have to get the angle of the screen just right; otherwise the picture gets dark. My friend's Mintek (sp?) has a screen that can be viewed at any angle, which is nice if two people are watching it. The only nice thing I can think about having the screen being only user-viewable is that you won't have that guy next to you on the plane staring over at the player trying to encroach on your movie viewing. (Maybe I'm the only one that gets bothered by people like that.)

As a tip -- after seeing a bunch of screen sizes -- 7-inch screens should be the smallest even considered. 5-inch is too small, no matter how good the picture may be. With letterboxed/widescreen formatted DVDs this brings the screen viewing area MUCH smaller. I still can't bring myself to watch a movie any other way, so my 7-inch screen is as small as I would go/recommend.

One thing I noticed is that when I plug this player into the front of the TV it's hard to hear the voices, whereas the music track and sound track is loud. My friend's Mintek does the same thing, so it might be the TV input or speakers on the front of the TV. But how often are you really going to do that?

My wife and I each own this player (since June), and neither one of ours has had any problems. I'm a little more abusive and demanding of mine, and it has performed flawlessly every time.

Sound = 4 stars (strange "stereo" setting that is really mono in each ear?)
Picture = 4.5 stars (another half-a-star if it had the other style screen)
Durability = 5 stars (this weighs heavily with me)
Battery = 5 stars
In-box accessories = 4 stars (comes with a dual earphone plug and remote)
Weight = 4 stars (with battery) 5 stars (without)
Buttons = 3 stars (seems to me that I have to push some of them twice before they work)

Alot of the guys I work with have portable DVD players, and this is by far one of the best. We use them almost daily, and for the most part no one has had any problems with theirs, so I think the quality is really getting up there for all players. I just like this one more than others.

******* UPDATE July 2005 *******
The Polaroid DVD player DIED. BUT, through normal use, I managed to put it through Hell and back!
1) I dropped it many times -- kept on working!
2) I slammed it in a door -- kept on working!
3) I walked away while it was still plugged in and ripped the plug out -- kept on working!
4) I drained the battery and recharged it many many times -- kept on working!

After a brief autopsy (with the help of a friend who is a trained technician) we could not figure out what killed the DVD player. It just wouldn't power up anymore. I (luckly) have two of these and swapped out the battery and power cord... still it won't power up.

Oddly enough, the second DVD player's spindle fell off and we can't seem to find it, so neither is working right now.

But, have no fear, these are well worth the money, and are tough. Great for kids (or clumsy adults.) I would buy one again!
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on March 6, 2004
Overall, this has a positive result so please read the whole thing before you form an opinion.
My husband bought this for me as a Christmas gift in December 2003. At the end of February, the top left side hinge (as the unit faces you) had a problem. It was more the screws inside that hold the plastic that goes around the LCD screen to the top side plastic casing. Right where the two are held together inside, the screws came undone/fell out/whatever from the plastic tab where they hold things together. What's worse is that the screws that came loose (there were at least two) started to "roll around" inside the unit.
My husband took it back to our local Best Buy, where he originally bought it, and the girl at the counter took one look at it and gave him this look like "You broke it, why are you trying to return it?" so needless to say he wasn't happy. Finally, he got a manager to look at it. We have been OVERLY CAREFUL with this thing since day one... I think we probably used it about 20 times because we've been busy with work, etc. We also have always had it in a nice padded case...
The manager at Best Buy took a look at it and said "Oh yeah, that one... Just replace it. It's marked DEVO anyway." Now I don't know what DEVO means, but it didn't sound too good.
Also to note: the replacement that we received was new, off the truck that day, and was much THICKER than the one we originally bought in December. It is built heavier, the door for the DVD's closes much better and stays shut well, and the LCD screen top doesn't "flop around" so much. Perhaps they've fixed some issues with this unit since last year, but I don't feel very confident that we're going to have a positive experience here given the response of the kid at Best Buy. For right now, I'm satisfied that this unit is at least WAY BETTER than the version of this model # that we received in December. IT IS THE SAME EXACT MODEL NUMBER JUST MUCH THICKER BODY AND BETTER BUILD QUALITY.
One thing is for sure though... Those people who said the picture quality stinks DID NOT READ THE MANUAL!!! The unit ships set at LOW video quality. You have to go through set up by making about three button pushes on the remote to correct this. DUH! And I'm a woman who isn't even that techy!
DID I MENTION THAT THE NEW REPLACEMENT UNIT THAT IS THICKER AND BUILT HEAVIER SEEMS LOUDER? Which was a major complaint last year with this unit...
Overall, though, my parents bought a cheapie Apex unit for $134 from Wal-Mart that has less picture quality and lower volume speakers but it takes a beating and keeps on going. It was a dark gray color- almost black- and was almost exactly the size of a portable CD player.
Choose your battles in price vs. quality if you are wanting something for the kids in the mini-van. Your best bet may be a REALLY CHEAP unit from Wal-Mart with some headphones and a headphone splitter for the kids. When you're in a dark minivan, the screen brightness isn't a huge deal. Our Polaroid is WAY bright unless you go in and change the settings. The cheapie Apex that my parents have works just fine. Plus it's fallen out of the case in the car and has been bumped around and keeps going strong. Would I have the same performance from this little Polaroid (which is supposedly made by Panasonic by the way)? I think not.
For my child to watch in the cars, I'd rather have the inexpensive one with less screen brightness but more durability. I don't like worrying about my daughter knocking over our unit in the van. For myself though, I like the screen brightness and other features of the Polaroid or another similar unit. I just hope that this replacement unit is more durable. I think we probably would've been satisfied with the Wal-Mart one if we had just listened to OUR parents. :-)
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
on July 10, 2004
Polaroid's portable DVD player PDV-0700 is a sharp looking, lightweight answer for trips in the car or long waits in an office. It has a very crisp picture, even when the picture is very dark. Many players can't handle this and the screen blacks out, but this player still shows all details.
The machine comes with Dolby speakers which sound good, but a little weak. When you plug in a set of headphones, however, the sound in them is great. The player will handle just about any format, from DVD to VCD to MP3 to CD-RW. It comes with a rechargeable battery which connects to the bottom of the machine. This powers the player for about 4 hours of constant playing. Of course, this player can also be used as the main DVD player in a house, with inputs to a TV and sound system. The remote is small and thin, and handles most features, but you have to go through a few hoops to do some things, like choose a chapter in a movie.
As mentioned by other reviewers, it is relatively simple to convert this machine to one which plays DVDs from all regions. The directions can be found in the online manual. I have used it to play everything from German DVDs to photo CDs received from the photo lab.
The only minor complaints I have about this machine are that the picture is not as good as some of the better machines I have seen, and the speakers could be a little better. I also wish you could control the volume with the remote and not have to rotate the volume switch manually. However, these other machines also cost much more than the 200 dollars you would invest in this one. For the money, you won't do much better.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on December 1, 2004
I've wanted one of these things ever since they've been on the market so I finally bought one for myself, for my birthday. I watched a snipit of my Family Guy DVD to test it out and it looked good. I've watched a couple of DVDs, mostly special feature discs and the second half of Festival Express, in the two months that I've had it. Mostly it stayed in it's protective case, which oddly enough is quite well put together.

Yesterday I put a Baby Einstein DVD in the player for my daughter and there was no color in the screen and it had a washed out look to boot. I tried unpluging it and pluging it back in, as the troubleshooting page in the manual says, to no avail. I tried several DVDs and no DVD. No change. The screen is washed out and black and white.

The sound still works fine if that makes a difference.

I called customer service this morning. I didn't have the receipt. The rep told me that in that case they could only go on that date of manufacture, which was June 2004 (4 months ago) and is outside of the 90-day parts and labor warranty.

I've got a $200 paper weight. The sound working fine, notwithstanding.

I took good, no great, care of this machine. When you get the kinds of failures that appear in these comments, it's part of the design. This is not just a bad product. It may be stamped with the Polaroid name (and to tell the truth that's a big part of the reason for buying this one) but the name is just licensed to whoever made it. Regardless of that fact, I will never touch anything stamped with Polaroid's name again.

.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on October 29, 2004
I have the polaroid portable DVD player and so far I am not impressed with it. For starters the lid to the DVD player pops open at the slightest nudge or movement. There is only one headphone port and the volume is lousy at best. I forgot my headphones on a recent flight and so I had to play it as is and I couldn't here is over the standard airplane backround noise. The screen and resolution is good but I'd say all in all they need to work out the kinks in this particular model. I wish I could take this back for a different model. Also the battery is so sensitive and fragile, atleast that's how the book makes it out to be so you don't even want to touch it if at all possible. Every time I remove the battery I feel like I have to force it and am afraid that I'll break it. All in all it gets the job done but for the money I paid I feel I should have gotten a better product.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on August 3, 2004
Like some earlier positive reviews, I like the performance of this player when it's new and working. But the construction of this thing is barely acceptable. In my case, the left hinge "exploded" while closing the screen - it snapped apart and a small screw fell out. I am very careful and cautious with my stuff and this unit was not stressed in any way.

I sent the unit back under warranty (5 months old - maybe 10 uses) and WaCA/Petters did eventually send a new unit, but it took 2 months and 3 phone calls. I have no expectation of long-term satisfaction from the new player.

Overall this has been a learning experience. No more disposable Polaroid electronics for me. You are advised to look elsewhere.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on July 8, 2004
Let me start by saying that the PDV-0700 is an outstanding product--for it's price. I was lucky enough to get mine extremely cheap: 280.00$ CAD (around 205.00$ USD). But not only did it come with the DVD player and battery, but it came with a carrying case valued at 60.00$ USD (I checked for myself, I never beleive what they actually say) PLUS two sets of headphones valued at 18.00$ USD each.

Now, as for the product is concered, the quality would be, in my opinion rated between O.K. and Good. The exterior "body" of the PDVD (my short-form of portable dvd player) is made of plastic, making it fairly inexpensive and cheap.

Looks: impressive. With silver "chrome" buttons, and a silver clamshell-type body, the PDVD is given a "very good" rating as far as looks are concerned. Everthing is of moderate size, not huge, not tiny either, so you should, not have to be too concerned about it being "not portable".

What's really cool about this PDVD, unlike most others, is the fact that it comes with almost every cable that you will ever need to use with this PDVD (car adaptor, audio/video cable, normal adaptor to plug into wall (I forget the name of it!), etc.). The only cable-type object that it does NOT come with is a casette adapter, which you must buy on your own if you wish to hook up the PDVD's speakers to the car's stereo system.

One thing though that really sucks about this PDVD is that the included rechargeable battery can be overcharged if you charge it for more than 6 hours. It will reduce service life, allowing to be able to recharge the battery less times than the norm (approx. 300 times). Usually with most electronics like Gameboy SP, and other rechargeables, I'll just leave them plugged in all night long. One idea though that I thought that I could use in this situation wwould be a plug-in timer. I would set in to turn on at a certain time, and have it turn off about 4 hours later.

This PDVD is an excellent value for it's price. I will say that it is definitly not the best on the market, but an excellent bang-for-your buck. I do notice that many customers are not sastified with this product, and I understand that I cannot judge for them, but for me, it's worked great ever since day one.

If you are looking for a top of the line PDVD, with all the lastest features, go buy a Samsung L-1200 (MSRP $999.99 USD), not a PDV-0700. In fact, if your looking for any top of the line product, Polaroid is not the way to go. But judging on the quality, battery life, picture, sound, and included accesories, and of course the biggest factor, price, go out to the store and buy yourself a new Polardoid PDV-0700 portable DVD player.
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