575 of 579 people found the following review helpful
on March 27, 2008
Color Name: Black
I have had this portable dvd player for a little over a week now and have enjoyed it throughly....Previously I have owned Panasonic and Polaroid brand players....and this one out shines them both !
The High Definition Screen truly gives your regular DVD's the look of a Blu-Ray or HD DVD....I have them both in my den and I safely say it's very close to that quality...maybe not exactly....but until they come out with portable units for Blu-Ray...this is going to be the closest I think you can get !
The screen on this one is 800 x 480 resolution where as most of the players out there have a 320 X 240 screen....that's a very big difference and it really shows.
The battery life is also excellent ( I do listen with headphones so that helps ) but I have watched about 4 hours with it already and still have 1/3 of a full charge left...so that's right at about the 6 hours they say you will get.
The last thing I need to comment on is the remote control...I never used to think that was very important on a portable unit...but after not having one on the Polaroid I owned.....I love having this one with a remote that will provide every feature the player will do...all the way to the ON/OFF...It has very nice on screen displays of all the functions....volume level...battery level.....everything.
Also it doesn't get hot at all...I know my Panasonic got pretty hot on the bottom...not this one....and it's also very quiet...makes very minimal noise.
Can't honestly think of a way they could improve this player !
******************UPDATED April 15th 2008*****************
After having this for a few weeks I wanted to update my review.
First I have added several pictures up top in the gallery for everyone so they can actually SEE the player and not just Sony Shots.
Also I have tried DVD-R's and +R's in the players now and they work perfect...no problems what so ever...With a program recorded for 2 hour Length on a DVD-R it looks like a commercial quality DVD.
One more thing on the battery life...I am not getting the full 6 hours....more like 4 1/2 ...then if I try and watch something that's a hour long I don't get all the way through it.....once it shows the last bar on the battery graph you have about 1 more hour to watch...maybe a little more....but about a hour.
But I am still loving this player very very nice !
********************One last update May 3rd********************
I have a big tip for everyone...If you turn the LCD brightness down from a Level 20 (the default) to a Level 10...which is still plenty bright...you can improve your battery life very much !....I am now getting the full 6 hours from the battery and that's the only change I made :)
353 of 358 people found the following review helpful
on May 16, 2008
Color Name: BlackVerified Purchase
I did a lot of research before choosing the Sony DVP-FX820 and what sold me were all the great reviews (thanks everyone!) I was leaning toward a player with a larger screen, but I trusted what I read about the picture quality of this unit... and I have to say, I received it today and I am amazed. It's much better than I expected! This little dvd player has a better picture than my HD TV! And although the speaker sound is a little hollow (no real base) the volume more than makes up for it... I've heard other players- or should I say I've tried to hear other players- the volume is wonderful on this one, the sound totally acceptable via the speakers and the sound is incredible when I use my 10 yr old Sony Studio Monitor headset.
While I was shopping around, I was a bit concerned about what would happen to my full screen DVDs on this widescreen unit. I read about other units that really stretched the image out so that it looked bad. When I tested this unit, I first saw this approx 5" x 4" image and thought, boy that's weird... it was still ok but I didn't understand it until I read the manual. You can change the format from "Normal" (which is that box that's narrower than the screen), or it can be changed to Full. The Full screen mode doesn't look bad at all. Everyone looks slightly heavier but not distorted... I flipped back and forth between the modes several times to see if I could really see the difference, and it wasn't bad at all- nothing looked distorted.
The battery is nearly the size of the base of the unit but it is very slim and hardly adds thickness to the until (I had read on other untils how the battery was a real detractor- but not with this unit.)
The remote is just the right size- it's big enough where you wouldn't lose it too easily but it's smaller than a normal tv/dvd remote. I didn't want one of those credit card sized ones! And it couldn't be easier to use.
I started out wanting a 10" screen but I changed my mind based on the reviews- and I'm very happy I went with the 8". After I thought about it, I realized that I didn't want to feel like I was carrying around a laptop- I already have a laptop and so why even bother spending $ on a portable DVD player? :)
I highly recommend this Sony unless your heart is really set on a larger one. I now think this size is perfect.
So anyway, I was very happy with the unit before I plugged in my headset. With my headset, this player blows me away- I'm amazed at the quality. And now I've got to look for a case that's worthy of it. :)
UPDATE... I found a great case worthy of this DVD player!! I purchased the Targus DVD001 13 Portable DVD Player Case from Amazon. It is good quality, nicely padded and fits not only the player, but also my large headphones which do fold and all the accessories. It holds a lot of DVDs if you take them out of their cases but I don't like to do that, so it only holds about 4 if you keep the DVDs in their plastic cases. This is my own issue with the case. But I love it and would recommend it to everyone. Oh, it also has a strap that staps across the DVD player to keep it snug and also a divider attached by velcro to separate the dvd player from the accessories you pack with it. Great Bag!
122 of 128 people found the following review helpful
on April 16, 2008
Color Name: Black
Have owned the original Sony DVP-FX810 and that was a good player too. I sold that and bought this one. The resolution is about twice as high as the original. Just bought this but I can tell you the screen really shines compared to every other DVD player (portable) that I've seen. I'm sure more players will have the high resolution soon. The volume is also much louder than the original.
The battery is supposed to last 6 hours at lowest brightness. With my old one which is basically this I did manage 5 hours at medium brightness so two movies should work fine before the low battery symbol shows. I wanted the red one but the sonystyle at Metreon had everyone except the red but the blue is nice too. Highly recommended.
106 of 112 people found the following review helpful
on July 6, 2008
Color Name: Black
When shopping at Best Buy for a portable DVD player, I tried a Toshiba, the Panasonic LS86 and asked about a Sony. My salesperson, who was knowledgeable, steered me away from the Sony, saying he didn't like it because it has a "glossy screen." So I tried the current Toshiba 9" and the Panasonic LS86, touted for its 13 hour battery life. I selected the LS86 because it has better blacks, meaning the Toshiba had a more washed out picture. I took the LS86 home and while learning how to use it I was pleased at the degree of control you have. (Yes, this will soon be a review of the DVP-FX820 - I returned the LS86 and got an FX820 - but first a little more about the Panasonic.) With the LS86 you have great control: you can control the brightness of the subtitles, you can reposition them, you have several factory presets for picture and one user picture preset, there are degrees of noise reduction available, a number of audio settings to control the tone of the sound and its stereo spread. It seemed great except for one thing: the picture was slightly disappointing. Text was awfully chunky. The edges of things looked rough. In a word, it had a lot of aliasing.
I went on line to read some reviews of the LS86. I'd read reviews prior to shopping but, somehow, hadn't found any for the current Sony player, the DVP-FX820. On my second internet visit I found the Sony right away. When I learned it has much greater resolution, I packed up the LS86, went back to the store and exchanged.
The DVP-FX820 has lots more pixels and that makes for a lots better picture. It has less control over those pixels, but as nice as adjustments are, they don't compensate for a poorer image. So, in my mind, the Sony is better.
The downside of the FX820: this model has a fair amount of edge enhancement, or sharpening. And there's no way to control it. I'm not going to describe what it looks like, because if you own one of these units and edge enhancement is below your radar, why point it out.
What about the glossy screen the salesperson mentioned? When he said "glossy screen," I imagined that the screen itself was shiny. What he was referring to is the fact that the screen is surrounded by a shiny black plastic bezel. A matte finish would be less distracting, but the shiny plastic should not be a deal breaker.
The contrast of the default LCD settings: I had to work a little with the "Backlight" and "Contrast" settings to keep the blacks from being crushed. Otherwise, things like someone's head of black hair might lose their detail.
Summary: A good solid unit with a consumer-oriented design philosophy. The controls are basic and fairly simple to operate. The picture seems to be the best in its price range. The audio, through headphones, is fine.
39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
on April 18, 2008
Color Name: Black
Small and portable. Excellent screen. Playing long and clear. This is 3rd portable DVD player owned and we really like it. Bought for extended use on airplane ride. Not worried about volume, can hear it just fine under normal conditions.
135 of 149 people found the following review helpful
on June 27, 2008
Color Name: Black
I bought this as a carry-along to use with exercise DVD's when traveling. The picture is fine for this purpose, since I'm usually in a confined space anyway and not too far away from the unit. However, for general use, it has two very serious drawbacks:
1) The sound quality with the speakers is extremely poor, worse even than my 5-year-old no-frills laptop - and the speakers are about the same size as the clunky old laptop. I can't believe Sony can't put better speakers in this thing.
2) The battery life is nowhere near the advertised 6 hours, even with the video display brightness turned down. Another reviewer was able to achieve 6 hours with the brightness turned down to 10 from the default 20. I can't get 2 hours at that level. If battery operation life is important to you, be realistic with this one - though shorter-than-advertised battery life seems to be an across-the-board problem with portable DVD players.
I'm not bitterly sorry I bought it, though I have not had it long enough to comment on whether problems develop after using it for a while - another reviewer describes playback problems after several months' use. But I am disappointed with the sound quality and sorry I can't use the battery power for longer.
37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on May 14, 2008
Color Name: Red
I purchased this unit it in red and use a little laptop case to carry it with the AC and DC adapters for travel, along with a DVD or two. This is an outstanding portable DVD player, with a bright sharp image, and very decent sound. Better sound can be found with the use of headphones which should also prolong battery usage. The battery attaches beautifully to the bottom and gives ample time for most uses. Don't even consider the other cheaper units out their, nor the older Sony model, the 810. Check all the reviews from other sources: this is the one to get and you will not be disappointed.
25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on April 29, 2008
Color Name: Black
I bought this DVD player in anticipation for a flight to Vegas from Orlando, and then back. I got on the plane with a full charge and when we arrived in Vegas, there were still 2/3 bars. The battery life was great, the picture quality was excellent...except one dead pixel. When you're watching a movie, you don't even notice it. Kudos on this one. I like it!!
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on June 6, 2008
Color Name: Black
Rather than rehash everything others have said, in my opinion, these qualities separate this unit from others:
1. Build Quality-Excellent
2. Picture-the best I have seen in a portable-highest resolution, sharpness
3. Battery life-excellent-more than 4 hours-battery is large, but very thin and does not add a great deal of bulk
4. Controls are located on the screen, rather than having to reach around the screen to operate while in a "twisted' mode, in my opinion, its strongest characteristic
5. A bit heavier than most
6. SONY makes reliable stuff
Radio Shack sells a big for $12 which is perfect for this unit...Nothing fits into the bag except the unit....great for air travel....put your accessories into your suitcase and board the plane lighter
That's about it.
67 of 78 people found the following review helpful
on June 4, 2008
Color Name: Black
The Sony DVP-FX820 was my first foray into portable DVD players. I purchased it based on a high rating here on a Amazon and on CNET. I will deal with the good things and then the bad.
This is a technically good unit with all the features you need for DVD playback and the high build quality you would expect from Sony. The 8" screen is the major star of this model. The panel has the native DVD resolution of 480 pixels high (anything more than this is unnecessary with DVD as the player would then need to have up-sampling to fill the resolution). In daylight the screen is great, for me it fell down when used in a darkened room as the black level is not quite good enough to my eyes. The included accessories include the battery pack, wall power adapter, in car power adapter and an A-V cable. A neat feature is the ability to send video and audio signals in to as well as out of the unit. This would be great for viewing camcorder footage on a bigger screen or perhaps even a little gaming while travelling.
Now the downsides...
The battery pack is pretty much the same dimensions as the player and when clipped on makes the whole thing a bit on the portly side. This seems to be a problem that the whole market of portable DVD players seems to suffer from at the moment. In general the player feels a bit larger than it needs to be. The bezel for example has dead space on the sides that reminds me of those early laptops with tiny screens sat in acres of plastic.
The biggest problem I have with this model is how it handles widescreen movies, specifically older non anamorphic encoded widescreen discs. Anamorphic encoded discs look great and fill the screen no problem. But when you put in non-anamorphic disc it presents it letterboxed at with top and bottom bars *and* bars the sides, thus reducing the size to about what you would see on a 5" display. Ut-oh not good! Full screen 4:3 discs will play back with bars only on the sides (you do have the option of stretching to fill 16:9 but then everyone looks like bobble heads!) To me the problem was impossible to get over as most of my DVD collection is widescreen with many older titles that are not anamorphic encoded.
If you have any older non anamorphic discs I would suggest you look elsewhere as you will be disappointed with this model.