written by: Simon Hill•edited by: M.S. Smith•updated: 5/19/2011
In this article we look at the most stylish DVD players you can buy. If you are obsessed with the perfect aesthetic then check out these options.
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Easy on the Eye
For some people home entertainment equipment is all about the function. Lists of specifications are hungrily consumed and performance comparisons puzzled over. Once the decision is made the purchase you make goes into your living room. It enters your personal bubble away from the world and while many of us are content with an eclectic mix of furniture and electronics it is undeniably satisfying to have stylish devices. You want something with seductive curves, something tactile and something which makes you smile every time you look at it.
Despite the rise of a new format many of us have failed to update our DVD collections to Blu-ray. Only a relatively small percentage of films have made the transition to the new format and they are expensive right now. Besides the majority of new DVD players offer upscaling capabilities so we can still enjoy the DVD format on our new HDTVs. In this article we’re going to take a look at the top five stylish DVD players. For a change the performance is rendered secondary as we seek out devices that please the eye.
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Samsung DVD-H1080R DVD Player
This is lightweight and super stylish design from Samsung. The machine is in a rounded shape and measures just 9.8 x 10.4 inches with a depth of 2.1 inches. It is perfect for people with limited space. It performs well offering upscaling to 720p, 1080i and 1080p via an HDMI cable. It also supports a good range of formats including MP3, WMA, JPEG, MPEG-4 and the DivX codec. The only drawback is that it has a bit of a bad reputation in terms of reliability. For $80 it is an attractive model and worth considering.
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Philips DVP5992 DVD Player
This is a fairly traditional design but the bevelled edges and minimalist frontage make it attractive. It is also a terrific machine in terms of features with support for high definition upscaling at 720p, 1080i and 1080p. It has an HDMI port and it also has a USB port in the front which allows you to play files from a USB flash drive. It is happy playing home burned CDs or DVDs and it covers a wide range of formats and the DivX codec. It will cost around $200 but the feature set justifies the price.
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NU CinePlayer PDP100 Ultra Slim Home DVD Player
How about this super slim effort? It proclaims itself the slimmest DVD player in the world at just 18mm. It is also very lightweight and sits it sits vertically it will fit places other DVD players fear to tread. It doesn’t offer the upscaling featured in some of the other devices but it does have component cable and optical audio output. It also supports MP3 files, JPEGs, MPEG-4 files and the DivX codec. It will cost you around $120.
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LG DVS450H DVD Player
This is a sleek, wall mountable DVD player from LG which is capable of upscaling to 1080p high definition. It also has a USB port and support for Windows Media Center so you could play files from your home network. You can play music, review photos or watch movies with this device and it supports various formats as well as the DivX codec. It is designed to be mounted on the wall and it costs around $120.
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Philips HTS9800W Home Cinema System
This is a great deal more than just a DVD player but it is so gorgeous it had to be included. It offers upscaling to 1080i and has an HDMI output. It also features 6.1 surround sound and comes with top quality satellite speakers including two wireless rear speakers. It plays by far the widest choice of formats out of all the devices on this list, it also has a built in AM/FM radio and the sound quality on offer here is unparalleled. This system looks properly futuristic and would fit with minimalist décor perfectly. If you want to get it you’ll probably need to spend around $1,000.
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The vast majority of DVD players conform to the standard visual and dimensions and they are tediously boring. There is actually a real dearth of stylish options although there are a few stylish Blu-ray devices hitting the market. If you want something with a unique look and you need to save space at the same time then the Samsung DVD-H1080R is your best bet. If you have plenty of money to spend and you want a surround sound system to boot then the Philips system is a real temptation and it looks fantastic. If you are still looking for more ideas and willing to consider a more standard look then check out the Best Sony DVD Players or Best Buy DVD Players for Christmas 2009.