Feeds
55%

Philips PET723 portable DVD player

Marriage twixt DVD player and digital photo frame

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Review Combining a portable DVD player with a digital photo frames sounds like a neat idea. But the two aren’t the best of bedfellows, especially when you equip them with a low-resolution screen.

The vast majority of portable DVD players sport a laptop-style clamshell chassis. With the PET723, Philips has abandoned this design. The display is instead placed direct on the front of the chassis, and slides up to reveal the optical drive - the idea being that you can use it as both as a portable DVD player and as a digital photo frame for your mantelpiece.

Philips PET723 portable DVD player

Philips' PET723: downscaling and stretching DVDs has undesirable consequences

First impressions are mixed. The PET723 looks stylish enough, with the 7in, 480 x 234 widescreen display dominating the all-black faceplate. But when you pick it up, the plastic chassis feels almost toy-like. A good old-fashioned volume wheel sits on the left side and is joined by an SD/MMC card slot, single headphone socket, AV output port and power hook-up. Menu and Setup buttons are placed on top, while the power switch sits alone on the right.

The list of on-board controls is completed by the four-way control pad just under the display and between two small speakers. The PET723 can kick out enough noise to fill a small room, but the cones are woefully tinny. If you want to hear any sort of bass you’ll need to hook up a decent set of headphones.

The remote control is a slim yet incredibly ugly affair. Navigating the rather amateur-looking on-screen menu is painless, though, if only because there are so few options to play around with.

Philips PET723 portable DVD player

With a clunk, the display slides up to reveal the DVD drive

With a rattle and a clunk, the entire front of the player slides up to reveal the optical drive – or at least half of it. It might look impressive, but this design does create problems. First and foremost, sitting on the outside of the player, the display is extremely susceptible to damage, especially since it doesn’t feature a protective layer – we were also a bit miffed not to find a carry-case in the box.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.