They might have been superseded by new fangled technologies, but the best DVD players are still a valuable addition to many home entertainment setups. Many of us still have enormous collections of DVDs that we built up over the years and the encroaching advance of technology doesn’t just magic them all away.
There are a lot of things you need to consider when choosing the best DVD player though. Do you need something capable of upscaling, or something region free so you can play DVDs from other countries? More modern devices can also connect to storage devices via USB and play digital files from them.
You should also think about budget. Most DVD players are cheap these days, as it’s an outdated technology by all accounts. If you’re willing to spend a bit more and want to future proof yourself, you should look at the best Blu-ray players as these will play regular DVDs in addition to newer Blu-rays. That way you can buy some 4K Blu-rays to take advantage of the best TVs of today.
Given how affordable they are now, we’d recommend sticking to one of the big name brands rather than looking for a bargain. You won’t save much, and the quality will be much more hit and miss. Look to names you trust like Sony, LG, Panasonic, though we can also vouch for some cheaper brands like Impecca, Craig and GPX.
We’ve rounded up our top picks for the best DVD player, with each one specializing in something specific, like speed, MP3 compatibility, or budget. Whatever you’re looking for, one of these should have you covered.
1. Panasonic DVD-S700 DVD player: Best overall
The Panasonic DVD-S700 DVD player is the do-it-all best of the best unit for your cabinet. This plays DVD discs from all over the world as it's totally region-free. It'll even upscale those discs to 1080p quality for use via HDMI. Support for Dolby Digital audio as well as a USB port for video, music and image file playback are really great features.
The is also the fastest DVD player we tested. So from inserting a disc to having it loaded up ready to watch, this was the quickest. It also remembers where you've left off so allows you to continue viewing from your last position in the program. Yes, this isn't the cheapest DVD player on the list but if you want a device that does absolutely everything you could want then this is the one and it's well worth the cost.
- Read the full Panasonic DVD-S700 DVD player review.
2. Sony DVP-SR510H DVD player: Best for ease of use and slideshows
The Sony DVP-SR510H DVD player is a super easy to use device that still crams in lots of useful features. From 1080p upscaling and HDMI support to Dolby Digital audio and DVD+R playback, this does a lot. What it won't do is region free playback, which bumps it down to second on the list – that and that fact this is a bit slower to load.
One unique feature we love is the ability to play a slideshow of JPEG images with your MP3 music playing in the background too – all from a USB drive and disc. This features a display and a selection of buttons on the unit as well as a comprehensive remote control. The fact this offers Sony quality upscaling for a really great picture is also of huge appeal here.
- Read the full Sony DVP-SR510H DVD player review.
3. LG DP132 DVD player: Best for CD to MP3 conversion
The LG DP132 DVD player is quite unique in that it offers a great CD to MP3 conversion system. Pop on your CD, slip in a USB thumb drive, and the player will convert the audio to MP3 on your drive automatically for you. It also offers region-free DVD playback so you can play pretty much any disc, no matter where it's from.
What's not so great is that this won't offer HDMI, 1080p upscaling or Dolby audio support. So you'll be getting the DVDs at their original quality, essentially. All that does mean this is a very compact player so can fit in well in smaller spaces. It also means the price is nice and low. Plus you get the backing of a decent one year parts and labor LG warranty for peace of mind.
- Read the full LG DP132 DVD player review.
4. Impecca DVHP-9117 DVD player: Best for speed
The Impecca DVHP-9117 DVD player does a lot for the price and it does it fast. This is one of the fastest loading DVD players on our list and it plays nice with both NTSC and PAL. It'll also upscale image quality to 1080p for output via HDMI. On the front is a USB port for easy loading of files like photos, audio and video to be viewed on the connected big screen.
This isn't the cheapest and there isn't support for Dolby audio, which could be a deal-breaker for some. Everything else is brilliant for the price.
- Read the full Impecca DVHP-9117 DVD player review.
5. Craig CVD401A DVD player: Best for small spaces
The Craig CVD401A DVD player is a compact unit that's perfect for anyone looking to hide away their DVD player in a small space. Despite that small package this still packs in HDMI and will upscale those older DVDs to 1080p quality so they look good even on a large TV. This will play lots of different disc formats and also supports CDs for audio.
The short 90-day warranty combined with online complaints about issues from users makes this one to be wary of. But for the price it appears to do the job for most – even if the load times aren't the fastest out there.
- Read the full Craig CVD401A DVD player review.
6. GPX DH300B DVD player: Best on a budget
The GPX DH300B DVD player is a great option for those looking to buy a unit on a budget. Despite this being a very affordable player it still loads nice and quickly, which applies to both PAL and NTSC DVD discs. That's also with the smarts to upscale the video to 1080p for output to a TV via HDMI.
While this will play nice with rewritable discs like DVD+/R/RW, it'll also play CDs – although there's no USB for file access and no Dolby support. But at this price you'd expect that. The only gripe is a short 90-day warranty and some online complaints about this going wrong after that period. But at this price perhaps it's worth the gamble.
- Read the full GPX DH300B DVD player review..