Best DVD Players of 2019

Suzanne Humphries ·
Electronics & Software Writer
Updated
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After two days of hands-on testing, we determined that the Panasonic DVD-S700 is the best DVD player out there. It’s easy to set up and use, and it logged one of the fastest times for starting to play a disc from the time we closed the tray. It offers full HD up-conversion, which is great for watching older movies in slightly higher definition. The DVD-S700 can read regular as well as rewriteable DVDs for all regions, supports Dolby audio and multiple languages, and even offers HDMI, RCA and USB connectivity.  

Best Overall
Panasonic DVD-S700
Panasonic’s DVD-S700 is a wonderful, region-free DVD player capable of full HD streaming and upconverting older low-resolution video. The player is easy to use, supports Dolby audio and features auto-resume playback.
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Best Value
GPX DH300B
The GPX DH300B is an affordable, feature-packed DVD player. Despite its low price, it has many standard features, including upscaling, Dolby audio support, automatic playback and an included remote.
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Best for Small Spaces
Craig CVD401A
The Craig CVD301A is a solid DVD player with a small, sleek design that’s great for those who don’t have a lot of space. It comes with all the basic features.
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Product
Price
OVERALL RATING
Price
Performance
Design
Support
Ease of Use Score
Time to Play (seconds)
R/RW Discs
Upscaling
Multi-Language Output
Auto-Resume Playback
Dolby Support
Remote Included
USB
HDMI
RCA
Region
Warranty
Direct Support
Online Resources
$64.98 Amazon Marketplace
5 5 5 5
A+
14.99
All
1 Year (Parts), 90 Days (Labor)
Chat, Phone
$4.99 GameStop
5 4.5 5 5
A-
21.8
1
1 Year (Parts), 90 Days (Labor)
Chat, Phone, Email
$39.97 Amazon Marketplace
4.5 4.5 5 5
A
11.92
1
1 Year (Parts), 90 Days (Labor)
Phone, Email
$28.05 Rakuten
5 4.5 4 4
A-
19.09
1
90 Days
Phone, Email
$29.99 Amazon Marketplace
5 4.5 3.5 5
A
14.89
All
1 Year (Parts), 90 Days (Labor)
Chat, Phone, Email
$27.46 Mytoytruck
4.5 4.5 4 4
A
14.64
1
90 Days
Phone, Email
$27.88 Wal-Mart
5 4 2.5 5
A-
18.26
1
1 Year (Parts), 90 Days (Labor)
Phone, Email
$29.99 Best Buy
4.5 5 2.5 4.5
A-
16.89
1
1 Year
Phone, Email
$24.99 Wal-Mart
5 4 2.5 5
A-
21.8
1
1 Year (Parts), 90 Days (Labor)
Chat, Phone, Email
$22.99 Micro Center
4.5 4.5 4 2
B+
16.82
1
90 Days
N/A
Best Overall
The Panasonic DVD-S700 is a solid DVD player great for college students or anyone simply wanting to play their DVD collection.
It is region free, so you can play any DVD, no matter where in the world you purchased it. It can also play rewriteable discs, including DVD-R/DL, DVD-RW, DVD+R, MP3-CD and JPEG-CD. And it features a USB input if you want to play media from a flash drive, be it video, music or even photo files. Audio can only be accessed via analog stereo or HDMI outputs; the player lacks digital optical and coaxial audio outputs. If you stop watching a DVD and want to continue it later, the DVD-S700 has an automatic resume function which continues playing the DVD right where you left off. In our tests, this device quickly starting any disc we put into the tray. If your DVD collection consists solely of older low-resolution movies, the player does have an upscaling feature that can slightly improve the picture quality.
Pros
  • Has full HD video up-conversion option
  • Starts playing DVDs quickly
  • Is compatible with all regions
Cons
  • Audio is only accessible via HDMI and analog stereo outputs
  • Construction feels a bit flimsy
  • One of the most expensive options
-
Read the full review
Best Value
With the GPX DH300B, you have a way to watch your cherished DVD collection without breaking the bank.
This simple DVD player offers standard functionality and supports multiple languages and modern aspect ratios. It is also backed by the manufacturer with a 90-day warranty, with customer support available via both phone and email. In our tests, the GPX had one of the fastest disc load times – just 14.64 seconds from the time we shut the tray. It also has a built-in automatic resume playback function, which marks and remembers where you stopped playing your most recent DVD and continues playback from that point whenever you begin playing it again. The player supports multi-language output and Dolby audio. And it can improve the quality of your low-resolution movies up to full HD thanks to the built-in upscaling feature. However, the player cannot play rewriteable discs, nor does it have a USB port for connecting digital media.
Pros
  • Fast disc play time
  • Full HD upconvert option
  • Supports multiple languages and subtitles
Cons
  • Cannot play rewritable discs
  • No USB port option
  • Remote batteries not included
-
Read the full review
Best for Small Spaces
If you live in a small apartment, or simply don’t like your electronics to take up a lot of space, the Craig DVD401A is a great space-saving DVD player.
It measures 2.95 x 9.06 x 10.24 inches and weighs just over 2.1 pounds. The player can play region 1 DVDs, as well as rewriteable DVDs and CDs. If you have older, low-resolution DVDs, you can take advantage of the player’s ability to upconvert them to 1080p via HDMI connection. This process uses an interpolation algorithm to match nearby pixels. It also uses progressive scan to smooth out image quality while you watch your movies. The player supports Dolby audio as well as audio and subtitles for multiple languages. The handy automatic resume feature marks where you stopped the most recent DVD you watched and remembers it when you resume watching it. The DVD401A ships with a remote control, so you can manage playback and other settings from the comfort of your couch. Though the player lacks a USB port, it does have both HDMI and RCA connectivity, so you can connect it to your TV. Overall, in our tests, we found the Craig CVD401A player and remote control to be intuitive and easy to use.
Pros
  • Extremely compact design
  • Can play rewriteable discs
  • Supports Dolby audio
Cons
  • No USB connectivity
  • Slow initial disc start time
  • No upscaling option
-
Read the full review
Best for Playback Resume
With Sony’s DVP-SR510H DVD player, you can enjoy full HD video playback. The player’s PhotoTV HD mode is capable of displaying photos in full HD resolution, and it can also play CDs.
It has an upscaling function, which uses an interpolation algorithm to upgrade lower-resolution video to full HD. It also uses progressive scanning technology to smooth out the picture while it plays your movies. The DVP-SR510H ships with a remote control, which allows you to easily manage all settings and playback options without having to leave your comfy seat on the couch. It can play regular as well as rewriteable DVDs and CDs, as well as digital media through its built-in USB connection. Included HDMI and RCA connection options let you connect the player to your TV. And the best feature on the player, by far, is its ability to remember where you left off on the six most recent DVDs you played. Other players can only remember one.
Pros
  • Remembers playback resume points for six DVDs
  • Supports digital file playback
  • Works with rewriteable discs
Cons
  • Slow to start playing discs
  • Limited to region 1 discs
  • High price point
-
Read the full review
Most Affordable
If you’re trying to stick to a tight budget and need a DVD player, the Sylvania SDVD6655-B is your best bet.
It can play regular as well as rewriteable DVDs and CDs. It also boasts plenty of connectivity options, including HDMI, video, composite, coaxial, 2x audio and S-Video. Though it’s missing a couple features, like upscaling and a USB port, and has very limited customer service options, it’s still a decent option for those who need a DVD player but don’t want to bust their wallet. This Sylvania unit uses progressive scan technology to smooth out your movie’s playback, and it even has a built-in upscaling feature that can improve the visual quality of your older, lower-resolution movies and make them look as good as a movie in full HD would. The player supports Dolby audio as well as multiple languages available on a DVD. It also ships with a remote control, so you can stop and start playback, and adjust other settings from the comfort of your seat.
Pros
  • Least expensive option in our comparison
  • Large variety of outputs
  • Features progressive scan
Cons
  • No USB connectivity
  • Limited technical support options
  • Looks and feels cheap
$33.29Walmart
Read the full review

Why Trust Us

We have been reviewing DVD players for nearly two years, and our most recent series of in-house tests took place over three days. In our evaluation process, we looked at top-of-the-line DVD players, budget players and ones designed for other specific purposes. Each DVD player was carefully assessed and thoroughly tested by seasoned professionals who have years of experience using them. We set up a controlled test environment where we could evaluate things like ease of use and how quickly they start playing a disc. In our tests, we also looked at things like design, connectivity options, language and audio support, and upscaling. We noted which DVD players were the easiest to use as well as the most capable.

How We Tested

After first researching DVD players online, we ordered the top devices and tested them ourselves. For hands-on testing, we used each DVD player in a controlled environment. We looked at picture quality, ease of setup and ease of use. We also evaluated how quickly each player could start playing a disc from the time we closed the tray, as well as remote control options and connectivity options.

We also looked at each DVD player’s upscaling ability, seeing if it actually looked like it made a difference to the picture, and it suffered a bit with every single player we tested. If you’re watching videos, we recommend buying a Blu-ray, remastered or digital version of the movie, if picture is really important to you, and that you invest in a high-quality television. However, given their small size and basic functionality, all of these DVDs do exactly what they’re designed to do, and do it well.

Key Features to Look for When Buying a DVD Player

Connectivity
Some DVD players offer basic connectivity in the form of SCART or HDMI cables, and budget models that offer internet connectivity usually only offer a wired connection. Others offer wireless connection options and can also connect to other compatible devices such as cameras, smartphones, tablets and computers wirelessly for maximum convenience. Some also have a USB port so you can attach a USB drive to access files, movies, music and photos, or you can connect a USB-compatible device to retrieve and view files.

Picture Quality
We recommend verifying the minimum resolution of your television or monitor, then checking that the DVD player you want can match it. There’s no point investing in a DVD player that can play HD content if you’ve got a basic low-resolution TV, and vice versa. However, a full HD television or monitor working with a DVD player with matching resolution provides much better image quality that’s noticeably crisper, more vibrant and more detailed.

If you have a high-resolution television and a stack of older, low-resolution DVDs, you should choose a player with upscaling abilities. These devices can slightly improve the image quality of old or low-resolution discs to give a near-HD output. If you’ve got a compatible television and you enjoy immersive movie experiences, you can choose a Blu-ray DVD player that supports 3D playback.

Extra Features
Many DVD players that have internet connectivity also provide a variety of apps, including streaming services and catch-up TV. Others also include social media or web browsing applications, turning your entertainment center into a smart TV. If you want to use your DVD player as part of a home theater or home entertainment setup, consider choosing one with a universal remote that can control all your entertainment equipment.



DVD Players vs. Blu-ray Players
If you’re unsure whether to purchase a standard DVD player or spring for a fancy Blu-ray player, we can help. For many, the obvious choice is to spring for the fancier Blu-ray player with its myriad internet-connected features. But if you don’t own any Blu-rays – or if you already have another Blu-ray compatible device, like a gaming console – there isn’t much incentive to make the jump.

Standard DVD players are less expensive than their Blu-ray counterparts, which is nice for those on a budget. They are a cinch to set up, and their simple interfaces and remote controls are also easy to use. DVD players are usually smaller than Blu-ray players as well, making them an all-around good choice for those who don’t have a lot of space to spare.

However, DVD players are becoming less and less common, as they are being replaced with Blu-ray players and gaming consoles. Standard DVD players lack modern physical connectivity options, like HDMI, and aren’t usually Wi-Fi compatible. Their aging design means they are less likely to be compatible with new TVs and auxiliary peripherals. They also aren’t designed to handle high-definition or 4K playback, despite the fact that many of them claim they have high-definition upscaling abilities. In our tests, we didn’t see a single DVD player that could make a standard-definition DVD look amazing on a new OLED screen.

Blu-ray players, on the other hand, are quite compatible with modern flat-screen TVs, and they offer far more connectivity options. Most of them are Wi-Fi enabled and support streaming apps – including DLNA for home media servers – allowing you to have one central device through which you can watch DVDs, Blu-ray discs, downloaded movies and video from streaming services.

If you’re on a tight budget, or don’t plan on owning any Blu-ray discs, we recommend going with a standard DVD player. But if you can spare a few dollars for the slight price increase and like having the bonus features and connectivity options, we recommend Blu-ray players all the way.