Which portable Blu-ray player is best?

While some modern consumers might scoff at the idea of purchasing their favorite films and TV on Blu-ray, savvy consumers are purchasing the key to a portable entertainment library that doesn’t rely on internet connectivity. Rather than being dependent on available free Wi-Fi or having to pre-download content to enjoy on a trip, Blu-ray discs offer entertainment for decades to come. With an attractive and versatile unit like the FANGOR 12.5″ 1080P Portable Blu-Ray Player with 10.5″ HD Swivel Screen, you and your kids can enjoy your favorite entertainment for hours wherever you happen to be.

What to know before you buy a portable Blu-ray player

Suitability for entertaining kids on long car trips

While a portable Blu-ray player might appeal to you if you happen to be an old-school cinephile who prefers non-digital formats, one of the most common reasons for purchasing one is to entertain children on extended journeys. In addition to letting you keep possession of your smartphone and tablet devices, your kids can enjoy hours and hours of entertainment without robbing you of your GPS, podcast or other useful functions.

However, it should be noted that not all models of portable Blu-ray players are capable of being conveniently mounted to the back of a car headrest and must instead be placed on a flat, stable surface. That being said, you should determine whether such a device will meet your requirements for mobile entertainment or whether a different model would be more suitable.

Designed for ruggedness, portability and convenience

As anyone who grew up with the internet can attest, compact discs and their subsequent evolutions are both remarkably sturdy and incredibly fragile at the same time. Despite being rendered useless if sustaining enough scratches or other physical damage, Blu-rays and other similar forms of data storage can last up to 20 years in ideal conditions.

Unfortunately, the same cannot necessarily be said for the technology behind playing Blu-rays, which is reliant on a complex system of moving parts which can be damaged or dislodged with relative ease. That being said, any portable Blu-ray player you purchase should be able to withstand any accident damage without rendering itself or your discs unusable.

Decent battery life and screen resolution

Although portable monitors offer far better options in terms of graphics capabilities and visual displays, portable Blu-ray players offer the convenience of audio, video and display in a single package. However, it is crucial to note that what you save in overall cost and convenience will be lost when it comes to overall quality of both video and audio output.

Fortunately, the selected models of portable Blu-ray players offer you several different options for extended battery life as well as the ability to enjoy HD content as desired. Invest in a unit that can offer a decent resolution while also providing anywhere from two to five hours of use before recharging is worth the expense.

What to look for in a quality portable Blu-ray player

Actual size and weight of unit

Bear in mind that just because a product is labeled “portable,” doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s easy for you to cary. After all, the earliest forms of laptops weighed as much as 20 pounds, but you probably wouldn’t want to carry one with you on your daily commute. As such, all of the selected models have been chosen not only for their technical abilities but also because they aren’t heavy. 

Offers features like HDMI output, SD card slot and USB ports

Having the ability to watch full-length shows and movies without an internet connection is very convenient, but what if you feel like watching something on a larger screen? Though you might be interested in a portable Blu-ray player for its intended purpose, why not purchase a model that can play entertainment from multiple sources?

While basic models will certainly perform their expected tasks, some models of portable Blu-ray players also come with advanced features including ethernet ports and the ability to insert media storage like SD cards and USB drives. By purchasing a model with advanced technical capabilities, you can enjoy all the Blu-ray content you’d like while keeping your entertainment options open.

Region of DVDs the unit can play, warranty and more

While this may be a bit of shock to younger readers, you may or may not be surprised to discover that DVD technology like Blu-ray can’t simply be played by any unit, depending on the region. To clarify, Blu-ray discs tend to be formatted to play only on units which are encoded with region-specific software, leading DVDs acquired from other regions to not function correctly.

If you happen to be a collector of Blu-ray discs from across the globe, it is worth your while to invest in a portable player that offers multi-region support to avoid disappointment, Finally, you should also consider whether your desired unit comes with a decent warranty and customer service in the event of any malfunctions.

How much you can expect to spend on a portable Blu-ray player

Depending on your desired features and budget, a quality portable Blu-ray player can cost between $123-$299.

Portable Blu-ray player FAQ

Can I connect my portable Blu-ray player to my TV?

A. Yes, as long as your unit comes with an HDMI output port. If so, you can simply connect the two devices using a standard HDMI cable to enjoy your content on a larger screen.

Can my portable Blu-ray unit cause my car battery to die?

A. As with many devices that can be powered via the standard 12-volt car outlet, your unit should be fine as long as the car’s engine is in operation. However, failing to unplug the unit before exiting the vehicle could potentially lead to a drained battery over time.

What are the best portable Blu-ray players to buy?

Top portable Blu-ray player

FANGOR 12.5" 1080P Portable Blu-Ray Player with 10.5" HD Swivel Screen

FANGOR 12.5″ 1080P Portable Blu-Ray Player with 10.5″ HD Swivel Screen

What you need to know: This is an attractive and versatile unit for long car trips.

What you’ll love: In addition to possessing a screen with full swiveling capabilities, this unit can easily be mounted to the back of a car headrest for hours of entertainment. It also supports various audio formats, including Dolby Digital Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, surround sound, MP3, MP4 and others.

What you should consider: There are reports of discs stopping midway through content, as well as breaking soon after purchase.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top portable Blu-ray player for money

ONN 11" HD Display Portable Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Media Player

ONN 11″ HD Display Portable Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Media Player

What you need to know: An affordable portable Blu-ray player with some impressive features for the price.

What you’ll love: This unit is capable of playing Blu-rays, standard DVDs and CDs and can output content via HDMI port, possessing ports for both USB and ethernet and an SD/MMC card reader.

What you should consider: There are issues with the overall quality of played video and audio.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

SYLVANIA Portable Blu-Ray, DVD, CD, USB, SD Multi Media Player

SYLVANIA Portable Blu-Ray, DVD, CD, USB, SD Multi Media Player

What you need to know: A handsome and rugged unit that’s a great value for your money.

What you’ll love: As well as offering a full 13-inch,1080 HD display, this unit is also capable of playing a DVD formatted in 2K. Furthermore, this unit is region-free, allowing you to greatly expand your entertainment options.

What you should consider: There have been issues with remote and physical controls not working correctly.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Daniel Martin writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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