Cheapo electronics advice
September 1, 2006 9:36 AM   Subscribe

Two cheapo electronics questions: Is there any bargain-basement DVD player on Amazon that's better than any other (in terms of quality/longevity more than features), and which of the following used monitors should I get for my Mac Mini?

I can get an older (i.e. '90s) 19" Hitachi CM715 or Sony Trinitron or a more recent (.e. 2000) Dell 17" or 19"; the 17" Dell is also a Trinitron. (If there are specific model numbers of those era Dell monitors that I should watch out for or be sure to snatch up, that's great.) All of these monitors are used and essentially free to me, and my main concerns are a great picture, likelihood of lasting five years and reasonable power consumption. (The Mini comes with a DVI to VGA adapter.)
posted by blueshammer to Technology (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The Philips DVP642 rocks my socks, but that's mainly because of it's features (it plays anything, it's super-easy to make it region-free, etc). I've had it for a few years and haven't had any problems with it, if that tells you anything about it's quality/longevity.
posted by amarynth at 9:53 AM on September 1, 2006

Seconding the Philips. Refurbished ones are available for cheap on the Philips website with some regularity.
posted by box at 9:56 AM on September 1, 2006

I love it SO MUCH that it makes me forget the difference between 'its' and 'it's', apparently.
posted by amarynth at 9:57 AM on September 1, 2006

Trinitrons have been solidly excellent for me. If you have the desk space, I find working on a 19" is significantly better than on a 17".
posted by anadem at 10:08 AM on September 1, 2006

If you've got storage space, nab both free monitors: one to use now, one as a spare to use when the first one dies.*

*written by the person who just had to go on an ill-timed, poorly-researched, and altogether frantic shopping expedition to replace a 21" CRT which died 5 hours before a giant deadline.
posted by jamaro at 11:00 AM on September 1, 2006

I have this one, purchased about eight months ago from Amazon for under $70. Love it. Plays practically anything.
posted by grabbingsand at 11:25 AM on September 1, 2006

No. Wait. I have this one. The Panasonic. Or maybe I bought a $20 cheaper cousin model....
posted by grabbingsand at 11:26 AM on September 1, 2006

I'd third the Philips DVP642.
posted by MegoSteve at 11:30 AM on September 1, 2006

We have a couple of these trutech dvd players. It is really small and plays everything. Amazon is currently sold out, but we got them at our local Target store for $31.00 each.

If you get that one, there is a related askme about it (apparently the plugs at the back are confusing.)
posted by sciatica at 12:48 PM on September 1, 2006

Love the Phillips, have two, only complaint is its goofy implementation of the progressive scan feature which I have not gotten to work successfully with any TV.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 12:51 PM on September 1, 2006

This blog entry by Jason Scott might help.
posted by krisjohn at 3:58 PM on September 1, 2006

The Phillips is an excellent player (I have one too! I think you're issued one with your Mefi membership nowadays), but I'll second what PinkStainlessTail said -- I've been unsuccessful getting the progressive-scan output to work with my brother's plasma TV. For using S-Video or composite outputs, it's great.
posted by neckro23 at 8:47 PM on September 1, 2006

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