To select the best portable DVD player we looked at a range of features that included media file support, screen size, screen syncing, portability, battery life and charging. While designed to be travel-friendly, you don’t want a screen that’s too small, or poor resolution that creates a fuzzy display. On the other hand, you may find that you want to play content through your portable DVD player but display it onto a larger screen. This is where screen syncing becomes important. And other important considerations such as which media files or formats are supported, battery life, and charging versatility will be core concerns as you select the right portable DVD player for your needs. These DVD players are a great alternative to the best streaming services when you don’t have access. You can also compare them with the best blu ray player.
Because of the above, we chose the ieGeek 11.5″ Portable DVD Player as our Top Pick and the best portable DVD player. It is the best overall because it supports multiple file formats so you have options on what types of media you can watch. Its swiveling function and anti-shock protection while being budget friendly make this a great option for bumpy road trips. If you want a bit of an upgrade, try the best portable blu-ray player. Either way, with this DVD player you’ll be able to watch movies anywhere.
Top 7 Portable DVD Players Compared
#1 ieGeek 11.5″ Portable DVD Player with SD Card/USB Port
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: A budget-friendly portable DVD player for kids and road trips that converts to a tablet for car mounting. Five-hour battery life, multiple DVD and file format support, screen and audio syncing, anti-shock protection, 270-degree swivel screen, and included AV cables, car charger and AC power adapter, and option to upload up to 180 classic games are other core highlights.
- Multiple DVD and file format support plus USB and SD card
- Screen and audio syncing
- Convertible for car mounting
- AV wire for audio syncing not included
- Gaming controller not included
A budget-friendly option can still come loaded with features, making it intuitive and useful. The ieGeek 11.5″ Portable DVD Player is perfect for children or anyone who wants an easy to use yet functional device. The 9.1-inch screen can swivel 270 degrees and can convert for car mounting. You can also opt to screen or audio sync for a more immersive experience.
A wide range of DVD and file formats makes this region-free device a must-have. Supported formats include DVD±R/RW, CD-R/RW, JPEG and MP3 as well as USB and SD cards up to 32GB. Anti-shock protection is ideal for road trips, and gamers have the option of using the included link when you purchase this portable DVD player to download up to 180 classic NES games. You might also want to check out Blu-Ray Players.
#2 NAVISKAUTO 14 Inch Portable Blu-Ray DVD Player
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: A Blu-Ray compatible portable DVD player with a larger 14-inch screen for a crisper viewing experience. 1920 x 1080P resolution, HDMI screen syncing, Dolby audio file support, region-free support, multiple media format compatibility, along with USB and SD card slots and multiple power chargers.
- Blu-Ray compatible
- 1920 x 1080P resolution
- Dolby audio file support
- HDMI cables not included
- Difficult side-angle viewing
- Won’t support 2K, 4K, 3D-BLU
The Naviskauto 14-inch Portable Blu-Ray DVD Player is our Top Pick. The fact that it supports Blu-Rays is a major factor as many portable DVD players don’t support this media format. In addition to that, the large 14-inch screen and 1080P resolution make this the best portable DVD player for kids to share on long road trips or flights. Plus, this DVD’s built-in rechargeable battery makes it easy to take on the road.
This model also offers other impressive features such as Dolby audio file decoding support for standard formats such as Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Digital, Dolby True HD, and DTS-HD Master Audio MP3. While it doesn’t come with the accompanying cables, it supports HDMI connections for a wide range of sync options — computers, smartphones, Smart TVs, gaming consoles and even streaming television devices. The included auxiliary audio cables makes it possible to connect to speakers or stereo speakers for more robust audio. This DVD player also includes last memory function, so your DVD will always pick up from where you last left off. This portable DVD player supports USB and SD card file imports as well as multiple file formats such as MOV, AVI, MP4, VOB, FLV, TRP, TS, MPG, MPEG, DAT, ASF, and WMV. There’s a reason that this portable blu ray player is at the top of our list. Have a look at the best DVD recorder and compare this model.
#3 DBPOWER 11.5″ Portable DVD Player with 9.5″ Swivel Screen
Award: Honorable Mention
WHY WE LIKE IT: A robust yet compact portable DVD player with region free support that plays multiple media formats including USB and SD cards, 800 x 480 screen resolution, a screen that flips 180-degrees and rotates 270 degrees, and can be connected to external visual and audio equipment for content sharing. Comes with a remote, can be converted to a tablet for car mounting, features three power supply options, and comes in three colors.
- 5 Hour Battery
- Supports mulitple media formats
- Convertible for car mounting
- Blu-ray discs not supported
- Replacement batteries aren’t available
This modestly priced portable DVD player makes our honorable mention because it would be ideal for a range of users from children to seniors and everyone in between. In addition to featuring a travel-friendly size of 11 inches and a 9.5-inch screen, you’ll like the wide media format support. Choose from external options like USB and SD cards or choose from digital formats such as MP3, WMA, WAV, JPEG, MPEG2, AVI, and DIVX. The screen features a comendable 800 x 480 resolution which is common for portable DVD players and can fold down 180 degrees and rotate 270 degrees. It also helps that this DVD player will be able to hold 5 hours of battery life.
If you decide to hit the road with this device, you can easily convert it into a tablet and mount it to your car’s headrest with the included mounting accessory. Plus with the included A/V cables, you can sync your screen to your television. You’ll like that this player is region free and can support a wide range of common DVD formats that include CD, DVD, CD-R/RW, DVD -R/+R, DVD+RW/-RW, VCD, and SVCD. The five-hour battery will get you through multiple TV shows and feature-length movies and you can choose between the included car adapter or the AC power plug when it’s time to recharge the battery. This built-in rechargeable battery makes it easier to take this DVD player on the go. And if you still use VHS tapes, check out the best VCR DVD combo.
#4 UEME Portable DVD Player with 10.1”Swivel Screen
Award: Best for Sharing
WHY WE LIKE IT: A travel-friendly portable DVD player for kids to share with a simplified control panel, 10.1-inch swivel screen, anti-shock technology, AV cables for screen syncing , and dual audio jacks for simultaneous use makes this perfect for sharing media while traveling. Region-free, supports multiple DVD formats plus USB and SD card, five-hour battery life, included car headrest mount, remote, and multiple power adapters.
- Anti-skip technology
- Includes car mount
- Region-free and multiple DVD formats supported
- Battery life can be inconsistent
- Remote can be inconsistent
If you have more than one child, you know that sharing is caring. This UEME Portable DVD Player has you in mind with a dual 3.5mm audio jack that allows two people to enjoy content simultaneously. You’ll also like that this portable DVD player converts to a tablet for easy installation in your car with the included headrest mount. And anti-shock technology guarantees that content won’t skip or stall if you’re driving on a bumpy road.
This model is region-free and supports a wide range of DVD formats that include DVD-R DVD-RW CD CD-R HDCD Music-CD Audiobook-CD Mp3-CD Picture-CD VCD EVD SVCD as well as USB and a maximum of a 32GB SD card. The availability of an SD card slot can allow for your DVD player to have a massive amount of storage. This portable DVD player comes with plenty of accessories to enhance functionality such as AV cables for screen sharing, and multiple chargers so you can charge it in the car or through a standard power outlet. With a five-hour battery life, road trips have never been easier. Have a look at more TV accessories and keep your TV up to date.
#5 HD JUNTUNKOR 12” Portable DVD Player with 10.1″ HD Swivel Screen
Award: Best for Road Trips
WHY WE LIKE IT: A medium-sized portable DVD player screen of 10.1 inches with multiple file and DVD formats supported and an easy to use remote control for car rides. 270-degree rotating screen, converts to tablet for car installation, three power systems, 1024 x 600 screen resolution, and AV cables to support screen sharing round out the top features.
- Easy to use remote
- Supports multiple media formats
- Supports multiple device connections
- Screen can have temperature issues with color
- Headrest mount impacts operation
Just because you’re looking at a small screen doesn’t mean you should compromise on quality. The HD JUNTUNKOR 12” Portable DVD Player features a 10.1-inch screen with a higher resolution of 1024 x 600. You’ll like that this model supports a wide range of media and DVD formats that include CD, DVD, CD-R/RW, DVD -R/+R, DVD+RW/-RW, VCD, SVCD, and can also play MP3/WMA/WAV, JPEG, MPEG2/AVI with USB and SD cards. Plus, the battery has 5 hours of life.
If you like, you can screen share with the included AV cables. This model converts to a tablet and can be installed in your car using a headrest mount. You’ll find that the availability of AV cable will come in handy in projecting your movies on almost any TV. It can also connect to multiple devices, such as external speakers, headphones, or even a computer. And you’ll like that the 5-hour rechargeable battery can be recharged either through the included AC or car power adapters. If you need to get your TV on the wall, read about the best TV wall mount.
#6 Pyle 17.9” Portable DVD Player
Award: Best Value
WHY WE LIKE IT: A vivid and large screen size of 15.6 inches makes this a must-have item while traveling with children thanks to the 1366 x 768 resolution. Multiple DVD and file format support plus USB and SD card input, region-free playback, included AV cables, headphones, remote control, and dual charging cables between AC and car adapters makes this an attractive option.
- Best screen
- Multiple DVD and file format support plus USB and SD card
- Comes with headphones
- USB and SD card support inconsistent
- AC adapter cord can break easily
We’re rounding out our portable DVD players shopping guide with a Best Value that offers the most features and a significantly larger screen size at a modest price. The 15.6-inch screen has a resolution of 1366 x 768 for a crisp display. The 270-degree swivel screen is perfect on its own but if you prefer you can use the included AV cables to screen sync.
As you would expect, this model is also region-free and supports a wide range of DVD and file formats such as MPEG4, VCD, CD-RW, DVD-R, MP3, WMA, JPG, VCD, EVD, and VOB as well as USB and SD cards up to 32GB. As a nice touch, this portable DVD player not only comes with car and AC power adapters but with headphones just in case you don’t have a pair handy. If you find that you need a new antenna, check out our TV antenna list.
#7 COOAU Portable DVD Player 11.5″ with Game Joystick
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Award: Best Budget
WHY WE LIKE IT: A built-in joystick and the ability to install up to 180 classic NES games makes this ideal for gamers on the go or children on road trips. Five-hour battery life, a 270-degree swivel radius, region-free DVD playback, multiple file support, screen syncing, anti-shock technology, and included cables and multiple chargers are other key features.
- Best for Gaming
- Built-in joystick
- Screen sync functionality
- Some DVD formats not supported
- Functionality is limited when car-mounted
- Must contact brand to receive NES games
Whether you’re a serious or casual gamer, you’ll appreciate that this portable DVD player has you in mind. As compared to all the other options in our guide, this is the only one that features a joystick. And if you’re inclined, you can contact the brand and request a zip file full of 180 classic NES games to keep you or your children occupied on that next road trip.
Gaming aside, this is still a great portable DVD player that offers standard features such as a five-hour battery life, screen syncing, a screen that swivels 270 degrees, and the ability to car-mount it as well. Anti-shock technology ensures a smooth viewing experience and the region-free playback is essential as well. In addition to USB and 32GB SD card support, you can watch multiple DVD and file formats including VOB, AVI, MPEG 1, MPEG 2, MPEG 4, XVID, MP3, and WMA. You may also need a USB to HDMI adapter for some of these players.
How We Decided
Portable DVD players are a must-have item for a range of reasons. For parents, this can be the difference between blissful travel and an unbelievable nightmare. But regardless of why you’re picking up this essential electronic device, your general goals are the same — to play entertainment content for personal use or possibly to share with others. So, there are a few core features we prioritized: media file support, screen size, screen syncing, portability, battery life and charging.
Screen size and resolution are two features that go hand in hand. Depending on how you’re traveling or where you’re willing to compromise, picking a larger portable DVD player with a bigger screen size might not be realistic. So, for the most part, we centered our guide around models with screen sizes that ranged between nine to 11 inches. These models are going to slip easily into carry-on bags and are going to be easier for small children to handle. With the display screen, where possible, we listed resolutions, making note of models with higher resolutions.
Media file support is going to be the next important factor. This can be further broken down into a few categories: region support, DVD formats, and file formats. There are six DVD regions that represent each of the six continents that produces entertainment content. All of the models on our list are region-free, meaning that you shouldn’t experience any restrictions on playing DVDs purchased from other parts of the world. With DVD formats, this option can vary depending on the make and model of your portable DVD player. But most tend to support multiple formats such as DVD±R/RW, CD-R/RW, JPEG and MP3. Additionally, all of the models on our list can support content imported from USB and SD cards up to 32GB.
Screen syncing refers to your ability to pair your portable DVD player with a television or computer so you can play content off of your player but display it on an alternate screen. While everyone might not care about this feature, it’s a standard option that all of the models on our list support. To that end, every model that promoted screen syncing also included AV cables to facilitate this feature. You may also want to check out what you can get with the best 4k blu ray player.
Another factor we considered was portability. In addition to determining whether a portable DVD player was small enough to be considered “travel-friendly”, we also looked at which models could be converted to tablets for car mounting. This is essential if you’re planning on taking a road trip but don’t want to invest in an overhead DVD player specifically designed for permanent installation in your car. While most models can convert into a tablet configuration, take note that not every brand includes the actual headrest mount that you’ll need to securely hold the player in place.
Finally, we looked at battery capacity and charging options. For the most part, all of the options we’ve featured offer at least four hours of battery life with most providing five hours. All of them feature rechargeable batteries and also provide you with a choice between an AC adapter for a standard outlet plug as well as a car adapter that would fit into your car’s lighter. The idea is portability, so most likely you won’t use these with the best 55 inch smart TV.
Portable DVD Players Buying Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
If you’re in the market for a portable DVD player, the assumption is that you’re planning on buying an electronic that has a travel-friendly design. Portable DVD players can be taken in and out of a car for example, while the best headrest DVD player stays in the car but you can still watch movies during trips. So look for DVD players that are small and lightweight so that they not only take up less space, but don’t weigh down your travel bag in the process. Where do you plan on using your portable DVD player? If you’re thinking about using a DVD player for road trips, then it’s important to consider portable devices that can convert into tablet formats and be mounted to a headrest with straps to watch your favorite movies comfortably.
- Audio and Video Quality
Considering that portable DVD players are typically smaller electronic devices, screen quality is going to be a very important factor. Focus on screen resolutions that are at least 720p which is ideal for smaller screens. Be aware of the portable player’s built-in speakers and their quality. Ideally, the player will feature dual stereo speakers, but if not, you can attach external speakers if you want higher audio quality. Some models will also have dual headphone jacks, so you can use a pair of headphones for a better audio experience.
- Media Versatility
To get the most use out of your portable DVD player, you should look for models that can play more than one file type. Even though DVD sounds like a standardized format, the reality is that there can be multiple file formats that technically fall within the general header of a “DVD”. Common file formats include mp4, AVI, and DIVX. AVI and DIVX formats are especially important if you’re also downloading your own content from the internet and burning it onto DVDs. But some portable DVD players can do even more than play video content. So, if you want that functionality, look for models that also support mp3 or jpg formats. You will also want the best streaming device to go with your DVD player.
- Battery Life
No one wants a portable DVD player that dies in the middle of watching a program. So, look for models that offer longer battery life. In particular, focus on options that offer at least three and a half to four hours of battery life so you can watch one or two feature-length movies before it needs to be recharged.
- Media Output
Some people want the flexibility to connect their portable DVD player to other media outlets. This includes television and speaker connections. So, look for models that offer options like HDMI port or audio-out auxiliary ports.
- Screen Size
In addition to supported media formats, you need to consider screen size. By definition, portable DVD players aren’t meant to be massive. However, you should be able to find a quality option that offers a screen of at least seven inches. Typically, most median-priced options will have a screen that measures between seven to 10 inches.