Hi-res: Sony Persona DVD deck
At the budget end of the DVD player market, consumers are spoiled for choice. Stroll along Sham Shui Po's Apliu Street and you'll find players galore. Most of them are made across the border under obscure brand names, but their low prices, compact sizes and features make them enticing buys.
Sony is aiming for a bigger share of this booming market with its Persona DVP-PR50P. The company knows it has the technology to compete, but its ace card is design. Compared to the oblong silver boxes that house most DVD players, Sony's latest budget player stands out. It comes in five colours (pink, green, orange, blue and black) and is shaped like a wedge of cheese the size of a lunchbox.
The DVP-PR50P is equipped with a powerful 12-bit/108-MHz digital-to-analogue video converter. It lacks an HDMI output but, at HK$380, that's excusable. Its component video outputs are capable of progressive scan and there's also a comprehensive set of video controls to fine-tune the picture. Also worth a mention is its Precision Drive Pro technology, which provides superior picture and audio quality and wider format compatibility. The addition of the Twin Laser Pick Up and Dynamic Tilt Compensation ensures stable playback even when the disc is slightly distorted. It is a multi-system player and plays most discs including DVDs, DVD-Rs, DVD-RWs, VCDs, CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, MP3s, JPEGs and Kodak Picture CDs.
If you're planning to put this DVD player in the study or bedroom, Sony has an LCD TV to match - the KLV-20S400, part of the Bravia S400 series, which also comes in the same colours. Weighing in at just 1kg, the DVD player is small enough to put on a table without taking up too much space, but sharp enough to get plenty of admiring looks from your guests.