11. 28. 2005
Sun Mini DVD Player
I got a Sun mini DVD player in Hong Kong for $45 USD. I just tested it with a PAL region 2 DVD and it easily converted to NTSC. It also plays DVD-R, CD-R, CD-RW, SVCD (MPEG2), VCD (MPEG1), CD, HD-CD (we shall see), DTS-CD, MP3/JPEG and WMA. I tried to override a macrovision feed but, alas, no can do. I'm able to fast-forward thru interminable anti-piracy warnings. With the remote I can zoom in and out of scenes that are either running or in freeze frame.
It's got a small footprint (6.5" x 9" x 2") and an array of video out jacks. The remote is in English and menus are easily switched to the same. I only wish I'd picked up a couple more as gifts but I was skeptical it would work at all given the price and the "any DVD to any TV" claim. In Hong Kong you can find it in Kowloon's Mong Kok District, on Sai Yeung Choi St. South (btw. Soy Street and Dundas), across from Mongkok Broadway Cinespot. There are many types of reasonably priced players on this strip but the Sun mini model was the cheapest (I actually didn't haggle with the salesguy), most compact, easily transportable and the most format agnostic I was able to find. I also had to buy an outlet converter that cost about $4 USD.
The HMVs in HK have prodigious and cheap DVD and VCD selections. I got super-discounted versions of the Shaw Bros.' "Disco Bumpkins," "The Empress Dowager," "Lady General," "Temptress of a Thousand Faces," Tony Silver & Henry Chalfant's "Style Wars," Ninjatune's "Zen TV DVD," and Carl Dryer's "The Passion of Joan of Arc."