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Help please: Which of these 3 DVD players?

by m4paws / January 27, 2008 1:53 AM PST

I have a choice of 3 dvd players via a credit at a local retailer. These are the only 3 models available with features I'm looking for. They do not carry any high def players and their blu rays are too expensive. All use HDMI connection and upconvert to 1080p. They player will be connected to my Sharp LCD, model lc52d62u via HDMI from the tv to the player, and a coaxial connection from the player to my A/V receiver. The Panasonic and Philips both have Divx which is an important feature, although I have another dvd recorder that can play Divx, but would still prefer it in the new player.

My main concern is which has the best picture quality.

Panasonic DVD-S53K This has some decent reviews I've found but did find one person saying it won't play +R/+RW disks. Anyone know if this is true? I have a lot of homemade dvd's that are +R/+RW. I understand that the Panasonic can play sound through both the HDMI to the tv speakers, and also to the A/V receiver via coaxil at the same time, which is nice because sometimes I just want to play sound through the tv, and not the A/V receiver all the time.

Philips DVP5982/37 This seems to be a popular player but the good reviews seem to emphasize that it plays files from a USB flash drive, but never really says how the picture quality is. The USB port is a nice feature but not necessary to me. Picture quality is more important. I understand that the Philips cannot play sound through both the HDMI to the tv speakers, and also to the A/V receiver via coaxil at the same time.

Sony DVP NS77H/B I have heard the picture quality is good, but have also heard that Sony has gone down in quality control and that their players don't seem to last.

If anyone can make a recommendation or comment, it would be greatly appreciated.

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