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Philips' PVD900: A generic portable DTV with decent features and battery life

The Philips PVD900's relatively large screen, decent battery life, and built-in QAM tuner make it a better-than-average portable DTV.

The Philips PVD900/37 has a 9-inch wide-screen display and costs a little more than $150 online. Philips

Philips makes a few portable DTV models, including the 9-inch PVD900/37 shown above, as well as the step-down 7-inch PVD700/37 and PET729/37, which combine a portable DVD player with a 7-inch DTV.

The PVD900, which online costs a little more than $150, looks and feels like your typical inexpensive tablet-style portable DVD player (sans DVD player). That doesn't mean it's ugly, it's just fairly basic and generic-looking, though at 9 inches diagonal, its screen is larger than some of the portable DTVs we've reviewed previously. The TV is also surprisingly lightweight (1.5 pounds), so you can easily carry it. However, like all products that have shiny black finishes, the unit will attract its share of fingerprints if held in hand.

To prop up the TV for viewing, there's a kickstand on back that folds flush against the unit when not in use. To be clear, this is not a high-definition TV, but it can pull in high-def stations and display them on the TV's 600x220-pixel-resolution screen.

As for the DTV side of the equation, the PVD900 pulls in any TV signals being broadcast in your area, but you do have to attach a small, wired external antenna (its base is magnetized).

On the bright side, this model does have a built-in QAM tuner, so you can connect this to a cable TV outlet and receive basic unscrambled digital and HD stations via cable (so long as you have a cable TV signal coming into your house). We tried it out at home and had no trouble bringing in a wide variety of stations. However, on our cable system, the available channels were mostly the same we'd get via an antenna; don't expect to get CNBC, MSNBC, CNN, ESPN, or any so-called "premium" cable stations.

Read the full review of the Philips PVD900.