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Audiovox D2016 review: Audiovox D2016

Audiovox D2016

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David Carnoy
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David Carnoy

Executive Editor / Reviews

Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.

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5 min read

Like other portable DVD players with 10.2-inch screens, the Audiovox D2016 is smaller than a laptop but bigger than a more conventional portable DVD player. With its detachable nickel-metal-hydride rechargeable battery clipped on, the unit weighs in at 3 pounds, 2 ounces. That's no heavier than competing 10-inch models, but it's certainly no lightweight.

6.8

Audiovox D2016

The Good

The Audiovox D2016 has a large 10.2-inch display, decent picture quality, two headphone inputs, slots for an SD card and a USB thumbdrive, and a game port, and it plays CD-Rs filled with MP3 or JPEG image files. It's also slightly cheaper than competing models from Panasonic, Philips, and other top-tier consumer electronics manufacturers.

The Bad

The D2016 doesn't have a high-resolution screen, it lacks support for MPEG-4 (DivX) playback, and the setup menu can be accessed only via the remote. The controls are confusingly laid out, and you'll be hard-pressed to find the accessory that enables gaming on the player.

The Bottom Line

A big screen and some nice multimedia and connectivity extras help distinguish the otherwise middle-of-the-road Audiovox D2016 from the portable DVD player pack.
Earlier this year, we reviewed the portable DVD player. Like that model, Audiovox's D2016 sports a 10.2-inch wide-screen display and can be found online for around $250. But for the step-up D2016, the company has thrown in some extra features such as an SD card slot (for JPEG photo viewing and playing MP3 files), a USB jack that allows you to connect thumbdrives and other USB mass-storage devices (again, to view JPEG images and play MP3s), and a mysterious input called a "game port" that allows you to play retro games built into a third-party optional controller. A cigarette lighter car adapter is also included, but you don't get any special car-seat mounting accessories.

Portable DVD players aren't particularly difficult to use--and neither is the D2016--but Audiovox could have done a little better job distinguishing the transport control buttons (play, skip forward/back, stop, and pause) from the directional keypad just below them that's used for navigating onscreen DVD menus. The two button sets are virtual twins, and they're punctuated by two small buttons that allow you to access the DVD menu and adjust the aspect ratio from wide-screen 16:9 to standard 4:3.

Another small gripe: the only way to get into the setup menu is by pressing a button on the included credit-card-size remote. You can change the brightness setting by turning a knob on the side of the player, but other picture settings, such as contrast and color, have to be adjusted via the setup menu. Of course, the problem with the remote-only access to certain menu options is that if you lose the remote, you're stuck with the settings you have.

As noted, the D2016 has a slot for inserting SD/MMC memory cards filled with JPEG images and/or MP3 files. We loaded up both an SD card and a thumbdrive containing a few images and music files, and the player was able to read all of them. When viewing pictures, hitting the play button starts a slide show. While the playback interface is ugly, the images looked pretty good, though you'll want to change the aspect ratio from wide to standard 4:3, or they'll appear stretched.

The player's more standard features include dual headphone jacks--they're on the same side of the player, however, as opposed to having one on each side, which is preferable--and an AV input/output jack, as well as support for playback of CD-Rs filled with MP3 and JPEG images. You won't find support for MPEG-4/DivX playback or component video output for improved video quality when connecting to an HDTV. Nor is there a digital audio output for getting surround sound when connecting to an A/V receiver. It's also worth noting that the input/output cable included with the player isn't the standard composite output cable that's included with most portables. Rather, it's got female instead of male connectors. On the plus side, this means you can plug a game console's (male) composite cables into the player and use the D2016 as mini TV monitor. The downside is to you'll need a second set of A/V cables--that is, one with male plugs on both ends--to output video and sound to a TV. It's little strange that Audiovox didn't include one.

Like the D2011, the player's screen can't match the high-resolution display of the Philips PET1002, but it is superior to those of competing "budget" models such as the Mustek MP100. We popped in The Last Samurai DVD and, as we've done with other players, backed down the color and brightness settings a couple notches to get blacks a little darker and skin tones a little more natural looking (read: less red). At certain angles, we did notice some light bleeding from the edges of the screen, particular from the lower left of the screen. It was hard to adjust the screen's angle to get rid of the bleeding entirely, and as with many portable DVD players, picture quality takes a hit with off-axis viewing; it's best to watch this display straight on. Those with a more critical eye might also say the picture exhibits a fair amount of noise (we sometimes refer to this as "dancing pixels"), but this is par for the course for middle-of-the-road portable DVD players.

As for sound quality, it was average--while the built-in speakers sounded fairly loud, we felt that the headphone volume could have been a little louder when we cranked the volume to the highest level.

Battery life is rated at only 2.5 hours, but we did manage to get closer to 3 hours, which should allow you to watch a longer film such as Peter Jackson's King Kong. Since large-screen players such as the Panasonic DVD-LS90 and the Philips PET1002 offer better battery life, this has to be considered a bit of shortcoming. But until the PET1002 came along, most models with 10.2-inch screens offered only around 3 hours of battery life.

In the final analysis, the Audiovox D2016 offers decent enough image quality and has couple of nice extras--the SD card slot and the USB connector--to make it worth a look in this price range. However, the inclusion of the optional game controller and male output cables would have sweetened the deal.

Audiovox 2006 portable DVD players compared:

Model Quick take Screen size
(inches)
Release date Price
Audiovox D1420 This oval-shaped, tablet-style model includes a carrying case with built-in disc holder. 4.2 June 2005
Audiovox D1500B This model utilizes a 5-inch 4:3 (non-wide-screen) display. 5 September 2004
Audiovox D1708 Audiovox's basic 7-inch DVD player. 7 April 2004
Audiovox D1708PK This is the D1708 model, packaged with a car headrest mounting bag/carrying case and two pairs of folding headphones. 7 April 2004
Audiovox D1708ES This is the D1708 model packaged with a car headrest mounting bag/carrying case and an auxiliary 7-inch monitor. 7 December 2005
Audiovox D1726 The D1726 is a tablet-style portable DVD player with a 7-inch screen. 7 May 2006
Audiovox D1812 Audiovox's basic 8-inch DVD player. 8 May 2005
Audiovox D1812PK This is the D1812 model packaged with a car headrest mounting bag/carrying case and two pairs of folding headphones. 8 April 2005
Audiovox D1812PKG This version of the D1812 includes car headrest mounting bag/carrying case, two pairs of folding stereo headphones, and an external wired game controller with 30 built-in games 8 November 2005
Audiovox D1915 Audiovox's basic 9-inch DVD player. 9 January 2006
Audiovox D2011 Audivox's basic 10.2-inch DVD player. 10.2 September 2005
Audiovox D2016 Similar to D2011, the D2016 includes dual headphone jacks, an SD slot, and a USB port. 10.2 June 2006

6.8

Audiovox D2016

Score Breakdown

Design 6Features 8Performance 6
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