Nextbase SDV185SD review

Small LCDs have moved on in the past couple of years, and you should expect more for your money. This will do the job, but not very well Tested at £200.00

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

Despite the build quality and ease of use, the SDV185SD falls down on price and picture quality – there are much better players around for less


  • +

    Decent build

  • +

    easy to set up and use

  • +

    comprehensive set of peripherals


  • -

    Poor picture

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The Nextbase SDV185SD is a portable DVD player with an 8.5in screen targeted at the in-car viewer.

Straight out of the box, setting it up is a simple affair: charge the battery stand and connect it to the player, and you're mobile. You'll also find it comes with all the peripherals you might need, including a good-looking pair of wireless headphones, a 12V car adapter, and a separate power supply for the unit so you watch films on mains power while you charge the battery stand.

One thing that niggles is that connecting to the battery stand means removing a small rubber guard from the bottom of the unit that could be easily lost.

A robust performer
The SDV185 feels sturdy and well thought out on the whole. In addition to the remote control, there are basic controls on the set for when you've dropped the remote in the car somewhere. The wireless headphones sound decent, working fine inside a car.

Viewing is an issue here, though: from a metre or so away, images on the SDV185SD are unappealing. Diagonal edges are jagged, movement is pixelated and the screen struggles with distinguishing between dark tones. Shots such as the night scenes in Four Brothers have little clarity: dark blues, blacks and browns all into one merge, and there's little detail in the backgrounds.

Small LCDs have moved on in the past couple of years, and you should expect more for your money. This will do the job, but not very well.

What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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