Geeks.com offers a number of portable DVD players in their online Electronics department, and the Spectroniq PDV-70X has quite a few features going for it. The first is the number of accessories included. Not many units can claim to bundle a soft carry case along with both AC and DC power cords, two sets of ear buds, A/V cables, slim remote control AND a rechargeable lithium battery pack all in one box. The second obviously is price. While not a big name brand like Sony or Panasonic, Geeks still manages to keep the Spectroniq PDV-70X available for well under $100, even close to $50 if you're willing to go with a refurbished unit. The main difference is in the warranty period, only 90 days instead of 180 days, however you save a few bucks in the process.
The controls on the PDV-70X are pretty self-explanatory, and those that you may be unfamiliar with on other players, such as the zoom feature, are fairly intuitive. They're also well-placed, controls for the display are located directly under the display. Controls for DVD navigation are right beside the DVD compartment. And all the output jacks are located along one side. The remote sensor is located on the front of the unit, and functional distance seems to be pretty good as long as you have line of sight. The battery pack has an external attachment, which does increase the footprint size, but on the plus side it's removable which cuts down on weight if you opt to use the player plugged in. The battery is only rated for around 2½ hours of use, however in testing I would easily get four hours or more on a full charge.
The display quality is of course a downside, although certainly 7" screens and 480 x 234 pixel size have been the standard for years now, newer high resolution 840 x 480 players are available. Be prepared to pay a premium for them though, easily two to three times the price of the Spectroniq. There are also players with larger screens, an 8½" size is most commonly the next step up. However if it still uses the lower resolution display I would suggest to stick with the smaller screen or pony up for the better display, as the pixel distance I believe will be a big detriment to quality within a viewing distance of two to three feet. Using the 2x zoom feature helps to make the viewing size of widescreen 2.35:1 or 2.40:1 movies more acceptable, however the display is better suited for full screen 4:3 or lesser-width wide screen 16:9 formats.
If you've been thinking about purchasing a portable DVD player and have held off this long, the pricing on these older generation display formats is very attractive for the frugal buyer. And the Spectroniq PDV-70X from Geeks.com bundles everything you might need into one complete package.