Portable CD Player Buying Guide

Some people have large collections of CD, and they may have been collecting them for many years before MP3 players and ipods became available and popular. A portable CD player is a good solution for those who want to continue to play their CDs, especially if they are always on the go. Portable CD players are not terribly complex, but there are a few important factors to consider when purchasing these devices.

Types of Portable CD Players

The first type of portable CD player is relatively small, only slightly bigger than the CDs themselves. They will have minimal extra functions in most cases though the newer ones will likely have anti-skip technology and decent sound quality. They have no built-in speakers, but rather, they are listened to while wearing headphones. These devices are most often used while on the go, or while exercising.

However, portable CD players can look like a mini stereo system as well. They will usually have a handle on top for carrying, and they can be run with batteries if you take it on the go or with a power cord plugged into the wall if it is available. This type of portable CD player has built in speakers as well as the potential for other features such as a built in radio tuner, MP3 capabilities, and greater chances of equalizer functions and tuning features. You can usually find this type of portable CD player when people go to casual sporting events or on picnics and such. They are great for group listening, but they likely will have a headphone jack for individual listening as well.

Pay Attention to

You will want a device with an anti-skipping feature built in. There are two types of anit-skipping devices. One type is anti-shock, and this will include a stronger laser so that if you do jostle the device, a skip will not be detected. The other type is a memory buffer that reads ahead on your CD, and it keeps part of the music in memory. When you hit a bump, it continues to play the music in its memory while catching up again.

You need to consider what types of CDs the portable CD player will support and which types you will likely play. Many people like to burn their own CDs onto CD-R or CD-RW disks from their computer. These types of CDs store MP3 files and some portable CD players do not support this format. In addition, some may support CD-R, but not CD-RW disks or vice versa. Just make sure your player will be able to play the types of CDs that you will want to listen to.

Some portable CD players have extra features like a built in radio tuner. You may finish playing your CD, but you are not ready to stop listening to music. With this type of player, you will be able to listen to the radio. It is even better when the player has preset radio station buttons, so you can listen to your favorite station with just the touch of one button.

Some models use digital processing to produce the low bass sounds. You will feel like you are listening to a surround sound system right in your headphones. This is also nice when you listen to your music when exercising because those bass tones often provide the extra rich sounds that get you really moving.

You need to pay attention to the types of batteries and battery life of the portable CD players you are considering. While you may not know what the battery life will be like prior to purchasing, you can find out what types of batteries you will need and how many. In addition, you can find out if the devicd will support rechargeable batteries which may be a more economic solution than always purchasing and throwing away regular batteries.

Sound quality is an important consideration when purchasing a portable CD player. Sound quality can vary gretly between devices, and the best way to know what you like is to test them out in the stores. Since different people have different tastes in sounds, your opinion may not match that of others. Do not take price point as the deciding factor on sound quality because it is not always a good indicator. Some lower priced models have a great sound but less features, so you need to decide what is most important to you.

Top Brands and Product Lines

Sony produced the very first portable CD player, the Discman. They sell a variety of audio products including portable cd players in a range of prices.

Insignia is the house brand for Best Buy, and they sell value priced portable cd players with a ragne of features.

Memorex portable cd players provide a variety of features in the lower and middle price ranges.

GPX Electronics also offers value priced portable cd players with decent feature packages.

Bose, a well known audio electronics manufacturer offers portable cd players. These tend to be higher end models at the mid to upper price ranges.

Sylvania, a diverse electronics company, sells both types of portable cd players in the lower to mid price ranges.

Jensen offers several different types and varieties of portable cd players in the lower to middle price points.