Home > Philips DVP5982, Reviews, Technology > Review: Philips DVP5982 DVD Player

Review: Philips DVP5982 DVD Player

To go along with my HDTV, I decided that I needed to upgrade my DVD player. While my Insignia DVD Recorder/VCR didn’t look awful, it certainly didn’t look good. And while the quality of HD-DVD and Blu-Ray are definitely impressive, the on-going format war combined with the cost made those players inviable options.

Enter the market of upconverting DVD players. These players, which take your standard 480i DVDs and scale them to high-definition resolutions are as common as regular DVD players these days. Places like Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Circuit City, are full of them. I’ve actually owned two of them.

I started with the highly-touted Sony DVP-NS75H which is truly a great machine. It has a great design and a super picture quality. Sadly, it only upconverted to 720p or 1080i, not 1080p as my set is capable of. While I’d like to think that I’m not a total videophile, I noticed some of the ghosting and artifacts that interlaced video can expose when put on a big screen. Despite the claim of my HD monitor to do de-interlacing, I was finding that it didn’t do an especially good job.

Enter the Philips DVP5982. Based on Philips well-received 5960 the 5982 adds support for 1080p output as well as improved USB compatibility. I returned the Sony, picked this one up, and set it up. Here are some of my observations:

The basics:

The DVP5982 is a basic upconverting player that you can get for around $70. It includes an HDMI output for upconverting along with coaxial digital audio outputs, plus the standard analog outputs (component, s-video, composite, and stereo audio). There is no upconverting over the component outputs however. It supports DivX file playback (as long as they’re standard resolution and not too large) over USB from a FAT32 formatted device. The menu system on the 5982 is a bit archaic and hard to read, but it’s manageable.

What I Like:

  • True 1080p output. I was suspect of whether the 1080p output would make any visible difference over the 1080i of the Sony. I was wrong, the 1080p output made a huge difference in certain troublesome scenes from movies. I had noticed with the Sony that whenever there was a light or white background (such as a white wall or the sky) and there was motion in front of it, there were artifacts left all over the screen. In the same way, motion scenes would blur and leaving ghostly lines on the screen. Those problems are largely gone with the Philips.
  • DivX playback. I have a 160GB hard drive attached to the USB and loaded onto their I have various movies that I’ve captured onto my computer from my cable dvr. Rather than burning all of these onto DVD or having to hook my computer up to the TV to watch them, I can just transfer them onto this hard drive and hook them up to my DVD player and they play. Pretty much every file I’ve thrown at it has played no problem (but I don’t have any DivX HD files). The only exception was some movies that were encoded at incredibly high data rates. Even then, for the occasional really large or really high data rate file you can put it onto a DVD in DivX format and play it from the player.
  • Image Quality – although its not as good as the Sony with some adjustment to my tv settings the image quality is still very good. There is some minor pinching

What I don’t like

  • Audio Output – this machine will either output over the HDMI cable OR the digital coaxial out – but not both at the same time. This really is only a minor problem, but it can make things more complicated than they need to be
  • The Disc Tray – The tray feels kind of floppy and cheap
  • The Menu System – Simply put, it’s awful. Once you figure out the fonts and how it works, it makes sense, but the visual appearance really leaves something to be desired.
  • The Image Quality – As I said above, it’s not quite on par with the Sony, although the elimination of the ghosting and artifacts make it a worthwhile trade off.

The Summary:

Well, seldom am I so glad I spent $70 on something. Some minor inconveniences aside, for the price you cannot beat this player if you’re looking for 1080p (or want to future-proof you DVD player). I feel very comfortable waiting out the HD-DVD/Blu-Ray battle with this player attached to my HDTV – DVDs look fantastic. The DivX playback, while somewhat limited by what USB devices can be attached, is a really nice added feature. But for me it was the combination of price and 1080p playback that convinced me – and I haven’t been disappointed.

  1. Taran
    May 28, 2007 at 8:47 am

    thank you for sharing…I want to buy the phillips DVP5982 and wanted to have some feedback on it! you opinion is really usefull.

  2. Drew
    May 29, 2007 at 6:05 am

    Thanks… one question though, does it play divx movies with higher than 720 pixel wide? I own the dvp5140 and it doesn’t (It’ll say ‘video resolution not supported’).

  3. John
    September 16, 2007 at 3:49 pm

    I am just returning mine as it freezes during playback on every DVD that I played on it

  4. harold
    September 21, 2007 at 7:09 pm

    One Question, how did you setup your 160G drive so that the player would support it?

  5. September 21, 2007 at 10:37 pm

    The only thing I did with my drive was to format it FAT32. It’s a regular powered external hard drive.

  6. Anand
    October 25, 2007 at 2:57 pm

    Does this player region code free?

  7. October 25, 2007 at 6:47 pm

    Yes – it can be hacked to be region free

  8. Peter
    November 4, 2007 at 8:07 pm

    Thanks for the review. will the player fast scan forward and reverse and does it remember where it is on a disc if it shuts down or is switched off?

  9. Mike
    November 5, 2007 at 9:06 pm

    Did you notice any audio distortion? We just hooked one up for a friend and threw in first a DVD and then, after noticing considerable audio distortion, tried a CD. It too produced a lot of distortion but we tried the different audio filters in the setup and managed to reduce the distortion considerably. Movies, however, still have a lot of distortion when the volume is turned up any higher than a quarter of the way. We will try next with higher quality audio cables, but I’d like to know if you experienced any issues with audio.

    Thanks for your thoughtful review.

  10. Lynn
    November 23, 2007 at 9:15 am

    What do you need to transfer movies and shows from a DVR to your computer? Is it just a simple USB file transfer?

  11. Lynn
    November 23, 2007 at 11:13 am

    The owner’s manual says that the USB port supports playback of JPEG/MP3/WMA files. You were able to play DiVX files though? Do you think that would work with a USB flash drive too?

  12. Mike
    December 1, 2007 at 10:08 am

    Thanks, Wally, I appreciate all the effort you put into this review. My Philips 642 has just died, and tomorrow I’m headed out to pick up the 5982. I don’t yet have HD, but I am a HUGE DivX guy, and I’ve been undecided on what to buy until I read your review – I was a little worried about how well the USB port would work, but I think you cleared that up just fine! and yes, indeed Philips seems to have lousy menu displays, but do seem to handle whatever you throw at them, also I’m looking forward to not having to burn so many discs. Anyway, this is Mike in McHenry, IL saying Thanks for putting out that review! A good review is hard to find…… Merry Christmas!

  13. JC Smith
    December 20, 2007 at 8:03 am

    One of your responders asked: “The owner’s manual says that the USB port supports playback of JPEG/MP3/WMA files. You were able to play DiVX files though? Do you think that would work with a USB flash drive too?”

    The answer is yes. I’ve played several DIVX movie files using a flash drive on my DVP5982 and they look great on my 50″ Toshiba Plasma HD

  14. Alex
    January 9, 2008 at 7:55 am

    How do you get it so the device is supported (flash drive)? I have a ripped dvd that is DivX but my flash drive isn’t supported:(

  15. Mo
    January 10, 2008 at 8:07 pm

    You said it doesn’t output signal over both HDMI & the digital coaxial simultaneously? How do you hook it up to a home theatre system then? (when the audio needs to be redirected to the home theatre receiver but the video needs to be transmitted to the tv over hdmi)

  16. January 10, 2008 at 8:11 pm

    I think I must have been unclear. It cannot output audio over the coaxial and hdmi at the same time. In my case I actually run a HDMI to DVI cable to my LCD and then the coaxial into my audio receiver.

  17. raymoonddeza
    January 16, 2008 at 10:07 am

    Hi, Wally:
    Tns for this review. You said It cannot output audio over the coaxial and hdmi at the same time. In my case I actually run a HDMI to DVI cable to my LCD and then the coaxial into my audio receiver.

    That sounds like the way I want to set mine up. Wud like to claridy. So… your setup has
    1) A HDMI-DVI cable connnected to HDMI output of 5982 then to DVI input on LCD? and,
    2) Coax Digital audio out of 5982 goes to audio receiver?

  18. January 19, 2008 at 3:17 am

    Aahmen, Wally, and Thank You! I’m very happy with my DVP5982. Aside from what you have just mentioned, another bonus is the High-Def JPG playback. My 8-megapixel pics look great, although access takes long. I still have to try pics that are resized to around 1280 x 1024 pixels, for faster access.

    Also…Mike said on November 5, 2007, “Did you notice any audio distortion? …threw in first a DVD and then …tried a CD. It too produced a lot of distortion…”

    If one had an audio receiver that accepts digital audio, chances are that receiver would do a better job than a DVD player in converting digital to audio; that’s the forte of receivers. I would recommend sending digital audio via coax to receiver and letting the latter do what it’s good at doing. To do that you wud have to go to HDMI Audio setup and turn off HDMI Audio output. This will send audio to coax digital out.

  19. David Matos
    February 28, 2008 at 10:05 am

    My problem is similar to what has been said above. I have an older Technics SA-DX1050 Receiver, a Philips DVP5982 and a brand new Sony Bravia KDL-40S3000. What I need to do is have the DVD output video over HDMI to TV, and audio over Coax to Reciever and (here’s the kicker) via Analog RCA cables to the TV. My 3 year old watches videos and needs the audio on the TV. (My old Philips DVP462 would output via optical and analog at the same time.) The TV seems to override the analog when audio is coming over HDMI. I’ve tried a bunch of configs and none seemed to work, but it’s late so I may have missed something.

    Any advice would be great!

  20. Sophie
    March 16, 2008 at 12:03 am

    Hi I am about to buy this player and the salesman swears it’s region free. Just in case it doesn’t play my DVDs from Europe, can you please post the hack?

  21. March 16, 2008 at 6:11 pm

    Looks very nice – is it region free?

  22. Jeff
    May 4, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    Thanks a lot. Can i use a coax-to-optical toslink converter to get the audio into my amp-receiver (which has 5.1 output)?

  23. S M
    June 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    Region Free:
    Press Setup
    select the Preference tab
    Press 1,3,8,9,3,1
    Press up/down key to select “0”
    and hit menu to exit.

  24. June 30, 2008 at 11:18 am

    video resolution not supported guy, you should try divx converter, supportin that shit now

  25. August 11, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    thank you for your article, this is the good information

  26. natanael
    April 6, 2010 at 8:16 pm

    Hola ! tengo uno DVP5982 lo tengo conebvtado con el HDMI y me dice el que no tiene support ! alguien me puede ayudar ! THX

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