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Top 7 Best Portable CD Players In 2020 Review And Buying Guide

The Sony CDP-101 was the first CD player that was commercially available . It seems like quite a recent piece of equipment but was first released way back in 1982. Sony also produced the first portable version, the Discman. Later to become the Sony Walkman.

Nowadays, we have portable versions, and while it was a novelty in the 80s and 90s, it is now commonplace.

Best Portable CD Players

There are plenty to choose from so let’s take a look at the very Best Portable CD Players and find the perfect one for you…

Best Portable CD Players In 2020 – Top 7 Rated Reviews


1 Jensen CD-555 CD Portable Bluetooth Music System with CD Player – Best Rated Portable CD Player

Jensen Electronics has a history that dates back to 1915. That is when the founder Peter Jensen invented the first moving-coil loudspeaker. These days they are only involved in consumer electronics.

With the home consumer electronics market dominated by Japanese companies, it is an opportunity to see what others are doing. Is this a good portable CD player?

You are about to find out…

This is a top-loading player that is CD-R/RW compatible. Jensen is a US company, but this particular model is made in China. It is cubed shaped, which is an interesting design and a welcome change from the norm. The front panel contains the controls and an LED display lit in blue. This actually is a nice touch, certainly attractive in dim light.

The controls are basic and about what you would expect to find. It has search and skip as well forward and back and play for the CD, but there are some other useful additions.

Take control…

It has a built-in FM stereo radio with programmable memory. There is a dial to find your stations on the front, and there is a push-button boost for the bass, a headphone jack, and aux input. The aux input is a good added function allowing you to connect your phone or other compatible devices.

Also on the front panel is a light for Bluetooth connection and the pairing control. This version supports the basic A2DP system but also has AVRCP. The latter Bluetooth profile offers remote control options from a phone or similar device.

But keep in mind…

Whilst it is portable, it is not as compact as some. Ir measures 7.1 by 6.1 by 10.2 inches and weighs 2.3 pounds. It does, though, have a fold-down carrying handle. Taking it with you isn’t that much of a problem.

We wouldn’t say that this is one of the best sounding CD players we have ever heard. The bottom end is a bit lightweight. The high frequencies, though, are quite clear. A decent budget system at an attractive price. It takes six C batteries or runs off the mains.


Jensen CD-555 CD Portable Bluetooth Music System with CD Player

Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Nicely designed unit with a useful front control panel.
  • Bluetooth compatible with aux in., at a reasonable price.

Cons

  • Some will want a system that is a little more portable.

2 Sony DEJ017CK Walkman Portable CD Player w/ Car Accessories

There is a rumor that Sony knows a little about the best portable CD players. And they should. But all is not particularly rosy in the garden with this particular model.

We are great fans of Sony products in all their wide-ranging forms and formats. They make great, sometimes exceptional equipment. So we are expecting this to be the same. But will it come up to scratch?

Let’s take a look…

It is well-made as we would expect with a nice pleasant under-stated design. Mostly plastic, of course, but the quality of the plastic is strong and doesn’t feel flimsy. Controls are located on the outer edge, and there is a single line LCD.

What else makes it unique?

There are eight separate playback modes and a boost control if you want to add some extra bass. Battery life is quite good, with sixteen hours from the two AA batteries that are not supplied. It also has a DC mains connection if required. The mains unit is also not supplied.

The sound is quite nice and well-balanced. You will only need the extra bass boost if you happen to listen to bass-dominated music. All positive things and as we say, what you would expect from a company like Sony. However, there are some things that could have been included to justify a rather expensive price tag.

Looking for speakers?

There are no internal speakers with this player, though that is probably asking too much as most don’t have them. You will need headphones. Also, it might not be advisable to wear in the gym if that is what you need it for. It is ok if you are walking, but it can be a little temperamental when running. It mentions CD-R/W, but it can be a little selective on what burned CDs that it will actually play.

It has AM and FM radio Am/Fm Radio, and you can set up to 30 presents. Ten on Am and twenty on FM. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have Bluetooth capability, which is quite surprising. All things considered, a good portable CD player, but it is very expensive and without Bluetooth. Therefore, it is not a rosy option.


Sony DEJ017CK Walkman Portable CD Player w/ Car Accessories

Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Nice simple and easy to use design.
  • Sixteen hours of battery life.

Cons

  • Very expensive and doesn’t include Bluetooth capability.

3 Sony Bluetooth Boombox Bundle – Best Portable CD Player with Bluetooth

Staying with Sony, we look at a design that was popular and evidently still is. Compared with some portable players today, this is rather large at 14.6 x 9.1 x 6.5 inches. However, its plastic design ensures that at five pounds, it is not heavy.

But if you are looking for a cost-effective portable player that has a range of play options, this could be the one.

Let’s see why…

The build, as we said, is plastic, but it is quite sturdy, and there is a foldaway handle. It is a classic Boombox design that is battery operated with a mains option. It comes as part of a package that also includes a NeeGo Bluetooth receiver that connects to the player via a 3.5mm socket. You also get all the cables you will require for connecting the various options we shall discuss.

The sound, as is usually the case with a boombox design, is quite powerful. It might not win any awards for its fidelity, but it is quite clear at the top end and has a heavy bass response.

Want variety?

Play variety is the name of the game with this machine. CDs, CD-R/RW, and built-in AM/FM radio. Also cassettes and MP3s. Courtesy of the Bluetooth connector, you can also use any of the playlists on your devices. Also, of course, any of your favorite streaming sites.

That means you are able to play your complete range of music going back years. Quite a range of options. The controls are all placed on the top, and there are plenty of them.

Is it the right portable CD player for you?

You will get up to nineteen hours from six C batteries on the machine. The receiver will give you six hours on a full charge. Batteries are not included, and there is no remote control with this unit. A good option for those seeking a portable player on a budget.


Sony Bluetooth Boombox Bundle

Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Plenty of options for playing all your music.
  • Strong build with a Bluetooth receiver at a good price point.

Cons

  • Some may prefer a smaller unit.

4 Jaras JJ-Box89 Sport Portable Stereo CD Player with AM/FM Stereo Radio – Best Value for the Money Portable CD Player

This is a more than interesting portable CD player. As we look at it, it resembles something. Can anyone else see it?

All will be revealed a bit later…

In the meantime, we have a top-loading CD player with an interesting design. It is either battery or mains operated. It will take six ‘C’ batteries and also the mains lead, which is a nice touch.

It includes an AM/FM radio, in stereo, that has a programmable memory. There is a digital LED display on the top, giving basic information. The headphone socket is positioned on the rear of the unit.

Super simple…

On the top are the controls, which are all push-button. That makes them nice and easy to use. The CD cover has a soft-eject design. Controls for the CD include play, pause, and repeat. Also, search and skip. For the radio, there is a telescopic aerial.

If we are talking about the sound, it has to be said it is quite basic. But for what is a budget portable CD player, more than adequate. The speakers located on either side give a stereo effect and will give you a decent volume for most genres of music. However, it may not like bass-heavy music so much.

So what does it remind us of? 

There is a robot called “Nao” made in France by a company called Active Robots. This CD player looks like its head. In fact, at our first sight, we thought that is what it was.

We digress. This is a fun little player that, considering the price offers excellent value. It should therefore be considered as one of the Best Portable Music CD Players for those on a budget.


Jaras JJ-Box89 Sport Portable Stereo CD Player with AM/FM Stereo Radio

Our rating:4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Pros

  • Great design with a fun factor to it.
  • Easy to use controls and for the price point, a decent sound.

Cons

  • Some may just want higher quality. (or not like robots)

5 Toshiba TY-CRS9 Portable CD Boombox with AM/FM Stereo – Best Budget Portable CD Player

Next in our Best Portable CD Players review, we have another CD player with a distinctly robotic look, this one from Toshiba. This is another top-loading CD player that is very much a budget-friendly offering. But despite its competitive price, it still offers a number of good features.

CDs are just the beginning…

Playing CDs are just a part of its musical offerings. It will give you AM/FM radio with storage for 30 stations. But also, there is a 3.5mm jack socket to connect your smartphone or other compatible devices. That allows you access to your personal playlists.

It runs off the usual six size C batteries or by connecting up to a mains supply. The mains lead is included, which is always a thoughtful addition in our book. It is quite portable as well, measuring only 9.4 by 4.9 by 8.8 inches and weighing only two and a half pounds. It will give you about one-and-a-half watts RMS from each speaker.

What’s our final verdict?

The overall sound of this CD player isn’t going to set the world alight. However, it is reasonable, and on that basis, the cost-effective price tag makes it worthy of consideration. If you are looking for a cost-effective option, this is worth a look.


Toshiba TY-CRS9 Portable CD Boombox with AM/FM Stereo

Our rating:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • Some nice features for playing music from various sources.
  • Cost-effective price.

Cons

  • Some will want a more portable player.

6 NAXA Electronics NPB-251BK Portable CD Player – Best Low Cost Portable CD Player

This portable CD player is very similar in design and features to the Jaras player we previously reviewed. We would go as far as to say that apart from a few cosmetic and color changes, they are nearly identical.

So, why would you buy a budget portable CD player?

We will discuss that later…

It is a top-loader, and you can listen to music from a variety of sources. The loading operation has a soft eject design. Other than your CDs, you can connect up your MP3 through the aux socket. It also has an AM/FM radio. It has a memory that is programmable, so you can create your own playlists.

The controls are all on the top of the player, and there is an LED display. There is a telescopic aerial to give the radio a clear signal. The controls feature the usual requirements of play, pause, and repeat, etc.

But how well does it work?

It works from either six size C batteries or via a mains supply. It is quite portable, measuring 9.03 by 8.11 by 5.39 inches and weighing just 2.5 pounds. It has a decent build quality with a foldaway handle. The sound quality is what you might expect from a budget system such as this.

So why do you buy a budget range system? You don’t buy a CD player at this price for its quality. You buy it for its convenience and portability. And of course, because it is not expensive. It has all three of those things.


NAXA Electronics NPB-251BK Portable CD Player

Our rating:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • Well-made option with some good play features.
  • Cost-effective price.

Cons

  • Sound quality is not the best you will find.

7 GPX PC807B Personal Portable MP3/CD Player with Anti-Skip Protection – Best Portable CD Player For the Gym or Running

To complete our look at Portable CD players, we move back to a more modern ‘flying saucer’ design. This is especially suitable for those who like to listen to music in the gym.

We will talk about that a little later…

This is a simple CD player that is not overly blessed with exciting features. It has been designed just to play your CDs or MP3s, and that’s about it. There is no AM/FM radio or “last memory” features, or any programmable options.

It will play CDs and CD-R/RW discs. There are no speakers included in the build, of course. But they do give you a pair of earbuds. The quality of the buds isn’t great, but nevertheless, it is a nice addition.

What about the design?

The circular design and weighing only half a pound makes it is easy to carry around with you. The surface of the player has a rubberized material. This has a number of benefits, again something we will talk about later. There is an LCD that has an indicator for when your battery level gets low. There is also a volume control and the stereo jack socket for connection to the MP3.

It operates from two AA batteries that are not included or from the mains supply. It will also run from a car power adapter. None of the connecting cables are included. The CDs are easily loaded from the top, and the controls are located around the edge. They are rubberized and well-labeled, and easy to use.

So why is this one of the best CD players for the gym or jogging? 

We have already mentioned the rubberized surface. That means it is easier to handle with sweaty hands without dropping it. But more than that. CD players are very vulnerable while in use to sudden movements. They don’t take too kindly to such treatment. This Player has up to 200 seconds of what they call anti-skip protection.

This simply means that all the reasonable bumps and vibrations from jogging or that you might get in the gym won’t affect the play of your CD. As a portable CD player for the gym, that feature has to mean that this is one of the Best Portable Music CD Players. Especially for those who need to use it during exercise. Set at a decent price point, it is worth consideration.


GPX PC807B Personal Portable MP3/CD Player with Anti-Skip Protection

Our rating:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • Good design features and easy to operate at a reasonable price point.
  • Anti-vibration design and rubberized finish mean it is good for use in the gym.

Cons

  • Some may want a radio and other features.

Best Portable CD Players Buying Guide

We’ve come a long way since the Sony Discman…

We suppose you could say that but the Discman, or a variant of it, is still on the list. That is the sign of an outstanding product. But there is also a range of options with different sizes and functions for your portable CD player.

What Is It For?

Toshiba TY-CRS9 Portable CD Boombox with AM/FM Stereo and Aux Input

Deciding what you are going to use your portable CD player for, will define what you should be looking for. If it is for the gym or running, then you need a ‘very’ portable player. It must also be able to handle the vibrations and bumps it will get.

The design, size, and weight will also play a part here. It might be for party gatherings or for small gatherings. In that case, the volume will be more relevant, as will the quality of the sound. It will also, of course, need speakers built-in. The boombox designs may be exactly what you need here.

Location and other considerations…

You may want to buy it just for use at home. If you like a range of music, then you might need options. In that case, an aux-in might be a good idea to hook up a smartphone or device with a playlist.

You might want AM/FM radio or even Bluetooth so you can stream from your favorite sites. All these options are available on the list. If it is a gift for a family member, then maybe you might want to think about the styling. There are some great designs and some really fun stuff at competitive prices.

Finally, The Cost…

GPX PC807B Personal Portable MP3/CD Player with Anti-Skip Protection with Stereo Earbuds, Black/Gray

Most of the portable CD players we have looked at are reasonably close to each other in price point. There is one exception to that. But that is for those who want really high-quality sound.

Some will, of course, but others will make do with the lesser sound quality for a far lower price. Build quality isn’t that much of a problem. They are all quite well-made. Most are plastic casings, of course, but decent quality plastic that is quite robust. There is one exception to that with a rubberized finish. That is useful in some situations and designed really for a specific purpose.

Love Music?

Then check out our Best Internet Radio Reviews, our Best Sound Card Review, our Best GTX 1080 Laptops Review, our Best Bone Conduction Headphones Review, our Best Bluetooth Beanies Review, and our in-depth review of Best Computer Speakers you can buy.

Or if you love gadgets…

Take a look at our Best Rechargeable Hand Warmers review, our Best Wireless Garage Door Keypads Review, and our review of Best Automated Light Switch Timer currently on the market in 2020.

Which Of The Best Portable CD Players Would We Choose?

Our view is that we have enough quality of sound in the house. Therefore, we would not be too concerned about the sound quality of a portable CD player being of the highest standard. We would be looking more for a CD player we could use at small gatherings. But also with a fun aspect to it.

We would therefore pick the…

Jaras JJ-Box89 Sport Portable Stereo CD Player with AM/FM Stereo Radio

It has a radio built-in, adequate volume, and an interesting look at a reasonable price. Our choice as the very best of the best CD players.

Happy listening!

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