I bought my Mico DVD player about 2 yrs ago from an independent retailer for £230.00. I have always been reluctant to buy obscure Japanese brands as they tend to fall apart. When buying this model the guy in the shop recommended it. At first I didn't like it as it was a lot larger then some models, I later on found out this is because it has dolby 5.1 digital decoder built in and to get the best out of the sound it even has optical digital out (as well as the regular co-ax and S-Video). I was hoping to get it chipped to play multi regions but the shop owner told me there was no need as it was already a Multi region player. This player not only plays all regions put pretty much anything that is on CD!!!!! This includes MP3's and Obscure VCD's that where filmed in Bangkok cinemas. Another feature I have noticed is unlike may DVD players this one will record DVD onto video. This DVD player has now been taken off the market and is probably due to the two above reasons. I found the remote hard to use and ugly. Another problem I encountered was that on most films you have to turn the Subtitles off on every film. Apart from that and 2yrs on my Player is still going strong. Even though DVD players have not gotten smaller I am to scared to replace this model as I doubt any other DVD player will be able to do what this one does.
Now, the thing about the Mico A980 is that you won't get one any more. I used to work for a firm who sold these excellent players, and will say 100% that the Mico A980 cannot be purchased any more. However, one can purchase the UPGRADED Mico A980-S player from all the outlets which originally sold the A980. It will chances are be the same price, and is still an excellent first player and as ideal entry-level player for any DVD enthusiast. I've seen the insides of the machine and I know it uses the excellent "C-cube" decoder chipset, which happily plays pretty much any disc from anywhere. After much experiment, the player only refused to play one section of a single disc- the "extra features" on "The Dark Crystal" region two version. It plays discs from America with no twiddling, hacking or monkey business (this is why you'll have to get one from the independent retailers), and even laps up RCE "import proof" movies such as the Region One versions of "Hollow Man" and "The Patriot". But wait! The features don't stop with that. The player can also play VCD's of all natures (we tried our home-made vcds in it, on the cheapest, most ugly media and it loved it), and can play Mp3 music files from disc. For all you Napsterheads with a CD re-writer (please bear in mind that all copyrighted downloaded music can only be retained for 30 days under UK law), this feature is fantastic, trust me. Round the back you're looking at a great set of connections, Scart, Phono, S-video, optical, composite and the rare component out. Pretty much the full set on a cheap player! Impressive, Jim. It's a great player, but it does have a couple of gripes I'm afraid. The first is the Macrovision, which was permanently disabled on the A980, is only temporarily killable on the A980-S. SOMETIMES -and I stress that this is rare- the machine will throw a tizzy fit and refuse to play discs. To av
oid this it is best to stop the disc rather than let it play until it auto-stops. Even more rarely it will decide that it doesn't want to work at all, so keep your receipt. The remote also takes a little getting used to. Finally, one has to switch the subtitles off by hand on some films, no matter what you set in the menus. This WILL bug you after a while. Apart from these little gripes the Mico DVD A980-S is a great machine for people with a little money who want an all-region machine with plenty of extras.
I recently purchased the MICO A980 having been recommended by DVD World (its best buy!). On first use I was impressed by how easy it seemed to operate, however, I soon became confused as to some of the options available from the remote control. The Enter button is very prominent in the middle of the remote but for sone reason when playing DVD's I have to use the select button?????? A multi region hack is available (i have recently tested it with a DVD bought from the US) which allows you to select both mutliregion 13 and individual regions as necessary. Good connections on the back with both cable and optical connections available. However, for some reason when my unit is connected to my TV it causes a long pause before displaying a picture - probably me though! Excellent 'starter for ten' at £170
I bought one of these through www.unbeatable.co.uk a month ago and am delighted with the performance and range of features it offers. Being a first machine for me I did a lot of research on the web for reviews, features and price comparisons before buying. I wanted a machine that was multi region, able to play mp3 and vcd formats. This narrowed my choice away from the mainstream big name players to a number of Chinese made machines. The Mico consistently got excelant reviews from magazines and also users. Mico are a Chinese company who only produce the A980 and a range of DVDs for own branding for other companies and the likes of Dixons etc. The A980 is a machine that will cope with virtually any format :- DVD for 6 regions VCD DVCD SVCD CDV CD-DA CDI-FMV MP3 CD CD-R CD-RW The sound quality is excelant, it offers DTS/AC3 digital output and 5.1 channel surround. There's also a built in graphic equaliser and karaoke feature. Picture quality is superb, it reads every disk I've put in, unlike some other budget DVD players. On the rear of the machine there's the usual array of connectors for scart, svideo,digital out, audio out, surround. Nothing has been missed out. The on screen displays alter for each mode, DVD,VCD,MP3 etc and give all the information required. Subtitling, audio, zoom and all the menu and play functions can be accessed through the remote control. Most functions have a corresponding button on the player as well. Overall a machine that gives great all round performance in a variety of formats. Until recordable DVD comes out in a few years this machine is future proof. The only importer for this is Unbeatable.co.uk, also look for the Azuda A890 as this is an identical rebadged machine.
This Multi Region DVD player has top of the range features at a bottom of the range price. Plays any region DVD's without problems - useful for the bargains on the internet, has dolby 5.1 digital decoder built in and to get the best out of the sound it even has optical digital out [as well as the regular co-ax and S-Video]. If you have any CD-R movies they will play too - as will MP3 encoded music CD's. I have used this player for nearly six months without a problem and 2 of my friends have since bought them on my recommendation. Great all round quality.