Boondocking Discussions on dry camping
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Old 06-05-2012, 02:07 PM   #1
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Default Boondocking but need DVD for kids at night

We have a two and four year old and we will be boondocking for five days. We are really good at conserving water, but need the DVD for wind down time at night. Any ideas how to get enough electricity to do it? We have looking into generators, but we hate camping in a beautiful spot and messing it up with noise. We have also considered the two battery idea, but not sure about the result. Any suggestions welcome. Thanks.
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Old 06-05-2012, 02:28 PM   #2
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If you use one of the small DVD players that has a screen and you use 2, 12 volt batteries and a small 110 inverter or use a DVD player that plugs directly into 12 volt, and you only play one movie a night you should make 5 days with no problem. We have a 19 inch flat screen and a DVD player only, both are very low watts. We can watch 4 or more movies with 2 -- 12 volt batteries. Even this combination should play 5 movies. If you use lights and other 12 volt items this will reduce your play time. If you have a Fantastic fan don't run it or battery life will be greatly reduced. The small DVD player with screen is your best option. We have boondocked a lot in the past but we also have a generator. The Honda 2000 is very quiet, but it does make some noise. A 100 watt solar panel will keep you going also,
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:02 PM   #3
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We have a small DVD player that is 12 volt and rechargeable, from Walmart or Amazon. We usually start off from home with the DVD player battery fully charged and then plug into the twelve volt plug in the trailer. You can play it a long time without draining the trailer battery. You may want to consider getting two deep cycle batteries and also converting your lights to LED. That way you can extend your time between charges significantly.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:26 PM   #4
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I just bought a Sony BluRay portable player (BDP-SX910)... Battery life is awesome and it came with both 110 and 12v chargers. Kinda pricey, but I had (have) a cheapy one and the battery usually doesn't last a whole movie, this one last 2+ movies.

Besides, this one HDMI out so I can use it with a regular tv and don't have to buy one with built in DVD player... never liked that idea anyway too much to go wrong and when the DVD goes out... then what? You either buy another one or a portable unit or a small unit.
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:23 PM   #5
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Cool!! I never thought about there being BluRay portables. That should do the trick for you. Our DVD player is getting a little temperamental, I may have to look for one of those sometime. It has played too many Big Bang Theory episodes.
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:41 PM   #6
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Do you know the wattage draw on the DVD player? It should say in manual or on box or on back label or something.

Thanks

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Old 07-18-2012, 09:57 PM   #7
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Do you know the wattage draw on the DVD player? It should say in manual or on box or on back label or something.

Thanks

Rick
It says DC 12 V 1.5 A 8.5W when playing BD-ROM using headphones
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Old 07-19-2012, 09:43 AM   #8
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I would put in a solar panel, no noise and it's the green way to go,2 batteries would also help
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Old 07-19-2012, 10:57 AM   #9
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THey still make DC powered TV's, they are harder to find, and are about 100 more than same non DC tv (in this case Television you know, not tow vehicle).

I was chasing down one myself, since I boondock and dont run generator late at night if I dont have to. I found one made by Naxa, 24 inch with built in DVD, and it was $300 I think a 20 inch one is cheaper and I thought I had saved the shortcuts (links) when I started this reply, but I didnt I guess I gave up.

http://www.bundlecity.com/c-28-ac-dc-tvs.aspx or search for models you see there, or another

24 12 Volt TV HD Widescreen w/Digital Tuner DVD Player SD USB NTD2452 - $306.00 : $275 plus ship. I saw them at otehr outlets somewhere too, but hopefully that helps.

Jenson makes them as well... it is just hard to find if you dont have the time to search all over.

portable DVD is cheaper, but I will have me one of these TV's soon, so I can watch OTA TV...
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Old 07-19-2012, 10:46 PM   #10
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People tell me that the old tube sets are still more efficient than flat screen had models. Of course I don't know what amp draw is on the little converter boxes u need to pick up digital signals these days. That said, the 1.5 amp draw on davidc's DVD player is pretty impressive. With my two not-so-great battereys I still get around 110 amp hours total which is a lot of movie time on davidc's machine. Boon docking with ac tv over dc means figuring cost of inverter and slight increase of amp draw. Friend of mine uses his laptop with tv card for all of it.
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Old 07-20-2012, 07:18 AM   #11
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People tell me that the old tube sets are still more efficient than flat screen had models. Of course I don't know what amp draw is on the little converter boxes u need to pick up digital signals these days. That said, the 1.5 amp draw on davidc's DVD player is pretty impressive. With my two not-so-great battereys I still get around 110 amp hours total which is a lot of movie time on davidc's machine. Boon docking with ac tv over dc means figuring cost of inverter and slight increase of amp draw. Friend of mine uses his laptop with tv card for all of it.
I can't see the old tube sets being more efficient... and yes , I understand you mean picture tube and not an actual "tube" TV...

The other problem is finding a NEW one... not one that is already used and abused, plus the space they take up can't make it worth it to find one... You could put 3 or 4 flat panels in the same space...
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Old 07-20-2012, 07:20 AM   #12
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Post Script - I bought the portable unit because if I ever use my van (like I plan too) as a "day" camper, I can just take the unit with me and watch a movie before hitting the hay...
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Old 08-14-2012, 11:22 PM   #13
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we just load up the ipad with videos before we go. The battery lasts several days on it's own before needing to be plugged in or recharged, and if needed, I can charge it from the inverter in my truck if we make a trip to town.
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Old 06-13-2017, 01:08 PM   #14
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I just use my tablet. Before we go, I download some movies onto the tablet from the library or from Hoopla. The kids are very happy with that. I use the 12V charger in the Hi-Lo to keep the tablet (and cell phones) charged.
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Old 06-13-2017, 01:20 PM   #15
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we just load up the ipad with videos before we go. The battery lasts several days on it's own before needing to be plugged in or recharged, and if needed, I can charge it from the inverter in my truck if we make a trip to town.

You just replied to a thread that is almost 5 years old...

But since you replied to it, I can't figure out why you would need to recharge your tablet (DC) with an inverter (AC) when you could just plug it into an adapter stuck in your lighter or most vehicles have USB power ports.
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Old 06-13-2017, 06:27 PM   #16
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You just replied to a thread that is almost 5 years old...

But since you replied to it, I can't figure out why you would need to recharge your tablet (DC) with an inverter (AC) when you could just plug it into an adapter stuck in your lighter or most vehicles have USB power ports.

I didn't realize I had replied to a thread that is almost 5 years old. I'm rather new here. I will certainly pay more attention to dates in the future, although I can't figure out why it's apparently such a big deal.

As to why I plug my tablet and cell phone into the charger in the Hi-Lo - it's simply because I can and it's convenient. I don't feel like walking out to the truck in the evening or after dark to plug in my electronics. And yes, our truck has a USB port, a few of them in fact. But some cars and trucks have to be running for their chargers to work.
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Old 06-13-2017, 08:25 PM   #17
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It is okay that you replied to an old thread. Some times technology marches on. You are welcome to post any time. Best of luck in all your camping adventures.
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