In one recent poll, the television was chosen as the best invention of the 20th century. We’re not sure that it should be at number 1, but it’s certainly up there as one of the most popular. It’s fair to say that most – if not all – households have more than one TV these days, and long gone are the days when you had but four channels to choose from (indeed, some of us can remember when there were only three!
Invented in the 1920’s – it’s often accredited to the Scotsman John Logie-Baird although it is acknowledged that a number of inventors were working on the same concept at the time – it took a few decades for television to become commercially viable for domestic use, and a few more before colour TV overcame black and white as the format of choice.
Nowadays, you can buy a quality, full-HD TV with access to all the Freeview channels plus internet access giving you downloading services and more for a few hundred pounds. What we’re talking about in this article is the portable type, suitable in particular for kitchens.
A TV in the kitchen is a very popular choice in many homes – it’s great to be able to keep up with your favourite programmes while cooking or enjoying a meal – and portable models make the best choice thanks to taking up little room. So, without hanging around any longer, let’s look at the top portable TV’s for kitchens, and see if we can find the one for you.
The Top 10
Aspure Portable TV Player
The first model we looked at was this truly portable model – it comes with a choice of DC mains power or a built-in, rechargeable battery – from Aspure, which is aimed a people who might want to take a TV camping, in a caravan, or in a car. Is it suitable for a kitchen? On the face of it, there’s no reason why not, although we will say the design looks a little dated and a 10-inch screen is sort of large tablet sized.
It does, however, promise Freeview access, you can use an SD card with it and use all the popular connectivity options, it has its own antenna, a remote control and is not much more than £100. However, numerous customers said it doesn’t have great reception, the quality and picture are poor, and that they believe there are better models they could have spent their money on. They should have come to Interneteyes!
August DTV905 9-inch
We’re staying with the very small, very portable type of TV for this choice, which is a 9-inch model from August. Now, we actually think this sort of screen would be great for a caravan or tent – once again this is a rechargeable model – or even in a car, but for permanent use as a kitchen TV, we reckon you’ll get tired of watching a screen the size of a medium-sized tablet. However, it’s cheap, it has full connectivity via USB, and it offers Freeview.
This one comes with remote control, has a 7-day timer and can handle subtitles, and is simple to use and neatly designed. It is under – just under – £100 too so is cheap enough, but we’re not sure it’s that cheap in comparison. It is popular and we found many customers had commented on how good it is, but it’s also worth considering some of the negative comments that included not being able to get a picture in some places, poor resolution and it basically not working at all.
Vbestlife 10” Portable TV
Very similar in every way to the first one we took a look at, this is another 10” TV that is designed for portable use – camping, caravans, in the car, when travelling and so on – and while perfectly acceptable for such use, maybe a touch too small in the kitchen. When we think of a TV for the kitchen we are thinking of those that are akin to smaller versions of our main TV, whereas these are more like screens for portable games consoles.
Nevertheless, for around £90 you get a TV with Freeview access, a rechargeable battery plus mains option, SD card and USB connectivity, and a record feature where you can use a memory stick to record your favourite TV programmes. Many customers say it does the job – bear in mind they are mostly using it away from home – but others say it has poor reception, poor audio and the display is patchy, and there are concerns about overall quality.
Bewinner DVB-T2 TV
Another of the very typical 10-inch portable TV’s – this one is also available as small as 7-inch – this model offers all the usual features and functions of one these, and is suitable for camping, for caravans and for when you are away from home. It would also be useful for train and coach travel – there’s an earpiece for private use – but is it really what you want in your kitchen as a permanent TV?
You get Freeview, it comes with SD card and USB connectivity, and it’s a very neat little package with a stand, and it won’t cost you much more than £80, but is it worth it? While researching this model we found – curiously – that there were no customer reviews or comments. Perhaps it’s very new to the market, but we’ll leave the decision to you.
Vbestlife 14” Portable
This is the first on our list that we would consider a genuine portable TV for the kitchen – rather, that is, than a portable TV for travelling or camping. It has a sensible-sized, 14” screen that is still very small but easier to watch than the above four – and it comes with all you want in your small TV. This one has all the USB connectivity options – and others – and is rechargeable or mains powered.
Like all of these, it’s an HD resolution TV – plus this one has the function for recording programmes – and is fitted with its own antenna plus it has a port for a home aerial. This one, notably, comes with a good number of positive reviews. However, note that we thought quite a few very similar – if not identical – to those we’ve seen for other items. Negative comments include poor reception, poor user interface and poor audio and visuals.
Ashata Portable Digital TV
With products such as these – especially in the electricals market – it is not unusual to find the same item for sale under a number of different brand names. This is because they are being manufactured in their millions in the Far East, and sold by different companies. It keeps the cost down for you, and it means that there is not much to do when it comes to choosing – if this is what you want – other than look for the cheapest one.
This 10” portable TV is branded ‘Ashata’. We make no secret of the fact that we believe it to be the very same item as at least two of the above of the same size. You get the usual features – HD resolution, remote, recording functions, Freeview, built-in aerial and so on, and also very similar comments from customers: many say it is good, others say reception is poor and sound and picture not great. Bear in mind this is the cheapest of the lot so far at not much more than £70.
August DA100 10.1”
August reckons to have been in the business of making TV’s for cars for more than 15 – years – we’ve already looked at a smaller model of theirs earlier – so they should know what they’re doing. This is a 10-inch model (10.1” to be precise) with all the usual stuff to contend with such as Freeview, USB and SD card connectivity, a remote, rechargeable and mains options and also comes with Timeshift, which means you can pause and continue live TV.
That’s a pretty decent specification for a portable camping or car TV, and it’s reflected in a higher price than some with similar specs. What we will say is that, of the 10” models we’ve looked at, this one comes with almost entirely positive customer comments. The few poor reviews mention poor reception. We’ll talk more about that later as it is, quite clearly, related to geography and not the device – and this could apply to any of those on our list.
Vbestlife 12” Portable
This is another model from the Vbestlife brand, and it’s simply a bigger model of the other two with a 12” screen – that’s perhaps better for a kitchen TV, but we’re not sure it’s big enough. It comes with all you want in your small TV. This one has all the USB connectivity options – and others – and is rechargeable or mains powered. You get all the Freeview channels and so on, but we will say that – in comparison to some on the list – it’s not cheap at a little over £110.
Like all of these, it’s an HD resolution TV – plus this one has the function for recording programmes – and is fitted with its own antenna plus it has a port for a home aerial. This one, notably, comes with a good number of positive reviews. However, note that we thought quite a few very similar – if not identical – to those we’ve seen for other items. Negative comments include poor reception, poor user interface and poor viewing angle.
Bewinner 14” Portable TV
Another 14” model – this is most likely very, very similar to the other models of this size on the list – this one is branded ‘Bewinner’ and they appear to offer a wide variety of portable TV devices. It comes with all the Freeview, USB and SD, rechargeable and other functions that you will find on all of these, plus you can record to a memory stick and watch later (though with this one you cannot pause live TV and then continue).
Is there anything that makes this one stand out from the crowd? Apart from its larger screen size – which perhaps makes it ideal for permanent kitchen use – there isn’t. It’s pretty much as all the rest, but that’s what you should expect when, in fact, the internals of each of these are probably pretty much identical. While it will cost you more than £100 it’s not a bad TV, and customers like it, but look out for the usual poor reception problems.
Garsent Digital TV 12”
This is, as far as we can see, another generic model – the brand name ‘Leadstar’ appears on a number of these models whereas they are being sold under a different name – with a 12” screen this time. It follows the same leads as all the others with its Freeview tuner, USB and SD slots, rechargeable or mains power and built-in antenna, and is priced accordingly for a 12” model at a little more than £100.
In general, it came across well with customers – we will say most of them are using it as a truly portable TV, rather than one for the kitchen – with some very positive remarks about value for money, but the usual complaints also arise: poor reception, and some people complaining it does not work at all and they could not get a picture!
That’s our list of what are considered flat-screen TV’s for the kitchen, but are they really? And if they are what you are looking for, what do you need to know, and which is for you? We have a few things we’d like to talk about before we give you our verdict.
Some Points to Consider
There are a few things that came to light when we went searching for the best TV’s for your kitchen, and we think they’re important to mention. First, TV’s are not hand-built; they are assembled on fast-moving production lines, and many different brands sell the same item, the only difference being the branding.
To be absolutely fair, this is the same with even the bigger TV companies – and computers too – in which the internals will be from the same source in many cases. So, say you want a 10-inch portable TV; we recommend you choose that with the lowest price, as it’s very likely to be exactly the same as the more expensive sets.
Another point we thought we should touch on was that of the recurring complaint of poor reception, which applies to every single item on this list. First, the UK is notorious for not having the greatest coverage where digital TV reception is concerned, especially when it comes to remote areas, or those with variable landscapes. We believe this is why many people who take one of these for camping – or in the caravan, boat or car – find reception to be variable, at best.
No built-in antenna is going to pick up very well when the signal is weak. However, plug one into your home permanent digital TV aerial, and we reckon you’ll get reception as good as your other TV’s. If you are going to be using it for travel, perhaps consider an auxiliary aerial that can be located on top of the caravan, for example, for better results.
One final point that we found curious: when we went searching for customer reviews from buyers for these TV’s, we found a few of the same comments – exactly the same in wording – praising quite a few of these models. For this reason, we’d advise you to take customer testimony with great care!
So, is there one we would recommend? Let’s wrap this up!
We set out investigating the category of best flat screen portable TV’s for the kitchen. We’re not certain that a 10” TV will do the job, so we have eliminated all of those – and the smaller one’s – for this purpose. If you want a small, portable screen – whether for in the car, at the caravan, in the boat or a tent – or just for when you’re travelling – then each of them is pretty much the same, so look for the one with the best price and go for it.
If you really do want one for the kitchen – to stand on a worktop or hang on the wall – for permanent use, we reckon there’s only two here that will suffice, and that’s because they are the only 14” models on the list. Surely any screen smaller than that would make regular viewing very difficult?
So, which one would we choose out of the two options? Well, given that we believe them to be the same item made in the same factory but marketed under different names, the Bewinner 14” Portable TV gets the nod solely because it is a slightly cheaper price.
As a final word, while we think this mode a good choice, we recommend you check out different screen sizes as even 14” is very small for a TV for regular viewing, so we hope we’ve helped you find the perfect TV for your kitchen!