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Old August 26th, 2003, 09:08 PM   #1
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DVDs, PAL, NTSC and regions...

A friend asked me today if they had to get a DVD from Europe converted from PAL to NTSC for it to work on their DVD player.
I said you just need a region free DVD player and it should be fine. Is this correct? I don't deal with international stuff very often, so I'm just double checking.
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Old August 26th, 2003, 10:53 PM   #2
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You can buy those at Multi-System Electronics on the corner of Broadway and Manitoba (Vancouver).
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Old August 26th, 2003, 11:13 PM   #3
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Dylan,

You can also search the web to get the "hack" code to make your current DVD player "all region." It's easy...you usually only have to input some code using the remote control.

I'm not sure of the "legalities" of this in Canada...but since the whole DVD region concept is a crock anyway, limiting only honest users and sales to international buyers and not making a dent in stopping piracy...then "ethically" I don't see a problem with it.

That'll get you around the "region" nonsense...as for NTSC and PAL...hmmm, not sure.
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Old August 26th, 2003, 11:35 PM   #4
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You are correct, they only need a region free DVD player. There are 6 DVD regions, (Region 1 - Canada, US; Region 2 - Europe, Japan; etc.).

DVDs are not PAL or NTSC aware, that's just how the player outputs the signal so that you can watch it on your PAL or NTSC TV. For example, I have an older Apex 600A DVD player that is region free, has built in Macrovision crack and outputs either PAL or NTSC depending what I select in the menu.

The $99 Electrohome player they sell at the local Costco is region free. It's not the greatest player but I only bought it so that I could view my DVD-Rs that my Apex won't.
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Old August 27th, 2003, 05:59 AM   #5
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Deregioning or unlocking a region is not illegal, it's used to control the market by DVD distributors, (eg people from Aus cant get DVD imported from the US as it "affects" the local market.
Also it stops people from buying movies which are released in the US (or anywhere else) but are still playing in the cinemas here.

check out www.vcdhelp.com for region unlocking
search your player model and go from there
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Old August 27th, 2003, 03:20 PM   #6
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An update to my previous post. It turns out there are PAL DVDs. I was looking at one of my DVDs and it said Region 1 NTSC which meant that PAL DVDs must exist.

I did some more research and found that DVDs sold in Europe can be PAL format. If your friend has one of these DVDs, they'll need a multisystem player.
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Old August 27th, 2003, 03:24 PM   #7
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Get a region free player. Absolutely. There is so much good stuff out there in the big wide world that will never ever be released in North America to do without.
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Old August 28th, 2003, 03:03 AM   #8
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PAL/NTSC and DVDs

It's probably worth clearing up any misunderstandings about PAL/NTSC and regions.

DVDs are either PAL or NTSC. This phrase is used inaccurately for DVDs, because it does not reflect the modulation used in the transmitted signal. Rather it refers to frame size (PAL is 720x576, NTSC is 720x480) and frame rate (PAL is 25 frames per second, NTSC is 29.97 frames per second).

Regions are an encryption methodology only, and can be applied equally (or not at all) to PAL or NTSC DVDs.

Just about every PAL DVD (the output of the player is good old analogue PAL) player will also play NTSC DVDs, with a small resulting loss in quality (the player has to fake the change in frame rate and size). Only a minority of NTSC DVD players (where the output of the DVD player is never the same colour) will play PAL DVDs.

FWIW,

Julian
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Old September 9th, 2003, 11:59 AM   #9
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That is partially correct, Julian. Indeed on disc it is nothing more
then a resolution/framerate thing. But ofcourse the players
(not all players can convert one signal to the other) just output
the signal analog with all modulation etc.

The thing that is wrong is that region is an encryption method,
it isn't. Regions are just bitflags that have been set. You can
have region encoding without encryption. The CSS Encryption
has actually nothing todo with it.
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Old September 9th, 2003, 12:22 PM   #10
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I stand corrected Rob.

But at least the distinction between PAL/NTSC and regions remains true.

Julian
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Old September 9th, 2003, 04:39 PM   #11
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So if I have a friends wedding in NTSC and he has relatives in England. Can I just encode the DVD like normal and will they be able to see it. Or will I have to try to convert the movie PAL and then put it onto a dvd?

Rob
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Old September 9th, 2003, 05:11 PM   #12
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The problem is seldom the DVD player in Europe. Most players
simply output an NTSC signal to the TV (some can convert the
signal to PAL). A lot of TV's here are multistandard as well (ie,
they can display PAL, Secam & NTSC). But definitely not all. If
you want to be safe convert to PAL and burn a PAL DVD.
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Old September 9th, 2003, 07:07 PM   #13
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Thanks Rob.
I was thinking that but if there was a shortcut I would always like to take it rather than fiddling with trying to get a decent conversion out of the software.

Rob
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Old September 10th, 2003, 03:27 AM   #14
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You can take the risk depending on how important it is that
people see it. A wedding reproduction for your friends relatives
might not need the best NTSC -> PAL conversion. You can
probably get away with a lot.

I'm converting the intro before each Lady X episode from NTSC
to PAL for all european episodes (like my own current episode)
in Vegas 4.0d. Looks very good to me.
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