View Full Version : NTSC DVD viewable in Europe...

Phil Gosselin
February 25th, 2009, 03:23 PM
Hi all,

One of my client asked me to redo the audio on one of his dvd and remaster it. The current DVD is in NTSC but the remaster will be shown in Europe.

Someone I know who does transfer and transcoding for a living told me that basically a DVD can be read anywhere in the world as long as the region is set to 0.

Was he right?

Once I remaster the actual DVD should I still transcode it?

I know that NTSC vs PAL standards are a big deal when it comes to broadcasting but does the same rules apply to DVD...after all a DVD player in a laptop is pretty much the same wherever your location is. Not to mention that this isn't a signal that is being read but plain old data.

Thanks for your input.


Ivan Snoeckx
February 26th, 2009, 06:21 AM
Hi Phil,

I'm living in Europe, and I own several DVD's made by Vortex Media ( These DVD's are all NTSC and all these play without any problems on the several DVD-players and Blu-ray Disc player that I own. The picture quality is supurb on the 40" LCD, even when it is a NTCS disc. I have seen much worser things that were produced here in Europe.

In the old days with VHS tapes this all was a bigger problem, but if your client here in Europe owns a recent DVD-player or Blu-ray Disc player he will not have any problems to play back your remastered DVD in a decent quality.

The DVD-players/recorders I used are three from Sony, a Pioneer and a Medion (very cheap from brand from a foodstore Aldi)
The Blu-ray Disc Player is a Sony.

Phil Gosselin
February 26th, 2009, 01:54 PM
Hi Ivan,

Thanks for the info, that really put my mind at ease.


Ervin Farkas
February 27th, 2009, 09:04 PM
These DVD's are all NTSC and all these play without any problems on the several DVD-players and Blu-ray Disc player that I own. The picture quality is supurb on the 40" LCD, even when it is a NTCS disc.
Ivan, that is highly misleading information.

Call yourself lucky if that's the case. The key is that NTSC disks MAY play in Europe, just as I have three players in my home here and they all play PAL DVDs - pure coincidence. I took them to friends and they did not play.

In summary: DVD player manufacturers have the option to make the players universal, but they are not required to do so. It is pure coincidence that both your players and mine play anything we feed them; however, one cannot rely on this when authoring DVDs.

Phil Gosselin
June 12th, 2009, 10:54 AM
Well this is misleading now.

Ivan has European players that plays NTSC DVD's

and Ervin has American players that plays PAL DVD's.....


Does someone has a clear answer because very soon I will have to render 32 clips and half of them are for the European market. They are installation video that will be on a DVD that will be shipped with my client's products across Europe.

The thing I don't understand is that why should it matter. This a non broadcast digital signal. Shouldn't it be played anywhere?

Last, I don't want to brag but here is a post over at VideoHelp that goes back to 2005 (check 1st reply)

DVD PAL to NTSC or NTSC to PAL DVD Conversion - (

Anybody has a comment on it?



Seth Bloombaum
June 12th, 2009, 03:32 PM
If "NTSC DVDs play on European players & TVs most of the time" is good enough for you, then you're done.

If not, if "most of the time" isn't good enough for your client work, you'll need to convert to PAL, which is not too difficult with today's tools.

I've had good success in Vegas, rendering to a PAL format, pulling that into DVD Architect, creating a PAL project, and seeing it show up in my computer's DVD player software as a PAL disc.

You want me to decide for you? Convert to PAL.

Chris Soucy
June 12th, 2009, 09:41 PM
I have come across no, zero, nada PAL DVD players in the UK, Australia or NZ that will NOT play NTSC discs, and that's one heck of a lot of DVD players!

Even the super el cheapo $30 piles of junk from places like, er, never mind, all play NTSC discs.

I think you'll find pretty well all NTSC players will play PAL discs as well.

Why so?

The PAL/ Secam/ NTSC decoders are all on one dinky little chip, why make 3 when one will do them all.

Plus, you cannot implement changeable region codes on a DVD player without them being able to read ........, yep, other regions discs!

Tho', certainly in PAL land, most players have abandoned region codes altogether now and come preset to 0 for "all regions", those that aren't have a 3 or 4 key remote button sequence (described in perfect Chinglish in the manual) to set it to 0.

Send him a NTSC disc, it'll be fine.


Seth Bloombaum
June 13th, 2009, 11:31 AM
Chris, I'm glad you've had good experiences with playing NTSC in PAL countries.

Mine have not been so happy. The first time my video came across in black & white and not full screen and with an off aspect ratio was the last time I took an NTSC DVD to Europe. How much of this was the player and how much the display I can't say.

Granted, I am an old stick in the mud... made enough mistakes to know that when something inevitably goes wrong in a project, I want to be able to assure a client that I took an all-due-diligence approach, that the distribution media was of the correct standard for delivery, that it was tested, that all risks possible were identified and managed appropriately.