DVD region codes, how the world is divided
DVD players and DVD's are labelled for use within specific geographical regions. the DVD world is divided into six major geographical regions with two additional regions reserved for specialised use.
- Region 1 USA, Canada.
- region 2 England, Japan, Europe, South Africa, Middle East, Greenland.
- Region 3 South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, parts of South East Asia.
- region 4 Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, (including Mexico)
- Region 5 Eastern Europe, Russia, India, Africa.
- Region 6 China
- Region 7 reserved for unspecified special use.
- Region 8 reserved for cruise ships, airlines, etc…
- Region 0 all region all these discs are uncoded and can be played worldwide however you must play PAL discs in a pal compatible unit, and NTSC discs in a NTSC Compatible unit
As you can see from the listed destination, England is in region 2. Old DVD players sold in England meet region 2 specifications, and region two players can only play region 2 discs region code numbers are on the back of each DVD package.
DVD's encoded for regions other than region 2 cannot be played on a region two player and players marked with other regions cannot play DVD's coded for region 2
The reasons for DVD region coding
why does DVD region coding exist? Coding is a tool to protect Copyright and film distribution rights in other words movie or studio profits.
Movies are sometimes released in theatres in different parts of the world at various times throughout the year. The summer blockbusters in the UK may end up being The Christmas blockbuster overseas. If that's a curse, the movies DVD version maybe out in the UK while it is still being shown in theatres in another country
to preserve the financial integrity of the theatrical distribution of a particular film, A friend in England cannot send a DVD copy to the country where it is in theatrical release and be able to play it on a player there.
Regional coding the good and the bad
Depending on who you are, region coding is a blessing alright curse. If you are a movie studio executive, not only do you reap maximum profits for the theatrical release, but also the DVD releases for your film. However, if you are a consumer wanting to see a movie that is available on DVD in your friend’s country but not in yours you may have quite a while to wait.
The code free DVD player solution
for those consumers Wanting to play any region discs there is an abundant market for so called code free DVD players, which are modified versions of stock DVD players in which the region coding function has been disabled.
With the magic of Mail order on the Internet, these players are widely available, even if not legal. The fortunate owners of these players can purchase DVD's from any region.
Region code hacks
another way to get around DVD region codes is to see if you can “hack “your current DVD player using a series of remote-control commands to enable it to play DVD's from other regions. The best online Resource for this information is the Video help DVD player hack forum
If you type in the Pacific brand and model number of your DVD player in the video help DVD hack search bar, you may be able to access details on whether you're DVD player can be made region code free. If you have a new DVD player and it's not on the list keep on checking back to see if the list has been updated.
Also, if you find that your DVD player is not on the list, and there is no hack. one restriction might be that you can only change the DVD region feature a limited number of times before the player becomes permanently locked to a specific region. on the other hand, There are DVD players that can be made region code free Without this restriction.
it is also important to point out that with Blu Ray disc players, you may be able to make DVD playback region code free, but not Blu Ray disc playback, As Blu Ray follows a different region code Format.
The NTSC PAL
There is an additional factor to consider in the region code system. In the analogue video world is also divided into the NTSC PAL Video system, the consumer may need a multi system TV to access DVD's compressed in one of these formats although this is Only difficult in America, We're all analogue video is based on the NTSC Format, most consumers in Europe under the parts of the world do own TV's that can view DVD's Pressed in either NTSC or PAL
The consumer factors
It's really nice to purchase the latest blockbusters DVD version a few months after the theatrical release. however, it's an inconvenience to wait another month or so if it means that film is still in theatrical Release somewhere else in the world. if the movie his worthy Fans will wait for the DVD. there is no evidence that blockbuster DVD releases’ Sales suffer because of a long wait to get Your hands on it
The real benefits of DVD region coding
the only People that seemed to be benefiting from DVD region coding all the Movies and studios with addition the Markets of code free DVD players. under this system the marketers of cold free DVD players provide a practical solution for consumers.
Home DVD recording
with DVD recorders, DVD, recorders-VCR combos, and DVD camcorders for consumer use, the question comes up as to how they are affected by DVD region coding. the good news is that since DVD region coding is a commercial application, any DVD recording you make on the consumer based DVD recorder, DVD camcorder, or even a PC or not region coded if you record a DVD in PAL, it will be playable on DVD Players in countries that use that system, and the same for NTSC; There is no further region code restriction on home recorded DVD's
if you choose to implement region coding on your DVD recordings, you need access to the software or service that implements the region code distinction
There is a need for some region coding to protect movie release dates, but if there are issues such as price fixing of DVD products is also involved, Hollywood may end up being in deep trouble on this one.
with the increase in travel, Communications and entertainment available just about everywhere at any time, Hollywood Would probably be better off releasing films and videos at the same time everywhere which is becoming more common. not only are consumers better served, but the cost of region coding and the need and the need for aftermarket code free DVD players become less desirable.