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digitalvideo 04-26-2003 12:16 PM

KVCD on Norcent dp300
i can get this dvd player for $40 after rebate and i need some report to see if it plays all the kvcd/kdvd templates

bigggt 04-26-2003 12:27 PM

download the compatibility test(not sure where to get it),i did it and they all worked(vcd type)when i tried the kvcdx3 temaplate i can't get it to work yet but on the compatibility test it works.Sorry don't know about the dvd templates

dazedconfused 04-26-2003 12:37 PM

Hi digitalvideo,

I don't know if this player handles all the kvcd templates or not, but here's a good place to look for some info: . Hope it helps.

By the way, there are some VERY cool things you can do with that particular player IF you're lucky enough(they're getting scarce) to get one that was made with the right parts (read some of the posts in that forum to see what I mean). Unfortunately, even if you are lucky enough to get a Norcent dp300 that can run the One-Firmware-For-All firmware on it, this firmware currently only handles 23.976fps material at the 352x240 resolution. Any resolutions higher than that require a framerate of 29.97fps. Still, at $40 it sounds like a nice player, even if you can't add a hard-drive to it or are stuck using 29.97fps. Good luck.


bigggt 04-26-2003 12:55 PM

Hi dazedandconfused,i currently bought one of these players and am wondering what you mean,i can't get the kvcdx3 to work but the 352x480 at 23.976 works well,on the compatibility test they all play fine

dazedconfused 04-26-2003 03:02 PM

Hi bigggt,

What I meant was that I did not know how the Norcent DP300 (a standard, straight out-of-the-box, unmodified one) would handle the various kvcd templates.

However, I do know that some Norcent DP300 models (if they have the right video processor and flashrom inside it, and also a dvd-drive with an ide-interface) can be "upgraded" to use a very cool firmware called OFFA developed by some talented programmers at the OneFirmwareForAll Yahoo Group. It is actually the original firmware for the Sampo 631CF dvd player (my player), with MANY other cool features added in that you just will not find on any other dvd player. :wink: I'll leave it to you to read up on what these features are, but a couple are the ability to connect a hard-drive full of your favorite files to your player and to create your own splash screen (screen that appears when you turn your player on), among many others. Check out the link I posted previously, or the corresponding sections at to learn more about the OFFA Firmware and which dvd players it is compatible with. If you have a dvd player with the correct ESS video processor in it, you might be able to use OFFA. There are several Apex dvd players that do, for example.

Unfortunately, one of the current downsides of the OFFA firmware is that, for some reason, it will only play kvcd's that use a 23.976fps framerate properly if they have a resolution of 352x240. Any kvcd templates that use a resolution higher than 352x240 require that a framerate of 29.97fps (for ntsc material) be used for it to play without stuttering audio/video sync problems (while running OFFA firmware). So while the OFFA firmware is great in many regards, it isn't a perfect choice for KVCD compatibility (because you lose ~20% of the compression benefits of the kvcd templates by using a 29.97 framerate instead of the usual 23.976fps used by the templates). Still, it's a great project and firmware for people who can use it, and the other features make it worth it. The only other players out there right now that might give OFFA-compatible ones a run for the money in the "look what I can do" department, are the KISS players that can play divx files.

So bigggt, if you're lucky enough to have gotten a Norcent DP300 with "the right stuff" in it (you see, different batches were made with different parts at different factories), then you could probably upgrade to the OFFA firmware if that sort of thing interests you. But it would be at the cost of losing the ability to encode @ the 23.976fps framerate with resolutions higher than 352x240, which kinda sucks, but I still manage to fit 2-hour movies onto 1 disc using the x3 template @ 29.97fps and it still looks great on my regular mid-size tv, so I'm not complaining. :mrgreen:

Boy, that sure was a mouthful, wasn't it?! :lol:


bigggt 04-26-2003 03:12 PM

thanx,mine is right out of the box,i just bought it to see if it would play kvcd's because i have an apex 1100 that wouldn't(until i actually found this forum,man i love it here)My apex is one of the ones that you can do all the upgrades and everything but still i haven't tried to do any of it.

thanx for your expanation

dazedconfused 04-26-2003 03:25 PM

No problem bigggt! :D I should have been more clear to begin with. :lol:

By the way, if you do take a look "under the hood" of your Norcent to see if it's one of the OFFA-upgradable kind, please post back here and let me know what's inside! You see, since you say that all the samples on the KVCD Compatibility Test cd play correctly on your player (and if it's also got the right parts in it), then possibly if I were to tell the OFFA programmers about this, they might be able to "fix" the OFFA firmware so it plays 23.976fps materials at higher resolutions properly by looking at the original Norcent firmware (keyword: might). My understanding is that chances of this happening are slim....but it sure would make me one happy camper! :wink: Thanks.


bigggt 04-26-2003 03:47 PM

can you tell by serial numbers or something because i have no idea what to look for.

dazedconfused 04-27-2003 02:36 AM

Hi again bigggt,

Yes, there is a way to tell by the serial #. A ton of useful information on deciphering whether you have a Norcent-DP300 with "the right stuff" inside it to run the OFFA firmware is listed at the following link: . The main points are that it must contain an ESS ES4318F video processor chip inside and also a 29F040 or 39SF040 flashrom. There are links to internal pictures of the Norcent DP300 within this FAQ link I provided as well, in case you want to take the lid off your player and have a look just to make absolutely sure, instead of solely relying on the serial# (this technically voids your warranty though, so beware...or be careful not to leave any tell-tale signs that you did so...also make sure the unit is unplugged before removing the lid so you don't shock yourself...however, this really shouldn't be necessary if you read the info and decipher according to your unit's serial#).

Anyways....DP-300's with the "right stuff" to run OFFA are scarce nowadays, so consider yourself lucky if you got one. Have fun. :wink:


bigggt 04-27-2003 08:40 AM

Hey Dazed&Confused,spent the last half hour reading that forum and found my box for my dvd player and my serial number starts with HE so unfortunatley I don't think it is the correct player :cry:

Oh well i'm not to good at doing that kind of stuff anyway

I'm still debating if i should do anything with my apex 1100 because like i said i only bought these 2 players to play vcd's and now kvcds.

dazedconfused 04-27-2003 11:57 AM

Hey, I browsed through that Norcent link and it says that if your serial number starts with HE111, then it should be of the OFFA-upgradable variety...if your player's serial started with HE112 or HE113, then you're outta luck. Of course, even if your serial # does start with HE111, I would still open it up and verify the right parts are inside before "jumping-in" and flashing your firmware (should you ever decide to give OFFA firmware a try, that is). Afterall, wouldn't want to end up with a $40 paperweight.


bigggt 04-27-2003 01:52 PM

Sorry i meant to put HE112,and my paperweight would be $90(canadian) :D

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