Quantcast Advice on code free region free DVD - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
05-28-2009, 05:02 PM
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Mr K

I need your advice on a Region free, Code free dvd player. I have been looking at the Pioneer Elite DV-49A $ 249.00 from International Electronic in Ill. Their JVC Model is out of stock.

Since I do not have a DVD recorder, I might be better off with the JVC 150B for $290.00. My daughter could use the VHS for her SOAPS . I know you are not found of VHS – DVD combos, but Comment on this unit anyway.

Whatever unit I end up with will be connected to my wall mounted Sony XBR TV via an hdmi cable that has already been installed. I Thought I was finished with PAL dvds, but I just returned from Germany with two more PAL disks, and I have no desire to convert Them.I must be geeting lazy. Your advice always welcomed
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  #2  
05-29-2009, 05:45 PM
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I would suggest the Philips 5990 DVD player, available at Amazon.com and Walmart.com

(NOTE: not all Walmart brick-and-mortars carry it, take note -- might be best to buy online, do Site-to-Store free shipping, if buying from Walmart)


These units are easily "hacked" to play PAL DVDs of any region by simply entering a not-so-secret code into the menu system of the player. Very easy.

According to the DVD Player Hacks section at VideoHelp.com, all you need to do is this:
  • press Setup
  • select the Preference Tab
  • Press 1,3,8,9,3,1
  • Press up/down key to select "0"
  • and hit menu to exit.
That puts the unit into Region 0 mode, meaning it will play anything from any region, including PAL regions (R2, R4, etc).

The Philips plays homemade PAL DVDs fine, as those have no region data, or a commercial pressed disc that does not have region coding. Many small distributors opt for no region coding.

This Philips also does a pretty decent job of playing Divx, XVID and similar MPEG-4 variants. Nice extra bonus feature. I bought one of these players for a family member, in January 2009 from Walmart.com (had it shipped Site-to-Store). I use a Philips 3575 DVD recorder, which is very similar in how it plays back discs. Great units.

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05-29-2009, 06:11 PM
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I think the big draw to the Pioneer Elite DV-49A is mostly name-brand recognition, as well as the audio features, such as DVD-Audio and SACD. Is that something you need or want? For plain DVD player needs, it's a waste of money.

If you really need a combo DVD recorder and VCR, I would honestly only consider the Panasonic DMR-EZ48VK. It's available at Amazon for the best price (use this link), new for $290 shipped free, or refurbished for $135 + $23 shipping.

The Panasonic has an ATSC tuner for over-the-air HD (and therefore probably a QAM tuner, for HD unencrypted cable local channels), an okay VCR, and records decent at 1-hour XP or 2-hour SP. It's not so much a "good recorder" as much as its the lesser of all evils. The image quality is acceptable, as long as you don't go past 2 hours on a disc, the VCR is an average quality consumer VCR and would work okay.

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06-06-2009, 10:19 PM
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Mr K
Took your advice, ordered Philips 5990 DVD player, from Amazon
$70.00 delivered. Connected it up, put in a home made disk of my 2009 vacation
I had just been watching on my Sony player, and was surprised. It upgraded the
Disk as well as the Sony blueray player. Both look great, but the Sony cost much
More. SO unless you need the blue ray ability, it’s an easy choice.
Now to the PAL playing part. I have trouble following your instructions
On hacking the Philips unit, so I just put in a PAL disk and it played it, it played
All my European disks right out of the box. Then I remembered something you said
Once, sometimes small outfits code their disks “ 0 “. All my PAL disks are made
Locally by a Passau company which is probable a small outfit, so maybe I should
Hack this unit anyway. So this time I read the instructions, find the preference tab
Select “0” and my unit should play disks from everywhere now.
Thanks
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  #5  
06-06-2009, 10:24 PM
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I only hack my units on an as-needed basis. If your PAL discs are all Region 0 or region-less, then I wouldn't even worry about it.

I'm glad to hear you got it all worked out, and it's playing your discs well for you!

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