WHAT DVD 2001

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DR DVD AUGUST

 

COPY

 

AILMENT OF THE MONTH

 

REMOTELY HELPFUL

I recently misplaced the remote control for my Cyber Home AD-N212 DVD player and I can't seem to find a replacement for it.  I've tried to track down the manufacturers and a couple of universal remotes but they don't work either. Can you suggest a remote that actually works with my DVD player because it is becoming quite a pain not being able to do anything except just watching the films?
Steve Ford, via email

 

Cyberhome do seem to have become somewhat elusive of late and a quick check around the major suppliers of replacement remotes drew a blank. I still think your best bet is a universal remote control, in particular the One For All 6. This one is programmed with thousands of command codes so there's a fair chance it can work at least some functions on your DVD player but even if it hasn't got the exact Cyberhome codes, One For All's customer support department should be able to come up with a solution and the handset's code library can be updated over the Internet.

 

 

WE LIKE PLAY

In your reply to Ross Jackson (Issue 26), you asked for feedback regarding
Play247.com. I've only been using Play247 for just over a month but in that time, I've ordered sixteen discs and one large box set. Where items are in stock and released, they all arrived in no more than four working days, and in some cases only two. Never had any problems with price either. I checked a handful of companies offering a similar service and Play's prices are either
the same or better in nearly every case. I can recommend them without reservation for delivery service, convenience, a damned good site, and excellent customer service. And no, I am not an employee; I just appreciate such a good service when there are so many crap companies out there.
Daryl Butterworth, via email

 

 

I've used them for well over a year and have been supplied with many great DVD's. Service is first rate either over the web or via the phone. One thing to note is that they supply Canadian discs, this is not usually a problem although it can occasionally affect the extras. As for the RCE comments these are only shown on Columbia and Warner releases and only affect those that have players that are unable to cope with the enhanced coding. It just saves the hassle of returning discs. A word should also be said about DVD Digital World who are also top notch in the supply of Region 1 discs (via Florida), they are also able to source those not normally found anywhere else - and I don't mean porn! I'd recommend both these companies to anyone and everyone. Well that's all I've got to say, except for the usual, great mag, love the cover discs, keep up the good work and hello mum.

Allan Wood, via email

 

Yes, hello Mrs Wood, your son is one of dozens of What DVD readers that wrote and emailed to sing the praises of Play 247. Not one bad word, though a few people commented that the range of titles wasn't that wide but I think we can take it as read that they are offering a really good service, more power to their elbow!

 

 

DARK DEEDS

I have an LG 3200 that Argos gave me as a replacement for malfunctioning Alba DVD103. The picture that plays on my machine is very very dark and I have to push up my brightness and contrast to their maximum to be able to watch the DVDs. I have a four-year old JVC TV with a SCART AV socket.  The Alba worked fine - is it likely to be the Player or is it my set up?
Kath Walton, via email

 

The fact that the brightness levels on the Alba DVD were okay suggests that there's something amiss with the LG player. I suspect it is something quite trivial, probably down to factory mis-alignment, but it's not something you can fix so whip it back to the shop and let them deal with it since it must still be under guarantee.

 

 

UTTER ROT

I have a couple of dual layer Region 0 discs, which persist in showing the copyright message and commercials, before the menus appear. I really hate watching these mandatory tracks and since neither fast forward nor chapter jump is enabled at that time I thought I could solve the problem by placing the disk in player beforehand and playing the disk before I switch TV on or to the DVD channel. The problem is that my DVD player (Sony DVP-S335) and my TV tend to lose sync and as result I see on the TV the copy protection signal that is meant to prevent copying DVDs on video tapes. I can get rid of the signal by ejecting the disk and re-inserting it but then I had to watch those tracks I specifically wanted to skip. Do you have any idea about how I could either re-gain the sync on the fly or skip the intro tracks?


As a slightly related issue I have to mention so-called 'laser rot', the symptoms of which sound to me a lot like the sync problems I'm having. I have not myself encountered laser rot, and this is 'net wisdom', which pretty much equals hearsay and rumour.
Jarmo Ahosola, via email

 

I have come across a couple of deviant players that let you skip through copyright notices but officially this is not supposed to happen and the powers that be insist that we have to watch them, and anything else they choose to put on their discs. Perhaps we should start a campaign…Those 'copy protection signals' are probably time codes or data blocks hidden away in unused portions of the video signal, which you wouldn't normally see when the picture is stable. If loss of sync only occurs on certain discs I would hazard a guess that they are NTSC recordings (most Region 0 DVDs are) and your TV isn't a multi-standard model. Otherwise, if it happens on all discs, then the TV's sync circuitry may need a tweak. The laser rot story is an old chestnut that surfaces from time to time. Basically it relates to some faulty CD pressings about ten years ago, where the bonding process that joins the halves of the disc failed, air got in and oxidised the reflective layer, making the disc unplayable. As far as I'm aware lessons were learned and it hasn't happened since, on CDs or DVS. 

 

 

SUB NORMAL

I have just bought a REL Strata 3 subwoofer. Is it only Dolby Digital sound that activates it or does ordinary surround sound also work? Now that I have a subwoofer I now realise what I have been missing and now that I have it, I no longer want to play anything without the use of my Rel.

David Symmons, Guildford

 

I heartily agree and no home cinema system is complete without a big beefy sub rumbling away in the background. Almost all movies made in the past twenty years, whether they are on tape or disc have surround soundtracks and most of them have bass-heavy effects, more so on action blockbusters and sci-fi flicks, and a sub woofer is the only way to hear them, no matter how good the rest of the speakers in your system happen to be.

 

Some DVD players – notably recent Philips models – have a separate sub-woofer output that extracts bass sounds from the analogue Dolby Surround soundtracks, but you're more likely to find a sub output on a AV amplifier with Dolby Pro Logic and/or Dolby Digital/dts decoders. Sub outputs are also fitted to players with on-board Dolby Digital decoders. In most cases these are at line-level, which means that the sub woofer has to be an 'active' type with a built-in amplifier, some AV amps have amplified sub woofer outputs, for driving 'passive' (i.e. un-amplified) subs.

 

 

LIES LOCK UP

I own a Samsung 709 DVD player. I have bought and rented lots of DVDs since January, but I have problems playing What Lies Beneath. Around chapters 22, just when you discover the meaning to the film! The disc will just hold or totally stop. Is there a problem with this disc?

Steve Gill, via email

 

Not as far as I am aware, I checked around the web sites and news groups and found no reports, including the usually reliable UK specific 'DVD Flaws' site (http://freespace.virgin.net/jonathan.prince/bugs.htm). Have you checked the obvious, like a dirty or scratched disc? It could be faulty so it's worth trying it on another player, or taking it back and getting it exchanged.

 

 

CRACK CODE CORNER

 

AIWA XD-DV170

I desperately need a hack for my Aiwa XD-DV170. I have searched the net for a while and the only one that I came across said that the 'menu', 'top menu' and 'power' buttons should be pressed at the same time. I have since found that it doesn't work.  Please say there is another one! If not, around how much does it cost to get a player chipped?
Tracey Barber, via email

 

Bad news I'm afraid, I've searched high and low for a legit handset hack but no luck. Multi-region versions of this machine are available but as yet I haven't found any UK chipping companies listing it, which suggests it's trickier than usual. If anyone knows different please let me know.

 

PHILIPS DVD-711

I have got a Philips DVD-711 player and wondered if there was a 'hack' for it, or is the this a case of getting it 'chipped' at my local DVD shop?

Simon Reid, via email

 

There is and the most reliable method is to use a One For All 6 universal remote control. Configure the handset using the set-up code 0539, press the Magic button and enter the code 085. The screen should show a line of dashes, now, on the DVD remote handset enter the following numbers: 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 0, 0, 5, 2, 5, 5. Press Play and the display shows 'No Disc', switch the play off, count to ten then switch it back on again.

 

 

SAMSUNG DVD-511

I have a Samsung 511 DVD player, 25 Region 1 DVD's and a boyfriend who has done a runner with the damn codes. Is there any way I can hack my player to play all regions? If not, please supply me with details on how to wipe the smug smile of that stupid gits face by getting it to play my Region 1 DVD's again.
Spice Sugar, via email

 

Consider that smile wiped!  Cold start the player by switching it on and pressing the Stop and Play button on the front panel together. This brings up a language menu, select 1 for English.  Now press Repeat on the handset and the following code: 3, 8, 7, 6, 7. The current code setting should appear on the screen (i.e. '02'), enter the new Region code (1, 2, 3 etc., or 9 for All Region) then press Open on the Player and Standby on the Remote. If you have changed it to Region 1 and you want to change it back to Region 2, you should enter the following code 2, 9, 3, 3, 4 after pressing the Repeat button.

 

 

SAMSUNG DVD-709

I have a Samsung DVD-709 but I heard that it could be hacked by pressing a few buttons on the remote and not using the Awia remote.  Can you help?
C. Cheng, Essex

 

Certainly can, try the DVD-511 hack above

 

HITACHI DV-P305

I recently purchased a Hitachi DV-P305E DVD player and it is restricted to Region 2 discs only. I was wondering if there was a code to type or a hat that you know of that I can use to make my DVD player a multi-region player?
Slimm Dogg, via email

 

And another winner, and coincidentally the same solution as the Samsung hacks above (guess who makes all these machines….?)

 

JMB DVD-3000

I've recently purchased a JMB DVD 3000 and was wondering if you could tell me the region hack
Mark Adair, via email

 

This one is quite easy. Switch on and on the player press and hold Stop, Open, Forward Skip and Skip Back for 3 seconds. This should bring up a hidden service menu. There should be an entry for Region Number, use the 'Free' option and exit the menu and the player should go into Standby mode. Different firmware versions have been used on this machine and there's a chance that may not work, in which case try this. Switch on and hold down Stop, Open and Forward Skip for 3 seconds and the service menu should appear. On no account touch the Initialised Type menu item or bad things could happen

 

LG DVD-3350E 

A simple question: Will this player play discs from any region, bearing in
mind the player has Region 2 printed on the back of the box. If so do I have
to input anything?
Tony Sweeney, Chesterfield

 

This is another fairly straightforward handset hack. Switch the machine on and press Pause, then the following code: 3, 1, 4, 1, 5, 9, then the Region number you want to change the machine to (i.e. 1, 2, 3, etc, or 0 for All region), press Pause again, switch the player off, count ten and it's done.

 

TOSHIBA SD100

I have recently bought a Toshiba SD100, is there a remote control hack for multi-region play?

Chris Hisieke, Taunton

 

Sorry, no joy on this one, and to save anyone else asking, we have yet to see a handset hack that works on any Toshiba player.

 

SONY DAV-S300

I have recently purchased a Sony DAV-S300 and wondered whether or not there is an easy hack to get it to play Region 1 discs, without having it chipped?

Steven Balme, Halifax

 

Sorry Steven, all Sony DVD players are hard coded and chipping is the only solution but be aware that you'll void the guarantee.

 

WARNING

As usual we cannot guarantee these procedures, you use them entirely at your own risk and we take no responsibility whatsoever if anything goes wrong! Consider yourselves duly warned.

 

---end---

 

Ó R. Maybury 2001, 2405

 

 


 

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