WHAT DVD 2002

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DR DVD JUNE

 

LETTERS

 

TITLE DEEDS

There are over 8 million deaf or hard of hearing people in this country and I happen to be one of them. You can therefore appreciate the enormous joy I have experienced in recently

acquiring a DVD player. It has opened up a whole new world of entertainment with the availability of subtitling. So much so, that I am a DVD Preacher! Everybody I speak to, whether deaf or of normal hearing, I advocate the purchase of this superb format.

 

That being said, the quality of some subtitles leaves me a little bemused. As I can also lip-read to some extent, I am often able to ascertain that the text on screen does not exactly follow the spoken word. "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" being but one of the worst examples. Also, accessing subtitles can be a pain in the butt with unnecessarily complicated access screens i.e. I could not even find the facility on "U-571" (which I returned to the shop although I am told there is definitely subtitles available). Packaging can also be a problem. For Christmas I bought my wife (who has normal hearing) a copy of "Bridget Jones' Diary" and told her I was disappointed at the lack of subtitling on such a new film. Imagine our surprise when we discovered that subtitles are available - no mention of this on the packaging!!

 

I seem to remember reading somewhere that it costs around £400 to put an hours subtitling onto a disc - not a great expense. So why is the deaf and hard of hearing community sidelined when it comes to wanting to collect DVDs of television programmes? It also disappoints me that Director's Commentaries (that appear on almost every successful feature film DVD) do not carry subtitles. I just cannot understand, especially as the technology is there, why we have to be marginalised and treated as a "minority".

Jeff Castle, via email

 

A

Youíre right of course but maybe it is just complacency on the part of distributors as pretty well all movies and most TV programmes on DVD available in this country have English language subtitles but thereís no excuse for the extras not having them. One way of checking if a disc is subtitled is to visit the web sites of retailers like www.play.com and www.dvd.co.uk, which list the subtitle languages for the discs they sell. Your problem with lip-synching on Crouching Tiger is easily explained, this was a Chinese language movie, dubbed into English, so the subtitles will never match lip movement. One last point, the subtitle display is not a function of the disc but of the player and perhaps this isnít well explained on your machine, it may be worth re-reading the instructions on this point.

 

 

JUMPIN JITTERS

I have a Hitachi DVP 305e, which I have had for about 18 months, however it has a problem

Whenever I watch a DVD I can take it for granted that somewhere in the movie the picture will jump, almost like it misses a few frames of film, this never happens in the same place twice and happens on every disc I watch, even new ones. If I rewind it and watch the section where it jumped again, it doesn't do it. This happens at least once or sometimes twice on every DVD I watch, so I know it isn't the disc. Iíve cleaned my DVD player with a lens cleaner disc but it still jumps. It isn't the layer change, because it does it on single layer discs as well. I find myself watching DVDs and waiting for the picture to jump! And it does!

I'm beginning to think either me and the player have some kind of "Stephen King Shining" thing going on or Uri Geller did it when said he was going to use the power of his mind to affect household electrical goods, I knew I shouldn't have stared at the TV when he told

me to! All joking aside, what's wrong with the player? And should I start looking for a new one?

T. De Havillan, via email

 

A

Youíve effectively eliminated disc problems, itís highly unlikely to be anything to do with the TV and since Iím not aware of any generic problems or bugs with this model my guess is thereís a processor fault on your machine. Iím afraid the only way youíre going to fine out is to have it looked at. Get an estimate, if it comes to more than £50 or so it might be better to get a new player.

 

 

A LIQUIDITY PROBLEM

I have preferred not to buy any DVD Player for the time being, although I do enjoy watching DVDs. I am using my PC system instead. I find it easier to switch between Regions using free software instead of paying extra for chipping. I have no problem at all with the performance of my system. However, I did have a problem with one of the DVDs I bought a couple of weeks back. This is a first in my 100+ disc collection, so it is bugging me.

 

The disc is called Liquid Sky, produced by Wintertainment in Region 0. The disc starts well, I see the Main Menu very fine and than the screen just turns green every time I make any selection from the Menu. I bought it from Amazon.com and they very helpful and sent me a replacement within a week. Same problem with the second disc, too. When I informed them about the case they did not hesitate at all to send me a full refund immediately.

Kosta Ceran, Istanbul

 

A

Iíve trawled around and come up with big fat zilch on this one. If Liquid Sky has any problems itís to do with the plot, not the DVD transfer, which leaves me to conclude this is one of those inexplicable incompatibilities that turn up from time to time. Itís no consolation but I wouldnít mind betting itís fine on a regular DVD player; maybe itís about time you got one, instead of having to squint at a PC screen?

 

 

CRACK CODE CLINIC

 

LOGIX DVD-3300D

Can a Logix 3300D DVD player be region Ďonedí via its remote control or does it have to be chipped?

Loco Pig, via email

 

A

It can and the procedure is as follows. Step one, press Open then Setup on the remote handset, enter the Region number (1 to 6) or 9 for all region playback. Next, press 2 010 then Step, Shuffle Next. There have been some firmware revisions for this model and you may need to try a different code, if 2010 doesnít work, use 3010 and if thatís no good try 4010.

 

 

SHARP DV-NC55H.

My cousin is coming over from Canada to good old Blighty shortly and has said he will bring some of his new DVD's with him. We have a Sharp VCR/DVD combination model DV-NC55H. Is there anything I can do so that the discs will be watchable?

Neil Lover, via email

 

A

Sorry Neil, Sharp players are a bit variable in their hackfulness, this model needs chipping to play R1 discs but Iím not aware of anyone marketing a conversion just yet.

 

 

JVC XV-522

I am going to America shortly and wanted to know if US DVDs will work in my JVC XV-522 DVD player, or is there a code to make them work?

Smirnoffice, via email

 

A

No luck on this one either, Iím fairly sure it is hard coded but I found a couple of references to a hack using a One For All remote. Iím a bit dubious but if anyone can shed some light on it I know quite a few owners of this machine would be very grateful.

 

 

SAMSUNG 511

Could you please repeat the hack for the Samsung 511?

Tom Bennet, via email

 

No problem, this is a popular machine and itís worth repeating. Begin by Ďcold startingí the player Ė i.e. putting it into its virgin, first-time condition Ė by pressing the front panel Stop and Play buttons. The language menu should appear, select 1 for English. Next press Repeat on the handset and the code 38767. You should see the current region code setting on the screen (i.e. '02'), next enter the new Region code (1 to 6 or 9 for All Region), press Open on the Player and Standby on the Remote. To change back from Region 1 you should substitute the code 29334 after pressing the Repeat button.

 

 

JVC XV-S42

I have recently purchased a JVC XV-S42 player, can you tell me if there is a remote control hack for the player, or do I have to get it chipped?

Andy Mortimer, via email

 

Sorry, Iím only aware of one hackable JVC player, and this isnít it!

 

 

PHILIPS DVD 711

I have a Philips DVD 711 DVD player and I was wondering if you could tell me the region hack code?

John A. Gibson, via email

 

AndÖ

 

PHILIPS DVD-622

I am looking for a region hack for a Philips DVD 622 player. Have you any advice on a hack for this particular model, to change it from region 2, to a multi region player?

P Wilkie, via email

 

I havenít tried it myself but I have it on good authority that the classic DVD-750 hack works on both of these machines, in which case you will have to get hold of a One For All 4 or 6 Universal remote control handset. Program it with the set-up code 0539 then press the Magic button and enter the code 085. The display should row of dashes, swap over to the playerís remote and tap in: 222 222 005 255. Donít worry if the last digit doesnít show on the display, finally press Play on the remote and the display should now show ĎNo Discí. Switch off, wait a few seconds and switch on.

 

 

TOSHIBA SD1600

My brother in the USA has bought a Toshiba SD1600 so for Christmas presents we sent him some DVDs, but they don't work. When he inquired nobody seemed to know about ways of recoding or replacing the chips, could you please tell me how to make his player multi regional?

Claudio, via email

 

Fraid not, itís chipping or nothing with this model

 

 

HITACHI DV-P250

Some time ago I purchased a Hitachi DV-P250, recently I bought your magazine for the first time and found it very interesting. I was wondering whether you have a code crack for my player.  

Ralph Willingham, via email

 

A

Thereís not a handset hack as such but I understand it is possible to reprogram the playerís firmware using downloaded files and a PC with a CD-burner. It sounds really risky to me but if you want to know more have a look at: http://www.theironduke.plus.com/HitachiSyndicate/Files/files.html

 

 

GRUNDIG GDV620

Please help me with a hack for my Grundig GDV620. I am sure there must be oneÖ

Steve Gat, via email

 

Try this: open the disc tray the enter the following code on the handset 9817, next select the region code (1 to 6) or 9 for all region and itís done.

 

 

SAMSUNG M-105

I have finally found a fix for the Samsung M-105. The problem is the firmware V5.02E, which requires a different code. Switch on your player. Ensure the tray is closed and no disc is inserted. The Samsung (or Thomson, or Hitachi) splash screen should be visible on your TV screen at this point.

 

Press REPEAT on your remote control (not REPEAT A-B!) followed by a five-digit sequence, which corresponds to the currently set region:

R1 - 29334 (DVD-x09 and clones only)

R2 - 38767 (If you have a DVD-M series player, e.g. DVD-M105, with firmware 5.02Ee, use 57538 instead)

R3 - 56732

R4 - 76884

R5 - 53814

R6 - 24462

 

If you've done this correctly, 0x will appear at the top left of the screen where x is the currently set region. You can change this to a region of your choice by pressing the appropriate digit on your remote control (1 to 6), alternatively, you can set "auto-region" mode (even for RCE discs) by pressing 9. To store the new setting press OPEN/CLOSE or EJECT (either on your remote or on the player itself) to open the tray - you must do this before 0x disappears from the screen. When the tray is open, wait at least 15 seconds, and then press DVD POWER (may be called POWER, or STANDBY) on the remote to close the tray and put the player into Standby mode. Some firmware versions apparently require a slight variation of the above, namely pressing MENU before you press REPEAT.

David Lau, Glasgow

 

A

Many thanks for that David youíve made a lot of people very happy.

 

ROWA 280

I hope you can help me; I have recently purchased a Rowa 280 DVD machine from Asda. I was wondering if there was any code to unlock the multi region programme,

Gary Jones, Liverpool

 

A

There are two versions of this machine, one made by Pioneer, which has to be chipped and the other, made by Minato, which can be hacked for multi-region replay. If yours has a PAL/Auto/NTSC switch on the back itís the former. To hack the other on the remote one press: Open/Close, Zoom, A-B, Cursor Up, Cursor Left, Cursor down and Cursor right, and thatís all there is to it.

 

 

HACKED OFF

 

LOOSEN THAT LAPTOP

We continue to receive pleas from PC and laptop owners troubled by the region locks on their apparatus. Itís not really our department Ė there are plenty of computer magazines out there Ė but for the general good of the DVD community hereís a web link to DVD Genie, a brilliant freeware program that can unlock many of the most popular hardware and software players: http://www.inmatrix.com/genie/index.shtml If it works for you donít forget to make a donation to the author who puts in a lot of his spare time working on the program, itís only fair.

 

 

RCE Ė KNOW YOUR ENEMYÖ

We might not like it but youíve got to admire whoever dreamt up Regional Code Enhancement (RCE), which prevents Region 1 discs working on players chipped or hacked for all-region playback. Itís elegantly simple and exploits the Region code check that is carried out by a DVD player whenever a disc is loaded. A small program or Ďscriptí on the disc interrogates the playerís SPRM (system parameter) registers, asking if it is set to Region 1, the script then asks if it can play discs from any other region? If the return is yes the player is instructed to Ďbranchí to a static page or stop screen, showing a graphic of the world and a message warning that the disc is intended for play on Ďnon-modified playersí, and for good measure it locks up the Playback controls.

 

 

HOLLOMAN DEFEATED

Owners of multi-regional Pioneer DVD-717 players have been having all sorts of problems playing Region One releases of Holloman, which has RCE coding. There is a simple workaround, wait for the stop screen (world map) to appear then press the Stop button on the handset, followed by CHP/TIME and Play, the movie should now start and you should be able to access the menu as normal.

 

---end---

 

R. Maybury 2002, 2602

 

 

 

 


 

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