WHAT DVD 2002

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DR DVD SEPTEMBER

 

REGIONAL VARIATION

I have recently bought a Grundig 620 DVD player which is connected to my Goodmans GTV76WZ 32" widescreen TV. I have used the handset hack detailed in your magazine but I have a bit of a problem with the picture quality of my region 1 discs. Once I set the player to either region one or nine and the video setting is PAL, the actual image is fine but the motion is jerky (presumably the difference between NTSC and PAL). If I change video setting to NTSC or auto then the motion is fine but the image flickers slightly.

 

Previously I owned a Samsung 709 DVD player, which I could handset hack two different ways. One way was fine but the other resulted in the jerky motion. Is there a different way to hack the Grundig or can you offer any suggestion to cure my problem?

Donny Wooller, via email

 

A

I don’t think this has anything to do with the way the player is hacked and incidentally, I would be interested to learn of this ‘alternative’ hack for the Sam 709. There are basically three ways a hacked or chipped DVD player handles a Region 1 NTSC disc. The optimum method, involving the least picture disruption, is to play the disc as-is in NTSC, but this requires a TV that is able to handle a ‘raw’ NTSC video signal. Method two, which is by far the most common, is for the player to do some partial conversion on the colour components of the video signal and output a 525-line/60Hz video signal. This is known as PAL 60 and it depends on the TV being a fairly recent model and able to display the 525-line picture (which most can, nowadays, thanks to the widespread use of multi-format processing chips). Since the picture is still basically in the NTSC format the picture still looks fairly normal. However, in the third method, where the player fully converts the NTSC signal into PAL the difference in the number of lines and frames does result in a jerky picture. The picture flicker you mention sounds very much like normal 50Hz picture processing, which is more noticeable on a widescreen display. It may just be that you’ve become more aware of it when you’re looking for other picture defects. Unfortunately there’s nothing you can do about screen flicker, apart from lashing out on a 100Hz TV.

 

 

SERIAL CONFUSION

I bought 'V' the original mini series" thinking it would be the complete series, which I remember from years ago. My first disc came with what I thought was only about half of the series. It was a flipper with 2 parts of 34 and 29 chapters, but only took us to just after they had started to fight back. The disc is R2, 189 minutes (about half of the series maybe).

 

I sent the disc back and they (play.com) promptly sent me another disc. Unfortunately this was the same. I can definitely remember the visitors being driven away at the end by a biological red dust scattered into the atmosphere by balloons, and also the birth of the hybrid baby, not to mention the lovely Diana trying to "convert" the resistance fighter Julie (sad, I know)... Have I been duped, is there another disc, or have I just been thinking of something else.

John Ray

 

A

No, you haven’t been misled, and your memory is not playing tricks. The mini series was actually a five-parter, you have parts one and two made in 1983, this was followed a year later by the concluding V; The Final Battle three-part series. The two-disc DVD containing parts 3, 4 and 5 has only just gone one sale in the US (mid June), so it may take a while for it to reach us in Region 2 unless you have a R2-capable DVD player, in which case it’s time to pay a visit to your favourite on-line store.

 

 

 

AI OK?

I bought a copy of AI artificial intelligence from HMV in Birmingham. I have a Wharfedale 750 DVD player, the menu screen on disc one comes up and the interview at the end plays but if you click on play the movie the player does not recognise the disc at all and turns off?

 

I have tried other R2 copies of the disc and still the same problem, yet the movie plays on all other people’s players, even my copy? I have not tried disc 2 to see if the same problem exists. I did mail Time Warner UK and US about this but after two months give up waiting for a reply could you help?

Mark Wood,

 

A

No easy answer on this one, it sounds like an iffy disc, but AI has a reasonably clean bill of health, apart from a clumsily positioned layer change. It’s just possible there’s something wrong with the player though more likely it’s another one of those irritating processing glitches but since the disc plays all the way through you’re unlikely to get much of a reaction from either the disc maker or deck manufacturer, who I suspect will simply blame each other.

 

 

CRACK CODE CORNER

 

GOODMANS DVD3500PK

I have a Goodmans DVD3500PK and I was wondering if there is a way to convert

it to multi-region playback?

Stuart, via email

 

We’ll kick off with a simple one, all you have to do is open the disc tray and then enter the code ‘9817’ on the remote, this should reveal a hidden service menu with a region change option (1 to 6 or 9 for all regions), and there’s also a switch for Macrovision, exit the menu and it’s done. Incidentally, you may need to switch to PAL output in the setup menu if your TV cannot handle raw NTSC video.

 

 

LG DVD4210

I have recently purchased a standard DVD player as I was told when I bought it that Multi-Region DVD players did not exist in this country due to export issues (i.e. getting cheap DVD's from the internet!).

 

A nice Sales Assistant from HMV told me just last weekend that my LG DVD player, model number DVD4210, is actually capable of playing multi-region DVD's if a specific code is entered.

 

Would you be able to help me find this code or tell me which one of your back issues I could find it in?

Chyrelle Mitchell, via email

 

And…

 

LG 4710

I have just purchased the above DVD to find I can only play Region 2 discs. Is there a code or hack I can use to play multi region DVDs?

Helyna Quartermaine, via email

 

Good news for both of you and the same hack works for both models. Switch the player on and make sure there’s no disc in the tray, next, press Pause then 314159 on the remote. In the player’s front panel display you should see the word ‘code’, all you have to do now is enter the region number (1 to 6 or 0 for all regions), press the Pause button again and switch the player off, count to ten and switch it back on again.

 

As a matter of interest regional coding never had anything to do with buying ‘cheap’ DVDs, it was built into the DVD specification on the insistence of the major Hollywood studios, which wanted to maintain control over movie release and distribution, and as an aid for countries or regions with censorship requirements. 

 

 

MATSUI 120

Please could you send me a region hack code for a Matsui 120? 

L. Morrow, via email

 

This is another really easy one. On the players front panel press and hold the Stop, Skip and Open buttons for the count of five, a service menu appears with a Region Change option, enter your choice and exit the menu.

 

 

MEDION 4210

I have recently purchased a Medion 4210 DVD player. Is there a remote control hack so I can play region one discs on it?

C.J.P, via email

 

Hopefully this will work, press Open/Close on the remote handset to open the disc tray now press the Setup button, enter the new region code (1 to 6 or 0 for all regions) and to finish off press Pause, Skip Back, Skip Forward, Setup.

 

 

 

SYNN DVHT3080

I've bought a home theatre package from Sainsburys for £220.  It’s a Synn DVHT3080, which contains a Synn DVD8034 and Synn JSP200 speaker system. Can I change the region using the handset?  As a bonus, can Macrovision be removed using the handset too?

Mark Wain, via email

 

The DVD player in this system is actually a Limit DVD-8080 and the hack is to switch on, press Open/Close 8421, use the OK button on the handset to change the region code and finish off by pressing Open/Close again.

 

 

 

FERGUSON DVD 400

Can a Ferguson DVD 400 be hacked to play all regions through the remote?

Keith Pritchard, via email

 

Yes it can and to get at those forbidden fruits on the remote handset press Menu 167, select the region of your choice – 1 to 6 or Mute for region free and exit the menu. By the way, there’s a bonus hack for this machine, to enable VCD playback, load an audio CD, and on the handset press Menu, 1, Index, Open, 1 and it’s done.

 

 

ORION

I was given this address by a friend who told me that you could give a code to put into my DVD player to make it multi region. The make of my player is Orion.

Matt, via email

 

Right address, but your friend forgot to tell you that including the model number of your player would have been helpful as there are several Orion players. You might be lucky though, I believe only the DVD-2000 is available in the UK, in which case there are two possible hacks, depending on the firmware version, but you’ve got to promise to buy your own copy of the mag from now on.

 

Assuming that you’re now a paying customer the first one to try is the hack for the Ferguson DVD-400 (above) and if that doesn’t work, press Menu, 9, Open/Close (the tray should stay shut), 5, Mute and the region selection menu should appear. Make your change and press OK, Exit. If successful ‘All’ will appear on the on-screen display.

 

 

PROLINE 2500

I have a Proline 2500; do you know of a hack code for this model?
Mark, via email

 

Another machine that can be hacked using the Ferguson DVD 400 codes.

 

 

WHARFEDALE DVD-M5

I have a Wharfedale DVD-M5, which only plays region 2 much to my dismay. I have been thinking of selling it and buying a new multi region player but before I do I thought I would ask your advice, just in case there’s a hack for my machine?

Martin Coates, via email

 

Hold that sale! There is a hack for the M5 and it’s dead easy, just press Setup 6283 and a service menu with the region setting will appear. After you’ve changed it press the Setup button to save the setting.

 

 

HACK FREE ZONE

Here’s this month’s list of players that I can’t find a hack for, I’m fairly sure the only way to get these machines to play R1 movies is to have them chipped but I (and the player’s unfortunate owners) am only too happy to be proved wrong. This month’s unlucky wannabees are: Sharp’s DV7 and DV620 (Colin Cummings), Toshiba SD 110 (Uday Thakkar), Panasonic A360 (mactitus), JVC XV-S42 (James Hough), Samsung DVD-907 (Simon Buckingham), Sharp DV-NC55H (Mike Wilson), Sony DVP-S735 (Jon C) Sanyo 7201 (Rob Williams, JVC XV-S302 (Linda Burgiss).

 

 

HACKED OFF

 

PHILIPS RCE WORKAROUND

If you’ve disabled the region lock on your Philips DVD player but are still having problems playing RCE (region code enhancement) protected discs, try this. Load the disc then repeatedly press the Stop button, to stop the disc loading and displaying the RCE ‘world map’ page. Now press the T-C (time/chapter) button twice and the display should show a row of dashes. You can now get into the disc by entering a specific time, or it may just start if you press the Play button.

 

 

PC DRIVE SOURCE

If you thought the situation with region code hacks for DVD players was complicated pity anyone who wants to watch R1 movies on their PCs and laptops. Nevertheless, help is at hand and for those who know their way around Windows and Mac OS then there are firmware ‘patches’ for most makes and models of DVD-ROM drive. For a really comprehensive list of what’s available have a look at the following web site: http://perso.club-internet.fr/farzeno/firmware/ and heed the warnings! They’re not kidding when they say you could turn your drive, and even your laptop into a very expensive paperweight…

 

 

HITACHI RCE WORKAROUND

This trick seems to work quite well on chipped Hitachi DV-P250 players. Load the troublesome region 1 RCE disc, wait for the map to appear, press Stop and Direct Search buttons and enter Title 1, Chapter 1 and 1 second then press Play and the movie should play from the start. You can access chapter skip and trick play functions as normal, but you won’t be able to go into the Menu.

 

 

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Ó R. Maybury 2002, 1305

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

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