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Old 07-24-16, 12:34 PM   #1
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Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

My Panasonic B35 has started to give out and it's time to go region free. What is the best combo of price and player out there right now?
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Old 07-24-16, 12:41 PM   #2
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

http://www.bombayelectronics.com/Son...o_bdps1500.htm


I just purchased the above Region Free BD/DVD player from Bombay Electronics in Illinois.

It's free shipping via Fedex and no sales tax.

There's also a coupon code= bargainoffers to get an additional 5% off. Came out to $133 flat.

After 2 days, so far, so good. Very happy with it and plays everything smoothly.

There's are several more expensive players available on that site, but I read all the reviews of this player and everyone seems to be happy with it.
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Old 07-25-16, 12:37 AM   #3
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Why does the description of the player say multi-region BD play is "optional"? Does it convert PAL to NTSC or just pass it through?
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Old 07-25-16, 12:48 AM   #4
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by randian View Post
Why does the description of the player say multi-region BD play is "optional"? Does it convert PAL to NTSC or just pass it through?
Yeah I had to double check reading that before I ordered it.

It's $100 as a Region A player, but as a muti-region DVD player. The extra $40 is an add-on for them to modify it and make it a Multi-Region BD player.

and yes it does convert PAL to NTSC. The converter is built in. I played a couple of my UK Region 2 PAL DVDs and they played perfectly.
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Old 07-25-16, 08:16 AM   #5
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

I've been thinking about this one from Amazon

$179 new / $109 refurbished.

Sony S5200 2D/3D Blu Ray and DVD Player with Wifi, US and EU Connectors, and 6ft HDMI Cable (Bundle)

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...A2EH3A7AEDBIYP
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Old 07-25-16, 11:06 AM   #6
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by inri222 View Post
I've been thinking about this one from Amazon

$179 new / $109 refurbished.

Sony S5200 2D/3D Blu Ray and DVD Player with Wifi, US and EU Connectors, and 6ft HDMI Cable (Bundle)

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...A2EH3A7AEDBIYP
That's the one I have and I also paid $109 shipped for the refurbed unit.
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Old 07-25-16, 12:31 PM   #7
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJariya View Post
http://www.bombayelectronics.com/Son...o_bdps1500.htm


I just purchased the above Region Free BD/DVD player from Bombay Electronics in Illinois.

It's free shipping via Fedex and no sales tax.

There's also a coupon code= bargainoffers to get an additional 5% off. Came out to $133 flat.

After 2 days, so far, so good. Very happy with it and plays everything smoothly.

There's are several more expensive players available on that site, but I read all the reviews of this player and everyone seems to be happy with it.
Thanks for posting - I'm going to give it a shot. I've been wanting a second region-free player for my living room and as a backup to my modified Oppo-BDP-83 which is a little long in the tooth.
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Old 07-25-16, 02:04 PM   #8
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

So just to make sure I understand, are both of the Sony models listed so far units that have been unofficially modified after the fact by third parties? So I couldn't go back to Sony for any kind of official repair or service needs?
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Old 07-25-16, 02:12 PM   #9
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by hdnmickey View Post
So just to make sure I understand, are both of the Sony models listed so far units that have been unofficially modified after the fact by third parties? So I couldn't go back to Sony for any kind of official repair or service needs?
I believe so. The Region Free BD part is modified by them (the $40 surcharge)

But, Bombay Electronics does have a 1 year parts and 90 day labor warranty.
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Old 07-25-16, 02:14 PM   #10
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

I don't know what they're doing to modify it, but back when I got the mod kit for my Oppo, it was just plugging a ribbon cable in. Could easily be reversed. I'm not sure if these players have any alerts to notify the case has been opened but somehow I doubt it.
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Old 07-26-16, 08:13 AM   #11
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by hdnmickey View Post
So just to make sure I understand, are both of the Sony models listed so far units that have been unofficially modified after the fact by third parties? So I couldn't go back to Sony for any kind of official repair or service needs?
The only kind of multi-region modification for any player sold in the US is "unofficial" (whether a hardware mod for BD region-free or either hardware or software mod for DVD region-free).

As was said, the hardware mods have been (in my experience) a simple device that "plugs in" to a convenient empty slot on the circuit board, which can be easily unplugged if you need to send back for service.
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Old 07-26-16, 09:38 AM   #12
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by mythmaker18 View Post
The only kind of multi-region modification for any player sold in the US is "unofficial" (whether a hardware mod for BD region-free or either hardware or software mod for DVD region-free).

As was said, the hardware mods have been (in my experience) a simple device that "plugs in" to a convenient empty slot on the circuit board, which can be easily unplugged if you need to send back for service.
Thanks. Makes sense. How about software updates? Has there ever been any conflict with loading updates do to the mods?
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Old 07-26-16, 09:40 AM   #13
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Any opinions on th better model of the two Sony mods listed so far? Unless I'm missing something, the key difference seems to be one has on board wi-fi and the other does not. I would rather have the wi-fi built in.

Are there any other region free players that people would recommend over the two Sony models. I would much rather the modification be hardware based vs. software based. Seems those are able to handle PAL DVD's as well.
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Old 07-26-16, 12:41 PM   #14
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Yes, hardware mods are immune to firmware updated, while software mods might "break" when a new firmware is released.

I know this is probably no surprise, but I recommend Oppo as the best region-free player. Easy hardware mod, can convert PAL to NTSC (but can also "pass through" the signal if your monitor can handle PAL without needing a conversion), can convert 1080i/50 to 1080i/60 (and can also pass-through) and also have a better upscaler (for your DVDs) than any other brand on the market.

If you only need region-free for the DVDs, there is a software mod for that available for Oppos called SuperDisk (as I recall).

If the new ones are too pricey, consider a used older model.
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Old 07-26-16, 01:07 PM   #15
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by mythmaker18 View Post
I know this is probably no surprise, but I recommend Oppo as the best region-free player. Easy hardware mod, can convert PAL to NTSC (but can also "pass through" the signal if your monitor can handle PAL without needing a conversion), can convert 1080i/50 to 1080i/60 (and can also pass-through) and also have a better upscaler (for your DVDs) than any other brand on the market.

If you only need region-free for the DVDs, there is a software mod for that available for Oppos called SuperDisk (as I recall).

If the new ones are too pricey, consider a used older model.
I've heard of the Oppo brand, but never purchased one before. What in the above list of features are things the Sony models listed can't do?
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Old 07-26-16, 01:11 PM   #16
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

http://www.bombayelectronics.com/Opp...ayer_s/163.htm

There's 4 Oppo players listed in the site I posted, but they're significantly more expensive. Cheapest player is $629.
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Old 07-26-16, 01:20 PM   #17
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

With Oppo it's more about build quality and reliability in addition to features. They still have support for things like SACD and DVD-Audio which is nice. But more importantly, my BDP-83 is built like a tank. 7 years old and still works like new. Great firmware support too.

I had considered just buying their latest player and "retiring" the BDp-83 to living room duty, but I didn't want to spend the $500 plus mod money at the moment so I figured I'll throw $140 at the player Djariya linked. But I will definitely by another Oppo if/when the BDP-83 goes down or is no longer being updated with firmware. There was a scare a couple years ago with X-Men Days of Future Past but Oppo did a firmware update even though they had said they weren't supporting the 83 anymore.
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Old 07-26-16, 01:21 PM   #18
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJariya View Post
http://www.bombayelectronics.com/Opp...ayer_s/163.htm

There's 4 Oppo players listed in the site I posted, but they're significantly more expensive. Cheapest player is $629.
I think you'd be better off buying the Oppo's direct. The mod kits I think are usually in the $50-$60 range so you'd basically be paying Bombay $70 to install it which is really simple to do.
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Old 07-26-16, 03:30 PM   #19
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by mythmaker18 View Post
Yes, hardware mods are immune to firmware updated, while software mods might "break" when a new firmware is released.
I wouldn't say immune. My Oppo has a hardware mod that stopped supporting region free blu-rays for a time due to a firmware update. Luckily a later firmware update resolve the issue.
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Old 07-31-16, 04:35 PM   #20
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Nothing but love for: http://www.220-electronics.com/regio...y-players.html
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Old 08-22-16, 07:33 PM   #21
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Are there any region-free UHD BD players (as in, they can play regular BDs and DVDs from any region) yet?
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Old 08-22-16, 08:26 PM   #22
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

Ask in maybe a year or so. There's only a couple of UHD players available as of now, with a few more models to be released before the end of the year. I read somewhere Oppo is working one one, but it guessing sometime in 2017. But since UHD is region free, I'm guessing they won't be as hard pressed to mod one that will be region free for blu and DVD. But they will be out there, just not as fast as ones in the past.
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Old 10-20-16, 07:14 PM   #23
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

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Originally Posted by trespoochies View Post
Ask in maybe a year or so. There's only a couple of UHD players available as of now, with a few more models to be released before the end of the year. I read somewhere Oppo is working one one, but it guessing sometime in 2017. But since UHD is region free, I'm guessing they won't be as hard pressed to mod one that will be region free for blu and DVD. But they will be out there, just not as fast as ones in the past.
The Oppo rep told me their 4k/UHD player should be out before the end of this year... you can sign up on their website to be notified when it will be generally available. I would think, though, that it will be some time before a region free mod (SD, BD) would be available for that model. Just my opinion.
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Old 10-27-16, 08:57 AM   #24
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

A budget possibility for region free blu playing is the Seiki SR4KP1, which also offers region free DVD and 4K upscaling. The region free blu playing requires resetting, if you're switching regions. The region free DVD is permanent. You will need to Google instructions for how to do these settings. I've set up mine for region free DVD but haven't yet tried region 2 blus yet (don't have any). Nor do I have need of 4K upscaling.

Here's the current Monoprice deal for $48: http://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=16073

The only caveat is that the machine is pretty flimsy. But for this cost, I guess you can't have everything. Another plus is really excellent DVD upscaling.
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Old 11-07-16, 07:37 PM   #25
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Re: Region Free BD Player - Best combination of player and price

I just received one of the Seiki SR4KP1 systems - purchased from B&H Photo:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...ay_player.html

$49.99 with free shipping making it a better deal than from Monoprice (they wanted ~$12 shipping). Just make sure you have a pair of AAA batteries for the remote as the unit doesn't come with any.

It *is* a lightweight/flimsy feeling unit but getting it region free is dead simple and quick. That's the first thing I did and tested it with a R2 DVD I'd received from Hastings in error. It played flawlessly. It has very good video quality and far more features than I expected. It even has a composite video output (not that anyone would truly use that output for serious viewing), a network port (for updates from a LAN or for BD-Live stuff - it has *no* built-in apps), and supports PIP on discs having that feature (I have one but haven't yet tested it). I've not yet tried any R2 BR yet but I don't have any of those. I wanted one for some British sitcoms that aren't available in R1. It's so inexpensive that I'm tempted to order a 2nd as a spare. So far I'm very pleased with this unit.
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