Go Back  DVD Talk Forum > DVD Discussions > International DVD Talk
Reload this Page >

How to start getting into region 2?

International DVD Talk Intl. DVDs, Region Free Players, RCE, Hong Kong DVDs & More

How to start getting into region 2?

Old 04-10-01, 12:38 PM
  #1  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Where would be the best place to buy a (not-expensive) region 2 player and dvds?

~Shayne~
Old 04-10-01, 12:40 PM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 996
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Do you have a PAL or multi-system television?
Old 04-10-01, 12:42 PM
  #3  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I just bought a 27 inch Sony Wega. So, it's probably only NTSC right? I really don't know.

~Shayne~
Old 04-10-01, 12:47 PM
  #4  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 996
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Your Wega is NTSC, that means even if you have a region code free DVD player, it will display properly on your NTSC TV. You can consider buying PAL decoders instead of chaging everything just to play region 2 DVDs.
Old 04-10-01, 12:50 PM
  #5  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have seen a few region free players, but they are all over 600 dollars, with almost 100 dollar shipping. Are there cheaper alternatives?

Unfortunately I was not able to get my hands on an Apex.

~Shayne~
Old 04-10-01, 01:08 PM
  #6  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 266
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
jsut look on ebay for an apex, jsut make sure you know it can be hacked, they are pretty easy to find, or e-mail me and i might sell you mine.
Old 04-10-01, 01:59 PM
  #7  
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: USA - Bush: Selected, not elected
Posts: 12,212
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You can get Region 2 DVDs from http://www.blackstar.co.uk and http://www.dvdzone2.com for a decent price. Email me if you have any further questions as I've just gotten into the non-region 1 titles myself.

[Edited by gotdvd? on 04-19-01 at 09:20 PM]
Old 04-10-01, 04:56 PM
  #8  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hey thanks for the information. The price at laserexchange.com isn't too bad. Mp3 support would be really a nice feature also. I'll also keep checking around for Apex's. I might just e-mail you, DeepRedInferno.

oh, and Gotdvd?, that is one hell of a nice collection.

~Shayne~
Old 04-10-01, 06:21 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Docking Bay 94
Posts: 14,259
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
Just to reiterate -- but really add nothing new.

What you want is the APEX 600-A with the "secret menu". Be careful -- because later versions of this model have the menu removed. Make sure that you confirm that the menu is there.

That's your best bet. It's unfortunate that you won't be able to get it for $100 or so at Circuit City like many did (including me). But still, that'll be a lot cheaper than getting a multi-region + PAL converter. Plus, the APEX actually lets you choose a specific region, so it even defeats the new DVDs that don't play on "hacked" players.

And, http://www.blackstar.co.uk is absolutely the best place to buy. I've had amazing service from them -- not a single complaint.

Old 04-10-01, 07:50 PM
  #10  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks... The Apex's on ebay seem to be at about 120 dollars. I'm kind of weary to get the unopened box ones because I don't know if it will have the "secret menu". Most say NTSC and Pal, but don't mention anything about "region free."

Again, all of this help is greatly appreciated.

~Shayne~
Old 04-10-01, 07:58 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 1,064
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Just my 0.02 cents. I would suggest buying an Apex 703 at
Circuit City or Wal-mart (either online site or REAL B&M
store. Price is around $170.00 Then get the hacked firmware files and burn them to a CDR or RW. Pop this into your player and you have:

1) Multi-region
2) No Macrovision
3) (though it has it without the upgrade) Pal to NTSC
conversion

e-mail me if you have any questions.

Though it is rumored that not all 703's can be upgraded.
If you get one that can't, just return it and get a refund
or a new one

[Edited by diesteldorf on 04-10-01 at 05:00 PM]
Old 04-10-01, 08:03 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Docking Bay 94
Posts: 14,259
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
Originally posted by RandomAxes
Most say NTSC and Pal, but don't mention anything about "region free."
Part of the problem is that eBay has been getting pressure from the MPAA about auctions for the "secret" APEX machines. eBay's position is that because of the lack of region coding and macrovision protection, they violate copyright laws. This is dubious at best, but it is the position they have taken. Any auctions that mention the "secret menu" are quickly shut down.

Your best bet is to personally e-mail the sellers and ask. I'm sure they'd be more forthcoming in personal e-mail than they would in an auction description.
Old 04-10-01, 08:09 PM
  #13  
Cool New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 40
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally posted by RandomAxes
Where would be the best place to buy a (not-expensive) region 2 player and dvds?

~Shayne~
You can also try here: http://www.dvdstreet.infront.co.uk/

I've ordered from them and they are reliable and legit.

Later...
Old 04-10-01, 08:11 PM
  #14  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 139
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
So by buying an Apex 703, and getting these "files" burned to a cd, I essentially can have the same as the Apex 703? I first bought a Fisher DVD-S1000. It is a good *and really cheap* player. Is there anytime of firmware or upgrade of any other type for that?

You guys are tons of help.

~Shayne~
Old 04-18-01, 01:46 PM
  #15  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 2,261
Received 182 Likes on 149 Posts
Get a Sampo 620. It is region free right out of the box -- you just need to enter a code on the remote:
"The short version of this hack is : SETUP - 3,8,8,8,3 - use cursor keys to select relevant region - ENTER - SETUP"

It also does (so so) PAL to NTSC conversion. The Sampo 620 is available cheap from numerous sources -- you shouldn't pay more than $159 for and I have seen it for as low as in the $130s.

Ted
Old 04-18-01, 06:39 PM
  #16  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 769
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Do not forget that Region 2 covers both the UK, Europe and Japan. UK and Europe are PAL, but Japan is NTSC.

I don't know how they are put together in the US, but here in Australia most Sony TVs are multi-system capable - in other words they can handle input from both PAL and NTSC players, so it might be worth your while checking this out with your local Sony agent.

If you plan to buy UK DVDs, then I would recommend someone like BlackStar for single DVD purchases (free shipping but with VAT tax included) or Amazon UK for multiple DVD purchases (shipping charged but VAT tax removed) - the removal of taxes amounts to more over multiple discs than does free shipping.

Hope this helps. Tim...
Old 04-18-01, 10:22 PM
  #17  
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: USA - Bush: Selected, not elected
Posts: 12,212
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally posted by Ted Todorov
Get a Sampo 620. It is region free right out of the box -- you just need to enter a code on the remote:
"The short version of this hack is : SETUP - 3,8,8,8,3 - use cursor keys to select relevant region - ENTER - SETUP"

It also does (so so) PAL to NTSC conversion. The Sampo 620 is available cheap from numerous sources -- you shouldn't pay more than $159 for and I have seen it for as low as in the $130s.

Ted
Please note this player does not accurately convert PAL movies to NTSC in their correct aspect ratio. 2:35 movies look like 1:85s and 1:85s look fullframe... what a piece of $hit!
Old 04-19-01, 08:50 AM
  #18  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: IL
Posts: 2,935
Received 31 Likes on 24 Posts
Please note this player does not accurately convert PAL movies to NTSC in their correct aspect ratio. 2:35 movies look like 1:85s and 1:85s look fullframe... what a piece of $hit!
The Sampo only botches the PAL conversion on anamorphic discs as it can't convert to NTSC and downcovert for 4:3 TV sets at the same time. Of course if his WEGA can do the 16:9 squeeze then the Sampo will work fine in all cases.

You probably didn't notice but the region-free player that you mentioned was available for $240 through Laser Exchange is the same Sampo 620 that can be had for around $139 everywhere else.

If you're looking for more information on hacking region-free players you really need to check out the forums at http://www.nerd-out.com.

Old 04-19-01, 02:04 PM
  #19  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 2,261
Received 182 Likes on 149 Posts
Chad says:
You can get a generic regionfree player for $240 shipped from http://www.laserexchange.com - It's on their homepage. It plays everything and even has a built in PAL to NTSC converter to watch Region 2 DVDs on your NTSC television.
That is the same Sampo 620 that is available for $139 elsewhere – laserexchange.com is an obvious ripoff.


Mugwump says:
The Sampo only botches the PAL conversion on anamorphic discs as it can't convert to NTSC and downcovert for 4:3 TV sets at the same time. Of course if his WEGA can do the 16:9 squeeze then the Sampo will work fine in all cases.
You are correct, the anamorphic downconversion circuit gets used for PAL to NTSC conversion and it can’t do both at once. However, even with a 16:9 TV the conversion is still off, but way better than with a 4:3 TV. (It removes the number of lines needed for 4:3 downconversion (480/4 = 120) as opposed to the difference between PAL and NTSC (576 – 480 = 96) – 24 lines too many.)

The thing is, to my knowledge, there does not exist a DVD player that does a better conversion job than the Sampo. For $700 - $1000 you can get a TenLabs PAL to NTSC converter, but even at this very high price tag you get an inferior picture. The only way to get the real deal is to get PAL/NTSC multistandard TV. All decent European TVs fit the bill. If you wish to avoid a trip to Europe, you can order one from http://www.mindlogic.com, which I did, I got a 16:9 Sony WEGA & couldn’t be happier. However even with a converter or new TV you would still need the Sampo for its unadulterated PAL signal.

There is one other solution and that is an HTPC, however be warned that you need to get your output from a good video card. I tried the PAL/NTSC conversion (to a TV via video out) on a Hollywood+ card and it was unwatchable.

Ted
Old 04-19-01, 04:09 PM
  #20  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: IL
Posts: 2,935
Received 31 Likes on 24 Posts
Ted, thanks for clearing up the PAL downconversion issue. On my setup I manually adjust the screen size to achieve the anamorphic squeeze so I'm able to make the Sampo work perfectly. Sounds like sets with an automatic 16:9 mode will still be a bit off but the Sampo works better than all but the most expensive PAL/NTSC converters.
Old 04-19-01, 11:28 PM
  #21  
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Japan
Posts: 116
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You might also try an Odyssey 2080 at http://www.inc-tech.com

I just got mine. I can't say about the PAL/NTSC anamorphic problem, but the PAL/NTSC conversion is great.
Old 04-20-01, 01:41 AM
  #22  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 559
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Just wanted to add another recommendation for www.blackstar.co.uk when looking for region 2 DVDs.

For region 4, I've had a number of smooth transactions with http://ezydvd.com.au. There's also a region 4 informational site at http://www.dvdplaza.com.au/cgi-bin/index.cgi.

And here's a pretty good resource for comparing DVDs from different regions: http://www.dvddebate.com/index.php
Old 04-20-01, 10:34 AM
  #23  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 2,261
Received 182 Likes on 149 Posts
For region 2 - France I recommend http://www.dvdfr.com for disk info, and http://www.cinestore.com for purchases. Knowledge of French helps a lot for those sites.

Often however the French R2 releases are far superior to those from the UK. The French have almost 100% anamorphic support, no censorship (quite common in the UK) and just better quality transfers. One example: Citizen Kane has a great transfer on the French DVD and a totally lousy one on the UK DVD.

Ted
Old 04-20-01, 04:24 PM
  #24  
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Belgium
Posts: 59
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
For those who don't speak french and still want french region 2 dvd releases, go to http://www.dvdzone2.com the site is in english.

They have a good selection (french & benelux dvd releases).
Great service. Cheap prices. They are based in belgium.

Gaétan

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.