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REGION CODING EXPLAINED

 


DVD REGION CODES EXPLAINED
Most DVDs include codes that can be used to prevent playback of certain discs in certain geographical regions. Each player is given a code for the region in which it's sold. The player will refuse to play discs that are not coded for its region. This means that discs bought in one country may not play on players bought in another country.
Regional codes are entirely optional for the maker of a disc. Discs without region codes will play on any player in any country. It isn't an encryption system, just one byte of information on the disc that the player checks. Region codes are a permanent part of the disc, they won't "unlock" after a period of time.
There are 8 regions. Players and discs are often identified by the region number superimposed on a world globe. If a disc plays in more than one region it will have more than one number on the globe. So, if you have a region 2 player you will only be able to play code 2 or 0 DVDs. To confuse things further,a lot of region 4 discs will play on a region 2 player and vice-versa despite having no indication on the box.

REGION 1
U.S. , Canada and U.S. Territories

REGION 2

United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, South Africa, and Middle East (including Egypt)

REGION 3
Southeast Asia and East Asia (including Hong Kong)

REGION 4
Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands, Central America, Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean

REGION 5
Eastern Europe (Former Soviet Union), Indian subcontinent, Africa, North Korea, and Mongolia

REGION 6
China

REGION 7

Reserved

REGION 8
Special international venues (airplanes, cruise ships, outer space.)

REGION 0
Region Free. Playable on any system.

DVD DISC FORMATS EXPLAINED
In addition to region codes, there are also differences in discs for NTSC and PAL TV systems.

The MPEG video on DVD is stored in digital format, but it's formatted for one of two mutually incompatible television systems: NTSC or PAL/SECAM. Therefore, there are two kinds of DVDs: NTSC DVDs and PAL DVDs. Some players only play NTSC discs, others play PAL and NTSC discs.

All DVD players sold in PAL countries play both kinds of discs. These multi-standard players convert NTSC to PAL . Most NTSC players can't play PAL discs. A very small number of NTSC players (such as Apex and SMC) can convert PAL to NTSC. So, if you have an NTSC only DVD player you will NOT be able to play a PAL disc unless you use a standards converter box.

RECORDABLE FORMATS (DVD+R, DVD-R) WHILST BEING USUALLY REGION 0 SOMETIMES CANNOT BE PLAYED IN OLDER PLAYERS (PRE 1999 APPROX)