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Playing Region 4 - Australian DVD's

by AaronDuck / December 13, 2006 6:27 AM PST

To the person asking how to play region 4 DVD's in the US - easy just go online and buy a DVD player from Australia or a region free player. Region free DVD players can be picked up for $50. Of course our right to buy region free DVD players may soon be gone as we have to comply with US laws on copyright due to the Free Trade Agreement.


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OR a dvd-rom drive
by netmasta / December 13, 2006 7:15 AM PST

You can change a computer DVD drive's region encoding a limited number of times. It's much easier than trying to find a new player. Of course, it's on your computer and not in your living room TV. Well, unless you have a Media Center.

To do it:

1.Right click on the drive in My Computer, click 'Properties'.
2.Click the 'Hardware' Tab.
3.Double click on the DVD drive
4.Click on the 'DVD Region' tab and follow the instructions on screen.

I've never tried it, but I'm guessing that the dvd player software doesn't need any changes. I could be wrong though. PAL vs. NTSC comes to mind.

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(NT) be careful, you can only change this 4 times
by scottwb555 / December 13, 2006 10:56 AM PST
In reply to: OR a dvd-rom drive
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Living in a different Country
by kellenjb / December 13, 2006 11:01 AM PST

I have a cousin who is currently living in China, but is a US resident and returns home several times per year. He ran into this problem very early on. His DVD software offered him to change the region when he was watching a dvd. Didn't give him any message about a limit. Soon he was wondering why it wasn't asking him any more.

Thing that I don't understand is that they claim that even if you reinstall Windows your changes are gone. Are your changes stored on the internet?

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No, on the drive itself...
by John.Wilkinson / December 14, 2006 3:34 AM PST

After you have exhausted your 5 allowed region changes you can send the drive back to the manufacturer to reset the internal counter. This can be done a maximum of 4 times, after which the drive is permanently locked into the current region. That was the compromise given by the DVD Copy Control Association.


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Playing region free on computer
by Owyn / December 13, 2006 8:29 AM PST

There are a lot of region free dvd software solutions available. DIIK which are legal where.

Google "windows region free dvd player" for more info.

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Philips DVP642 @ amazon
by Ravensblood / December 13, 2006 9:25 AM PST
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That works
by Owyn / December 13, 2006 11:16 AM PST

That player also does PAL to NTSC so you are wide open. Menus are a bit anemic but otherwise a great value for the price.

DivX/Xvid support is also very good for any AVI I tested with CBR/AC3 encoded audio. VBR audio is a bit of a mess.

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Thanks for all the ideas
by fatbiker / December 13, 2006 10:48 AM PST

Man! When I called in I had no idea I would get so much good info. I have searched the web on this topic in the past, but I wasn't sure what information to trust.

Thanks everybody.

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Experience with Multi Region DVDs
by tarsee / December 13, 2006 11:26 AM PST

Moved to Australia from Canada two years ago. I looked into getting a multi region DVD player once I got here. I went to the Bose store down the street and they told me that most high end systems such as Bose and Sony are region free. Given the price difference, I thanked him and bought a high end Sony.

I have DVDs from 3 different regions in my collection and never had any trouble with my Sony DVD player. Not sure if this still is the case with new models though.

I understand why there is regional coding but there should be a time limit associated with it to allow all DVDs to become region free after a certain time.

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Buy one in Mexico
by javageek / December 13, 2006 10:24 PM PST

You don't have to go all the way to Australia to get a region 4 DVD player.

Region 4 is also the region that was assigned to Mexico, so any dvd player bought in Mexico should be able to play the Serenity DVD.

What's even better, most players here are "multi-region" which means they can play dvds from any region, including region 1. Even the name brands (Sony, Panasonic, etc) offer multi-region players here.

I guess the U.S. is really the only market where they're still enforcing the whole region protection.

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by markofvero / December 13, 2006 2:12 PM PST

An easy, open source solution is to use the VideoLAN client (VLC), which can decode DVDs from any region, on pretty much any operating system that you're likely to run:

In addition, VLC makes an excellent all-around media player and video streaming solution; it's easily worth the download even if you don't need to play DVDs from foreign regions.

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Better on the computer
by pufit_ / December 13, 2006 7:17 PM PST

Some NTSC televisions cannot reproduce a 625-line image properly, often cutting the last 100 lines. Unless you can force NTSC play, which in my opinion, can decrease the quality of the image if converted from PAL, I would just play it on the computer.

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Region Free DVD
by GadgetGetter_23 / December 13, 2006 9:17 PM PST

I live in Australia and i have found that most dvd players are region free starting from your $40 AUD up to your $900 AUD. my solution would be to order a dvd player when you purchase the dvd. This will insure that you will get a dvd player that will play the discs.

Hope this helps.

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by jhpope / December 13, 2006 11:46 PM PST
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Region Free Hack
by wgjones3 / December 14, 2006 12:49 AM PST

I've only had 3 or 4 DVD players, but I've been able to hack all of them using remote control hacks found at Of course, I've never actually tested these hacks--the closest I came was when I was going to order Boomtown from the UK before I found out about the US release.

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