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Best Region Free Player?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by John B. Holbrook, Jan 22, 2003.

  1. John B. Holbrook

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    I wouldn't mind spending a couple of hundred on a good region free player so I can order some TV series DVDs not available in the US. Any suggestions? I have a primary DVD player, so as long as the region free unit is progressive and can pass a DTS signal, I'm happy.
     
  2. Michael Merrell

    Michael Merrell Stunt Coordinator

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    Speaking of TV series DVDs...start here (I did): http://www.buffyguide.com/faq.shtml#vidstandards

    Google is probably a good bet, too.

    I believe that the Malata and JVC (at least) will internally convert PAL to NTSC, which is another hurdle you might face.

    --Mike
     
  3. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    If you're using it primarily for TV shows, then you might want to wait a little for more feedback on the Philips 963sa, especially from an eventual Secrets Shootout update.

    This player uses a Faroudja fli23xx chip for deinterlacing, which will likely yield better results on video-sourced DVDs than the Mediamatics-based players like Malata and JVC. The player is reportedly hackable via the remote (ie. no physical mods) for all-region, PAL->NTSC playback.

    However, if you get this player, you'll probably want to use it as your main player given the price tag ($400-450) and probable high quality output.

    If you don't care about quality, then maybe the cheapy Cyberhome 500 ($70 at Best Buy) is good enough as a 2ndary player. It is also hackable for all-region, PAL->NTSC playback via the remote, but there are reliability issues w/ it. If you want to try it, you might want to give it a quick test at the store before bringing it home.

    _Man_
     
  4. Mike Becher

    Mike Becher Auditioning

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    I'm very interested in getting a region-free player as well. Man-Fai, what are some other good choices inbetween the "cheapy" Cyberhome 500 and the higher priced Philips 963sa? I'm looking to replace my main player, but I don't want to break the bank. Any suggestions are appreciated. [​IMG]
     
  5. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    If you need PAL->NTSC conversion, then pretty much the Malata's and hacked JVC's are your best options in the $200-300 range.

    Most of them can also do scaling/aspect ratio control. The Malata's even let you do custom scaling like on a PC although they are not as reliable as the big name players. They tend to be the favorite amongst people who want all-region, PAL->NTSC playback. And actually, they use the same all-in-one Mediamatics chip as the JVC's.

    If the Philips 963sa does not work out on the scaling/aspect ratio control features as reported now, I might get a hacked JVC 600 (~$300) instead. If you don't need reliable scaling/aspect ratio control, you might try a hacked JVC 500 (~$230?) instead. Hopefully, a newer firmware can change that for the Philips since it has the potential for being the best all-around player for
     
  6. TimothyE

    TimothyE Stunt Coordinator

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  7. Mike Becher

    Mike Becher Auditioning

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    What is PAL to NTSC conversion? I'm very ignorant on this as I am just starting to put together a modest sytstem. In what situations will I need this option?
     
  8. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    NTSC is the video format used in North America and certain other countries like Japan. PAL is the format used in many other countries, especially in Europe.

    If you plan to import DVDs from Europe or certain other places, you'll probably need PAL->NTSC conversion assuming your TV doesn't support PAL.

    _Man_
     
  9. Matt DeVillier

    Matt DeVillier Supporting Actor

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    also consider the Cyberhome CH-500. it's a cheapo player (available from Best Buy among other places) and can be hacked from the remote, but does perfect PAL->NTSC conversion. hard to beat for $50. performace is probably not up there with the JVC/malata though
     
  10. Claire Panke

    Claire Panke Second Unit

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    Timothy, the RP82 does not do PAL>NTSC conversion. European DVDs would be unplayable unless John has a display that supports PAL.
     
  11. TanD

    TanD Stunt Coordinator

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    One higher end option should be the DENON 3800 (with a downloadable multiregion firmware upgrade), it does NTSC to PAL, and PAL to NTSC or native, with super image and audio quality. But It is about 1K.
     

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