22 February 2015

Unlock DVD Blu-ray RegionThis one is a lot of fun: You borrow a DVD from a friend, or you buy one online somewhere.

You stick it in your player.

And then, disaster strikes!

You get a message like “Region not allowed”, and the movie won’t play.

WTH?!

Welcome to the glorious world of Region Codes!

Sometimes, it’s possible to bypass this restriction, but it depends on your DVD/Blu-ray player.

Region codes explained

Region codes are basically DRM (digital rights management) techniques that allow studios to control the release of films in various regions. So, for example, they can release a new movie in the USA first, and then the UK, and then elsewhere.

If you’ve ever looked for movies on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk, you’ll notice that DVD and Blu-ray movies are usually released in the USA first, and then a month or two later, they’ll appear for sale in the UK.

Region CodesWhy the movie studios do this is anybody’s guess, but mine is that they’re trying to make as much money as possible. Shocking, I know.

Now, let me just say that I don’t support pirating movies. But, here’s the thing: If I want to buy a movie in another country, I’m still paying for it. It’s not piracy. If I want to buy a movie in another country, in another currency, and if they’ll ship it to me, then what’s the biggie? There isn’t one, except that Uncle Hollywood says, “No!”

Well, screw you, Uncle Hollywood. I’m a rebel. You’ve got enough money, I’m not shortchanging anyone, I’m not pirating anything, and goddammit, I wanna watch my movie! 🙂

The following is a color-coded Region map for DVDs:

DVD Region Code Map

Blu-ray discs also have region codes, but most studios don’t enforce the region code restrictions, which are way more lax than for DVDs. There are a few exceptions to this rule, so there are no guarantees. Also, hacks that exist for Blu-ray players usually don’t turn off the region code setting for Blu-ray discs – it usually just makes playing DVDs a region-free experience. Sometimes, it also unlocks the Blu-ray region code, also.

As for DVD players, some are hackable, and some are not. Some are hackable until you update the player’s firmware (via ethernet, WiFi, or an update file on a USB stick). Then, the player is no longer region-free. YMMV (your mileage may vary), so be careful.

Hacked Off

Right, so: How do you hack your player?

That depends. Some manufacturers basically don’t allow it. Toshiba is kind of famous for having non-hackable players. Sony usually requires downloading a CD image, burning it to a disc, and playing the disc in your player. Samsung players are often hackable, but then they’ll issue a firmware update that resets the region code and disables the hack – lame! My personal preference is Philips, because almost all of their players are hackable.

The hacking process for some players is quite simple:

  1. Go here: http://www.videohelp.com/dvdhack
  2. Search for your model number, i.e. “Philips DVP2880
  3. Go through the list of instructions, and try it out!

The instructions will usually be something like this (this is just an example, specifically for the above player):

  1. Power ON the DVD player with no disc inside
  2. Goto SETUP and go to Preferences
  3. With preferences highlighted, Press NEXT CHAPTER>|, PREVIOUS CHAPTER |<, NEXT CHAPTER>|, PREVIOUS CHAPTER |<
  4. The OSD will show the current Region Code
  5. Press the Navigation Up or Navigation Down buttons to select your desired region, or 0 for region free
  6. Press OK to confirm your region selection

Poof! You’re done.

Note that different manufacturers have different methods for hacking the region code on their players. Not all hacks will work for you. For example, you may have the exact same model number, but the Australian version of the player instead of the EU version. Like I said, YMMV. But, usually on sites like VideoHelp.com, there will be several sets of instructions, so try them all before you give up.

How do I watch movies on my puter?

SlySoft AnyDVDPiece of cake!

Buy Redfox’s AnyDVD. You can use it for a free 21-day trial by downloading it here:

https://www.redfox.bz/en/download.html

The price is now a bit steep, but I’ve used it for years, and it really rocks. Many movies also contain added copy protection so that the disc won’t play on a computer. AnyDVD conveniently disables all that nonsense for you, on the fly. It’s one of my favorite bits of software, and it’s updated regularly to remove the latest copy protection mechanisms, so you can just watch your dang movies in peace.

Got another favorite player hack site? Post it in the comments below!

Also, don’t miss:

HD Home Theater Setup: HDMI vs Optical, 5.1 vs 7.1, and everything else

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Make Your DVD or Blu-ray Player Region-Free
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111 thoughts on “Make Your DVD or Blu-ray Player Region-Free

  • 12 August 2018 at 11:15
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    Heh Scottie – I was wondering if you could help me out with a simple hack for my Panasonic DMP-BDT 210 UK player.
    trying to get it to play American Blu ray discs is this possible through some remote control hack?
    Any advice would be kindly appreciated.

    Cheers David

    Reply
  • 14 August 2018 at 03:29
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    Hi there I have just brought a Australian LG UBK80 DVD player can it be altered to multi region player please

    Reply
  • 24 October 2018 at 07:58
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    Hey- I can’t find my Sony RMT-VB201U

    Reply
    • 24 October 2018 at 12:05
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      Sony players are usually notoriously difficult to hack. They usually required burning a CD/DVD and playing it to hack the player. So, due to the difficulty, hacks aren’t too common for Sony’s in my experience.

      Reply
  • 24 October 2018 at 22:08
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    Hi. Scottie. I have Kenwood Sovereign DV-5900M mega changer with I would hate to part with, but will have to if it can’t be made region free. Would you know if it is possible.

    Reply
  • 1 November 2018 at 14:41
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    We have a number of treasured movies on VHS. We can copy some to disc, others do not allow copying. Is there any way to by-pass this?

    Reply
    • 1 November 2018 at 14:50
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      Easily? No. I have a friend who was doing this with old home movies, and even without any copy protection, he still had a heckuva time. There were a couple of tapes he simply couldn’t copy despite his high-techiness.

      Reply
    • 30 December 2018 at 06:12
      Permalink

      some movies on VHS format came with a copy protection called Macrovision. You need to purchase a Macrovision protection device and connect the video out from your VHS machine in to this device and out to your copying device or computer.
      You can find Macrovision removal devices on ebay if you are lucky.
      Some used electronics shops may sell this also.

      Reply
    • 25 November 2018 at 13:48
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      Oh wow! That’s handy. When I checked some years ago, Sony’s were the most difficult to hack. Good news!

      Reply
  • 6 December 2018 at 03:37
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    Hi Scottie
    Can you please tell me if I can be the make my Soniq portable dvd player region free? I almost got it, but couldn’t change the number.
    MODEL NO. Soniq QMD71B
    Thanks

    Reply
  • 16 December 2018 at 04:23
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    Any help for a Toshiba BDX2300KU Blu Ray to make it region free would be most appreciated.

    Thank you in advance.

    Reply
  • 22 December 2018 at 00:24
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    Several sites have an unlock hack for the Samsung DVD-1080P9 all of which require a code to be entered at some point.

    My problem? My remote has NO numeric keys so how can I enter the codes??

    Is there a non-numeric way of unlocking it?

    Reply
  • 30 December 2018 at 00:20
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    How about Blu-Ray Region FREE Hack for Samsung BD-J6300 (BD-J6300/XN)..?
    Any suggestions?
    Marco A’dam

    Reply
    • 17 January 2019 at 16:34
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      I need this hack too!!! Anybody please!!!???

      Reply
  • 2 January 2019 at 08:00
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    Hi
    I have a LG UBK80 Blu-ray DVD player
    Is there a hack for multi region DVD?
    Regards
    Alex

    Reply
  • 17 January 2019 at 16:25
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    Hello. Do you guys know the code for Samsung BD-J6300/ZF Blu-ray?

    Reply
  • 11 February 2019 at 03:59
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    H,i I have a Panasonic DMR-XW440 and I can’t find a hack anywhere for it. Everyone wants money as it is not a new one where Panasonic would do it free. Its only the last couple of years I have been buying overseas DVD’s as Australia doesn’t sell what I am after, at least not yet. I often go for older stuff so the stores here aren’t interested in bringing them in. Can you help? I went to videohelp and they don’t have it.

    Reply
  • 12 February 2019 at 11:51
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    Been trying for days, no luck! Desperate!
    My model bought in Europe, region 2 and B is : Blu-ray Samsung BD-J4500R/XN and on my remote it says AK59-00149A in case that’s important.

    I want to play region 1 dvds from the USA!

    Tried every code, every number, nothing works! Press repeat (fast or 5 seconds, tried both) then code for region number (tried all) then no black window on top left with a number where I’m told to quickly press 9. Nothing appears on screen!
    Please HELP!!!

    Reply
    • 12 February 2019 at 12:18
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      I had the same problem. I couldn’t hack the Blu-ray player in the end, so I got a separate DVD player that was listed on the videohelp site, and I play US DVDs in that player. It was the only thing that worked in the end.

      Reply
      • 12 February 2019 at 12:56
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        Thanks for replying! So sad and desperate! I have an “old” SONY dvd recorder, think it might work? I don’t use it anymore (too many things connected to my tv and couldn’t connect with HDMI I think so quality not so great). What and how should I do?
        SONY DVD RECORDER ” RDR – HX680 ” n° 4006553 and on remote, if it matters RMT-D249P

        Reply
  • 19 March 2019 at 04:38
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    Do you know if I can convert my Samsung Blu-Ray played to Region Free? Model number BD-JM57/ZA. Thanks.

    Reply
  • 2 April 2019 at 09:19
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    Hi Scottie,

    I have a sony UBP-x700 player with region A, but i want to make it region free, kindly help.

    Reply
    • 12 June 2019 at 05:02
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      i want to know about this too please.

      Reply
  • 11 April 2019 at 18:46
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    I have a Sanyo model # FWBO505F N. There aren’t any number buttons on my remote. I have gone to the OSS but it only shows the license information. There aren’t any settings there that can be changed. Dear sir can you offer any assistance? I do thank you for your time either way…. Calvin from Saint Pauls N.C.

    Reply
  • 17 April 2019 at 01:56
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    I picked up a Pioneer BDP-180-s, making the mistake of not checking the region codes prior to purchase, and the region code hacks I can find don’t work – including the one from videohelp.com, listed for this model. Have you heard of any firmware hacks (or other options) that actually work, since it appears the unit isn’t generally available from PioneerUSA? I’m trying to switch it from Region 2 to Region 1 (or Region 0).

    Reply
  • 15 May 2019 at 07:47
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    what blu-ray player should I buy to make zone free

    Reply
  • 8 June 2019 at 02:28
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    Hey Scottie I need help hacking my Sony UBP-x800 player thank you for any help

    Reply
  • 15 June 2019 at 12:48
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    I have a sony UBP-x700 player which was purchased with an emergency budget expense after my Sony DVP was struck by lightning. I’d rather bypass the Region Code than rip all my affected DVD’s onto a USB drive.
    I have seen a reference to downloading code to a CD and letting the device ingest it, but haven’t seen any links beyond that.

    Reply
  • 17 July 2019 at 00:36
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    Does Anyone know how to make LG UBK90 region free? I need to play Region B Blue Ray Disks.
    Thank You

    Reply
  • 26 July 2019 at 03:40
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    Hi,
    I’ve just purchased a Panasonic DMR-PWT560 (GN) as many had written that it could be set region free by Panasonic Authorised service centres at no cost, and this was confirmed by customer service.
    Though I understand any firmware update would overwrite the mod.
    Can the region unlock be achieved by end user (me)?
    I understand this would pertain to the DVD, not Bluray… so can the remote also be used to manually change between A, B and C if/as needed?
    Thanks,
    Brad

    Reply

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