The Benefits of Region Free
If you’re interested in watching Blu-ray Discs and DVDs from around the world, you may have came across information on the web about region-free (multi-region or code-free) Blu-ray and DVD players that can be used to watch Blu-ray and DVD movies from other regions. You also may have come across some information on region code software hacks which allow your player to work with foreign-coded movies. While in many instances these hacks will work, there’s also an equal amount of instances where they don’t.
Part of the reason that region free Blu-ray DVD Players are so popular is because unlike software hacks, region free players have modified internal hardware that’s specially designed and tested to allow the playback of discs from any and all regions. Instead of scouring the internet for region code hacks that are constantly changing and can vary from title to title with no guarantee of consistency, an internally modified player handles discs from all regions with ease and without any additional work on your part.
Aside from the hassle of using region code hacks compared the simplicity that a region free Blu-ray player offers, there are quite a few other benefits.
Region Free Software Hacks vs. Region Free Hardware Modifications
Cons of Software Hacks:
- Many hacks have a set number of times that they can be used before the player itself will lock up, not allowing you to change regions anymore. Even though this seems to be just a small inconvenience, consider the possibility that your player locks up on a region other than the one native to you, rendering your player practically useless.
- The majority of the time, a hack that may have worked previously will no longer work following a software update. Depending on the model of player you have, you may have no control over updates. If you’re connecting to BD Live or to the internet with your Blu-ray player, the update may run in the background without your knowledge and suddenly your software hack no longer works. Manufacturers are very in tune with the popularity of region code hacks, meaning that programmers and developers are continually creating updates that eliminate the functionality of well known hacking procedures and loopholes.
- Once a player has been hacked, the manufacturers warranty, in most cases, is null and void. If it locks up or even fails to operate – and even if it’s due to something completely unrelated to your region code hacking – there’s a good chance that you’ll be left without a replacement. If you have a rather expensive player, this poses a risk to your investment as you’ll be forced to purchase a new player at full price.
Pros of Hardware Modifications:
- Hardware modified players, or region-free players, when modified correctly will continue to work. Not only will they work efficiently but they’ll work with all regions. There is no need to make changes for specific discs or even specific titles. A region-free player simply recognizes and plays a disc, regardless of which region it came from.
- Since the warranty on a region-free player is usually supplied by the company who performed the modification, there are no worries about the warranty being rejected by the manufacturer due to modification.
- Unlike software hacks, hardware modified players are normally unaffected by software updates. This means that you can still connect to the internet and get the most out of your player without having to worry about updates that affect its functionality. If you’re paying top dollar for a high-quality player, there is no sense in risking its functionality or refraining from using certain features just so you can use discs from other regions. This is what region free, hardware modified players are made for.
Overall, if you’re serious about movies and want the full Blu-ray experience without financial risk or the chance of lost functionality, a Region Free Blu-ray DVD player is your best bet. there are modified players of all price ranges and practically every major brand you can imagine (including exclusive high-end brands). Realistically, there’s no reason that you should to resort to using hacks.
Additionally, the vast majority of region free players also include built in PAL/NTSC conversion so there’s no need for an external video converter, and most of them also work on both 110 and 220 voltage so you can use them anywhere in the world without the need for a voltage converter.
It’s actually quite clear why there’s such a market for region free players, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. Whether you’re a serious movie collector or simply addicted to foreign cinema, a region free player is your key to Blu-ray and DVD satisfaction.