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Old 19-10-2013, 11:16   #1
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Buying a 'Codefree' BD player in the UK

I have decided to get my second Blu-ray player and want to get one that plays at least Region A&B. There are a few listed on Amazon but one has to be careful as some of them are region free only for DVD playback. But there are a few models, noticeably LG, which clearly say 'Codefree' for Blu-ray as well and have ABC marked on them.

Am I right in assuming that such a player, when connected to a TV & Home Cinema system, will play Region A discs as well as the usual B?

Because of the way my second Home cinema room is set-up, there are certain limitations and I would like advice on which make/model to go for.

- It only needs to be a Blu-ray player and not a recorder.
- It must play Region A & B BDs at the very least.
- It must have at least one Optical digital output (no free co-axial inputs left on my amp)
- There should be no need for any additional hardware to get the playback. I have heard that some of the currently available codefree BD players have to be used through a computer or whatever)

May I ask for some suggestions of Make, Model and buying outlet, please?
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Old 19-10-2013, 11:55   #2
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Yeah, just look for Code Free and you'll be OK. Can't advise on optical out, as I don't use it so have never looked for it, sorry.

If you've no aversion to second hand, check out the AV Forums classifieds - some proper bargains turn up from time to time and it's such a well established site you can be sure that the sellers have treated them properly and won't sell a fellow enthusiast a dud. I'm on my fourth and have paid less than £100 for most of them second hand. (good brands, Pioneer, Panasonic etc)

Most of them are hard modded - which means all you have to do to change regions is press a button on the remote whilst in standby and choose 1 or 2 for A or B. Easy and software updates don't affect it. I'd be wary of one that's had the software hacked as it can revert back to a single code if you update it.

Last edited by KRW; 19-10-2013 at 11:56.
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Old 19-10-2013, 12:53   #3
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How much are you willing to spend? Modded players aren't cheap unfortunately!
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Old 19-10-2013, 13:03   #4
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This is fine both price-wise and spec.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/LG-CODEFREE-...defree+blu+ray

I have looked at detailed specs elsewhere and there is an Optical Output.

What do you think?
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Old 19-10-2013, 13:37   #5
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I've no experience with LG players but I can't see them being all that bad really & £200 is a good price for a codefree player, but that company's Amazon listing is god awful! There's no mention of how they have made it code free (was it a hardware mod or software hack?) and you have to wonder how exactly it is powered when they state something as vague as this:

"100~240V 50/60Hz WOLD-WIDE POWER SUPPLY UNIT WILL ARRIVE WITH THE CORRECT PLUG FOR ATTCHEMENT FOR YOUR POWER SOCKET."

So is it using an adapter, or does the player have the PSU built in? I'd send the seller a few questions if any of these things are an issue for you Raigmore.
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Old 19-10-2013, 14:03   #6
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Power supply is not a problem. As I am a diver, I have several quality worldwide adapters and in any case, this one says 240V. As for the technolgy used to make it Code-free, I have no idea. But the seller appears to come with a high recommendation from Amazon.
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Old 19-10-2013, 14:14   #7
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It should be 240v compatible, but I know a lot of people dislike adapters/power bricks when it comes to their AV equipment so I thought I'd bring it up. I guess the only thing you have worry about is whether it's a modded or hacked player: The problem with software hacks is that they may revert back to Region B (or probably region A because I think these players may be US imports) if you attempt to update the firmware of the player (which is something you may need to do to play the latest or future discs).
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Old 19-10-2013, 14:24   #8
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If it's a hardware mod, it's a good price, but the one-star review there makes me think it's not as straightforward as they make it seem. I'd avoid.

This seems decent - http://www.mrmdvd.com/catalog/produc...oducts_id=1542

I'd trust this site. They've come down in price lately, it seems. Last time I looked for one new, they were about the £3-400 mark but that was a few years ago.

Or this one - http://www.mrmdvd.com/catalog/produc...oducts_id=1537

You might come a cropper with the optical out condition. I don't think the first one I've linked to has one and I'm not sure about the second one. It all seems to be HDMI now.

I've used this company in the past for DVD players and I think they're pretty friendly if you email them, so you could always ask them which models have optical out? I suspect it might be a problem.

Nope - I've found you one albeit slightly more pricey -
http://www.mrmdvd.com/catalog/produc...oducts_id=1536

Review here mentions optical out

http://hometheater.about.com/od/dvdp...yer-Review.htm

Last edited by KRW; 19-10-2013 at 14:29.
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Old 19-10-2013, 14:46   #9
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http://www.mrmdvd.com/catalog/produc...oducts_id=1537

Thanks KRW. The above is your second link and the product description clearly says Optical Output. Is this a hardware hack player? Same price as the LG.
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Old 19-10-2013, 14:55   #10
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So it is, I didn't notice. These are hardware modded players. I'd be 99.9% confident of a player bought from here. There are those who have reported problems with them, but, like I say, I've had four now and they've all worked perfectly. I've only bothered upgrading as I needed additional features but the region-free side of things has always been very smooth.

On my current player, to change regions, you press the blue button on the remote for five seconds until it beeps. Then press 1 for A or whatever and it'll beep again and then just play the disc.

The only problem I've ever encountered was an old player, I think Pioneer, which wouldn't let you change regions if you left a disc in the machine. It sounds like no big deal but was annoying if you'd already sat down to watch something and set it to the wrong region and couldn't just turn it off and on again

I'm glad to see they've come down to comfortably under £200.

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Old 19-10-2013, 14:58   #11
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I have just spoken to the guy at mrmdvd and he confirmed that the Panasonic DMP BDT130 he is selling is Hardware hacked, latest firmware updated and has an optical output. He was EXTREMELY helpful and even discussed the idiosyncrasies of my second system and suggested solutions. I WILL buy from him.
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Old 21-10-2013, 11:24   #12
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I've bought all of my region-modded DVD devices from MultiRegion Magic - they've always been willing to help.

Can't speak on the Blu Ray front as I bought my modded Oppo from a different place, but if I have a requirement to get another I would always check these guys out first.
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Old 24-10-2013, 22:24   #13
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Just bought the dmp bdt130 for £79 from tesco, i have ordered a hack remote from ebay, fingers crossed it works
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Old 24-10-2013, 23:05   #14
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That will almost certainly only make it DVD Multiregion, not BD code-free banus.
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Old 06-10-2019, 18:40   #15
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The MRM website still looks active and the only BD player that I bought through him 6 years ago still works like a dream, playing all my US Criterion BDs and other Region A locked ones like a dream and of course other regions too. Now I am going to upgrade my AV systems and want to buy the BD players from him. But the charge for hardware hacking seems to be rather high; for example, the Sony UBP-X800m2 is available for £248 from Amazon but MRM is asking £449 with the HW hack. I don't recall paying 80% over the marked price in 2013; is that usual now?
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Old 06-10-2019, 19:02   #16
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Blu-ray player hacks have always been quite a bit more expensive than DVD players but not 80%! Thats pretty extreme.

Have you considered using two separate players? Keep the one you have for BDs especially since its still working well. And get a regular X800m2 for UHD discs. Remember there is no region locking with UHD.
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Old 06-10-2019, 19:25   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeyserSoze View Post
Have you considered using two separate players? Keep the one you have for BDs especially since its still working well. And get a regular X800m2 for UHD discs. Remember there is no region locking with UHD.
If you have the room, that would make more sense.
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Old 06-10-2019, 21:29   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeyserSoze View Post
Blu-ray player hacks have always been quite a bit more expensive than DVD players but not 80%! Thats pretty extreme.

Have you considered using two separate players? Keep the one you have for BDs especially since its still working well. And get a regular X800m2 for UHD discs. Remember there is no region locking with UHD.
I thought of that but cannot be done. The Samsung Q90 that I plan to get has only 2 HDMI inputs and they are needed for the X800m2 and the Sky Q box. The only remaining input is an Optical one and of course, audio only.

The only other option - which I am not at all sure will work - is to connect the old Panasonic DMP-BDT130 directly to the TV's HDMI input and use the latter's input selector only for this device. But if I did that, will the ARC facility between the TV and the soundbar allow the sound through the speakers? Most of my Criterion BDs are older films and the audio is DD 5.1 at best.

Last edited by Raigmore; 06-10-2019 at 21:54.
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Old 06-10-2019, 23:06   #19
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Get a HDMI splitter for the two players. You'll only be using one at a time.
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Old 06-10-2019, 23:36   #20
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Get a HDMI splitter for the two players. You'll only be using one at a time.
Did you mean a HDMI Switcher? I guess I'll have to do that.
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