Making iMac G5 DVD Region free (multiregion)

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by will, Nov 26, 2005.

  1. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2002
    #1
    Apologies if this has already been discussed (forum search didn't turn up anything I could see), but I've been trying to make my iMac G5 (2.1GHz 20" iSight model) region free.

    I haven't found a firmware patch, and VLC can't read the optical drive (MATSHITA UJ-846) as a block device, so can't bypass the region setting.

    I have a collection of R1 and R2 DVDs, and would ideally like to be able to play all of them via Frontrow.

    Anyone come across any solutions?
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #2
    I would have thought VLC would work but you have to bypass the dialogue box when you insert the DVD. From memory, it's a DVD Player warning, not a system warning so if you Ignore or Cancel it, you should then be able to watch the video file in VLC. I could very possibly be wrong, of course. :eek:

    As for changing the regions on the DVD drive, even if it's possible it means messing with the firmware of the drive and is not recommended, particularly on a new machine.
     
  3. macrumors 603

    swiftaw

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    #3
    From what I understand, the latest hardware releases from Apple (starting pretty much at the beginning of 2005) have closed the loophole that allowed you to view DVD's from other regions using VLC. The only way now is to change the region, which of course you can only do 5 times before it becomes locked.
     
  4. Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #4
    Interesting. My May-baby (iMac) still plays nicely with VLC. :confused:
     
  5. macrumors 603

    swiftaw

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    #5
    What Rev is your iMac?
     
  6. Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #6
    B

    Wow, I think that's my first post that's made up entirely of a single letter.
     
  7. macrumors 65816

    neocell

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Location:
    Great White North
    #7
    If apple did block the work-around for playing different region DVDs in VLC you could always use MacTheRipper to rip a region fee version to your hard drive (first set CD & DVD to ignore DVD in the System Preferences) and then watch the ripped version, or else try some of these softwares, as probably one will allow you to watch different region DVDs on your Mac link. Just make sure you have the CD & DVD set to ignore.
     
  8. macrumors 603

    swiftaw

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    #8
    No, the same block stops your ability to rip other region disks too
     
  9. macrumors 603

    swiftaw

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    #9
    You might be lucky then, I have a rev D powerbook and have found there is no way to view or rip 'other' region DVD's
     
  10. Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #10

    Yeah. It may also have to do with the country you get the Mac in. Perhaps... Who knows.
     
  11. macrumors 603

    swiftaw

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    #11
    Yeah, it is rather annoying as a Brit living in the US, have stacks of both region 1 and 2 DVD's
     
  12. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2005
    #12
    Are there any external USB drives that are region free and work with the Mac? I have a simular problem to this poster, and was thinking maybe an external drive that was region free would solve the rpoblem completley.
     
  13. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #13
    I'm very tempted to spend the $200 or so putting a Pioneer DVR-K05 in my forthcoming Powerbook, particularly given that it's now an Apple-supported drive and there's beta region-free firmware available.

    The news that the VLC loophole has been closed (EDIT for Matshita drives) is worrying news indeed (particularly given that like most Australians, it's virtually impossible to sate my DVD buying habits with just R4 titles).

    It's no surprise that Panasonic has caved on this front though - they were the consumer electronics firm that caved at the dawn of DVD to allow region coding into the tech specs of DVD...
     
  14. macrumors 68000

    aafuss1

    Joined:
    May 5, 2002
    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    #14
    On the Windows version, there seems to be no region code 'loophole'. I can play R1 discs just fine (My Invader Zim DVD's).
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #15
    Sorry - should've pointed out that the loophole was for Matshita drives. :eek:

    They appear to be physically preventing VLC from reading the disc in the first place...
     
  16. macrumors 68020

    YS2003

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2004
    Location:
    Finally I have arrived.....
    #16
    If you buy an external DVD player (one of those USB or Firewire powered models), can you watch other region's DVD? Even if you need to set the external USB or Firewire DVD player's region to the other region, it is better than messing up with the internal drive by changing regions (who comes up with 5 times as the cap for changing regions on the OEM DVD player; why not like 100 times).

    Does it affect the internal DVD drive (the one comes with the Mac) if you adjust the region for the external USB or Firewire DVD player?
     

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