Every time I get a piece of pseudo-spam from Amazon these days it’s pushing multi-region DVD players for £29.99 and I get slightly peeved. Not because they’re selling them but because the DVD drive I bought quite recently for my Mac isn’t region-free, having that stupid “5 changes and you’re locked” thing going on. It strikes me as very stupid indeed that a piece of specialist kit for my computer than can do pretty much anything I want it to is not as good as a cheap mass market player in this regard.
So it was with some glee that I discovered, via Cult of Mac, something rather cool. The excellent VLC player (which plays pretty much any movie format under the sun) ignores region coding. Disable the annoying DVD player app that comes with OSX, open the disc in VLC and it plays. No firmware zapping necessary.
Score yet another one for open source, methinks.
(I don’t know if this applies to Windows but I’d be surprised if it doesn’t)
[Update: a new Cult of Mac post has more on DVD ripping and video playback]