DVD Page

DVD Page

I watch a lot of anime, some on DVD.

http://www.animeondvd.com The best anime DVD site I have seen.

http://www.wildcoast.org/dvd/ The only other AniDVD site I have seen, but its review style is mediocre, no comments are available to explain the ratings, and the ratings are not credited to anyone. Another problem is that blank entries left as a place holder for reviews on unreleased titles all have 'F' ratings.

See my separate anime page for anime specific topics.


There is a lot of banter about what players are the best, but I can show the capabilities in a post on AnimEigo-DVD@lists.animeigo.com by AnimEigo president Robert Woodhead:

1) You must have a Sony, JVC, or Pioneer DVD player, or a PC-based DVD. These are the brands that apparently can play DVD-R. A quick test at the local Circuit City shows that Magnavox, Proscan, RCA and Panasonic machines cannot play DVD-R.

Mr Woodhead later restated his finding on JVC, as playback oddly halted about halfway into his disc.

Aren't all DVD player players alike? See the above. DVD players have a dizzying array of features that aren't part of the standard. The standard mostly holds for capabilities, such as all players must be capable of generating subtitles and reading the dual layer discs. Variations include CPU power (rewind and fast forward speed are affected), connectivity (cheaper units are limited on A/V output types), quality control, plus the stringentness of the player's capabilities matching the standards, as some types of fades are not well supported, the ability to aggressively check error correction data and the ability to play back high bit rate discs. I hear a Panasonic A-120 is very good at compliance, but the list above shows Panasonics as not capable of reading DVD-Rs. Always check a library's Consumer Reports (hey, tax dollars at work here, don't pass them up).

Product Specific Information:

http://www.brouhaha.com/~eric/video/dvd/ A site that gets a bit more in-depth on the internals of many specific DVD players.seen.

http://www.videodiscovery.com/vdyweb/dvd/dvdfaq.html An in depth FAQ about the DVD format itself. Fairly informative and well mirrored.

http://www.dvdresource.com/ General news and reviews in the DVD market, plus some informative pages such as known flawed players and titles.

Copy Protection:
Contrary to popular commercial opinion, copy protection is possible, but not enforced on every DVD disc. I have a Crutchfield Home Theater pamphlet that claims (or implies) that all discs are copy protected in every way. I guess I'll never buy from them as they are very obviously uninformed. Macrovision enablement is not free to disc producers, a charge of less than five cents per disc is levied. The only disc that I can think of that I have rented that has any analog copy protection is possibly Gattaca, because a record attempt showed unusually snowy picture on a later playback try. None of my discs that I have purchased seem to have it. One reason for this rarity is that analog copy protection slightly degrades the picture on many TVs, and can totally screw with some others, including projectors and very old TVs. I suspect that this was the very reason why DIVX players did not have a reputable playback quality, as they are copy protected and encrypted up the wazoo.

Code Free DVD:
One of the major drawbacks to the DVD format is the region coding, intended to limit distribution of titles so that video release follows theatrical releases in every area as theatrical releases usually aren't timed together globally, as well as guaranteeing a region for foreign licencees. Video producers know this is fairly futile as standard region coding is fairly defeatable, but soft-defeatable players may only have its region change five times. This may put pressure on future standards to lock and encrypt the code in a way that is hard to reverse engineer. Some 'smarter' DVD titles refuse to play on regionless players, so some mods are designed to be region selectable. The sites below are from a post on the AnimEigo-DVD list, although some of the information was incorrect or improperly categorized, so I fixed the problems.



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