How do I make a DVD player zone-free?

I think this is legit since I own the DVD’s from different regions, but if you mods think not, please lock me up.

I am an American living in Prague with DVD’s from Regions 1, 2 & 5. I had a Nintaus DVD player that was zone-free, but it broke and I need to replace it. Problem: Nintaus costs twice as much as other DVD players here and I am broke. So I want to buy an LG or Clatronic or Sony (all are on sale this week for under $100) and make it zone free.



Do a Google search on DVD player hack and it should turn up everything you need. It will give you a list of players that are hackable, and how to do them (generally pretty easy). Keep in mind that some players are marketed in different countries under different brand names, but you should be able to figure it out.

I was just googling “zone free dvd” and getting companies that charge outrageous prices for it.


This is a little off the topic, but just because you legally own the DVDs that doesn’t make the whole thing legit - at least, not in the opinion of the people who devised the region system in the first place. Whether you care what they think, or should, is another question.

The region system, as I understand it, was designed to keep people from reselling DVDs across key international borders and thus breaking legal agreements about the publication of material in particular countries.

If you’re in Prague, you shouldn’t be able to play region 1 dvds… according to the system. “Sorry, it wasn’t a very bright idea to buy them,” in effect. I can’t quite tell from the tiny little map whether you’d be on the region 2 or region 5 side of the dividing line… but you’re not supposed to straddle that one either.

just my $0.02 as usual.

Go to, look up your player model, and see whether there are any methods for unlocking it. There are also, I believe, links there to companies that sell unlocked units.

A rule of thumb: Lesser known brands usually come region-free from the factory, or they can easily be converted to region-free by using some secret key sequence on the remote control.

For brands like Philips, Sony, Pioneer, etc. you usually need to “chip” the player, which can be expensive.

Try this site: It has lots of information

Sort of.

The regional restrictions or zone locks are completely optional for the producers of a movie.Their creation was purely a movie-industry-internal thing, so that DVDs of popular new movies released in one area would not take sales away from cinema showngs of the same movies in another area. AFAIK, there was no issue with larger trans-border copyright differences.

Problem is, after a movie has been released in all regions, there’s no way of having the region locks ‘expire’ on a disc. Your Zone-1 disc remains nominally-unplayable on a Zone-2 player, even after the movie has been released in Zone 2. This is a serious problem with the system.

Some movies are apparently being released for all zones simultaneously now. I’ve seen music DVDs like that. Let’s hope that more follow.

And there is no reason to put zone locks on DVD re-releases of older movies which are distributed worldwide already!

Then you get cases like my friends who moved from Canada to New Zealand with their Canadian 200-DVD Zone-1 collection. New Zealand is in a different zone. The movies had been released ovcer there, but there was no way they could afford to re-buy them all. They bought a new multi-zone DVD player instead.

I had to do a lot of research before I found an unlockable DVD player! I have the Yamaha …um…5650. It unlocks by pressing some numbers.

I went to DVD Region free, but they seem to have been since taken over by greed and they charge now. Their site has also become a lot tackier.

Another idea is to just buy a DVD drive for your computer. My friend has one just for watching European DVDs.

DVD players sold in different markets seem to have vastly different profiles (if that’s the word I want). Just last year I bought a Phillips DVD player locally. Included in the box was a pink slip with the region unlocking instructions on it. A few key presses on the remote and the Region 1 DVD hired from the local video shop played fine. Another useful feature is that the video output can be set to either PAL or NTSC.

NZ is in Region 4.