Question about "All Region" DVD Player

You’re right it is a useful link:

(Bolding mine) To me it says that your TV is playing a mostly NTSC signal (525 lines at 60 HZ) but the color information is on the PAL subcarrier (4.43 MHz). I haven’t found a difinitive link about where the extra 100 lines come from (or go) when playing this format. It could be that the TV justs adjusts the image to fit the screen. Since you say you don’t see any letterboxing, that’s probably it. Of course if there were letterboxing, it wouldn’t be nearly as noticable as watching widescreen movies on a TV since there isn’t as big of difference between PAL and NTSC aspect ratios as there is between TV and film.

Anyway, it boils down to the fact that European TV’s are far more flexable than US ones. (There’s irony somewhere in that statement, I just know it.)

No. It’s advertised as being region-free, that is, it circumvents the regioning system. In that, it’s honest.

Sure, but I don’t think that’s quite what I was getting at; what I’m asking is whether the moving image data stored on a DVD is actually formatted in such a way as to be suitable for a specified TV format, or whether it is just a digital video stream (like an .mpg file) that needs to be converted to a suitable TV format regardless, even when played in its own region.

An analogous situation would actually be a file such as .wma or .mpg - it would be inappropriate to describe these as PAL or NTSC, because it is just a digital video file designed to be played on a computer; if you want to see it on TV, you’d have to get a TV-out card, which would convert the digital video to PAL or NTSC on the fly.

I’m not saying this is the case, I’m asking whether it is, but if it isn’t, how can region 0 discs play in any player - even those that do not have built-in format converters?

It is a digital video stream and many of the electronic details of the TV norms are not relevant on that level. However the resolutions are different even in the digital data. The frame rate is also fixed in the digital data because you have a certain number of well defined frames and expect the result to run in real time. Of course you can fiddle with this by dropping or duplicating frames but that is already a part of the conversion.

Region 0 disks will only play on players that support the relevant video norm. However many will support some kind of conversion and for software players it is not an issue at all.