What is DVD Region Codes
Almost all commercial DVDs that are sold have what is called “region code”, which only allows the DVD to be played on DVD players that have this region code, and the only DVD players that typically do have this region code are those sold in that same region. For instance, all DVDs and DVD players sold in North America have a region code of “1” and DVD with a region code “1” can only be played on DVD players with that same region code. What this means is that if you live in North America and order a DVD from another country, it probably will not play on your DVD player.
DVD region codes that Hollywood used
Region 1: USA, Canada
Region 2: Japan, Europe, South Africa, Middle East, Greenland
Region 3: S. Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and parts of Southeast Asia
Region 4: Australia, New Zealand, Latin America
Region 5: Eastern Europe, Russia, India, Africa
Region 6: China
Region 7: Reserved for Unspecified Special Use
Region 8: Reserved for cruise ships, airplane and the like
Region all: Uncoded discs that will work anywhere
Why need region codes?
The region codes was established primarily to protect the movie studio’s physical distribution system. Feature films are rarely released on the same date in different regions of the world. If a DVD comes out in the United States before the same movie is released to theaters in France, DVDs of the movie imported from the United States could hurt ticket sales of the movie in French theaters.
How to play different regions DVD on Mac?
Hardware solution: The easiest way to play different regions DVD on Mac is to buy a region-free player, however, if you’ve already got a nice DVD player, you can use hacks to turn off the region code in your DVD player. Note that hacking your DVD player region code is a violation of the DMCA and this is illegal in the United States.
Software solution: If you live in the United States and you want a solution that will work on any DVD player but not to hack your DVD player, another best solution for you is to make a copy of the movie, although backing up copies of DVD is currently illegal in the United States, it will become available in the future. Then what you need to do is to using one of the popular ripping programs on the market, here, I would like to suggest you Pavtube DVDAid for Mac, which enables you to make a 1:1 copy of the original DVD disc without quality loss with all audio streams and subtitle tracks well preserved. You will get a DVD that works that can work in any DVD player.
If you have interest for DVD Copy laws in different countries, you can read this article:
Digital Copyright Laws in US, UK, Japan, Australia, Norway…