Blu-Ray Region Guide

11 Sep 2009  5 Comments

There seems to be a lot of confusion around blu-rays region/zoning dilemma coming from the DVD. I noticed that after the recent PS3 post.

So this is a quick guide,here it goes:

DVD’s had 6 zones as shown in the graph below:

DVD Regions.png

But Blu-rays have 3 regions:

Blueay Regions.png

But blu-ray has an unspoken secret, most movies are region free, so it doesn’t matter what  region your player is. You can check the Blu-ray titles here

As for the PS3, all PS3 games are playable on all region consoles, there is no region lock for games. But the restrictions are on DVDs and some blu-ray movies, so you wont be able to play your PS2 games (not an issue with the newer models)/DVD movies that you purchased from amazon if you have a PAL PS3 and vice-versa.

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  • Marzouq

    Now thats an amazing clarification! I didn’t even know that! All I knew is that the PS3 was region free which I thought was genius, seems an interesting pattern they have made for Blu-Rays! I think they should just abolish it all together since its pointless!

  • N

    I wish that we wouldn’t have to deal with region coding anymore. But as it stands right now, Blu-Rays are the best format from that perspective. ofcource in the lead is the mpeg/avi/mkv file formats :)

  • bo-shaikha

    See the reason they made the blu-ray region free (with the option to have the regions locked still in the gray area) is because of the prior blu-ray and HD war. To my understanding sony decided to have all the regions unlocked in order to attract a larger audience for both the blu-ray format as well as their PS3 since x box was running the HD format.

  • DVLz

    Just a clarification mpeg is NOT like avi or mkv cause they are both containers that’s all. Before mkv took the lead there was another container known as ogm. Inside these containers you can add few streams, but mkv has more options such as subtitle, chapters, fonts etc.. Another famous container is the rmvb that can be played using real player or real alternative codec installed on PC, also wmv is doing well. The reason why I mentioned containers is that they can be encoded with either divx,xvid or x264 and they all give different results from crappy to super. Another thing you should know that bluray comes in different video codec formats for example:

    Ultraviolet Blu-ray
    Video codec: MPEG-2
    Video resolution: 1080p


    Braveheart Blu-ray
    Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC
    Video resolution: 1080p


    Army of Darkness Blu-ray
    Video codec: VC-1
    Video resolution: 1080p

    MPEG-4 AVC is the dominant then comes VC-1 then at last MPEG-2 which is the crappiest of all.

  • N

    bo-shaikha: You are absolutely correct, I remember reading that somewhere at the beginning of the HD format war. Microsoft only backed up the HDDVD just to delay the adaptation of the Blu-ray format, which they have done perfectly. the wanted time to get their media streaming service up and running. As they see it, digital media is the future, and I agree.

    DVLz: thanks for the in-depth/geeky info bro, always appreciated :)


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