John_Cline wrote on 6/16/2014, 3:28 AM
No, we have not, there are almost no multi-standard set-top DVD players in the U.S.
Arthur.S wrote on 6/16/2014, 7:23 AM
Thanks for the info John.
musicvid10 wrote on 6/16/2014, 7:36 AM
NTSC plays in Europe (generally), PAL does not play in North America.
Arthur.S wrote on 6/16/2014, 8:00 AM
Yes, multi-standard TV/players have been around in the UK for years - almost as far back as I can remember DVD appearing. Just wondered if that had become the 'norm' in the USA now too. Doesn't make any sense to me to produce NTSC only players. Or is it more expensive to produce a multi-standard device?
Chienworks wrote on 6/16/2014, 8:34 AM
I'm sure it is more expensive to produce a multi-standard device, probably on the order of at least a few cents these days. It's much more likely an anti-piracy measure, though probably not terribly well conceived nor executed. It could be felt by the production studios that a DVD player that could handle other discs might invite USA residents to shop abroad for cheaper or stolen content.

Then again, just like i've already gotten to the point where i haven't played music from a CD in years, i may soon get to the point where i don't watch video from a DVD anymore. Every video-capable device i own *except* my DVD player can handle pretty much whatever format i stick in it.
musicvid10 wrote on 6/16/2014, 8:42 AM
I suspect that relatively few commercial DVD titles are PAL-only, so the need for multistandard playback in the US is not big.
rs170a wrote on 6/16/2014, 10:58 AM
Every once in a while I get someone coming into my office with a DVD (travel, etc.) that they purchased overseas somewhere that's in PAL format and they're wondering how to get it to play on their home DVD player.

Steve Mann wrote on 6/16/2014, 4:40 PM
It could also be the DVD Regions nonsense. There are no countries in Region 1 that use the PAL standard.
PeterDuke wrote on 6/16/2014, 6:19 PM
A problem with tourist DVDs is that they often do not say what TV standard they use.

I attended a concert in Ukraine (in more halcyon days) and DVDs of the performance were available for sale afterwards. One domineering woman with a North American accent was buying up most of the stock while other anxious customers were waiting. The DVD did not say what standard, but I suspected PAL. Since I could play both PAL and NTSC I bought one. If the woman had been more pleasant I would have cautioned her, but I let her buy about 20 DVDs. When I got home I found out that they were indeed PAL. I wonder how she got on...
Chienworks wrote on 6/16/2014, 8:11 PM
Years ago a cow-orker of mine came to me with a VHS cassette she had shot of her once-in-a-lifetime family reunion. She wanted me to make a copy to send to her relatives in Switzerland. I explained that while i could make the copy, it wouldn't play in their VCRs because of the NTSC/PAL differences. She asked me what it would take to convert it. I found a format converter box and a multistandard VCR that would record PAL. Between the two of them it was about $3800. I also found a service bureau i could send it to who would do the job for about $500. She was incensed (not at me) and announced that the whole format thing was just stupid and wrong.

I have to admit, i kinda agree with her.
GeeBax wrote on 6/16/2014, 10:19 PM
The mind boggles at what a cow-orker might be?

It seems that a pseudo-standard exists of 1920 x 1080 at 23.97 fps for international releases of movies. My set can handle all sorts of frame rates directly, so I wonder whether US sets are the same?
Steve Mann wrote on 6/16/2014, 11:14 PM
Make a BD disc. There is no PAL/NTSC on BD, just 50 or 60hz.
Chienworks wrote on 6/17/2014, 8:19 AM
Assuming, of course, that the recipient has a BD player.

Now that i think of it, almost every DVD player i've owned has been able to play back an MPEG1/MPEG2 file burned to a data disc, either CD or DVD, and pretty much not cared about format particulars. I've successfully played 480i/p, 240i/p, 360, 252, pretty much any resolution 480 or under, 30fps, 29.97fps, 25fps, 24fps, 23.976fps, 15fps, 14.985fps, 12.5fps, 19.287452fps ... you name it, it just plays. The player does all the interpolation and conversion necessary to get out a signal the TV can handle. It's only when the disc is DVD-Video format that the player gets picky.

So perhaps the solution is to simply make an MPEG2 file on a data DVD and see how well that works.
riredale wrote on 6/17/2014, 9:50 AM
GeeBax, you know what a cow is. You know what an ork is (a spelling variant of "orc," probably because of regional differences). So now you know what a cow-ork is.

What I find a bit unsettling, however, are some additional facts that Chienworks mentions. It's a female, so you know how that goes. Furthermore, it's Swiss, so it keeps a gun under the bed. And it gets incensed easily. All in all, really bad news for anyone selling magazine subscriptions door-to-door, or offering to convert VHS tapes to a different format.
Kimberly wrote on 6/17/2014, 2:29 PM
Make a BD disc. There is no PAL/NTSC on BD, just 50 or 60hz.

Really? So the 24p (23.97p) "NTSC" BDs that I'm burning will play Down Under and elsewhere in PAL-land as long as they are a proper BD in all other respects?

As some of you may know, I'm in a unique location where I distribute a weekly tourist video on NTSC DVD and/or PAL, and I also do a BD in what I thought was "NTSC" spec. But if Blu-Ray is Blu-day the world over, that is AWESOME news for me.


Chienworks wrote on 6/17/2014, 3:31 PM
NTSC and PAL (and SECAM) refer to standards that, among other things, define SD resolution formats.

HD doesn't use SD resolution, so therefore HD cannot be either NTSC or PAL. It's as simple as that.

However, that does NOT necessarily mean that all HD is cross-compatible with other HD. On the other hand, it doesn't mean that they aren't either. All it means is that the NTSC and PAL standards simply don't apply to HD.
John_Cline wrote on 6/17/2014, 5:44 PM
The original question was about DVDs and the simple answer is that the overwhelming majority of U.S. DVD players and TVs will only display NTSC video.
PeterDuke wrote on 6/17/2014, 6:12 PM
" But if Blu-Ray is Blu-day the world over, that is AWESOME news for me"

Probably all films distributed on BD in Australia (50 Hz land) are 24p. I await somebody to tell me otherwise.

But will 50i BD play in the US? 24p and 60i BD should be universal.
musicvid10 wrote on 6/17/2014, 6:37 PM
Bluray players still have region codes.
John_Cline wrote on 6/17/2014, 6:50 PM
"But will 50i BD play in the US?"

Good question, I don't have the answer.

Blu-ray discs that one burns themselves don't have region codes.
Former user wrote on 6/18/2014, 6:17 AM
I created a "PAL" bluray at 50i and it would not play on my Sony Bluray player.
Dexcon wrote on 6/18/2014, 7:31 AM
DaveT2 ... could the inability to play the BD disc on your Sony BD player be related to the profile of the BD-R or BD-RE disc that you are using?

I have an early version BD-RE (no profile given on the disc or the manufacturer's website) - this disc plays on my older Sony BDP-S350 BD player but will not play on my newer BDP-S580 BD player, the latter which requires a BD profile of at least 2.1. I suspect that my older BD-RE disc is possibly profile 1 or thereabouts, but I currently have no way of knowing.

Anyway, profile 2.1 BD-R and BD-RE discs from Verbatim happily play on both Sony BD players.

I only mention this as being a possible cause of the inability to play on your BD player as against being a "PAL/NTSC" issue (being the main issue of the thread).

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Former user wrote on 6/18/2014, 8:10 AM

I had burned 60i disks that play with no problem on the player using the same software, so I don't think it was a disk compatibility problem.

I had created the 50i from the same NTSC source material, so I really have no way of knowing if it was created correctly. I still have the same player so I may run some further test if I can find some true 50i source material.
PeterDuke wrote on 6/18/2014, 5:37 PM
It looks like a 60i player and it won't play 50i discs.