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Video Journal FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions

Set-Top DVD Player Problems

Q: My set-top player refuses to play the disk, even though it plays commercial movies without trouble. What's the problem? (My PC-based DVD player on the other hand will play the Video Journal.)  

A: Because the disk will play on a PC-based DVD player this rules out the the individual disk being defective. Here's what the problem likely is.

Firstly, if you are in a PAL or SECAM country, make sure your DVD player is set for NTSC discs ó most newer DVD players have that option.

Secondly, the movie industry has instituted a system of "regional coding" of DVDs. This means that every player checks the disk to see whether it is encoded for Region 1 (North America), Region 2 (Japan), Region 3 (Western Europe) etc, etc. All DVD players check the disk on start-up and if the regional coding doesn't match the one in the machine, the disk won't play. This is an anti-piracy scheme. For this reason you can't buy a DVD disk in London and play it on a machine in New York, and similarly you can't buy a player in Hong Kong and use it with disks purchased in Paris.

The Video Journal is set to play in ALL regions. We designed it this way so that it will play on all players, in all regions of the world. And it usually does. But, we have discovered that some small number of DVD players have not been designed correctly, and when they encounter a disk with all Regional Codes set, they are unable to play it.

If this is the case with your DVD player you have three choices;

  1. Find another DVD player that will play the disk.

  2. If your player is new, exchange it for one that is designed properly.

  3. Return your Video Journal disk to us for a full refund.

We are attempting to compile a list of players that have this problem, (see below). If you encounter this problem please tell us what country you are in and what brand and model number of player you are using. You can write to us here.

PC DVD Player Problems

Q: My PC-based DVD player on the other hand won't play the Video Journal.

A:  Here are some things to examine.

  1. Unless there are obvious cracks or scratches on the information (shiny) side of the DVD, it is very unlikely to be faulty ó it is possible, but we haven't had a faulty one yet in many hundreds of disk.

  2. The Basics! - Make sure there are no hairs or debris on the playing side.

  3. If playing on a computer, make sure the appropriate drivers are installed so that the DVD mounts on your desktop. Remember this is a DVD Video (not a DVD-R or a CD-ROM). Look for answers here.

  4. 90% of problems we have encountered (thankfully few) involve playing the DVD on a computer's DVD drive with player software. The other 10% are with older set-top players. Try the DVD on a set-top player instead of a computer or on a newer (2000 and later) set-top player ó maybe at your local TV/Hi-Fi store or a friendly neighbor?

  5. Some software players encounter problems with our Regional Encoding. Unlike the DVDs that you own or rent which are set to play in North America (Region 1) or Europe & Japan (Region 2), the Luminous Landscape Video Journal DVD is set to play in *all* regions (1-8). Occasionally, we find that software based players where the regional encoding is set by the user, do not like the fact that All regions are selected to play. You can try to re-set the Region in your player software ó but *beware*, since most software players allow you to do this a very limited number of times! The only real work-around is to try a different player.

  6. The other possible problem is that the DVD also contains non-DVD files that your player may 'see' and dislike. . If you open the disk on your computer desktop you will find a Directory or Folder with the DVD@ccess installers for PC & Mac. It is conceivable that these files are foreign to your software player and it gives you an "Unknown File" message. If your player gives you the option of Open/VideoTS you should try try that, selecting the VideoTS Directory on the DVD. The only other work-around is that out lined above.

    In our experience, the PC DVD player with the least problems and most features is WinDVD.

    Download a demo of v.8 or look at other players here

    The demo version of WinDVD is functional for 14 days. So at least you'll see if the DVD plays on your computer or not.

Please give us the DVD Player and drive information and we will attempt to solve these problems for you.

Known Problem Drives, and Fixes if Available

Samsung SD-608 DVD... 

Other Disk Problems

It's always possible that your disk was damaged in transit. Even though the disk envelope is well designed, postal service handling can be rough on something as delicate as a DVD. Please check the shiny side of the disk for obvious cracks or scratches. If your disk was visibly damaged in transit we'll be pleased to replace it. You can write to us here.

Multi-Angle FAQ

If you are having problems with the Multi-Angle feature, introduced in Issue #3, please check here.


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Concepts: DVD, DVD region code, Digital rights management, NTSC, HD DVD, DVD-Video, Blu-ray Disc, PAL

Entities: London, Hong Kong, Paris, New York, North America, Europe, Region 2, player software, Michael Reichmann, DVD, DVD@ccess, WinDVD, TV/Hi-Fi

Tags: dvd player, Video Journal, software player, set-top player, regional, computer, obvious cracks, PC-based DVD player, regional coding, North America, player software, regional encoding, newer dvd players, PC DVD player, DVD disk, Video Journal disk, Video Journal DVD, problems, older set-top players, DVD drive, individual disk, DVD Video, disk envelope, different player, NTSC discs, anti-piracy scheme, appropriate drivers, SECAM country, Western Europe, friendly neighbor, Hong Kong, movie industry, Regional Codes, *all* regions, computer desktop, 14 days, real work-around, Unknown File, postal service, small number