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The directors' cut

发布时间:2019-03-08 08:10:02来源:未知点击:

By Barry Fox COMPUTER users risk buying drives for playing digital video discs which don’t work with their decoders. This follows a move by Hollywood studios to plug loopholes which let PCs play digital movies intended for release in other territories. DVD discs and players are regionally coded, which lets the studios stagger the release of movies across six global zones. DVD movies will play on a PC’s DVD-ROM drive, which needs a decoder board to decipher the compressed movie data. Because PCs are international products, the DVD Forum, which governs the industry, initially agreed that DVD-ROM drives need not be regionally coded. Instead, they come with software which lets the user set and re-set the regional code up to five times. After that it remains locked to whatever was the fifth setting. But now, at the prompting of the Hollywood studios, the DVD Forum says that from the end of 1999 all new DVD-ROM drives must be regionally coded. This means that a decoder board will only work when its regional code matches that of the drive. But some drive manufacturers are adopting this practice early, so a DVD drive that has been coded for Europe may not now work with a decoder that has been set for American releases. Creative Labs of Milpitas, California, sells a decoder board and DVD-ROM drive. Until October, the drive was not coded and the decoder zone could be re-set five times by the user. Now the firm has started to code both the drives and decoders as they leave the factory,