DVD formats explained

There are two kinds of DVD available and two main TV formats, so here’s a simple guide.

DVD Regions

All our DVDs/DVD-Rs are ‘region-free’, so they will play anywhere in the world.

TV Formats

Although you don’t have to bother about which DVD region you are in, you do need to make certain that you buy DVDs compatible with your national TV system. There are two main types; PAL and NTSC.

PAL TV is used in the UK, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and many other Commonwealth countries. Our PAL DVDs are therefore the obvious choice for those countries.

NTSC TV systems are used in the USA, Canada, Japan and some other countries. Our NTSC DVD-Rs are therefore the obvious choice for those countries.

Some customers in NTSC TV countries have multi-system DVD players specially designed for both TV formats and they should also buy our PAL DVDs.  But be careful, most NTSC DVD players are multi-region, not multi-system and they will only play our NTSC DVD-Rs.

DVD Types

There are two types of DVD discs; DVDs and DVD-Rs.

DVDs are ‘pressed’ from a master disc. Pressed DVDs are used to create large numbers of copies of the same programme and are used for all our programmes, when they are first released in the PAL TV format.

DVD-Rs are digitally printed from a master DVD, just like copying one CD to another. They are the standard, industry-wide, method of producing less than 500 copies of the same programme.  They are used for all our NTSC TV format DVDs and for extra production runs of earlier PAL DVDs in our range, when the original release has sold out.

Both types of disc produce identical programmes and both are backed by our no-quibble replacement policy, in the incredibly rare event that you ever experienced a problem playing one.