Genuine v. Pirated DVDs

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jaylmerb

Guest
Sorry for my ignorance here, but I have only recently started buying DVDs, (as opposed to VHS), and would like to know how to be sure what I have purchased is the genuine article? VHS sometimes have holograms, plus adverts before the feature, on helping people stay alert to pirating. What are the signs of a genuine, or a dodgy, DVD? Has anyone had any bad experiences re. the origins of DVDs they have ordered from online retailers? In particular, this is probably a stupid question, but I just wanted to be sure: nobody has ever suspected leading online retailers, such as Play, to be selling anything other than the genuine article, have they?

Many thanks; and sorry if this has already been discussed to death earlier in the forums - I'm a bit new to all this 'threads' business too!
 

TheBigApple

Active Member
I think common sense dictates that if you buy from a reputable retailer then it will be the genuine article.
 
J

jaylmerb

Guest
Thanks - I'm sure you are right. The only reasons for my slight worries in the first place, were:

a) being new to DVDs, and therefore not knowing how to distinguish an original from a fake/copy; and
b) the prices on some websites seemed so low, as to almost be too good to be true!

But I guess the latter is more a reflection of the huge profit margins and/or higher overheads of the high street stores?
 

LV426

Administrator
Staff member
It really is hard to tell with the best copies (fakes) as they are pretty much indistinguishable from the originals.

However, tell-tale signs are:

Evidence of Chinese origin (such as Cantonese characters on disc label etc) BUT reference to Region 1 or 2 on packaging.

Missing extras - not in line with what it says on the packaging

Region-free disc

Single layer disc where most commercial discs are dual-layer

Packaged differently (in cardboard).

As for picture quality - if it is a 'rip' of a genuine DVD then it will probably be indistinguishable.
 
A

Azrikam

Guest
I hazard a guess that if you stick with the Recommended Retailers list on this forum, you'll be sure of getting genuine DVDs.
 

Indiana Jones

Moderator
If it has a big "DTS" logo along the top of the cover and the word "DVD9" written on the cover and on the disc, it is likely be a bootleg, check out eBay for examples as it is full of them.
 

andypandy

Active Member
"full of them" is true and one of the other comments mentioned previously - "picture quality indistinguishable".

There you go - your choice.

Be warned there are some bad copies out there that CAN be distinguished with the original. If the amount of data on the DVD reads greater than about 7GB (average-this does also depend on the length of the film), then you can be fairly certain it's either an original or very good copy. You can always ask, those who will not give you an answer - stay clear. Always check the spec of the DVD film and ask the question to the seller - what subtitles does it have ? audio tracks ?, extras ? etc

Most do not state the full details - either can't be bothered or they could be copies - which shoudn't put you off completely as I said in my pervious parapgraph. With all this knowledge from me & others if you buy a copy see for yourself.

I haven't come across a retailer selling dubious copies, yet !
 
J

jaylmerb

Guest
This is interesting (the issue of pirated DVDs is obviously quite topical at the moment!):

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/3512878.stm

Further to what you were saying, Nigel, re. the warning signs: I thought Region-Free discs were quite common - are they most likely pirated? (Is Region 0 the same as Region-Free?) Also, how do you tell the difference between single and dual-layered, unless it's stated on the cover? Thanks for your help!
 
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jaylmerb

Guest
andypandy: i'm probably asking another really obvious question here, but how do you find out the amount of data on the DVD? i've just been checking some of my discs, and cannot see any references to how many GB they are? thanks!

indiana jones: i've just found one of my DVDs has "DVD 9" on the cover and the disc. but it's from amazon (new, not marketplace). surely they're not flogging counterfeits these days too? do you think it really is a fake? thanks!
 

figrin_dan

Active Member
Welcome Jaylmerb!

The 'warning signs' are just that, there are many legit discs with region 0, dvd9 and, of course, 'dts' written on the cover.

Your best bet is to check the recommended retailers area. If in doubt, put a link in to the site you are looking at. If it's dodgy, the mods will soon remove the link - But I didn't tell you that!
 

Indiana Jones

Moderator
To check the file size just put the dvd in your computer, then right click on the drive and select properties, it should tell you how much of the dvd is used up, if its 4.36Gb or under its a DVD5, if its more then its a DVD9
 
M

mr_fantazmo

Guest
b) the prices on some websites seemed so low, as to almost be too good to be true!

An easy way to end this thread would be for you to just list the websites that seem to good to be true so that other forum members can comment on whether they have used them or had any bad experiences with them.

I think you are pretty safe with the likes of Play and cd-wow.
 

andypandy

Active Member
I would go along with Play and cd-wow being reputable.

Amazon although do sometimes sell secondhand or new DVD's on behalf of other individuals. There's a way for some copies to be sold.
 

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