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Mac Superdrive

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Steve1960
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Mac Superdrive

Postby Steve1960 » Tue, 07 Jan 2014 11:22 am

Anyone have experience of flashing an internal Mac DVD Superdrive with new firmware? I would like to make it region free.

Trawled the Internet but could only find old threads and dead end web links.

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zzm9980
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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 07 Jan 2014 11:29 am

My best advice is to use an application like Handbrake (http://handbrake.fr/downloads.php) to convert the DVD movies into a digital format and just play them out of iTunes, and/or copy to iPhone and iPads. You can also stream them to Apple TVs then.

If you insist on playing a DVD movie on the Mac itself, use an application like VLC Player which I'm pretty sure ignores the region code.

I recommend against trying to flash the drive.

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Postby Steve1960 » Tue, 07 Jan 2014 11:51 am

zzm9980 wrote:My best advice is to use an application like Handbrake (http://handbrake.fr/downloads.php) to convert the DVD movies into a digital format and just play them out of iTunes, and/or copy to iPhone and iPads. You can also stream them to Apple TVs then.

If you insist on playing a DVD movie on the Mac itself, use an application like VLC Player which I'm pretty sure ignores the region code.

I recommend against trying to flash the drive.


Yes this is just what I have been doing to play the movies on the iPad using Mac DVD Ripper Pro unfortunately if the DVD is not code 3 the drive just spits it out.

I am not convinced by VLC it seems a bit hit and miss from reading user experiences on the Internet.

Looks like I will have to get an external drive.

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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 07 Jan 2014 5:25 pm

Steve1960 wrote:I am not convinced by VLC it seems a bit hit and miss from reading user experiences on the Internet.


VLC is free, why not give it a shot? Handbrake is too. When you put the out of region DVDs into the drive, does the DVD Player app open too? Try closing it before the disc is spit out. Or, open System Preferences > CDs & DVDs and turn off the autoplay there. That will probably allow Handbrake or your Ripper app to work. (I say probably because I haven't tried in years, so if it doesn't I apologize)

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Postby nakatago » Tue, 07 Jan 2014 6:25 pm

Steve1960 wrote:I am not convinced by VLC it seems a bit hit and miss from reading user experiences on the Internet..


VLC arguably still plays the most formats (and also available in most platforms).

Failing that, just rip your discs using a codec you know VLC will play (e.g. mkv).

And just throwing it out there, maybe you can get a cheap-ish but reliable USB external DVD drive. I haven't been needing to use optical drives but I remember LiteOn was cheap but good.

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Postby Steve1960 » Wed, 08 Jan 2014 9:36 am

nakatago wrote:
Steve1960 wrote:I am not convinced by VLC it seems a bit hit and miss from reading user experiences on the Internet..


VLC arguably still plays the most formats (and also available in most platforms).

Failing that, just rip your discs using a codec you know VLC will play (e.g. mkv).

And just throwing it out there, maybe you can get a cheap-ish but reliable USB external DVD drive. I haven't been needing to use optical drives but I remember LiteOn was cheap but good.


Yes this is exactly what I did on the way home yesterday, bought an external DVD drive for 49 dollars. I only have DVD's from two regions so this was the the easiest solution.

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Postby Steve1960 » Wed, 08 Jan 2014 9:42 am

Actually another thought that occurred to me is that backing up my DVD collection or ripping to MP4 format to play on the iPad is going to work the optical drive pretty hard.

Better I kill one or two cheap external drives than the internal superdrive :-)

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Postby zzm9980 » Wed, 08 Jan 2014 7:21 pm

Steve1960 wrote:Actually another thought that occurred to me is that backing up my DVD collection or ripping to MP4 format to play on the iPad is going to work the optical drive pretty hard.

Better I kill one or two cheap external drives than the internal superdrive :-)


You probbaly don't have enough hard drive space to rip even a tenth as many DVDs needed to affect the longevity of your SuperDrive. Just googling, the cheapo external drives seem to have MTBFs of ~60,000 hours (that means they fail on average after 60k hours of USE)

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Postby Steve1960 » Thu, 09 Jan 2014 8:26 am

zzm9980 wrote:
Steve1960 wrote:Actually another thought that occurred to me is that backing up my DVD collection or ripping to MP4 format to play on the iPad is going to work the optical drive pretty hard.

Better I kill one or two cheap external drives than the internal superdrive :-)


You probbaly don't have enough hard drive space to rip even a tenth as many DVDs needed to affect the longevity of your SuperDrive. Just googling, the cheapo external drives seem to have MTBFs of ~60,000 hours (that means they fail on average after 60k hours of USE)


I have a 4TB Thunderbolt raid array external hard drive box :-)

Looks like the external drive should be OK thanks.


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