Oppo BD 95 review part III: Region Free Mod and HDMI lessons learnt




Oppo BD 95 review part III: Region Free Mod and HDMI lessons learnt

I used my Oppo 95 mainly with a stereo based system, but after installing the region free mod, I swopped out the BD 83 NE and now it’s connected to my HT system. It took 30 minutes or so to get the board installed by a dealer, then now you need to press the dimmer button thrice, followed by the mute button and then the number, 1 for region A, 2 for region B and 3 for region C. Then switch off the player and restart it. Viola, you can now play other region discs. There are no beeps, unlike the older BD 83.

Now the 95 is a HDMI v 1.4 player, and mating that with other equipment can prove troublesome. My Denon AVR 2809 is a HDMI 1.3a, and so is my Pioneer Kuro plasma. Playing a Region B Red Cliff BR disc proved to be a lesson in trouble-shooting. The screen kept going blank after the initial preview trailers, and the same happened for Cliffhanger, another Region B disc.

First, make sure the secondary audio is switched off. Otherwise you may not get bitstream lossless audio and be limited to LPCM output from the BR player.

Next switch off the 3D function of the player. Then if there seems to be a difficulty in sync, switch HDMI inputs. That forces the amp to try and re-establish the HDMI sync again and this tends to reset things and get the player back into play.

Finally also check that you are using a “High Speed” HDMI cable, especially if you are using a longer length. Nowadays,  there isn’t supposed to be HDMI 1.4 or 1.3, just “High Speed” or “Standard”.

The images generated are stable, and audio through HDMI is also clear. Beware of any audible “improvements” in sound quality over HDMI. It is more likely to be due to differences in input voltage which translates into volume differences and that is perceived as changes in sound quality.
I have no financial interest or other interests in any of the items / events I write about.

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