Input a special code to disable Macrovision
and play DVDs from around the world.
By Phillip Torrone
Photograph by David Albertson
About a year or so ago, I picked up a digital cam- ridiculous when you think about it. What good are
era combo device — the Panasonic SV-AV30. This these devices if you can’t watch your purchased
handy little $400 device records voice, video, and or rented DVDs on them?
takes pictures. It’s all low resolution, but fine for The technology behind Macrovision is basically
posting stuff to the web. unwanted noise that scrambles or signals a chip
The AV30 includes a cradle that can play its re- inside a recording device to not record. When I try
corded content to a TV/stereo (AV out) or record to record a DVD on my SV-AV30, I just get a warn-directly in (AV in). ing screen.
A lot of devices that have “video in” — like the Of course, there is a menagerie of applications
SV-AV30 and many of the new portable video that rip DVDs to allow you to copy the video to
players — can record from just about any video different kinds of play-source, but if the signal is from something that ers. But what I wanted Copy-protection: Just
utilizes the Macrovision video copy prevention was a DVD player that another mafia-style
technology, these portable video recorders sim- ignores Macrovision “protection scheme”?
ply will not allow recording of DVDs. It’s kind of and would let me re-