How to Watch Region 2 DVDs Without Buying a Multi-Region DVD Player

by Erica Sweeney

Read about multi-region DVD players and you will uncover lots of sketchiness: the companies that make them won’t provide support for them and online reviews are mixed, with some saying they don’t work and others saying that the picture or sound quality isn’t that great. US DVDs are Region 1, so Region 2 DVDs, those from Europe, Japan and the Middle East, cannot be played on US players. So what do you do if you want to watch a foreign film or British TV show that hasn’t yet been released in the US and don’t want to buy a multi-region DVD player? Hook up your laptop to your TV. Here's how.

Check that your TV has a VGA input and that your laptop has a VGA (monitor) output. Most relatively new TVs and laptops will have this.

Check that your laptop has an output for headphones, where you will plug in a mini stereo cable. And, check that such a cable can be plugged into your TV.

Purchase a VGA cable (monitor cable) and a mini stereo cable. You can get these at any computer store or online at New Egg or other places. Get cables that are a good length so that you won’t have to put your laptop on the floor next to the TV. It will be more convenient if you can put it as close to you as possible.

Change the DVD region code on your laptop. Most laptops will only allow you to do this a few times before the laptop automatically sticks to a region. It will not let you change back and forth as often as you like. So, if you plan to watch a lot of Region 2 DVDs, just leave your laptop on Region 2.

Hook up your laptop to the TV using the VGA cable and mini stereo cable.

Put the Region 2 DVD in your computer. Open Windows Media Player or any other DVD-watching software.

Use the TV/Video option on your TV and select RGB 2. The TV setting you need may vary. If you are unsure of the setting for your TV, follow the next step and then scroll through the TV settings until the laptop screen is displayed on the TV.

Minimize all of the open windows on the laptop and right click on the desktop. Select Graphics Options, Output to, and then Monitor. Your laptop screen should go black and immediately appear on the TV.

Maximize the software you are using to watch the DVD. Use the options in that program to set the DVD view at full screen.

Turn the laptop’s volume up to full blast, and then adjust the TV volume accordingly. Enjoy watching a Region 2 DVD in a Region 1 country!

Tip

  • check Use Amazon UK or other countries’ Amazon sites to purchase Region 2 DVDs. Most will ship to the US.

Items you will need

About the Author

Erica Sweeney is a freelance writer and editor based in Little Rock, Ark. She has a master's in journalism from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Her work has been published at SaidIt.org, Arkansas Times, Aging Arkansas and Arkansas Business.