I plan to get a Mac Mini down the road and I want to get a Blu-Ray drive to plug into it. However, I want it to be able to play any region of DVD (doesn't matter about multi-region Blu-Ray playing because I only plan to get US and Japan Blu-Ray, which have the same region. The DVDs however are different regions), and I want to know it can still rip and burn DVDs and CDs (it would be nice to be able to rip Blu-Rays too but last I heard it wasn't possible to do it legally). Is there such a thing and if so where can I get it? I did a brief search but am not coming up with much so far, I think.
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"They will walk after the LORD, He will roar like a lion; indeed He will roar and His sons will come trembling from the west." - Hosea 11:10
It's not legal to break the dvd and blu-ray encryption in USA and most of EU. But you can still get rippers for mac from other countries. Like dvdfab, Pavtube Blu-ray Ripper for Mac, Mac DVDRipper and makemkv. You might get problem buying those applications if they are beeing blocked though...
Or dual boot your mac into windows.
VLC don't compare the region codes on the drive and the DVD, although you may still need to rip your DVDs if you find the drive uses RCP2 and won't allow raw access, as this prevents VLC from working correctly with commercial discs from outside the user's region.
VLC offers the following explanation:
VLC media player
Does VLC support DVDs from all regions?
This mostly depends on your DVD drive. Testing it is usually the quickest way to find out. The problem is that a lot of newer drives are RPC2 drives these days. Some of these drives don't allow raw access to the drive untill the drive firmware has done a regioncheck. VLC uses libdvdcss and it needs raw access to the DVD drive to crack the encryption key. So with those drives it is impossible to circumvent the region protection. (This goes for all software. You will need to flash your drives firmware, but sometimes there is no alternate firmware available for your drive). On other RPC2 drives that do allow raw access, it might take VLC a long time to crack the key. So just pop the disc in your drive and try it out, while you get a coffee. RPC1 drives should 'always' work regardless of the regioncode.
The DMCA in the USA makes it illegal for even home consumers to rip DVDs and BluRays for any reason at all, although Hollywood has chosen not to pursue charges against home users ripping for home use because of fear that taking such people to court might legalize the practice a la the infamous "Betamax case". Hollywood would prefer that the practice theoretically be illegal but not legally tested in court. Now ripping and sharing what you rip with others or making copies of it to sell is a whole other thing.
Anyway, we get posts at time from people asking about the legalities of this. We're not lawyers. We can't protect you with regard to legal issues. If for any reason at all you have an issue with ripping your own purchased discs because it's not legal, then don't do it. End of story. End of thread.
Being on a Mac will make EVERYTHING a million times harder. Be warned. DVD playback on Mac without worrying about region codes is easy via VLC, which is free. BluRay is a whole other story and I have no idea if it's even possible on a Mac. VLC can theoretically play BluRays to a certain extent, but the playback is not guaranteed and you have to do a lot of manual tasks to set things up before you start the first time. If it doesn't work for you, you are just out of luck.
I watch Blu-ray movies on my Mac Pro on a regular basis using mac blu-ray player http://www.macblurayplayer.com
It came free with my blu-ray burner, and has never failed me. It's updated very often and I get lifetime updates. I find nothing difficult about blu-ray on a Mac at all.
Sorry... My bad. I was feeling too good after my pain treatment today and got keyboard happy. Thanks for setting me straight.