Originally Posted by slimoli
This is actually very interesting. Ripping to ISO can solve unplayable disks. One more reason NOT to update firmware.
Discs are generally unplayable because of:
1) Physical defect (damage or crud on the surface of the disc or laser)
2) Upgraded DRM
3) Authoring defects or trickery
IMO, the majority of cases of non-playability are due to 2) and 3)
When you rip a disc to ISO with AnyDVD HD, you generally remove the encryption and region code. Removing region code requires modifying Java (including removing BD-Live). In the process of modification, DRM and some authoring trickery get removed. The result is often an ISO that can be played, whereas the original disc can't.
A Bluray disc contains a number of M2TS files, that are the notional equivalent of vob files in a DVD; plus playlist and other supplemental files that are the notional equivalent of ifo files in a DVD.
Whilst it is possible to play an M2TS or vob file standalone, the player doesn't know which files to play to give the full feature: that's where the playlists come in.
The menus on a disc are the way that the playlists and specific tracks are accessed by the customer, but are under the control of the disc authors and can include trickery to make playback of rips difficult.
AnyDVD HD has a feature called Speed Menu which replaces the original tricky disc menus with a simple menu access to the playlists. Within each playlist, the player can be used to select the desired soundtrack or subtitle to use. The downside to this method is that the playlists are not identified as to their function (although Speed Menu attempts to identify the main feature) but it does give the customer total control over which playlist they want to view and when. An added bonus is that all discs now become capable of being resumed.
For recalcitrant discs where AnyDVD HD can't fix existing menu playability issues, Speed Menu may allow the individual features and extras to be played.
Therefore, by ripping to ISO with AnyDVD HD (and using options judiciously), it may be possible to play what otherwise would be unplayable discs, on an Oppo, without requiring a firmware update. This approach also supposedly supports 3D as well as 2D discs.