How to Convert a PAL DVD to NTSC With Menus

Written by ray padgett
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How to Convert a PAL DVD to NTSC With Menus
To play PAL DVDs in America, you must convert to NTSC. This process will retain the menus. (cd image by Thierry Hoarau from

Unlike CDs, VHS tapes, or most other portable media, DVDs come in two forms: Phase Alternating Line (PAL) and National Television System Committee (NTSC). PAL is the preferred choice for DVDs sold in Europe, while NTSC is used in America. This difference becomes an issue when trying to play DVDs purchased overseas. Most American players will not play PAL discs, and most European players won't come across the NTSC discs. If you need to play a European PAL DVD on an American NTSC player, you have to convert the disc. There are several ways to perform this task, all of which will keep the original menus intact.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • D2MP / Nero Recode / TMPGEnc Xpress
  • Blank DVD-R

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  1. 1

    Convert the PAL DVD to NTSC with menus using the free D2MP, which offers a simple interface, basic settings and an easy-to-follow process. To keep your menus, convert the video off the PAL DVD to a VIDEO_TS folder (not AVI file). This folder copies the DVD data exactly, but converts it to NTSC. Burn this folder onto a blank DVD to have an NTSC-compatible replica of your original PAL DVD, complete with menus.

  2. 2

    Convert the PAL DVD to NTSC with menus using Nero Recode. While this program isn't free to purchase, it comes included in the Nero CD/DVD-burning suite that several major PC manufacturers preinstall on their computers (look in "Programs" to see if you have it). As a paid program, it offers more options and support than D2MP. With Recode you can customise video aspects like frame rate and image quality. Like D2MP, the process leaves the user with an NTSC-compatible VIDEO_TS folder.

  3. 3

    Convert the PAL DVD to NTSC with menus using TMPGEnc Xpress. This program offers more controls and settings than the other two, but, at £64.90, it is meant for advanced users who will be performing this conversion many times. In addition to the basic ripping/converting/burning set-up as the other programs, TMPGEnc Xpress features built-in filters to edit video and audio.

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