DVD formats and compatibility
The PS2 will play all your favorite movies without any additional hardware or software. Just insert your movie and play it; the quality of image and sound should be as good as the one of a decent DVD player. If you have an import version of the PS2, for example if you are in USA and you have bought a Japanese PS2, then you will encounter several compatibility problems. In fact, every console is produced to work just in a precise area of the world. In other words, a Japanese PS2 will work only with Japanese DVD movies and Japanese games; an American PS2 will play only American DVDs and American games. Anyhow, there are several modification chips (also known as modchips) available which make your PS2 able to play games and movies coming from every part of the world. Use of modchips to play games imported from other countries is not illegal. Many think that having the possibility to play import games is a console owner's right. There can be many reasons that make you buy an import game; just to make an example, games released in a country may contain extra features or better voiceovers. Or, sometimes, a game might be available only to certain countries. There are literally hundreds of games available in the Japanese market that will never be released in North America or in Europe, sometimes just because a marketing expert decided so. Some series, amazingly popular in Japan, are unknown to the Western audience for this reason. It goes without saying that if you install a modchip on your system, Sony's warranty on the console will be void. If you want to install a modchip, you should first ask yourself if playing import games is something you really want or need, and if it is worth the risk. A broken "modded" PS2 will never be replaced by Sony.
There is no remote included into the PS2 package. There is an official remote available (look at the picture) and many third-party remotes designed for the PlayStation 2. In North America, third-party remotes became available before the release of the official remote from Sony.
The PlayStation 2 supports Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS audio technologies. Both requires you have an audio equipment that supports them connected to the PlayStation 2 via the Optical Digital Output connector, on the back of the console.
Dolby Digital 5.1
With this technology, sound is divided in 6 separate channels. In other surround systems, like the Dolby Pro Logic, sounds are "matrixed", merged into two channels. The 5+1 means that sounds come from 5 different channels plus a subwoofer, a dedicated channel for low frequency sounds used to create dense, deep bass sounds.
The PlayStation 2, anyhow, supports Dolby Digital 5.1 only when playing DVDs or, when playing games, during cutscenes.
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Like Dolby 5.1, DTS is an audio technology based on "discreet" sounds, in which the soundtrack is divided into separate channels. The PS2 "officially" supports DTS during DVD playback, but not in-game. Anyhow, EA was the first company able to develop games using DTS technology, also thanks to the help of DTS Interactive. The first videogames ever to feature in-game DTS sounds were EA's SSX Tricky and NHL 2002.