I encourage everybody to go Region-Free. So what if "Shaun of the Dead" isn't out in the US for another month? Order the DVD from a UK website or eBay seller instead. It's also handy when your favorite flick gets a bare-bones release in the US, but a lavish, extras-loaded edition overseas.
Another great geeky DVD player to check out is the Philips DVP642, which goes for about $60. It was hard to find for a few months, but they're beginning to stay in stock at Wal-Marts, Targets and such. Like the Yamakawa, it's region-free, PAL-friendly, ISO-friendly (plays MPEGs & MP3s from data CD-R/W & DVD+/-R/W).
The big selling point is that it also plays MPEG-4 videos from CDs & DVDs. So if you've got movies in DivX, XviD or 3ivX formats, you no longer have to decide whether to watch on your computer monitor or spend a dozen hours converting to a DVD player-friendly format.
So far, mine's only ever choked on DivX files with Windows Media or AC3 audio instead of MP3, and DivX files with "QuarterPixel" enabled (I've only ever come across one of those).
And though the documentation only mentions DVD+R/W, the player DOES support DVD-R/W. Philips has loads invested into the +R/W format, so they try to pretend -R/W doesn't exist.
REGION FREE DVD PLAYER - Also, for those of you looking for a region free, PAL>NTSC, NTSC>PAL converter DVD player for under $100, this one is great. I can play any DVD, from any region...and it plays PAL DVDs on my American NTSC TV. Great deal. It will also play mp3s, and MPEG videos that you've burned on to CD (porn of course, music videos, etc). Amazing, when you consider American DVD players are more money and they only play NTSC and Region 1!
If you shop around online, you can find it for around $49-$59! There are many great DVDs only released in Europe that are in PAL (ex. Paul Morrissey/Andy Warhold film collection)...and now, I can watch them, worry free.