I think there's a code that will let you change the region on any LiteOn. I can't remember it off-hand but I remember seeing it on videohelp.com.
I'm pretty sure the tuner on all LiteOn recorders is mono, so they may just have neglected to mention it on the LVW-5115GHC+.
As for PAL playback, they'll do it, but they just cut off the bottom of the screen. If you want to downgrade the resolution, I'm pretty sure you need a computer.