How to watch Blu-ray's on Laptop - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 08-21-2014, 05:42 PM - Thread Starter
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How to watch Blu-ray's on Laptop

I have some blu-ray movies that i would like to watch on my laptop & i'm not sure what software to use. I would prefer a free program if that's possible. My CD drive will work with dvd's so hopefully i don't need to upgrade or replace it. Any help you can provide will be appreciated.
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post #2 of 12 Old 08-21-2014, 05:45 PM
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You need a blu-ray drive, dvd drive won't do it. Not many have one. What make and model laptop do you have? Even if you have a blu-ray drive you may not get full advantage of a blu-ray unless your screen has the proper resolution....

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post #3 of 12 Old 08-21-2014, 07:21 PM
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More importantly, you would need a paid software solution such as Arcsoft's TotalMedia Theatre in order to play them at all, regardless of your screen's resolution. You also need a fairly new processor, as even a Core 2 Duo won't always be able to keep up with the ridiculous bitrate on Blu-rays, so a modern dual core or a quad-core CPU would be desirable, unless you have a high-end gaming GPU for your laptop that can perform the decoding instead.

The only way to be able to play a Blu-ray without using a paid software suite is to rip the disc to your HDD with something like MakeMKV, which will remove the encryption. After you do that, free movie players will be able to play the main movie, but menus and other extras still won't work.
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post #4 of 12 Old 08-21-2014, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
You also need a fairly new processor, as even a Core 2 Duo won't always be able to keep up with the ridiculous bitrate on Blu-rays, so a modern dual core or a quad-core CPU would be desirable, unless you have a high-end gaming GPU for your laptop that can perform the decoding instead.
You may not need a powerful CPU. The point is whether GPU has a hardware H.264/VC-1/MPEG-2 decoder. The following chipset/chips have such a hardware decoder so that a powerful CPU won't be necessary.

- Intel G45 / GM45 Express chipset (2008)
- Intel Core i3 (Clarkdale) processor (2010)
- All Intel processors since Sandy Bridge (2012)

A high-end gaming GPU plays no role at all in Blu-ray playback in whatever case.

@MPNASCAR24

You will need a Blu-ray drive (perhaps external USB). Such a drive usually comes with PowerDVD OEM so you don't have to buy it (but OEM version may have some restrictions). Or rip in MKV with MakMKV (free right now) and play them with a free media player such as MPC-BE / MPC-HC (you will lose Blu-ray menus of course).
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Last edited by renethx; 08-22-2014 at 12:56 AM.
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post #5 of 12 Old 08-21-2014, 11:37 PM
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Why do you want to use a laptop?

The picture will only be a little bit better due to size and the battery consumption is ENORMOUS!

I found that out on a plane trip.

Watched 2 movies (DVDs) on my 4 hour flight..no problem...on the way back, put in 1 Blu-Ray, didn't even make it to the end of the first movie (2:15mins).

But like everyone else said, you need the drive and the software to do it.

Granted if you are watching them in your hotel room, plugged in to AC power, you're good to go! =)

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post #6 of 12 Old 08-22-2014, 08:29 AM - Thread Starter
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The reason why i want to watch them on my laptop is because my brother works at night so when he's sleeping during the day i don't want to accidently wake him up with my movies. This has happened before & it always puts him in a bad mood. For those who asked my laptop model it's a Dell XPS M140 with an intel pentium m processor with a speed of 1.73GHZ. If my processor can't handle blu-ray playback can i still copy the movies to my hdd.
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post #7 of 12 Old 08-22-2014, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MPNASCAR24 View Post
The reason why i want to watch them on my laptop is because my brother works at night so when he's sleeping during the day i don't want to accidently wake him up with my movies. This has happened before & it always puts him in a bad mood. For those who asked my laptop model it's a Dell XPS M140 with an intel pentium m processor with a speed of 1.73GHZ. If my processor can't handle blu-ray playback can i still copy the movies to my hdd.
Copying the movies to your hdd won't solve much. That laptop is old enough that it is likely going to struggle with full bitrate HD content. You could re-encode the movies using something like handbrake, to get them down to a manageable bitrate and/or lower resolution. Handbrake is also going to be quite slow on that CPU.

You could also use something like Plex or MB3 on another computer to transcode blurays after ripping them with something like MakeMKV, and watch them on your laptop with the Plex or MP3 client. But that's going to be a fair amount of work to setup and maintain.

If it were me, I'd just get a decent set of headphones and call it a day.

RAID protection is only for failed drives. That's it. It's no replacement for a proper backup.
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post #8 of 12 Old 08-22-2014, 11:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MPNASCAR24 View Post
The reason why i want to watch them on my laptop is because my brother works at night so when he's sleeping during the day i don't want to accidently wake him up with my movies. This has happened before & it always puts him in a bad mood. For those who asked my laptop model it's a Dell XPS M140 with an intel pentium m processor with a speed of 1.73GHZ. If my processor can't handle blu-ray playback can i still copy the movies to my hdd.
Is this your machine? http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0%2c28...77038%2c00.asp

It doesn't have a blu-ray drive so you can't do anything in this laptop with a blu-ray disc (blu-rays and dvds are read with different types of lasers). I'd agree with ajhieb on the headphones for the system you're usually using....

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post #9 of 12 Old 08-22-2014, 03:07 PM
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There is no way a Pentium M could play a Blu-ray movie, anyway, so all other points are moot. Your laptop is way too slow to handle anything beyond DVD, so you would either need to buy movies on DVD for your laptop or get headphones for your regular setup, as has already been suggested.
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post #10 of 12 Old 08-23-2014, 12:47 PM
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While this is somewhat OT for the OP (as the Intel GMA 900 won't handle blu-ray playback)

There are 2 factually incorrect items floating around in the thread
  1. A laptop or desktop can (when gpu is capable) playback a blu-ray over USB ~ remember that blu-ray is only 4.5 - 7 MB/s at the most . . . well under the USB threshold
  2. MakeMKV can playback the main title of a blu-ray without commercial software (and without ripping) http://www.makemkv.com/forum2/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=703
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post #11 of 12 Old 08-23-2014, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark_Slayer View Post
While this is somewhat OT for the OP (as the Intel GMA 900 won't handle blu-ray playback)

There are 2 factually incorrect items floating around in the thread
  1. A laptop or desktop can (when gpu is capable) playback a blu-ray over USB ~ remember that blu-ray is only 4.5 - 7 MB/s at the most . . . well under the USB threshold
Who said otherwise? The only mention of USB was renethx and he suggested using an external USB drive. The only data rate comment was mine regarding his CPU/GPU's ability to keep up, but it had nothing to do with USB.

RAID protection is only for failed drives. That's it. It's no replacement for a proper backup.
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post #12 of 12 Old 08-25-2014, 11:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovinthehd View Post
Is this your machine? http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0%2c28...77038%2c00.asp

It doesn't have a blu-ray drive so you can't do anything in this laptop with a blu-ray disc (blu-rays and dvds are read with different types of lasers). I'd agree with ajhieb on the headphones for the system you're usually using....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
There is no way a Pentium M could play a Blu-ray movie, anyway, so all other points are moot. Your laptop is way too slow to handle anything beyond DVD, so you would either need to buy movies on DVD for your laptop or get headphones for your regular setup, as has already been suggested.
Yes this is my laptop. After reading all of your feedback i'll consider adding headphones to my tv so i can still watch my movies when my brother is sleeping. Many Thanks to all for your helpful advice.
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