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What are the benefits of playing Blu-Ray discs via PC (vs standalone player)?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I just built a PC capable of playing Blu-Ray discs (Intel 4770 CPU, on-CPU Intel HD Graphics 4600, Windows 7x64). Blu-Ray drive came with OEM version of WinDVD.

Playing Blu-Rays is not even a secondary purpose of this box (primary purpose is software development) but I connected it via HDMI to my TV, via optical to my receiver (receiver is old and doesn't support HDMI) and gave it a try.

All I can say: "Yes, it works". Switched Graphics card to 24 fps and it was fine. DD/DTS was output and decoded by my receiver.

However, I don't see any advantages vs standalone player. Video quality seems to be the same.

Can someone enlighten me why one would want to play Blu-Ray discs via PC vs standalone player? Are there any benefits I do not see?
post #2 of 9
For me it's mostly just so I have one less box to worry about. I have limited space around the TV and limited power, so being able to play my Blu-ray discs with my HTPC solves that issue. That said, it took a bit of work to get the playback integrated into my XBMC setup and make it remote friendly. For most people I suspect a stand alone player is probably the right way to go.
post #3 of 9
The main reason is the one you are excluding - which is to play movies without having to use the physical discs. If you only ever want to play physical discs, then using a standalone player is by far the best way to go. The biggest benefit of using a software player is ripping your movies to hard drives and using a front end, such as Media Browser, to surf through them and play them without having to go to your movies, turn your head sideways to read them, pick one out, put the disc in the player, then watch the movie. It is all done from the couch with a remote control instead...and you never damage your original discs since you never touch them.
post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeSchmoe007 View Post

Can someone enlighten me why one would want to play Blu-Ray discs via PC vs standalone player? Are there any benefits I do not see?

The ability to skip menus/trailers/warnings and playback the main movie in seconds and to playback discs from all regions.

I haven't seen a standalone that can do both.

PC - Insert disc from any region > wait to load > Enjoy Movie.
Standalone - Insert disc from set region (Usually) > wait to load > watch 5 minutes of trailers and warnings > Enjoy Movie.

Obviously Standalone players have their own benefits, they are cheap, hassle free and easy to use.
post #5 of 9
I'm to lazy to load a disc or suffer a slow menu system
post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I'm to lazy to load a disc or suffer a slow menu system

In some cases like renting a disc or if a buddy brings a movie over to watch, it doesn't make sense to wait 20-30 minutes while you rip that disc to the HDD, when you can just insert it, let it load and start watching within 30 seconds, by the time it would of took to finish ripping you are already deep into the movie.

For your own collection then its different, its great to just be able to watch any movie at any time with a press of a button, without having to insert the disc.

Luckily with a HTPC you can do both.
post #7 of 9
My HTPC has no optical drive but occasionally I use my Samsung BD-P2500 from 2007 to play discs.
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pkscout View Post

For me it's mostly just so I have one less box to worry about. I have limited space around the TV and limited power, so being able to play my Blu-ray discs with my HTPC solves that issue. That said, it took a bit of work to get the playback integrated into my XBMC setup and make it remote friendly. For most people I suspect a stand alone player is probably the right way to go.

Is there a tutorial on how to integrate playback into XBMC? Can universal IR remote like this: URC-R40 be integrated somehow? I dabbled with XBMC a little bit but never got into these details.
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeSchmoe007 View Post

Is there a tutorial on how to integrate playback into XBMC? Can universal IR remote like this: URC-R40 be integrated somehow? I dabbled with XBMC a little bit but never got into these details.

It's not quite a tutorial, but check out this thread on the XBMC Forums. It's conceptually the same as what I've done. You might still need something like LM Remote Keymap to properly control the external Bluray player application.
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