Question PC Blu Ray USB drive question

Fredvon4

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Oct 10, 2021
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My Google foo is faulty so I need opinions and recommendations:

Budget up to $100
PC is NUC with 2.0 and 3.0 usb ports
I have a library of DVD and Blu Ray CDs
My Current $23 DVD player does not do Blu Ray nor does it UPSCALE
I prefer the small form factor of a so called "portable" player

Is there a small form USB 3.0 connected Blu Ray player that actually upscales SD DVD movies to 720 or1080 resolution?

for some reason all my Google searches get a lot of options in my price range but NO true description of UPSCALING capability

BTW I watch DVDs on win 10 PC using the VLC app
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
To the best of my knowledge, there are no "players" that do upscaling on USB Blu Ray burners or players. That is reserved for stand alone units like those you connect to your TV. With USB devices upscaling is done by the software, so it depends on the capabilities of the BD or media software you use. In which case, any good USB external burner should be capable of doing this and I recommend models from LG and Pioneer as their products are the ones I've had far more success with on PC usage.

Also, I'd recommend you consider ditching VLC and move on to a more advanced product like Potplayer. But that is more of a personal and observed choice due to the many problems I and others have encountered with VLC over the years. You may not have said problems. VLC can do upscaling but from what I remember of it it wasn't particularly great at it. Your mileage may vary from mine.

https://www.winxdvd.com/video-transcoder/vlc-upscaling-enhance-video-quality-in-vlc.htm
 
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Fredvon4

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Oct 10, 2021
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My NUC has one HDMI and a USB C Thunderbolt 3 port that are driving three displays (2 from Thunderbolt and 1 via HDMI. )
When watching a video I certainly do not need the 3 wide screens. If I bought the typical LG/Sony/Panasonic Blu Ray player can I connect it to a PCs HDMI port and play a disc?....perhaps a SD DVD upscaled?
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
No. Since I didn't feel like explaining the entire process myself, and since I knew there was already a very good answer, I'll just share that with you below, with a few modifications of my own.

Short answer: No

Long answer: It depends



1. That player is a "set top box", meaning it only has an HDMI output, and is designed to be plugged into a TV. You cannot connect a standalone player to a PC using an HDMI and use it as a disc drive for the computer, the MOST you could do is get a capture card that supports any standards used to prevent copying to bring the video into the PC then do a "real time" recording (which would take the length of the movie) and thats if the copy protection didn't block you, BUY A Bluray drive meant for PC use.

2. You can plug it into any display that has an HDMI port. This includes TV's, monitors, etc. If your monitor has enough inputs to plug in this Blu-Ray player over HDMI, AND plug your PC in over a second HDMI port (or a different port all together, such as DisplayPort, DVI, or VGA), then you can connect both your PC and the player to your monitor. Otherwise, you would need to unplug one and plug in the standalone player to use that monitor.

3. If you connect the player to your monitor in the method described in point #2 above, you will have to switch inputs on the monitor using it's built in menu system to go back and forth between the PC and the player.

4. You can connect the player to a PC for the purposes of recording (note: Not the same thing as ripping) a blu-ray movie, in real time, assuming you also have an HDMI Capture Card installed (And it has the necessary features to strip out the HDCP encryption). But this is a pointless waste of time as you can easily, with a BD player or burner meant for use with a PC, simply play directly or rip to video file, so long as you have the right software. And you WILL need software. I recommend Potplayer for BD playback. It's free, it works, and unless you want to pay it's about the only decent free option out there unless something has changed since the last time I looked.

In short, using a standalone player with a PC is basically a no go except in very specific use cases but to simply connect it to a PC and play movies with it, that isn't going to happen.

Since you have limited USB ports I would recommend getting a self powered (Meaning it comes with it's own AC adapter cable that you plug into the wall) USB hub that will connect to your existing USB Type C port, and then connect to THAT with the BD drive you buy. Obviously, getting a hub AND a drive is probably going to cost more than 100 bucks. Thunderbolt hubs are rather expensive, going for 100-175 bucks by themselves. Then a drive is going to cost you like 90-120 bucks for something decent. You can get super cheap chinese built junk for 60-80 bucks but I wouldn't recommend it. They don't last.
 

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