The facts about Blu-ray
- HP Technology Article Index
- Laptops, Tablets & Netbooks
- Desktop & All-in-One PCs
- Storage & Accesories
- Find a Retailer
Support & Drivers
In today’s high-def world, Blu-ray is all the rage. But what exactly is it, how is it different from DVD, and why would or wouldn’t you want Blu-ray on your next PC? We’re going to help you figure all that out.
Look for this icon while shopping:
The benefits of Blu-ray
Depending on how you plan to use your PC, adding Blu-ray can be a good option to consider.
- Ultimate entertainment – A Blu-ray drive lets you enjoy the full HD video and audio experience of Blu-ray Disc movies.
- Play DVDs, too – A Blu-ray drive gives you the flexibility to play and in some cases burn standard DVDs.1
- Additional storage – Blu-ray Discs can hold up to 50GB of data, great for backup or making room on your hard drive.
“Blu-ray” refers to the blue-violet laser used to read and write information onto a Blu-ray Disc, which can hold an impressive 50GB of data.
The ability to hold so much data makes Blu-ray Disc the ideal media for high-definition movies. In fact, Blu-ray Discs let you enjoy movies at full HD 1080p resolution along with HD master audio soundtracks. Blu-ray Disc can also be used to back up and archive data.
Blu-ray Discs will not work with standard DVDs players, drives and burners. Unless you have a Blu-ray player or Blu-ray drive on your PC, you cannot use Blu-ray Discs.
Blu-ray Disc and DVD—what’s the difference?
These two media are similar in that they hold movies and data, but they are very different.
- Show standard-definition movies up to 480p resolution
- Hold up to 9GB of data
- Play on a Blu-ray Disc player and a PC with a Blu-ray drive
- Show high-definition movies up to full HD 1080p resolution
- Hold up to 50GB of data
- Do not play on DVD players or PCs with standard DVD drives
Playing a Blu-ray Disc
Blu-ray Discs do not work on a DVD player or a PC with a standard DVD drive. In order to get the best Blu-ray experience you need:
- A Blu-ray Disc player—This is a consumer electronics device that connects to your HDTV cable and plays Blu-ray Discs.
- A PC with a Blu-ray Drive—Add a Blu-ray Disc drive to your PC to watch Blu-ray movies on your monitor, or connect your PC to an HDTV to watch Blu-ray movies on your HDTV.
- An HDTV or a PC with a 16:9 widescreen HD monitor—Blu-ray movies are presented in the widescreen format. With a widescreen monitor or HDTV you’ll get the best viewing experience.
Blu-ray for backup
Since Blu-ray Discs can hold up to 50GB of data, they can be used to back up or archive data. To use Blu-ray Discs for backup you need a PC with a Blu-ray Disc writer drive.
- 1. Do not copy copyright-protected materials.
As HD DVD and Blu-ray are new formats containing a new technologies, certain disc, digital connection, compatibility and/or performance issues may arise, and do not constitute defects in the product. Flawless playback on all systems is not guaranteed. In order for some HD-DVD and Blu-ray titles to play, they may require a DVI or HDMI digital connection and your display may require HDCP support.