HTPC Blu-ray Playback

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HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 11:57 am

So I did a search and found scattered discussion of Blu-Ray playback on the forum, but no main point for information so I thought I'd make one.

In my research, seems like every retail option - PowerDVD, ArcSoft's TotalTheater, Corel's offering, - are very expensive and aren't as polished as they could/should be.

So, my question is what do you all use for Blu-ray playback and/or what do you recommend and why?
Last edited by southrncomfortjm on Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:13 pm

Honestly, for straight playback I use my stand alone Bluray players instead of HTPC - it just works without a lot of fuss (as you alluded to). For the BRs that I own, I have ripped and compressed them into .mp4 and .mkv (i haven't really standardized yet because I own about 4 total) for easy playback on the HTPC without all the hassle they seem to have designed into the BR. That being said, nothing bothers me more than when we rent something from Redbox and it takes literally 10 minutes to actually get to the movie through all the unskippable previews, FBI/Interpol/MPAA warnings, etc. I feel like I'm being penalized for watching the movie the way the production company intended rather than rip it and just start with the thing I actually, you know, wanted to watch - the movie. Sorry for the little soapbox there. I wish there was a straightforward and affordable program that would integrate with Media center and/or use the remote well, but I haven't had good luck with any of the usual suspects that you have listed - I always end up frustrated by some kind of warning/error and either ripping it or just watching it in the standalone player.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:17 pm

frumper15 wrote:Honestly, for straight playback I use my stand alone Bluray players instead of HTPC - it just works without a lot of fuss (as you alluded to). For the BRs that I own, I have ripped and compressed them into .mp4 and .mkv (i haven't really standardized yet because I own about 4 total) for easy playback on the HTPC without all the hassle they seem to have designed into the BR. That being said, nothing bothers me more than when we rent something from Redbox and it takes literally 10 minutes to actually get to the movie through all the unskippable previews, FBI/Interpol/MPAA warnings, etc. I feel like I'm being penalized for watching the movie the way the production company intended rather than rip it and just start with the thing I actually, you know, wanted to watch - the movie. Sorry for the little soapbox there. I wish there was a straightforward and affordable program that would integrate with Media center and/or use the remote well, but I haven't had good luck with any of the usual suspects that you have listed - I always end up frustrated by some kind of warning/error and either ripping it or just watching it in the standalone player.


Edit: Rule 1 :P

I wouldn't mind going about it that way, I just want 1080p (or close to) video with 5.1 surround.
Last edited by southrncomfortjm on Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:22 pm

I'm going to agree with the simplicity of a set-top box for Blu-Ray playback.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:29 pm

I use Cyberlink PowerDVD 12 on my PC, and we have a Samsung BD-C5500 stand alone player attached to a 32" Sony Bravia LCD TV. The stand alone player is by far superior in image quality. In fact, I prefer it, but the kids have camped on the TV. I needed a place to consume my media in peace, so I put a BD player in the PC, but if I had it to do over again I'd have gotten another small TV, a stand alone player, and a good set of headphones.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:38 pm

southrncomfortjm wrote:
Is there a good process for ripping the movie in a lossless or near losses way? I'm assuming I need AnyDVD or some other paid decrypter right?

I wouldn't mind going about it that way, I just want 1080p (or close to) video with 5.1 surround.


I've probably only done it 4 times total and remember that it wasn't fun any of the times. I do believe that AnyDVD was the initial step to remove the encryption and from there it gets fuzzy for me - there were a few different free programs I tried with varying results to utimately end with an mp4 of mkv. Final quality was always good, especially compared to something from a DVD, so there is some value in taking the time.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:52 pm

Cyberlink's PowerDVD works fine for me. I have the full retail version on a couple of my PCs and the OEM version that came with my Blu-ray drives on the others.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 2:11 pm

JustAnEngineer wrote:Cyberlink's PowerDVD works fine for me. I have the full retail version on a couple of my PCs and the OEM version that came with my Blu-ray drives on the others.


Do you use 10, 11 or 12 and Ultra or Pro?

I was going to test out 12 Ultra later this week with their free trial and see how it works.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 2:46 pm

Usacomp2k3 wrote:I'm going to agree with the simplicity of a set-top box for Blu-Ray playback.


I'm sure its easier, but I'm trying to have as few items connected to my TV as possible - basically just my HTPC and Receiver for 5.1.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:25 pm

My method is far from simple, but it does pay dividends in it's own way. My way is horribly setup intensive, but very smooth at playback time.

I have AnyDVD and Arcsoft on my HTPC for actual Bluray playback. That's really only used for rentals, though.

Any movie I purchase, I rip the contents and process those, keeping the bits I'll want most (movie, best quality English audio, English subtitles, chapters), and I toss the rest. For all but my favorite few movies, I then re-encode the video down to a lower bitrate, resolution, or both, and get the most minimal audio as well (1080p or 720p and AC3 5.1 640kbps or less).

It's not ideal, but my kids don't ruin my discs, and the movies play pretty flawlessly. You asked. :\
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:28 pm

southrncomfortjm wrote:
Is there a good process for ripping the movie in a lossless or near losses way? I'm assuming I need AnyDVD or some other paid decrypter right?

I wouldn't mind going about it that way, I just want 1080p (or close to) video with 5.1 surround.


I haven't bought a blu ray in a while, so haven't had to make any backups recently.

You can get some decent free programs if you know where to look that make the process not too painful. Plus, most accept batch scripts which can make your life easier if doing more than one at a time. Basically the steps are:

1)Removing encrypting (ie, Anydvd)
2)Selecting which video/audio tracks you want off of the Blu Ray
3)Compressing the Blu Ray video (and converting from AVC to H.264)
4) Compressing the audio track(s)
5)remuxing audio and video into an mkv or similar container

Unfortunately I'm not up to date enough with the current software to make any recommendations, but I believe I remember being able to do the bulk of these steps at one go with MKVTools...
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:30 pm

southrncomfortjm wrote:So I did a search and found scattered discussion of Blu-Ray playback on the forum, but no main point for information so I thought I'd make one.

In my research, seems like every retail option - PowerDVD, ArcSoft's TotalTheater, Corel's offering, - are very expensive and aren't as polished as they could/should be.

Codec/Decryption options - PotPlayer+DVDfab passkey, AnyDVD, XMBC - all seem to be limited in some way.

So, my question is what do you all use for Blu-ray playback and/or what do you recommend and why?


After you crack the decryption, you can use a basic media player such as Media Player Classic Home Cinema to play the movie. I don't think it has the menu support, etc, but you can use it to get at most of the content without too much trouble.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:37 pm

cynan wrote:3)Compressing the Blu Ray video (and converting from AVC to H.264)


Ehm, sorry, but I have to, or they revoke my pedant's club membership;

AVC and h.264 are the same thing. I think you meant VC-1, which is almost never used.

For a no-loss-versus-the-Bluray source rip, I'd start with AnyDVD HD, and use MeGUI's HD Stream Extractor to pull the video/audio/subtitle tracks that I want from it. I'd then simply remux those into mkv with a recent mkvtoolnix, and no processing or conversion should be required. On many movies, however, this can leave you with an extremely large file, to the point of ridiculousness (Avatar SE remuxed was something North of 45GB). Even a simple CQ pass from x264, with the quality set quite high can reduce the video track size to 1/2 or less with little to no loss in picture. Commercial h.264 encoders are setup to output something that is as low complexity as possible, with the fastest encode time, within a single set constraint (output file size). You can actually run something like x264 over most commercial BDs and get exact, identical output (barring some minor fingerprint-type variation) with a vastly smaller file size. The trick is that you are devoting many hours of high-end CPU time to the encode, while a commercial setup would be using more speedy/lossy settings, and/or dedicated encoding hardware.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 4:23 pm

southrncomfortjm wrote:
JustAnEngineer wrote:Cyberlink's PowerDVD works fine for me. I have the full retail version on a couple of my PCs and the OEM version that came with my Blu-ray drives on the others.

Do you use 10, 11 or 12 and Ultra or Pro?
I use PowerDVD as well (version 12 Pro). It integrates nicely with WMC and the image is pretty good.

Alas, I've found that as soon as a new version comes out, the old version will start having problems about a month later. I'm starting to get suspicious. Every now and then, it doesn't want to play a disc after resuming from sleep. Something about graphics drivers and resolution. A reboot will solve that, but that is a PITA.

Forge wrote:Even a simple CQ pass from x264, with the quality set quite high can reduce the video track size to 1/2 or less with little to no loss in picture. Commercial h.264 encoders are setup to output something that is as low complexity as possible, with the fastest encode time, within a single set constraint (output file size). You can actually run something like x264 over most commercial BDs and get exact, identical output (barring some minor fingerprint-type variation) with a vastly smaller file size. The trick is that you are devoting many hours of high-end CPU time to the encode, while a commercial setup would be using more speedy/lossy settings, and/or dedicated encoding hardware.
Personally, I'm not worried about encode time. I'm not in a rush and I can just run these overnight. Can you recommend a place that will list these options step by step? Right now, I have all of my DVDs backed up to NAS but it would be nice to do the same with the BR.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 4:34 pm

Darkmage wrote:
southrncomfortjm wrote:
JustAnEngineer wrote:Cyberlink's PowerDVD works fine for me. I have the full retail version on a couple of my PCs and the OEM version that came with my Blu-ray drives on the others.

Do you use 10, 11 or 12 and Ultra or Pro?
I use PowerDVD as well (version 12 Pro). It integrates nicely with WMC and the image is pretty good.

Alas, I've found that as soon as a new version comes out, the old version will start having problems about a month later. I'm starting to get suspicious. Every now and then, it doesn't want to play a disc after resuming from sleep. Something about graphics drivers and resolution. A reboot will solve that, but that is a PITA.

Forge wrote:Even a simple CQ pass from x264, with the quality set quite high can reduce the video track size to 1/2 or less with little to no loss in picture. Commercial h.264 encoders are setup to output something that is as low complexity as possible, with the fastest encode time, within a single set constraint (output file size). You can actually run something like x264 over most commercial BDs and get exact, identical output (barring some minor fingerprint-type variation) with a vastly smaller file size. The trick is that you are devoting many hours of high-end CPU time to the encode, while a commercial setup would be using more speedy/lossy settings, and/or dedicated encoding hardware.
Personally, I'm not worried about encode time. I'm not in a rush and I can just run these overnight. Can you recommend a place that will list these options step by step? Right now, I have all of my DVDs backed up to NAS but it would be nice to do the same with the BR.


I really couldn't say. I've built my own user-unfriendly methods over the years, centering around MeGUI. It's not pretty, but it's powerful and very flexible. If there's interest, maybe I'll finally get around to documenting my processes for you all.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Tue Nov 20, 2012 5:40 pm

I would be interested.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 4:47 am

Pagey wrote:I use Cyberlink PowerDVD 12 on my PC, and we have a Samsung BD-C5500 stand alone player attached to a 32" Sony Bravia LCD TV. The stand alone player is by far superior in image quality. In fact, I prefer it, but the kids have camped on the TV. I needed a place to consume my media in peace, so I put a BD player in the PC, but if I had it to do over again I'd have gotten another small TV, a stand alone player, and a good set of headphones.

southrncomfortjm wrote:
JustAnEngineer wrote:Cyberlink's PowerDVD works fine for me. I have the full retail version on a couple of my PCs and the OEM version that came with my Blu-ray drives on the others.

Do you use 10, 11 or 12 and Ultra or Pro?

I was going to test out 12 Ultra later this week with their free trial and see how it works.

I am interested to know as well. I looked at PowerDVD and WinDVD and the newegg reviews are not overwhelmingly stellar. Lots of complaints about disc/movie incompatibilities and update issues. Seems like a standalone player does better in this regard (as long as you keep it updated, I would think). Also, how much better is the image quality compared to using the PC playback software?

For me, I am planning a HTPC build to consume all my non-BR media anyways. Now the question is whether I can get away with a Bluray drive (perhaps even a writer) with software, or a standalone player, or even a PS3 (the Black Friday $200 combo looks extremely attractive). However, every option has a downside (or 2). I am also thinking about a new 3D capable TV so I would think 3D BR playback should be on my checklist too, if that changes anything.

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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:38 pm

As far as PowerDVD 12 goes, I have yet to experience any disc/media incompatibility issues. There are occasional patches/updates, but I have never experienced any issues when applying them. What stands out to me the most is the difference in image quality. I don't know the technical reason(s) for the obvious difference in image quality, but the difference is easily discernible. It's noticeable on DVDs as well. The Samsung BD-C5500 upcoverts DVDs (as long as the transfer was a quality transfer) very well, and, again, the difference in quality is very apparent.

I rip my DVDs down to AVI files (mp3 for sound, DivX/MP4 for video) using WinXDVD at around a 2200kbps bit rate. That's about half the size of the full mpeg2 video on the source disc. When viewing the AVI using VLC, the video quality often looks as good as or better than the actual, physical DVD played using PowerDVD 12. I have no explanation for this, but it is what it is.

The Blu-ray player I use also has the ability to play different codecs from source material on discs, USB drive, or a network share using the Samsung PC Share software. It's a rather versatile device, all things considered. However, with the kids having camped on the main TV, I needed a PC option - hence the BD-ROM drive and PowerDVD 12.

I can't really fault the software anywhere expect in the image quality department. Hope that helps a little.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:49 pm

Pagey wrote:I rip my DVDs down to AVI files (mp3 for sound, DivX/MP4 for video) using WinXDVD at around a 2200kbps bit rate.

I'm sorry, I have to, again. MP4 is not a codec, it's a container. I'm guessing you meant DivX/Xvid, or maybe Divx/h.264. Impossible to tell.

Pagey wrote: That's about half the size of the full mpeg2 video on the source disc. When viewing the AVI using VLC, the video quality often looks as good as or better than the actual, physical DVD played using PowerDVD 12. I have no explanation for this, but it is what it is.

Most upscaling DVD players soften the video as part of the upscale, to hide MPEG2 artifacts. Most either by defect or design make the picture over-soft.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:50 pm

Pagey wrote:I rip my DVDs down to AVI files (mp3 for sound, DivX/MP4 for video) using WinXDVD at around a 2200kbps bit rate. That's about half the size of the full mpeg2 video on the source disc. When viewing the AVI using VLC, the video quality often looks as good as or better than the actual, physical DVD played using PowerDVD 12. I have no explanation for this, but it is what it is.

But still does not beat a standalone player in the IQ department, right?

Pagey wrote:The Blu-ray player I use also has the ability to play different codecs from source material on discs, USB drive, or a network share using the Samsung PC Share software. It's a rather versatile device, all things considered. However, with the kids having camped on the main TV, I needed a PC option - hence the BD-ROM drive and PowerDVD 12.
Unfortunately I deal with exotic codecs and non-English subtitles all the time, mainstream Bluray players that claim support for multiple codecs still will be tripped up from time to time. So for those my only option is a HTPC. Following that line of thinking, if I can get away with just one "box" then it is a good thing. But sounds like a standalone BR player can make sure maximum quality out of the discs (and speed it seems).
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:54 pm

There is a program to 'make MKV' files *cough* and VLC media player for playback. It doesn't compress the video as far as I know but storage is cheap enough that unless you have a HUGE DVD and BR collection it shouldn't be a problem...maybe my opinion on HDD storage is out of the norm though. This program that will 'make MKV' files is very simple to use although ripping can take a while, I suppose if one wanted to compress after ripping you could use another program to do so.

Pagey wrote: As far as PowerDVD 12 goes, I have yet to experience any disc/media incompatibility issues. There are occasional patches/updates,
but I have never experienced any issues when applying them. What stands out to me the most is the difference in image quality. I don't know the technical reason(s) for the obvious difference in image quality, but the difference is easily discernible. It's noticeable on DVDs as well. The Samsung BD-C5500 upcoverts DVDs (as long as the transfer was a quality transfer) very well, and, again, the difference in quality is very apparent.

I rip my DVDs down to AVI files (mp3 for sound, DivX/MP4 for video) using WinXDVD at around a 2200kbps bit rate. That's about half the size of the full mpeg2 video on the source disc. When viewing the AVI using VLC, the video quality often looks as good as or better than the actual, physical DVD played using PowerDVD 12. I have no explanation for this, but it is what it is.

The Blu-ray player I use also has the ability to play different codecs from source material on discs, USB drive, or a network share using the Samsung PC Share software. It's a rather versatile device, all things considered. However, with the kids having camped on the main TV, I needed a PC option - hence the BD-ROM drive and PowerDVD 12.

I can't really fault the software anywhere expect in the image quality department. Hope that helps a little.


I wonder about the strange differences in quality too. For BR the HTPC is worse, for DVD it's better? Is it some software settings, or maybe settings for the video card (or video card capabilities that can't be changed) in the HTPC? Are you sure the playback source file is identical to the original when it gets worse?

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Last edited by MadManOriginal on Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:16 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:57 pm

Let's keep this a discussion of what to do with Blu-Ray data that mysteriously appeared, not on how to make that data appear in the first place. Doing so keeps us square with Rule #1.

Thanks in advance.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:59 pm

Forge wrote:
Pagey wrote:I rip my DVDs down to AVI files (mp3 for sound, DivX/MP4 for video) using WinXDVD at around a 2200kbps bit rate.

I'm sorry, I have to, again. MP4 is not a codec, it's a container. I'm guessing you meant DivX/Xvid, or maybe Divx/h.264. Impossible to tell.

Pagey wrote: That's about half the size of the full mpeg2 video on the source disc. When viewing the AVI using VLC, the video quality often looks as good as or better than the actual, physical DVD played using PowerDVD 12. I have no explanation for this, but it is what it is.

Most upscaling DVD players soften the video as part of the upscale, to hide MPEG2 artifacts. Most either by defect or design make the picture over-soft.


I stand corrected. I should clarify that I use the standard MPEG-4 Part 2 codec when transcoding to DivX. WinX will do h.264, but on my Athlon II, it will only do about 25-30 fps versus 75-110 fps for the standard MPEG-4 Part 2 DivX.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:44 pm

MadManOriginal wrote:I wonder about the strange differences in quality too. For BR the HTPC is worse, for DVD it's better?

So it does mean if I want some quality, I should give up some convenience of one single HTPC and get a separate player?

Now, to go off-topic a bit, for a standalone player, PS3 (I am aware of 3D BR can't bistream TrueHD) vs dedicated?
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 1:50 pm

My evidence is obviously purely anecdotal. I can't offer anyone a technical, reasoned explanation of why my Blu-ray discs look better on the Samsung stand alone than in the Samsung BD-ROM in my PC, which uses PowerDVD 12. I too prefer the idea of a "magical' all-in-one HTPC device. Maybe it's the LCD I'm using on the PC? Maybe it's the Radeon HD 4350? I can't say. But if I hooked my PC up to my TV, and the "quality" looked the same as it did on my 19" LCD attached to the PC, I'd be rather upset.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Wed Nov 21, 2012 2:25 pm

Pagey wrote:My evidence is obviously purely anecdotal. I can't offer anyone a technical, reasoned explanation of why my Blu-ray discs look better on the Samsung stand alone than in the Samsung BD-ROM in my PC, which uses PowerDVD 12. I too prefer the idea of a "magical' all-in-one HTPC device. Maybe it's the LCD I'm using on the PC? Maybe it's the Radeon HD 4350? I can't say. But if I hooked my PC up to my TV, and the "quality" looked the same as it did on my 19" LCD attached to the PC, I'd be rather upset.

I would suspect that the stand-alone Blu-Ray player has dedicated video post processing hardware embedded into it... and your Blu-Ray drive has dedicated error correction and high-speed data transfer hardware built into it.

Different tools for different jobs.
If there is one thing a remote-controlled, silent and unseeable surveillance/killing machine needs, it’s more whimsy. -- Marcus
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Thu Nov 22, 2012 7:07 pm

I did some more research and testing and found Dvdfab passkey with Pot player works very well for Blu-ray play back and it is totally free. No Rule #1 violations as far as I can tell :p

Still need to do some experimenting to figure out how to view anything other than the main movie though.
Gaming: i5-3570k/Z77 Extreme4/212 Evo/Corsair 500R/16GB Ballstix Tact 1600 CL8/MSI 7850 2GB/840 250gb, EVO 500gb, SG 3tb/Tachyon 550w/Win7

HTPC: i3 3225/H77/8gb g.skill 1.25v/1+2TB HDD/Asus BR/Asus 7850 2gb/Silverstone GD05B/Antec 380w/InfiniTV 4/Win7
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Thu Nov 22, 2012 7:57 pm

PowerDVD is on sale this week if you'd rather go the legal route.
http://www.cyberlink.com/store/index_en_US.html
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:54 pm

I've used PowerDVD Ultra 7.3 (the first version to support Blu-ray) and PowerDVD 10 for Blu-ray playback so far. PowerDVD 7.3 used to work fine, but I have recently run into compatibility problems with newer discs. The Avengers would not play, for example.

PowerDVD 10, on the other hand, has been able to play every disc I have thrown at it without a hitch so far, excepting Blu-ray 3D playback (see below). I haven't taken actual measurements but PowerDVD 10 appears to load discs (meaning going from disc insertion to playback) somewhat faster than 7.3.

Picture quality really should not be an issue with Blu-ray, IMHO. Blu-ray will look good either with an HTPC or a dedicated player, as long as your video card / integrated video provides the proper hardware for decoding etc. I had zero issues with picture quality on a Radeon HD 4670 and the same goes for my current HD 5670. DVD playback can be a bit of a mixed bag. Some old TV shows that are very obviously converted from VHS to DVD (some kids' DVDs are clearly in this category) can be a total mess with nasty dot crawl and combing artifacts, but even a dedicated hardware player will struggle with those. But as far as properly mastered DVDs are concerned, PowerDVD 10 plays them just fine and DVDs look glorious on a large LCD or plasma.

The issue I had with PowerDVD 10 and 3D playback appears to be a video driver+application problem. When I play Avatar 3D in 2D mode, playback is silky smooth. When I switch on 3D, I get very jerky playback with a huge number of dropped frames. A quick check in the options dialogue box and I found out that hardware accelerated decoding was disabled, and the Athlon II X2 @ 3GHz in my HTPC just could not handle the load, causing the jerkiness. The Radeon HD 5670 in the HTPC is supposed to support Blu-ray 3D so I don't know what's going on but 3D is just not enough of a concern for me to bug Cyberlink and/or AMD about it.

I did also try WinDVD Pro 11 recently on a machine that has an old OEM copy of PowerDVD 7.3 to see if it could handle The Avengers. WinDVD froze on the first go. A process kill and a second try later it played the disc just fine... Mind you, this was on a Windows XP machine. Maybe Win7 would handle better. One thing WinDVD has going for it is that it's very cheap right now compared to PowerDVD. The Corel website tells me the full download version costs $39 (USD) versus $79 for PowerDVD 12. Ouch.
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Re: HTPC Blu-ray Playback

Postposted on Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:15 pm

I use Corel windvd pro 11. Flawless playback on Vista, with an ATI 4670.

The only issue it has is that the keyboard is disabled during blu-ray playback, which means our universal remote doesn't work.

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