I currently have an internal Blu-Ray burner in my desktop that supports up to Dual-Layer. Since the upgraded Motherboard/CPU now supports UHD (Yes, I am well aware of all the hoops one needs to jump through to make this work on a PC) I wanted to replace it with a newer drive that has more support for the newer formats, and could possibly let me rip all the movies I have on disk since I have been getting quite the collection recently and it's becoming a bit of a pain to deal with them physically. This comes second to just trying to get a quality burner that supports BDXL and UHD though.
My main purpose of the drive is to try to read and write as many standard formats as possible (CD, CD-RW, DVD-RAM, DVD-DL RW, BDXL RE, etc.. I know I won't be able to get support for some of the more obscure/never popular formats like HD-DVD and that's fine... though apparently getting quad-layer support will be hard? From what I understand, this was depreciated over triple-layer but there are some quad-layer disks on the market?), as well as have UHD support for watching my HD, 3D, and 4K Blu-Rays on a PC. Trying to Google this as well as read the drive reviews on other forums, very few drives fit the bill, I was able to come up with three:
Asus BW-16D1HT - This seems to be (or at least was apparently) the "go to" for being able to rip your UHD movies with LibreDrive, but does not appear to be what I am looking for at all. From what I understand, these drives are apparently not reliable and break down a lot, as well as are very picky with what blank media (Mostly CD) you use and will not work with many of them. On top of that, apparently it's UHD support was removed in a firmware update... and the process to downgrade it to restore it is apparently involved, requires specific motherboard features, and could brick the drive if you do it wrong. Also, apparently if I do this, I can no longer use the drive to play UHD movies? So while I saw this drive mentioned a lot in the past, I think this one is not viable anymore and there are better alternatives now?
LG WH16NS60 - The second one I saw mentioned. Apparently even the latest firmware at the time of this post is supported in LibreDrive. But like the Asus drive, I read that supposedly it's known to break down a lot and not be reliable?
Pioneer BDR-212UBK - The most recent one that I found. Not mentioned a lot as it appears to be newer. From what I understand, people claimed these are better quality than the LG and Asus and are less likely to be picky about media or break down as easily? However, apparently you can't use it to rip 4K/UHD movies? (Yet? It's not clear if that's old information and it recently got supported or not.).
Also, what is not clear is if I will lose UHD playback if I setup LibreDrive with my drive? From what I was able to Google from some older forum posts, this is the case... but apparently for some of the newer drives this is no longer true? Can anyone clarify this? Again, LibreDrive support would be a nice bonus on top of just plain good read/write support and UHD playback, so I would not want to lose any of those features for LibreDrive support.
Did I get any of that wrong? Are there any other drives one can recommend that fit the bill? Again, being able to rip UHD disks is nice, but that's more of a secondary benefit over just finding a good drive that can play my HD/3D/UHD movies as well as read/write all of my disks properly, including up to re-writable BDXL.
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If you really do want to go the official route, there is a long list of hardware and software requirements for UHD playback. You need Windows 10, PowerDVD Ultra v. 17 or higher, an official UHD Blu-ray drive, plus an Intel Core i Kaby Lake, Coffee Lake, or Comet Lake CPU with a GPU (for SGX support and HDR-10 support), and a compatible motherboard with support for manually turning on SGX and HDMI 2.0a or DisplayPort 1.2 onboard. HDMI 2.0 or DisplayPort 1.2 from a discrete graphics card won't work as a substitute.
If any of those requirements are not to your liking then you need to go the unofficial route with DVDFab or other unlicensed UHD Blu-ray player software.
I have an LG WH16NS60, which I bought instead of a Pioneer drive because Pioneer drives are too long for my HTPC case. My LG WH16NS60 has only been used infrequently but there have been no problems so far. I am reluctant to tamper with the firmware because I am concerned that afterward, it will no longer work with PowerDVD Ultra for UHD Blu-ray playback and I am not interested in ripping my small UHD Blu-ray collection at this time.Ignore list: hello_hello, tried, TechLord, Snoopy329