Playing Bluray on Mac Mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by asimmd, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. macrumors regular

    Mar 24, 2012
    Hi Guys

    I have a late 2012 Mac Mini,and I have the Apple Superdrive.

    I would like to play Bluray films on my Mac Mini,so could someone please tell me if this is possible,what software would i need and recommend a suitable external Bluray player.


  2. macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    The superdrive won't read or play BRD disks. I use an Asus which is rock solid, USB 3 ad reads and writes them fine...You can rip them into ATV or Ipad format too with a couple of apps.

    MKV is no longer free, but is worth the money. You run the BRD through it, the resulting output can then be run through Handbrake ( free for osx) in any format you wish..It comes with presets for all popular IOS and Android devices:



    My Asus drive:

    Attached Files:

    • Asus.jpg
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  3. macrumors 6502

    Jul 27, 2011
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    If you just want to play films not rip them, there is some support for BluRay discs in VLC (you can google for more info on that and what you could try to play protected discs) or you could buy some software to playback Blu Ray discs e.g. Mac Blu-ray Player (note this software doesn't support the Blu-Ray menus but you can play the titles).
  5. macrumors 68030


    Dec 18, 2007
    NY State of mind
    ...but as MacMan45 said, your Superdrive won't read them.
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    Of course. I didn't make a comment about that.
  7. macrumors 65816

    May 1, 2012
    I have the exact same Bluray drive. Works like a charm.

    I keep the MKV's on my network storage but have also transcoded everything to Apple TV 3 settings (m4v) to play directly on my TV from itunes sharing.
  8. macrumors 601


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    On my Blu-Ray external I use the shareware Mac Blu-ray Player to watch Blu-Ray movies and it has never let me down.
  9. macrumors 604

    Cave Man

  10. macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012
    Just get a 20$ USB powered external on Ebay, and use Mac Blu Ray Player. Works great. The lack of menu's is actually a big plus: I never had a similar uncluttered BR experience without all trailer-crap and navigation limits on a real stand alone player. Buying the software is the biggest hurdle: the software comes in at least 10 names from 10 vague companies all located in Beijing. They use similar vague payment firms (similar like Kagi, but nowhere as good).

    I only found out that occasional discs are played in a weird colour space and a bit oversaturated.
  11. macrumors 601


    Sep 21, 2010
    That software also requires an Internet connection, and when you play discs, information is sent back and forth to servers in China for some damn reason. I'm not making any claims of wrongdoing, but I don't see any other blu-ray players that have to do that, either physical or software.

    MakeMKV can stream BDs directly to VLC, so it's possible to view commercial Blu-Rays using entirely free software and without ripping anything prior to viewing... and without sending any information to servers in China.
  12. macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012
    There is Little Snitch to prevent that. Besides that, remember that any software blu-ray player has to check decoding keys now and then. Don't block the servers for that!
  13. macrumors regular

    Oct 18, 2011
    Atlanta+35 miles
    Alan, what are you using for a monitor, and what free video inputs does it have. I can't imagine you cannot find a cheap standalone BD player. Heck, I bought three refurbished players off of ePrey more than a year ago and rolled back the firmware for open region coding and that cost me just under $60 unit. And the units were clean (read, new).

    BTW, I have like 6-7 BD players in my home. As many as displays I have. :D
  14. macrumors 65816

    May 1, 2012
  15. macrumors 601


    Sep 21, 2010
    I keep hearing about Little Snitch. I need to check that out.
  16. macrumors newbie

    Jun 26, 2013
    Find an excellent blu-ray software

    I think you just need a drive that supports BD and another blu-ray program to make the playback possible. I used iDeer Blu-ray Player and it runs in a very good performance, maybe you could also try it, and it even can allow you watch Blu-ray discs on your portable devices such as iPhone and iPad.
  17. macrumors 68020


    Oct 25, 2008
    From your original statement, it is unclear if you want to play directly a blu ray disc or 'blu ray quality' files.

    Either way, Mac Mini using OSX cannot play back the HD stream as HD audio. With proper software, you can play back up to 5.1 DTS or Dolby.

    If you are archiving blu ray level files, MakeMKV is a good option in that you can choose the feature (movie) and strip out streams that you don't use/need. Typical would be a film that is in English and omit the streams for other language dubs and also subtitles. After a few are done you will be amazed how much space is lost to keeping those extra streams.

    Other software that is not too bad for OSX include DVDFab which has a reasonable port over to the Mac side.

    My set up includes using Win 7 in virtual and some other software for particular cases - AnyDVD HD, ClownBD (terrific collection of software that is free and scripted together under a nice GUI) and txMuxer. With the latter, I was able to merge together two files and get LOTR extended editions into one large file for each movie. ClownBD is good for finding forced subtitles in most cases and though it might require a couple of rounds, you will get a great file that only contains the forced subtitles that show up in certain films. (Avatar is a good example) and as well get well synched audio.

    If you want to play back files on your Mac, check out both Plex and XBMC. They are free software for the most part (Plex as some add ons that cost a few dollars while XBMC is totally free, powerful and fun).
  18. macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012
    There you have another of the 10 clones of Mac Blu Ray Player. Just slight change in styling, but all the same program from Beijing.

    I have to say I like how the program works, but I use MakeMKV more and more lately. I like how you can clean-strip the BR movie to a MKV container on the HD and add your own SRT subs. I found out most BR's only have a 10-15GB video stream, so they take not too much space. I was expecting 40GB all the time, but films are usually much smaller. This way they just fit in my XBMC collection.
  19. macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    The biggest contributor to file size inflation are all the other (foreign) audio tracks that are typically packaged in the mt2s container.
  20. macrumors 6502

    Jul 14, 2011
    There is only one Mac Blu-ray Player:

    This was the original program and the one that works the best.

    All the other look-alike programs you see on the market are copies of that, but that in no way has anything to do with the original.


    You should also look into a program called Hands Off!, which I feel is better:


    VLC does not support playback of commercial Blu-ray discs with copy protection. Those require decryption keys, which only a commercial player can provide.


    The reason is that direct playback of commercial Blu-ray discs is restricted and requires decryption keys. Without internet access to a decryption server or a standalone player with the keys built-in, they will not play.
  21. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    I did suggest in my post that additional steps would be needed to play protected blu-ray discs in VLC without needing to rip them.

    One option that I think may have already been mentioned in this thread is using MakeMKV.
  22. macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012

    They all direct to the same company in Beijing, so it looks like it is a diversification on purpose.
  23. macrumors 601


    Sep 21, 2010
    You know for a fact this connection is for decryption keys or are you speculating? All of my other hardware and software blu-ray players work without an Internet connection at all, much less a connection to China.
  24. macrumors newbie

    Nov 27, 2013
    Hampton VA
    Hi all.

    Sorry to be so late to this party – finally signed up

    I want to share this - I have had success using MakeMKV Beta and VLC as mentioned above. I installed the DASPI package that comes with MakeMKV, and apparently you need to do that, even though it talks about SCSI. You open MakeMKV first, click on the picture of the Blu-Ray disc that shows up (with its title), and it begins processing. When it finishes, you click on the icon at the top for Streaming. That opens a UpNp stream. Then open up VLC, click on Universal Plug 'N' Play in the left sidebar, double click on the "Make MKV" entry that shows up in the main window. It expands out, highlights "Raw.mt2s" and begins playing the movie! Perfectly, too, I might add. The vaunted "MacGo Mac Blu-Ray Player" wouldn't play on my MacBook without "stuttering" and hesitations. I'm using a LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray Burner in an OWC external USB 2.0 enclosure. Thanks for all the input, you all!
  25. macrumors newbie

    Dec 28, 2013
    Hello :)

    I just tried this and got the movie to play, but the sound is not working. I'm getting some sort of strange sound (some combination of morse code and feedback) and none of the sound from the movie itself. Has anyone else had this problem? I have no idea what to try next. Thanks! (Sorry but I don't know how to better describe the problem. ^^")

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