Do MacBooks play Blu-Ray disks?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by helloimD4NNY, Aug 18, 2009.

  1. helloimD4NNY macrumors regular

    Aug 15, 2009
    Las Vegas, NV
  2. aaron.lee2006 macrumors 65816


    Feb 23, 2006
    Ontario, Canada
    No they don't but I presume they will in the future.
  3. r.j.s Moderator emeritus


    Mar 7, 2007
  4. kimosaabee macrumors member

    Jul 24, 2009
    nope... but if you have a blu ray movie in a file format such as MKV it will play it :D
  5. celticpride678

    Feb 15, 2009
    Boston, MA
    Not at this time, but rumors have shown it coming down the road (2010, 2011).
  6. AnotherFanBoy macrumors regular

    Jul 5, 2009
    Is this correct?
  7. r.j.s Moderator emeritus


    Mar 7, 2007
    Yes. You can play .mkv files - but you have to find a way to rip them from the BD.
  8. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Technically, yes they can play Blu-ray discs. The problem is that nearly all commercial Blu-ray discs are encrypted and OS X does not have the ability to decrypt these. If you rip a Blu-ray disc (thus removing encryption and HDCP) then burn that to a Blu-ray disc you could play the m2ts video files on your MacBook using Plex or XBMC.

    I don't know if Apple will ever incorporate Blu-ray decryption and playback because it is highly invasive of the OS and the licensing terms are not all that favorable (i.e., "bag of hurt"). Best you can do now is to rip using Make MKV for Mac or AnyDVD HD for Windows, then play those m2ts/mkv files, or transcode them with Handbrake to get them to a smaller file size.
  9. kimosaabee macrumors member

    Jul 24, 2009
    the only problem with making your blu rays into mkv's or whatever else is that to get the blu ray quality you will have to lay off the compression, which will result in huge files... 25 - 50GB depending on the movie of course. If you don't want to keep the movie any longer than to watch it then you'll be fine... but once you start storing those movies it will add up fast. Then you'll need to start looking for multiple TB drives.

    I have had issues when playing back some BD quality movies though, some skipping and stuttering, not cool, so far I haven't been too impressed with the play back quality of these types of movies. This happens even on the 9600 video card i might add...
  10. Nugget macrumors 65816


    Nov 24, 2002
    Houston Texas USA
    Well, that and the fact that a MacBook does not have a BluRay drive either. That may seem like stating the obvious but it's not clear to me that the OP knows it. Stick a BluRay disc in a MacBook and encryption isn't your biggest problem. :)

    Even if Apple releases a MacBook someday that can read and play a BluRay disc, none of the current MacBooks will be able to do it unless you were to hook up an external BluRay drive.
  11. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    The average size of a Blu-ray movie in my collection is about 18 gb. If one rips with Make MKV then there is no loss of video quality as it only rewraps the video and audio files in the m2ts container into an mkv container.

    My experience is that I can get those down to 1080p and 10-12 gb with Handbrake with no perceptible loss of quality. If down to 720p (the size of a MacBook 13" display) then you're talking around 6 gb or so.

    Have you tried Plex? It's pretty much the only app that can reliably play 1080p m2ts files.

    Well, since the video card has virtually nothing to do with playback this is no surprise.
  12. devburke Guest

    Oct 16, 2008
    I was thinking the same thing. If you already own a Macbook, the only way it's EVER gonna play Blu-Rays is with an external drive. Future Macbooks may have BD drives, but no current one does.
  13. kdum8 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 8, 2006
    Tokyo, Japan
    How much is a typical Blue Ray external mac compatible drive these days anyway?
  14. iPhownage macrumors newbie

    Aug 8, 2009
    Really? Hope the OpenCL in Snow Leopard sorts this. Graphics cards share the decoding load under windows (DirectX). I noticed a huge improvement of 1080p playback after upgrading my card from a nVidia 7800GT (256MB) to an ATi HD4870 (1GB).
  15. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Feb 20, 2009
    "Do MacBooks play Blu-Ray disks?"

    Not yet.
    But it's coming.
    Probably sooner than most folks here would think...

    - John
  16. devburke Guest

    Oct 16, 2008
    As far as I know, there aren't any yet. But I'm sure there will be before long, or I could be wrong and they could already be out there.
  17. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    I have this Blu-ray drive in this enclosure (about US$220). Get them and you can use either AnyDVD HD (Windows) or Make MKV (Mac beta, sans BD+) to rip Blu-ray discs to your hard drive. From there you can play them on your Mac using Plex or XBMC, or transcode them to mkv or m4v using the current Handbrake snapshot.

    That is the hope. The biggest hurdle will be if ffmpeg is written to use OpenCL or the native h.264/vc-1 decoding abilities of the 9400 gpu.
  18. getz76 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 15, 2009
    Hell, AL
    Is that true? How is it invasive? Honest question, not baiting.

    The licensing terms are terrible.

    I still think Blu-ray will never be fully embraced by the general public. Not a comment on the quality of the format, I just think digital downloads and on-demand will win (even if they are inferior in quality).
  19. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Supposedly at the kernel level and the ability to modify the OS with updated decryption keys as new discs are pressed.

    It's certainly a race. I'm convinced that 1080p video can be compressed down to 10-12 gb for a 2 hour movie with no perceptible degradation. That's about an 8 hour download at the slowest DSL/cable speeds so you might be right. When speeds get to the point where you can DL faster than you can play then on-demand will be in demand (pun intended). What you'll probably have to sacrifice are the bonus features and the high-def audio and additional audio tracks that typically come with Blu-ray discs. For some that'll be just fine; for others not.
  20. macrmf macrumors newbie

    Aug 15, 2009
    never IMHO

    Well i think it is never going to happen.
    Apple is betting high on their itunes store stuff. They want you to download your movies from there, so i dont think they ever support bluray.

    I think it is a good move, since discs are due to be extinct anytime soon. I thought it was a risky move they did assembling mac air without a dvd drive, but after buying a macpro i realized i never used the damn driver...i mean NEVER.

    Apple wants to create their own i bet you wont see a mac running bluray.
  21. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    I remember reading something about that; blu-ray decoding is required to be done in ring 0, so it can't be interrupted (and thus stuff copied). Also it requires the decryption key crap. This kind of stuff can destabilize the system.
  22. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a


    Sep 1, 2007
  23. iPhone 62S macrumors 6502a

    iPhone 62S

    Aug 18, 2009
    MacBooks, as far as I know, have screens that support 720p, so if you can get a BD rip of a film you can watch it in HD (obviously not full HD as that requires 1080p, but close enough for a laptop).

    I was amazed when I found that out actually, I have a HD screen on my laptop!
  24. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Will the Cyberlink software detect the video out Mini DisplayPort as HDCP-compliant?
  25. adamjackson macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    Beside the common knowledge that you can't read blu-ray disks on a Mac (even if you plug in an external drive), doesn't it bother anyone that Apple doesn't support this?

    I'm constantly amazed at how long blu-ray has been out, how low prices have dropped and how many applications support it but Apple just doesn't. Every time we think we'll be getting blu-ray support we don't.

    New iMac
    New Macbook Pro
    New iPhone 3GS
    New Operating System
    New version of Final Cut Studio
    New Version of Logic Pro
    new version of iLife
    New Mac Pros

    Every time something comes out that potentially has something to do with handling Blu-ray movies, apple isn't announcing anything. It's absurd and I wish Apple would just hurry up already.

    I don't give a crap if it's a bag of hurt. Take the pain Apple and put out Blu-Ray support.

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