Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

A new BluRay player should just work although hardware may need to be upgraded depending on video and CPU requirements.

I want to install a BluRay disc on my computer. Windows XP Pro, SP3 with a Pentium 4 CPU at 2.8 GHZ and about (gosh, I can't tell from the question here but it looks like one gig of RAM, it could be more). Do I need to upgrade my computer or buy a new one? I was considering a buy of a PowerDVD12.

In this excerpt from Answercast #80, I look at the possibilities of adding a BluRay drive to an older computer.

Hardware upgrade for BluRay

So, ultimately, playing BluRay discs on that computer will probably work just fine.

The actual limiting factors are two-fold. One is the drive (which is what you're looking at). The other would be your video card.

Remember that high definition is 1980 x 1200. If your display is not able to display that resolution or if your display can't keep up with full motion video at that resolution, that tells you then that yes, your CPU may be underpowered - and your graphics card may be underpowered. That's the time when you might be looking at a new computer.

But by and large, it should "in theory" work.

Certainly, if you're doing data from something like a BluRay disc, data should be fine since there's not nearly as much of a speed expectation, a continuous-type speed expectation from the drive.

But personally, based on what you've described here, I would be tempted to give it a try. And if it doesn't work, then take the drive that you purchased out and install it the replacement computer that you may end up buying.

(Transcript lightly edited for readability.)

Article C6156 - December 20, 2012 « »

Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

Not what you needed?

1 Comment
December 21, 2012 3:33 PM

Being pendantic, HD = 1920 x 1080

1920 x1200 is WUXGA - I'm guessing you had a "fat-finger" slip.

If you are upgrading to BluRay I would think a primary consideration is connection speed. For external drives you want at least USB3 or better eSATA.

I would also focus on a double layer burner to maximize storage per disk

Comments on this entry are closed.

If you have a question, start by using the search box up at the top of the page - there's a very good chance that your question has already been answered on Ask Leo!.

If you don't find your answer, head out to to ask your question.