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Blue Ray Movie Player for Mac


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#1 Douglas

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Posted 02 January 2008 - 11:10 PM

So, anyone else waiting for a way to play Blue Ray movies on a Mac?  I have an empty drive slot on my Mac Pro and I have been considering getting a Blue Ray drive for it, but unless they release a way to play Blue Ray movies, I can't justify it.

Anyone else feel this way?

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#2 Eric5h5

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Posted 02 January 2008 - 11:42 PM

Nope.  One, it's called Blu-ray, and two, I'm skipping both that and HD-DVD and waiting for HVD instead....

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#3 bobbob

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Posted 03 January 2008 - 11:30 AM

There are combo HD-DVD / Bluray drives for $250-ish, those would be the best bet currently. Under Windows you could use AnyDVD HD to rip the movies to your hard drive. I think you'd only be able to play them with VLC, if at all, though.

View PostEric5h5, on January 2nd 2008, 11:42 PM, said:

I'm skipping both that and HD-DVD and waiting for HVD instead
Hah. Good luck with that ;)

#4 teflon

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Posted 03 January 2008 - 12:16 PM

yeah, HDV doesnt look like much is going on with it... my bet is the announcement date was April 1st...

with rumours abound, wait until macworld... its only a few days away, and its supposedly when apple will spring with its HD drives... of course, add to that 10.5.2, and we may well see DVD Player being capable of  at least some kind of meaningful HD playback.

i cant wait for a 9.5mm slot loading BR drive to come along. theres already a tray loading one announced by someone, so its only a matter of time...
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#5 joelumox

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 01:58 PM

I expect every one knows this now. but the video player in Toast 9 will play blue ray movies at least from a disc image ( I don't have a blue-ray capable drive )

#6 Greg Grant

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 05:28 PM

It'll play Blu-Ray? As far as know and advertised it only authors Blu-Ray disks.

As far as I know you need AnyDVD HD to playback Blu-Ray on most Macs (using windows) or other like software under windows. A few things need to happen for official OS X Blu-Ray support:

1. Support for some of codecs like DTS-HD/Dolby Digital Plus that as far as I know cannot even be exported to using OS X
2. HDCP compliance, OS X at this time doesn't have any HDCP support
3. Licensing

The third probably is the big kicker as Blu-Ray players cost manufactures quite a bit more than any other medium in royalties.

This URL (I don't know how much I trust the URL itself but I've heard rumors Jobs really disliked the Blu-Ray pricing structure) cites Apple's hesitance towards blu-ray being the licensing. The original article that the author quotes isn't nearly as poorly written as it contains the actual quote, "A bag of hurt" not "A Bag of hunt", and as we all know, its Steve Jobs, not Steve Job.

I'm not sure what the pricing structure for software but it'd probably incur a few dollars per unit, hence every copy of OS X with blu-ray support.  I'd be willing to bet 10.6 is when the Mac platform sees blu-ray support when Apple can negotiate a proper deal that works for the consortium and them.

Don't expect VLC to bail out users anytime soon, first open source projects must tackle the problem of DTS-HD and Dolby Digital Plus before VLC can attempt to playback streams from Blu-Ray.
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#7 teflon

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 05:35 PM

Well thats interesting.
On the downside, thats just codec support. And since Blu Ray are just one of two codecs, AVC (read as H.264) and VC-1 (read as Microsoft WMV derived stuff), just taking the video and audio streams out of their BR containers and dropping them into something nicer, like .mkv, would allow VLC to play back about half the stuff thats out there. This actually works-ish.

The only downside here is that DRM gets in the way. You need a windows machine in order to get rid of the DRM and strip out the streams and then stick it back together into a mkv, and youve got the headache of storage, since thats then around 25gb of video just sitting on your HDD 3 times...

By the time youve done all that you might as well have just watched the damned film.

So, thats not really that much use other than on stuff which youve made yourself and burned to BD in toast. Commercial disks will hang on when Big Steve decides that BD isnt a "world of hurt" any more.
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#8 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 05:56 PM

Could you play a blu-ray in mac via Parallels or VMware? That would be kinda cheating but it be interesting to try
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#9 J'nathus

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 07:42 PM

View Postteflon, on April 23rd 2009, 04:35 PM, said:

The only downside here is that DRM gets in the way. You need a windows machine in order to get rid of the DRM and strip out the streams and then stick it back together into a mkv, and youve got the headache of storage, since thats then around 25gb of video just sitting on your HDD 3 times...
There's a program for Windows called AnyDVD that I use to make my DVD rips.  I've heard that the HD version can 'on the fly' strip Blu-Ray of it's protection allowing for output through unapproved sources.  Since I'm not likely to be buying a new monitor and / or video card that are both HDCP compliant anytime soon, this is a good thing.

#10 Greg Grant

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 01:12 AM

I seem to recall getting VMWare to playback 1080p on my Mac Pro but the problem is the players I know of make use of HDMI. Since VMWare has a virtualized connection, I sincerely doubt that it'll playback blu-ray unless there's a player willing to disregard the DRM. Notable some video players like VLC don't work with Parallels, not sure about VMware. Also notable I don't think VM windows can pass audio to your SPDIF output, it may be I've never tried such shenanigans .
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#11 teflon

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 03:10 AM

I already own AnyDVD, which I alluded to, just didnt explicitly state.

As to playing back through a Virtual Machine, it doesnt work because programs like PowerDVD check to see if its running on a virtual machine and then refuse to boot.
Also, playing back 1080p is one thing, playing back a 20mbps video stream at 1080p is another, and requires a GPU to be present in order to achieve it.
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#12 Tesseract

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 07:26 AM

View Postteflon, on April 24th 2009, 09:35 AM, said:

And since Blu Ray are just one of two codecs, AVC (read as H.264) and VC-1 (read as Microsoft WMV derived stuff)
Or MPEG-2 :bleedingeyes:

#13 teflon

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 08:02 AM

yeah, and MPEG 2, but thats a)almost never used since the first few disks and b)still looks fandabbytastic when its got a high enough bit rate thrown at it.

View PostGreg Gant, on April 24th 2009, 12:28 AM, said:

As far as I know you need AnyDVD HD to playback Blu-Ray on most Macs (using windows) or other like software under windows. A few things need to happen for official OS X Blu-Ray support:

1. Support for some of codecs like DTS-HD/Dolby Digital Plus that as far as I know cannot even be exported to using OS X
2. HDCP compliance, OS X at this time doesn't have any HDCP support
3. Licensing

The third probably is the big kicker as Blu-Ray players cost manufactures quite a bit more than any other medium in royalties.

sorry, didnt spot this before I finished my old post.

you dont need AnyDVD HD to play back Blu-Ray. You only need it to strip of region coding (which is only a potential problem if you import from the US/Japan to the EU/Aus, and even then dependant on the studio and publisher), and/or remove DRM like HDCP and BD+ to watch on a non-HDCP screen, and/or rip the movie from the disk.
What you do need, on windows, is a movie player which can handle BD. PowerDVD is the most prevalent. Its just a shame that it costs about as much as a bare BD player drive in the first place...

as for:
1. not an issue, since all BD also include standard definition audio which is compatible with standard definition audio systems, such as the built in speakers on an MBP. In order to leverage HD audio formats your computer/BD player will need to be properly hooked up to a decent HD audio system. Optical audio doesnt have the bandwidth to handle certain things, so your best bet is to go with a HDMI passthrough capable device. Of course, this is all damned expensive, so you can quite happily stick to something cheaper and less capable which only features SD audio.

2+3 Just want to add to this, HDCP and BD/HDDVD support are two very different things. The former is separate to the other two, and could (as has been done in Windows) have been implemented in OS X to tie in with the hardware HDCP support that is already in most macs since mid 2007, without having to pay the BD consortium any money, then rely on 3rd parties to bring BD playback software to OS X. Since MS added HDCP to XP several years ago, this isnt a problem other than Apple dragging their feet.
The "bag of hurt" seems to have come from the fact that any BD licensee has to pay all of the main BD consortium players individual licensing costs, which I believe may have added up to around $16. This is either changing soon, or has already changed to be a single payment to the BDC (which is also lower), and is then divided up between them. the "bag of hurt" would have been having to sit down at a table with each of the licensers and bashing out a deal, in addition to the total cost of the thing which would have knocked hundreds of millions off Apple's profits during the last year alone (not that they cant take the hit).

Basically, Apple have held off on HDCP for no good reason, whilst dragging their feet on BD itself is understandable, its time for them to suck it up and give us some freaking BD goodness in 10.6.
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#14 Greg Grant

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 01:08 PM

View Postteflon, on April 24th 2009, 07:02 AM, said:

you dont need AnyDVD HD to play back Blu-Ray. You only need it to strip of region coding (which is only a potential problem if you import from the US/Japan to the EU/Aus, and even then dependant on the studio and publisher), and/or remove DRM like HDCP and BD+ to watch on a non-HDCP screen, and/or rip the movie from the disk.
Yup, I guess I wasn't making sense. I do that time to time but removing the HDCP is key for systems that don't have any means of HDMI output, which means any iMac pre-March of 09 or pre-Unibody Macbook or Mac Pro (without separate purchase of a video card)

View Postteflon, on April 24th 2009, 07:02 AM, said:

as for:
1. not an issue, since all BD also include standard definition audio which is compatible with standard definition audio systems, such as the built in speakers on an MBP. In order to leverage HD audio formats your computer/BD player will need to be properly hooked up to a decent HD audio system. Optical audio doesnt have the bandwidth to handle certain things, so your best bet is to go with a HDMI passthrough capable device. Of course, this is all damned expensive, so you can quite happily stick to something cheaper and less capable which only features SD audio.
Dolby Digital Plus goes over SPDIF. Really, many of the disks include multiple audio formats as Dolby Digital and DTS are both mandatory formats for Blu-Ray. I wouldn't call these standard definition, but rather lossy codecs.

Side rant: I kinda hate the "HD" and "SD" terminology for audio, as the HD formats that are lossless don't exactly equate to always 192 Khz/24 bit but rather could contain as low as 48 KHz, 16 bit, (or often 48 Khz, 24 bit) or 96 KHz, 24 bit and such. I don't think we can define standard definition speakers, speakers are just transducers. Obviously not all speakers are created equal but they don't adhere exactly to things like sample rates or bit depth.

The HDCP probably will happen about the time Apple starts pushing HDCP into iTunes if the rumor mill proves true. I dunno why the long post re-explaining the later part. We both agree that the software licensing costs are probably the big kicker for Apple adopting Blu-Ray playback support. ;) The minidisplay port at least can potentially HDCP with HDMI support. Also I'm unclear if the minidisplay port can pass audio or not.

I don't know honestly as I don't know any mac users who've bought a Blu-ray drive and have a Mac with Mini-display port as they're only the most current laptops and iMacs. I just got my replacement MacBook this week but I don't have a blu-ray drive to test with, nor have I bothered to install Windows.
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#15 Frost

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 01:37 PM

View PostDouglas, on January 3rd 2008, 12:10 AM, said:

So, anyone else waiting for a way to play Blue Ray movies on a Mac?  I have an empty drive slot on my Mac Pro and I have been considering getting a Blue Ray drive for it, but unless they release a way to play Blue Ray movies, I can't justify it.
Yes, I have been waiting for quite a while. To tell the truth, I'm not upgrading from my G5 until they both have proper GPU options and full Blu-ray support.

TBH, Steve saying the few bucks per computer that ships with Blu-ray when they could easily just make it a BTO option so that not everybody uses it and when one considers Apple's rather sizeable profit margins, is bullpopsnizzle. Put BD in, or else.
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#16 teflon

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 02:34 PM

They'd also have to pay a few bucks for every copy of OSX which ships with a Blu Ray player. Alternatively, just leave the playback to third parties as MS do in windows. In which case they just need to get the GPU to help out on the VC-1 video encoding, since it already will do with H.264.

If the groundwork is there for this to happen, then Im sure that Roxio will come out with a BD player pretty sharpish. After all, they can already read and write BD-R without the DRM using Toast.
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#17 J'nathus

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 04:45 PM

View Postteflon, on June 10th 2009, 01:34 PM, said:

They'd also have to pay a few bucks for every copy of OSX which ships with a Blu Ray player. Alternatively, just leave the playback to third parties as MS do in windows. In which case they just need to get the GPU to help out on the VC-1 video encoding, since it already will do with H.264.

If the groundwork is there for this to happen, then Im sure that Roxio will come out with a BD player pretty sharpish. After all, they can already read and write BD-R without the DRM using Toast.
Isn't there an HD setting in the DVD playing software already?  When I saw that I figured Blu-Ray was coming soon...   I wonder what happened or is happening.

#18 teflon

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 07:17 PM

Yeah, but its practically useless as far as Im aware. It hints that Blu Ray support is coming, but it doesnt promise anything or do anything.
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