Back in September last year we took a close look at the ASUS BC-1205PT Blu-ray ROM drive, and after analyzing it we found it to be rather impressive. At the time though, the HD war was still on between Sony's Blu-ray and Toshiba's HD-DVD disc formats, and it made the buying decision a little harder with an outright winner yet to be determined.
Unless you've been living under a rock for the past few months, a winner has stepped up to the podium and of course Sony took the gold medal with Blu-ray. Toshiba has bowed out of the format war and has ceased production of all things HD-DVD. Now that there is really only one major HD movie format to choose from for the future, it makes the buying decisions much easier. At the start of the race, we saw dual format disc players and computer ROM drives, but of course they were expensive and out of reach for the majority of people out there. HD-DVD device prices have crashed as companies attempt to move excess stock, and while Blu-ray products haven't dropped in price, they haven't moved much either. This is considered a good sign for consumers interested in moving up to the wonderful world of HD over regular standard definition DVD.
Today we get a look at our second Blu-ray ROM drive to hit our labs, and this time it is from Philips & Lite-On Digital Solutions Corp based out of Taiwan. It actually came to us straight off the factory production line and we are excited to bring you the first review of the product. The first drive we tested was an internal SATA Blu-ray burner as we mentioned just before from ASUS, and while it was cheaper than standalone players, it still had a pretty high asking price. Today we get down and dirty with the Lite-On DX-401S 4X Blu-ray ROM drive which connects to your Windows XP SP2 or Windows Vista based computer via a spare USB 2.0 port. It is essentially a Lite-On DH-4O1S internal SATA Blu-ray ROM placed inside a stylish black and white plastic box with USB 2.0 port and external AC power supply.
After taking a look at the package and a close look at the drive itself, we shall move onto testing and see how it performs against a regular Pioneer DVD burner. If you are looking at adding Blu-ray movie playback capabilities to your desktop PC, home theater PC or notebook; or perhaps you're finally looking at replacing that aging DVD drive, you should read on as this might just be the perfect product for those requirements.
Let's get this show on the road and see what we have here with us today!