Optical Drives Guide

ASUS BC-1205PT Blu-ray Combo Drive review

ASUS BC-1205PT Blu-ray Combo Drive

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The ASUS BC-1205PT

The ASUS BC-1205PT

ASUS has decided to go with a contemporary black bezel for the BC-1205PT, though unlike some vendors, there is no additional front bezel of other colors included. So if black is not the color for your chassis, the ASUS BC-1205PT will obviously stand out for the wrong reasons.

Since the ASUS BC-1205PT is a modern optical drive, it only uses the SATA interface. Hence, there are no more jumpers at the back, giving the rear end of the BC-1205PT a clean, sparse look. Unfortunately, the same could not be said of this drive's reading and writing speed. Although it is a very versatile, multi-format drive that could even write to all major formats, including less popular formats like DVD-RAM, it is however a tortoise compared to the speedy 18x and 20x DVD writers currently available. All the media writing speeds are slower than its contemporaries and 12x is the best you can expect from DVD+/-R media, when the world has moved on to 16x at least.

Of course, the main selling point for the BC-1205PT is the fact that it's a combo drive capable of reading BD media. As such, single layer BD discs can be read at a top speed of 5x. Dual layer discs meanwhile are halved to 2x speed. Additionally, it is also a rather quiet drive, despite the lack of any noise dampeners lining the tray door. The quiet performance is probably due to ASUS' patented Double Dynamic Suspension System II, which acts to reduce any vibrations caused by the motor spindle. Other proprietary features that one can expect from any decent optical drive nowadays include buffer overrun error protection and an automatic optimal speed selection to produce the best recording quality. All which are standard issue for any DVD writer nowadays.

Besides the hardware, ASUS has also bundled CyberLink's BD Solution, a suite of software tools that allow users to author, create and backup their files and media to DVD media. Most importantly for consumers, the CyberLink DVD player allows playback of Blu-ray movies, which is no doubt the unique focus of this drive. We tried the program out and while the whole suite is probably a bit bloated for most users, the Blu-ray playback worked as advertised.