External Dvd Player

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wolf63 | 13:38 Mon 06th Dec 2021 | Technology
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Neither of my computers (Laptop and a Chromebook) has a DVD slot so I have purchased an external DVD player. Can I attach a computer monitor to it and watch DVDs?


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If your laptop has an HDMI output, and your monitor has an HDMI input, you simply (and unsurprisingly) need an HDMI lead to connect between the two. Otherwise things could get a bit more complicated:

Windows will probably duplicate the displays on both monitors by default but it's possible that you might need to tweak a setting to get it to happen:
Question Author
I just want to join the DVD player to the monitor and miss out the laptop.
Aha! Now I understand. (I was just being thick, as usual!).

You might be able to do it but, because the two devices were never intended to be paired together, the results can't be guaranteed. You might, for example, end up with a very poor quality picture:

Further, the majority of computer monitors don't have any audio facility built into them (or, if they do, it's only very basic). So getting the sound from the DVD to play might be a problem.

It might be simpler to pick up a cheap telly (for perhaps £30 or so) from the BHF Furniture & Electrical store on the Inveralmond Retail Park and use that instead.
Do you mean a dvd player like User Recommendation

Is your tv a smart tv? Does it have a usb socket? If so you could try.
Wouldnt the external DVD drive need software on the laptop to enable a dvd to be played ?
I'm glad that Paul's brain is fully in gear tonight. Mine certainly hasn't been up until now!

The link in my post at 1400 refers to the type of DVD player that you normally connect direct to a telly, so it's completely irrelevant here. (Sorry!). As Paul says, the type of DVD player that one connects to a laptop via a USB cable provides a data signal which needs to be processed by software on the laptop in order to convert it into video and audio to display on any monitor (whether that be one built into the laptop or an external device). So it CAN'T be used to feed a signal directly to a monitor.

Sorry, Wolfie, and thanks, Paul!
Question Author
now that I have my afternoon nap.

• I don’t have a TV
• I want to watch all 100 episodes of Stargate: Atlantis on Christmas day - on DVD
• I, ideally, want to connect the DVD player to my Chromebook
• I realise that I will probably need to use my laptop
• I have got User Recommendation
• I have been told that it is plug & play but nothing is that easy for me
>>> I want to watch all 100 episodes of Stargate: Atlantis on Christmas day

100 x 44 min = 4400 mins = 73 hours 20 mins.
I think that you might need a bit longer than Christmas Day to watch all of it!

To return to your question though (hopefully with my brain in gear this time) . . .

The Chrome operating system doesn't have the codecs that are needed to read optical discs, so you can't use an external drive to play DVDs on it.

Therefore you're limited to using your laptop. I'm assuming that it's running Windows 10 which, unlike earlier versions of Windows, doesn't come with the software for playing DVDs built into it. If Microsoft had their way, you'd end up paying £12.49 to buy Windows DVD Player from the Microsoft store but, fortunately, that's entirely unnecessary as there are plenty of free programs that can do the job just as well, with VLC being the most popular.

So you need to download and install VLC (unless, of course, you've already got it on your laptop anyway):

Once you've done that, plug your DVD player into a USB port on your laptop. (You might see a message saying that Windows is installing a driver for it. If so, simply wait until that task has been completed).

Insert a DVD into the drive. It might play automatically. If, though, you're presented with a dialogue box, asking you what you want to do with the DVD, select the option to play it with VLC. If you don't see that option, close the dialogue box (if it appeared at all) and open VLC. Click Media > Open Disk > DVD and click the play button.

Your DVD will initially play with control buttons at the foot of the screen but there's a 'Full Screen' button down there. (To exit Full Screen, press Esc).

Question Author
... my new DVD player (see below for details) and my laptop (win 10) should get on okay - that is brilliant.

I will have a trial run before Christmas to check all is okay.

Thanks, everyone - I got rid of my TV when they cancelled Stargate Atlantis and I don't plan on getting another one. Youtube entertains me when I am doing my Oxfam work at home. This is my current favourite channel

I'm off to bed. Iceland is delivering my shopping at the crack of dawn.

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