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  1. #1
    Richard Peters
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    DVD ROM question

    The CD drive in one of my computers died. I have a DVD rom drive I could replace it with. System requirements on the box says it needs a 1.3ghz P4. My question is do I really need a P4 to read CDs or data DVDs. I have seen other DVD drives that will work with less.

  2. #2
    pj7
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    Those system requirements are most likely what they "suggest" you have in order to decode and play DVD movies, likely using the software that came bundled with the DVD drive. Truth be told, I was watching DVD movies on an old Pentium Pro back in the mid 90's. And I've burned DVD discs on a computer not much more powerful... a 300 Celeron I do believe.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    It depends upon the software package as well. Some are more efficient than others. Using the VLC player, I could watch DVDs on a P-II 233mhz Dell laptop. Sound from those little speakers is crappy though...
    Last edited by DannoXYZ; 05-04-07 at 03:03 AM.

  4. #4
    riding once again jschen's Avatar
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    Depends on the DVD drive, too. Older Mac laptops when DVDs were still relatively new had hardware DVD video decoders, but that work has been shifted to software now that processors have gotten faster.

    But the main thing is that specs tend to get a bit silly over time because it's simply not worth it to a company to test on older machines that will represent a small minority of the future homes of their devices. And it's not worth it to them to write efficient code when the code works just fine on reasonably new computers with their excessive computing power.
    Last edited by jschen; 05-04-07 at 03:28 AM.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    The hardware DVD decoder was on the motherboard on those Macs. Strange thing was the 400mhz G3 Powerbook had the hardware decoder, but the 333mhz model didn't. I don't think the drive does any decoding and it doesn't have to be faster than 1x speed to play DVDs.
    Last edited by DannoXYZ; 05-04-07 at 03:49 AM.

  6. #6
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    to play DVD movies: a 433 celeron will do just fine. a 300hmz celeron will have issues with certain movies (Sleepy Hollow being one of them), unless you have a hardware decoder (such as the ones included in many Radeon and GeForce video cards, or a standalone dedicated DVD decoder card...those are quite rare anymore).

    If you have at least a celeron 433 ( or Pentium2 450, AMD K2/600, Cyrix/Via C3 733) then you are good to go for CPU decoding.
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