[Windows] Aurora Blu-ray Media Player is an awesome media player that has a lot of potential [Mac OS X]

aurora01When I reviewed Leawo Blu-ray Player, I ended up saying that it was a promising media player having great interface, but could not recommend it because of its high price w.r.t. the features offered. Today, I am going to talk about another remarkably great blu-ray player, i.e., Aurora Blu-ray Media Player that offers much more than what Leawo Blu-ray Player does.

What is it and what does it do

Main Functionality

Aurora Blu-ray Media Player is a program for playing Blu-ray, DVD, and various video files (both SD and HD).

Pros

  • Very smooth playback of Blu-ray discs (BDs), DVDs, high definition (HD) and standard definition (SD) videos up to 1080P with multi-format support
  • ISO file support
  • Preferred subtitles and audio tracks at will
  • Font position/type/size/color options for subtitles available
  • Simple but great interface
  • Large fonts for ease of read
  • Drag-n-drop works
  • Full-screen playback support
  • Right click support with keyboard short-cuts
  • Windows 8 supported & and Mac OS X version available

Cons

  • Little high price for a media player with no 3D playback

Discussion

I have tested the following types of files in Aurora Blu-ray Media Player for Windows version # 2.12.9.1301 in Windows 7 Professional 64 bit:

  • Blu-ray (BD50) & DVD (DVD9) commercial discs; Despicable Me (2010): Played with menu.
  • HD video: 720p AVC-x264/AC3-5.1 (or DTS-5.1)/MKV file with English subtitle (UTF-8): Worked with no problems.
  • HD video: 1080p AVC-x264/AAC-2.0/MP4: Worked with no problems.
  • SD video: DivX/MP3/AVI file: Worked with no issues.

During playback, the software takes ~ 215 MB of RAM whereas it takes ~ 35 MB in standby mode (your mileage may vary). You can right click to bring the menus. Menu options are also available with keyboard short-cuts or at the top. I am happy to report that subtitles’ font position/type/size/color can be changed by going to Tools > Preferences…, and then to Subtitle tab. However, the most important fact is that both BD/DVD menu and DVD playback work here whereas Leawo player fail in those areas. It’s worth mentioning that Aurora offers both Windows and Mac versions! I could not test it myself, but there are reports that supported media players work in OS X as long as you have an external blu-ray drive despite OSX natively does not support blu-rays. When you start this player, you will see that the interface is absolutely neat unlike some widely popular players like CyberLink PowerDVD. Aurora’s player has a contemporary look and ability. Fonts are large enough to read that may be good for older eyes.

I really wish this player would have the capability in playing 3D Blu-ray discs, too (including the stereoscopic 3D files like side-by-side, half-over-the-under MKVs). Nevertheless, for stereoscopic 3D playback, you must have proper hardware set-up. For those who are wondering, the following is the configuration of my laptop where this software test has taken place: ASUS G73JW | Intel Core i7-740QM, 1.73GHz | 8GB DDR3 | Nvidia GeForce GTX 460M, 1.5GB | OCZ 120GB SSD + Seagate 500GB Hybrid 7200rpm | 17.3? FHD/3D | Blu-ray Write | Win7Pro64.

Conclusion and download link

Is this one that can be recommended without any hesitation? Well, by and large, this is a visually cool Blu-ray software media player with an unpretentious but powerful interface that works without any hitch (so far so good). There is a serious complaint though; in particular, like I always say, 3D options are mandatory for a modern Blu-ray media player to be competent and widely acceptable. Also, the program feels not so cheap ($39.95) for a media player indeed, especially when 3D playback is not supported. For your information, I have personally liked it very much since it did not fail on me at all. One should always know that Blu-ray movie playback is somewhat hit or miss on Windows. Looking for freeware alternatives? Check out either DA Player or VLC (you will need to download the unofficial Blu-ray plugin for VLC; & according to my tests, DA Player is a total failure for commercial BD playback).

Price: $39.95

Version reviewed: 2.12.9.1301

Supported OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8/Mac

Download size: 35.9 MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 1/45

Is it portable? No

Aurora Blu-ray Media Player homepage

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5 comments

  1. mukhi

    @Draylynn Thanks for the feedback. Yes, you should be able to set up the default audio track as English, and please touch base with the support team of Aurora in this regard. I will try to see whether I can come up with a solution.

    P.S. Meh, with this comment, I have returned to dT after ~ 4 months! Family comes 1st, but now, it’s time to do something in my beloved dT. Let’s see.

  2. Draylynn

    I’ve tried Media Player Classic, VLC, PowerDVD, couldn’t get anything to play my Blu-Ray’s, went through hours of messing around, moving/copying library files to no end.
    I tried this on the trial (today) and it worked, hands down, no questions asked first time – awesome. Unfortunately the trial plops a massive watermark in the middle of the screen, so I bought it. Within a few min’s I was registered, watermark free, Blu-Ray’s playing away, love it.

    Only issue/annoyance I’m having with it is that every Blu-Ray seems to start with a German audio track, not the English one (nothing that right click > audio > English, can’t fix however). Maybe support can help rid me of this annoyance. But it works for now. n.n

  3. mukhi

    [@Mike] 1st of all, it is a BD plus DVD player. In my experience, free BD players don’t work very well. VLC with its 3rd party add-on can work as a BD player, but playback is not satisfactory. In fact, VLC is not a good player at all, IMHO, in general; it frequently forms ghosts, has hiccups during playback. Another free BD player is DA Player. Although some people “claim” that it works fine, but I could never play a single commercial BD with it.

  4. AT

    @Mukhi In your conclusion, you mentioned DA Player. It is a good player but it can no longer connect to the host server as DA Player has been replaced a while back and the host server has been offline. I haven’t checked with some of my older Bluray discs to see if they still work so you may need to have a separate decoder for movies to play. Unencrypted Blurays work fine in DA.

    I agree that Blurays playback is a hit or miss. I have 6 or 7 different players to try on whenever I play a Bluray on my computer.