Having a big screen laptop without Blu-ray is kinda like missing an opportunity to cruise down an empty highway. Granted, you can download HD content, but if you are geeks like us, there's an urge to fully leverage the full potential of the notebook. For whatever reasons you are getting Blu-ray, the USB-powered Asus' slim & sleek drive has you covered. It has upped the max. read speed to 4.8x for BD-ROM/RE which should relieve the agonizingly slow Blu-ray disc loading time. This however doesn't help with writing Blu-ray as the Asus SBC-04D1S-U
is only a BD reader, a tray-loading one.
What we also like about the BD reader is the big glowing 'X' on the side, making it far more aesthetically pleasing than the FastMac. A copy of CyberLink is bundled for movie playback. Keep in mind you can only output the HD content given both the laptop and the LCD screen have either HDMI or DVI (HDCP).