Choosing The Right Optical Drive When Building A PC

Building a PC can be a great way to not only save money but also let you configure a computer exactly the way you want. But the downside of that is that you have far too many options. One of the dilemmas that many run into is whether to add an optical drive to the build.

How Often Do You Use Discs

I too had this dilemma when I built my own PC. So what you should first think about is how often exactly do you use CD or DVD discs. In my case, I discovered that I use them quite rarely. I mostly use a cloud drive to store my data so there’s really no need to add it to my build. But perhaps you are the opposite, in which case it might actually be a good idea to install one.

PC Case

Now let’s say that you are the type that still uses a lot of DVD discs. The next thing you should check is if your chosen PC case even has the option for an optical drive. I went with the Fractal Design Nano S that doesn’t have an open slot for it.

There are plenty of new modern cases that are just closed at the front and you can’t add a drive even if you wanted to. In this case, you might want to reconsider the type of PC case you’ll go with. There are still plenty of nice looking cases that have extra slots available. Corsair is one of the most known brands for example and Fractal Design has other models as well.

Internal Vs External

However, you do also have different options. Say that you are like me and rarely use discs. But there are instances where you need to use them. Or say that you really like a certain PC case that doesn’t have an optical drive slot. In this case, you can still go with one of many best external DVD drives.

External DVD drives are much more flexible than the internal options. They aren’t attached to your PC and you can also connect it to a laptop if you need to. And that’s pretty useful as most of the modern laptops don’t have a built-in drive either.

Not only that, I also recently discovered that you can also pair an external drive with a smartphone (as long as it runs Android). It doesn’t require any rooting either, just an extra Y cable.

There aren’t any differences in speed either. Sure, back in the day you could had said that the internal DVD drives are much faster. But the advances in technology have closed that gap. Plus you can even reach the maximum DVD writing speeds with the plain old USB 2.0 port. So you don’t even need a USB 3.0 with an external drive.

The only downside is that they take more room compared to the internal drives. They also cost more. However the price difference isn’t that large. So it really comes down to which of the options is more convenient for you. I have gone with an external DVD drive and it just sits on top of my desktop.

The Top Optical Drives

Now picking the best optical drive has gotten both easier but also much harder. It has gotten easier in the sense that all DVD drives burn and read drives at exactly the same speed. There’s no difference in terms of performance. But that also means that it’s much harder to choose from the countless of options that are available. Which is why I have listed my own two favorite external and internal DVD drives!

ASUS External Slim Drive

ASUS is a computer brand that’s known for their quality. So it’s always a good idea to go with their products as you know what you are getting. That’s the main reason why I chose their external DVD drive.

In addition, it’s one of the slimmest drives available, which makes it extremely portable. As a plus it also has an affordable price tag. So overall a great device.

ASUS DRW-24B1ST Internal DVD Drive

As you can see I have gone with an ASUS internal DVD drive as well. And there’s a good reason for that. It’s not because I’m an ASUS fanboy or something. The DRW-24B1ST is the highest rated and most bought optical drive on Amazon.

You simply can’t go wrong with it. There’s nothing flashy about it and it doesn’t stand out. I really like that, especially if I have to add it to my new custom PC. And again the DVD drive is far from expensive. Put all of these together and you’ll see why people love this internal optical drive.

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