Whether you've collected a huge library of DVDs that you want to watch on your computer or have some install discs, you're going to need an optical drive. The easiest solution is to buy an external drive like the Asus ZenDrive, and attach it (preferably to one of our best laptops) when you need it. But who wants to carry around an accessory when they can just buy a laptop with a DVD drive of its own?
They're getting rarer every day, but there are also a few laptops on the market that still come with built-in DVD drives. We've rounded up 9 different notebooks (though two are quite similar) that have optical drives, from a $250 budget system to an expensive media machine. All of the drives on these computers are capable of reading and writing both DVDs and CDs. Here are 9 of the best laptops with DVD drives, from lowest to highest price.
Cover Image Credit: Shaun Lucas/Laptop Mag
HP Notebook 15.6-inch
- Optical Drive: SuperMulti DVD Burner | Display: 15.6 inches 1366x768 | CPU: AMD Quad-Core E2-7110 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 500GB 5400rpm SATA hard drive | Ports: Ethernet, HDMI, 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0 | Weight: 4.9 pounds
The most affordable DVD-drive-packing notebook is HP's $259 simply named HP Notebook 15.6-inch. With its SuperMulti DVD/CD burner drive, you'll not only be able to read discs but create them as well. This machine runs on an AMD processor, and features a modest 4GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive. And thanks to its 15.6-inch size, it also has enough room for a full keyboard and number pad.
Optical Drive: DVD Double-Layer Drive RW | Display: 15.6 inches 1920x1080 | CPU: Intel Core i3-8130U | RAM: 6GB | Storage: 1TB 5400rpm SATA hard drive | Ports: HDMI, USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.0, USB Type-C, Ethernet, VGA, Headphone Jack | Weight: 5 pounds
The affordable Acer Aspire E 15 (E5-576-392H, not to be confused with one of the many other Aspire E15's) is one of the best value picks out today. For $379 (currently on sale for $359) you get a capable 8th Gen Intel Core i3 processor, a full-HD display and nearly 9 hours of battery life. Its 5-pound weight may put some off, but that's par for the course on DVD-drive bearing laptops.
HP Notebook 15.6 Inch Touchscreen laptop
- Optical Drive: SuperMulti DVD drive | Display: 15.6 inches 1366x768 | CPU: 7th Generation Intel Core i3-7100U | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 1TB 5400rpm hard drive | Ports: Ethernet, HDMI, 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, SD memory reader Weight
If you're looking for a little more horsepower and want to multitask, this is a faster, better version of our most affordable entry. While it provides the same SuperMulti DVD burner in that HP notebook, it's got twice as much memory (8GB) and a Core i3 CPU that makes for faster performance than you'll see with the AMD processor in the cheaper model.
Optical Drive: DVD-RW double-layer drive | Display: 15.6 inches 1920x1080 | CPU: Intel Core i5-8250U | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 1TB 5400rpm SATA hard drive | Ports: HDMI, Ethernet, 2x USB 3.0, USB 2.0, headphone jack | Other: Noble lock slot, SD card reader | Weight: 6 pounds
Looking for a big-screen without an equally large price? The Dell Inspiron 17 5770 is a kitchen sink-level laptop. Not only does the Inspiron pack a comfortable keyboard, a 17-inch Full HD screen and that optical drive you're looking for, but it's also got an SD card reader, another dying breed of port. Just don't let its metallic finish fool you, that's a plastic chassis.
Acer Aspire E 15 E5-576G-5762
- Optical Drive: DVD-RW Drive | Display: 15.6 inches 1920x1080 | CPU: 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8250U | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 256GB SSD | Ports: VGA, Ethernet, HDMI, 1x USB Type-C, 2x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0, SD memory reader Weight
But say you want alaptop with a DVD drivea modern 8th Gen Intel CPU? This model of the Acer Aspire E 15 gives you both, plus a Full-HD display and a 256GB SSD. Accessible storage and memory bays make upgrading your machine possible, a rarity these days.
- Optical Drive: DVD Drive (Reads and Writes to DVD/CD) | Display: 15.6 inches 1366x768 | CPU: 7th Generation Intel Core i5-7200U | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 1TB 5400rpm hard drive | Ports: HDMI, 2x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0, SD memory reader Weight
Looking for more power? Dell's Inspiron 15 5000 laptop starts at $599 with a Core i5 CPU, and its optical drive comes standard. Upgrade options include a discrete AMD Radeon R7 graphics card for gaming, doubling the memory for more multitasking, a 256GB SSD and a Core i7 processor for more speed.
Optical Drive: DVD-RW drive | Display: 15.6 inches 1920x1080 | CPU: 7th Generation Intel Core i5-7200U | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 1TB Hybrid Drive | Ports: headphone jack, 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, HDMI, microSD memory reader | Weight: 4.4 pounds
But what if you horde data? The Asus X540UA packs a 1TB Hybrid Drive where you can store all of the content you import from its DVD-RW drive. And at 4.4 pounds, it’s also lighter than a lot of the laptops on our list.
- Optical Drive: DVD Writer | Display: 17.3 inches 3840x2160 | CPU: 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8550U | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD | Ports: Ethernet, HDMI, 1x USB Type-C, 3x USB 3.0, SD Memory reader Weight
Got more money to spend? You truly can have it all. The HP Envy 17 is a premium machine with an aluminum chassis, a 17.3-inch 4K IPS anti-glare display and audio from the sound maestros at Bang & Olufsen. It also packs a giant 1TB SSD, a 4GB Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics card, 16GB of RAM and — of course — a DVD writer drive.
Optical Drive: Blu-Ray Player/DVD Writer | Display: 17.3-inch 3840 x 2160 CPU | RAM: 32GB | Storage: 512GB NVMe M.2 PCI-e SSD | Ports: 3x USB 3.0, Ethernet, lock slot, 2x Thunderbolt 3, HDMI, headphone jack, mini DisplayPort, Smart Card Reader (optional), SD memory reader | Weight: 7.7 pounds
HP knows that professionals need optical drives too, and that's whyit sells the premium-grade ZBook 17 G5. That's right, the ZBook 17 G5isn't just a plain old laptop with a DVD drive: it's gota Blu-ray CD/DVD drive, which are even rarer than regular optical drives. This system also features military-grade durability and the blistering speed of an Intel Xeon processor.