Pros / This software has a wide array of burning tools that go far beyond Blu-rays.
Cons / It cannot copy commercial discs protected with anti-piracy encryptions.
Verdict / The program, as a whole, is excellent. Other programs on our lineup have far more Blu-ray burning tools.
Editor's Note: The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) forbids circumventing copy encryptions contained on commercial discs. The DMCA makes no exceptions for circumventing these encryptions for personal use. Top Ten Reviews does not endorse piracy or any other illegal activity.
Express Burn is an all-purpose disc-authoring software application. It includes a number of tools for Blu-ray burning, including the ability to extract the disc image, or ISO file, from an original Blu-ray disc and then burn a copy from the disc image. The program, as a whole, is extremely useful, but it ranks near the bottom of our lineup, because other programs offer a more robust array of Blu-ray burning tools, such as the ability to compress a Blu-ray movie to fit onto smaller-capacity discs.
The most important thing to understand about Express Burn is the fact that it does not work with commercial Blu-ray movies. That's because commercial discs are protected with anti-piracy encryptions. If you want to burn a new copy of the movies in your Blu-ray library, pick another program.
If you happen to have a homemade or unprotected Blu-ray, Express Burn works quite well. You have two options for burning new copies of discs: Copy Disc and Write ISO. The former is found under the "Video" tab and the latter under the "ISO" tab. When you choose the "Copy Disc" option, the program performs a disc-to-disc burn, meaning it reads the source disc, extracts the disc image (ISO file), saves it to your computer, and then burns it to the new blank disc. Depending on the size of the Blu-ray you're copying, this process can take hours.
The "Write ISO" option requires you to have a Blu-ray's disc image already on your computer. Express Burn offers a tool that allows you to save a disc's ISO file to your hard drive, which is also located under the ISO tab. Once you have an ISO file on your computer, you can burn as many copies as you want, even without the source disc. If you plan to make more than one copy of a Blu-ray disc, we recommend saving the ISO file to your hard drive and using the "Write ISO" function to burn the new copies. This will save you a lot of time versus making disc-to-disc copies one at a time.
Despite its overall utility, this program landed in the bottom tier of our review of the best Blu-ray burning software. It lacks almost all of the compression and customization features found in the top programs. The ability to compress a large commercial Blu-ray to fit onto a smaller-capacity blank disc would be helpful. Blank Blu-ray discs are expensive, especially the higher-capacity ones. Compression tools allow you to back up your Blu-rays and save some money.
- Ease of Use
- Time to Complete Identical Blu-ray Copy
Express Burn is an exceptional program with a lot of great features, but it comes up short on Blu-ray burning features. It lacks the ability to burn new copies of protected commercial discs, and it's missing compression and customization tools. If you're creating original discs, it's a great program – otherwise, look elsewhere for your Blu-ray burning needs.