Can the Xbox One Play CDs? (Everything You Need to Know)

Can the Xbox One Play CDs?

If you’re an avid gamer, then you may be wondering if the Xbox One is capable of playing CDs. The short answer is yes, although it requires a few extra steps to make it work properly. In this article, we’ll provide everything you need to know about playing CDs on your Xbox One, as well as a few tips and tricks to make it easier. Read on to learn more!

What Type of Discs the Xbox One Can Play

When the console was originally released in 2013 the Xbox One came with a Blu-ray Disc drive. This was later updated to an Ultra HD Blu-ray optical drive with the Xbox One S and Xbox One X versions of the console.

This means that these consoles can play game discs, Blu-ray discs, DVDs, and CDs. Game discs must be specifically designed for the Xbox One, or be one of the backward compatible games from previous generations of the Xbox console. Blu-Ray discs can also be used to watch movies and other multimedia content that is stored on the disc. DVDs are also compatible with the Xbox One and can be used to watch movies and other multimedia content.

The Blu-ray player in each of these consoles is compatible with Blu-ray discs, DVDs, and CDs that are sold in the same region as the console. In addition, some Blu-ray discs and DVDs are not region-encoded or are coded to all regions, which means they can be watched on any Xbox One console.

What Type of Discs the Xbox One Cannot Play

At first glance, the Xbox One seems to be compatible with all disc formats, but there are a few situations where the console won’t be able to play some discs.

Unlike Ultra HD Blu-ray movies, music CDs, and Xbox One game discs which are region-free, meaning that you play them no matter where they come from, most Blu-ray discs and DVDs are region coded. This means that unless they are region-free or coded to all regions you can’t play Blu-ray and DVD movies on your Xbox One if they came from a region of the world that is different from the region of your console.

In addition, as we stated earlier, the original Xbox One model does not have an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive, so it can only play standard Blu-ray movies (in addition to DVD movies, Cds, and game discs). In other words, since the original version of the Xbox console doesn’t have an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive it can’t play 4K 4K Blu-ray movies like the Xbox One S and Xbox One X. That said, even if you have the Xbox One S or Xbox One X console, the screen you have the console attached to must be capable of displaying 4K video to take advantage of this feature.

How to Play CDs on the Xbox One

There are a few steps you need to go through in order to play a music CD on the Xbox One, especially if you are doing it for the first time. But don’t worry, it is a relatively easy process as the console will take you through the steps to play the disc.

1. After you have verified that the disc drive is empty insert the CD into the drive.

Inserting CD into Xbox One


2. Once your Xbox One identifies that an audio CD had been inserted into the disc drive the Windows Media Player app should start up automatically (it used to be the Groove Music app). In the case of an Xbox One without the Windows Media Player app, or if this is your first time inserting an audio CD into the disc drive, the store page for the Windows Media Player application will be opened for installation. Once opened you should click the Install button for the app.

Windows Media Player app install screen on Xbox


3. Once the Windows Media Player app has been installed it should launch automatically when a CD is inserted into the disc drive. Otherwise, you can navigate to the Home screen or look through My games & apps to find the app and start it.

Window Media Player App on Xbox One Home screen


4. After the Windows Media Player app has launched, you will most likely be brought to the app’s home screen, which is shown below.

Windows Media Player Home


5. After opening the Windows Media Player app, select the Music CD icon that is beneath the Home icon in the upper-left corner of the screen.

6. At this point, the content of the CD will be displayed. You opt to play specific tracks or you can select “Play all” to begin playing the entire CD.

Window Media Player app playing CD

Can the Xbox One Play a Music CD While You Are Playing a Game?

The short answer is yes, the Xbox One can play a music CD in the background while you are playing a game.

However, there are a few details to be aware of if you want to do this. Firstly, you need to be using an app like Windows Media Player that allows you to have background music. Secondly, you need to be playing a digital copy of a game and not a physical copy, as this will free up the optical drive to be able to play the audio disc. If you don’t have a digital copy of the game, then you’ll need to stream music in the background instead of playing it from a CD in order to free up the optical drive for the game disc.

How to Troubleshoot Any Issues With Playing Audio CDs on the Xbox One

Troubleshooting any issues with playing audio CDs on the Xbox One may seem daunting, but it is actually a pretty simple and straightforward process.

  • Check the condition of the CD. – The first thing you want to do is to make sure that the disc was inserted correctly into the Xbox One’s disc drive. Assuming that the disc wasn’t oriented incorrectly (put in upside down), you want to make sure that the disc is clean and free of any visible damage that might prevent it from being played by the console.
  • Try playing the CD in another device. – Assuming that the disc visibly appears to be in good condition you could try playing it in another device. If the other device can’t play the disc there is probably a problem with the disc itself. If the other device does play the CD then you want to turn your attention back to your Xbox One and do some more troubleshooting there.
  • Try the following things with your Xbox One:
    • Restart the Xbox and see if that fixes the problem.
    • Check for any available system updates or updates to the app you are using.
    • Try downloading or using another app to play the CD.
  • Contact Xbox Support for further assistance. – If all of the above tips fail try reaching out to Xbox Support and see if they can offer any additional advice or assistance.

Does Every Version of the Xbox One Have a Disc Drive to Play CDs?

As we discussed earlier, the original version of the Xbox One console, along with the Xbox One S and the Xbox One X each came with an optical disc drive. However, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, released in 2019, was designed with the intent of exclusively playing games downloaded digitally and therefore does not include a disc drive, making this version of the console unable to play audio CDs or other disc-based media.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the Xbox One can play CDs, but not all models include a built-in disc drive. If you don’t have a disc drive, you can still use the Xbox One console to access music, movies, and games using streaming services or buying digital versions of the content.

About Dan G.
Dan G.

Dan is a video game enthusiast who has been playing games for over three decades. Starting out as an "old school" gamer, Dan has since embraced the modern age of gaming, thanks in part to his kids who inspired him to explore today's current consoles and games.

With a passion for video games and a desire to help others, Dan has become an expert in the field, specializing in video game consoles and hardware. Through his numerous articles and reviews he enjoys answering questions and helping parents understand the different options available for their kids.

If you're looking for expert advice on video games and consoles, Dan is a go-to source for reliable and informative information.