An object relational database is also called an object relational database management system (ORDBMS). This system simply puts an object oriented front end on a relational database (RDBMS). When applications interface to this type of database, it will normally interface as though the data is stored as objects. However the system will convert the object information into data tables with rows and colums and handle the data the same as a relational database. Likewise, when the data is retrieved, it must be reassembled from simple data into complex objects.
Because the ORDBMS converts data between an object oriented format and RDBMS format, speed performance of the database is degraded substantially. This is due to the additional conversion work the database must do.
The main benefit to this type of database lies in the fact that the software to convert the object data between a RDBMS format and object database format is provided. Therefore it is not necessary for programmers to write code to convert between the two formats and database access is easy from an object oriented computer language.