Friday, June 30, 2006

HDCP: More Alphabet Soup

Now that you have your high definition television you may be sights on a new HD DVD or Blu-Ray high definition video player, once the prices drop. These players promise superior video quality.

However, not on all televisions are capable of playing these discs in high definition.

High-bandwidth digital-content protection (HDCP) is a specification developed by Intel for protecting digital entertainment content. HDCP encrypts the transmission of digital content between the video source ( e.g. computer or DVD player) and the display (e.g. monitor, television or projector)

The problem is that HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc players will allow content providers to only output full-resolution signals using HDCP. If such a player is connected to a non-HDCP-enabled television set and the content is downsampled 960x540p signal, or standard DVD quality.

Many high-definition television sets currently in use in the United States that do not have an HDMI port (XBox360's as well) are not HDCP-capable. This initially negates the key benefits of HD-DVD and Blu-ray for those consumers.

In order to see HDTV with HDCP using a DVI connection, both the source and display devices must be enabled for HDCP. So, if you are thinking about a high definition display and want to play the next generation discs on it, your best bet is to make sure it has an HDMI port. Sphere: Related Content

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think the industry is hurting itself. The rapid change of video connectors is likely causing fewer and fewer educated consumers to invest in $1000+ sets if they won't have the latest input connector when the next "standard" is announced

This also has an impact on the high end videophile folks as well. Espicially once you get into front projection displays, the cost of video scalers and video processing equipment is quite high, not to mention cost of a projector itself. It's a shame to see all of that high end hardware become ineffective due to this new "standard".

In the end, I think this will lead to more consumer (throw away in a few years) type of buying mentality than HDMI helping to sell $3000 plasma display TV's.