MBP, HDCP, HD Movies, BR

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jspokes, Mar 30, 2008.

  1. jspokes macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    #1
    Worming my way through the mess the industry seems to be in at the moment I'm trying to make an informed decision about buying the current MBP. I can make sure that the Plasma TV I buy will support HDCP over HDMI and that the 30" Monitor will support HDCP over DVI-D, but can find no evidence to say that the current MBP supports HDCP.

    Now of course if I want to watch HD content on my Plasma I'll be doing that from a Sony PS3 from Blue-Ray, but I want to be sure that in the forseeable future I can also watch HD content on my 30" HDCP display from the MBP, either by adding an external BlueRay HDCP supported drive (I doubt I'll be able to upgrade the intrernal slot loader) or hoping that Apple will allow HD movie rental's from somewhere else other than Apple TV.

    Now it appears that the NVIDIA 8600 GT Graphics inside the MBP **COULD** support HDCP if Apple has put an EEPROM somewhere inside the MBP. But have they? Perhaps it's an indication that Apple haven't enabled HD Movie downloads from anywhere other than AppleTV and the current MBP can't do it. But knowing the startegist that Steve J is I was hoping he's thought of that. Of course there are a lot of IF's here, like if Apple will obtain agreement to rent movies outside the USA, buit surely that's just a matter of time. This purchase will last me 2-3 years, so I would prefer to know for sure what the capabilities are right now.

    I've emailed Apple asking them, but am not too hopeful about getting a reply.

    I'm not sure if this will find out but there appears to be a Vista application that may test for HDCP compliance, but not sure if it'll work on the MBP:

    http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb892489.aspx

    Could someone please run this on one of the latest version MBP and let us know the results? Other than that anyone know what the HDCP EEPROM looks like and fancy cracking open their brand new MBP to check? :D

    Thanks heaps
    Jon
     
  2. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #2
    Well the HDCP is in the GPU, so I think it has HDCP. However I'd want to ask, what source will you be playing from? If you're using OS X there is not playback software; if it's Windows, get AnyDVD and it will remove HDCP on the fly.
     
  3. DocSmitty macrumors regular

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    Jan 7, 2008
    Location:
    Lincoln, NE
    #3
    Quite a few macrumors users have run their MBP dvi out into hdmi in on their tvs. Do some forum searches, should find plenty. So yes, the MBP is hdcp compatible.
     
  4. jspokes thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 30, 2008
    #4
    No Evidence means?

    Thanks for your replies guys.

    alphaod: How can we assume that because the 8600 could support HDCP it is supported? Great tip about AnyDVD though. All speculative at the moment but just dont want to be left out of the loop if Apple releases it HD Downloads service on iTunes.

    DocSmitty: Am I missing something here? Just becase someone can play a DVD over DVI-D > HDMI proves nothing; does it, regarding HDCP? Now if someone had an external blueray drive to test it that would be a different matter no?

    Anyone got an external BR drive and willing to test this?
     
  5. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #5
    HDCP does not require anything except GFX card support. The DVI is nothing extra. It just transmits data. If the signal is HDCP encoded, it will be encrypted data. As with the HD downloads, Apple already has that, but I think it's Apple TV only ATM.
     
  6. jspokes thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 30, 2008
    #6
    8600 HDCP or not

    I'm finding this a test in communication!

    Nvidia's 8600 range of cards CAN support HDCP, but only the top end GTS does out of the box. The 8600 GT (like the one in the MBP) only supports HDCP if the person building the laptop has included an EEPROM with the HDCP keys on it, (So I'm lef to beleive) This is what we need to check to know if current MBP owners will ever be able to play HD rentals or BR discs through an HDCP chain.

    There are already 2 upgrades available for internal BR drives that I know of and heaps of external ones. If someone has the setup then we could prove this definitively:

    MBP + Internal/External HDCP BR Drive, Win XP/Vista, PowerDVD > DVI-D>External HDMI/DVI HDCP Compatible Display.
     
  7. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
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    NYC
    #7
    I'll try it, if I can find a way to connect my internal Blu-ray drive to my MBP (sans an enclosure)
     
  8. DocSmitty macrumors regular

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    Jan 7, 2008
    Location:
    Lincoln, NE
    #8
    Ah sorry, I misunderstood your question. I thought you were asking if the MBP was compatble with HDCP enabled devices, rather than was it actually outputting an HDCP signal.

    The digging I did got about as far as you, that the 8M series are all HDCP compatible but so far I've been unable to find out if that means it's standard or not. My guess would be that it is not enabled on the MBP, but I suspect you're going to need to find someone fairly high-up the Apple technical staff tree to get an answer.. best of luck with the tests
     
  9. jspokes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    #9
    MBP Does NOT support HDCP (According to Apple)

    Hi All

    I have just received an email back from apple regarding HDCP support on the Feb 08 MBP:

    "Apologies for the delay, neither the Macbook or Macbook Pro support HDCP. However you can hook up either machine to HD display."

    So now we know why HD downloads are only available on the ATV. Such a suprise considering the Nvidia Graphics Card could support HDCP. Have Apple shot themselves in the foot with this one?

    At least the guys at Slysoft may be of help if we ever get realistically price BR drives... ;)
     
  10. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
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    #10
    Well the external eSATA ones are like $120 + enclosure.
     
  11. DocSmitty macrumors regular

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    Jan 7, 2008
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    #11
    Yes and no... one could argue that Apple had a vested interest in not supporting HDCP to push consumers towards the Apple TV product. They don't seem too concerned about supporting BR either, but then Apple will likely just pop out BR upgrades on a whim without any sort of prior inkling.
     
  12. Mackan macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    #12
    Most likely Apple didn't support HDCP in current generation MacBook Pro's (even if they could) because they want you to buy a new machine later. All marketing strategy, I guess.
     
  13. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

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    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #13
    The new HP 17" laptops with Blu-Ray support it via HDMI, so it might be that Apple will do the same with the next update of the MacBook Pro (if Blu-Ray is a BTO option) since a single connector for audio and video would be easier and cleaner then sending the video over DVI and having to add an optical or coaxial Toslink connector.
     
  14. zerohp macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    #14
    Did a little testing last weekend running Windows XP with boot camp. My 17" penryn supports HDCP on both the internal lcd and connected to my home theater projector with DVI. This is using the windows graphics drivers included on the leopard cd.
     
  15. bart rijksen macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    #15
    What was the e-mail you sent your question to? I want to ask them a question too, but i couldn't find an e-mail on the apple site. Thanks
     
  16. tomyboy134 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    #16
    http://arstechnica.com/reviews/hardware/MacBook-pro-santa-rosa.ars/1

    In the middle of the review there is a interesting sentence::D


    The GPU has been changed from the ATI Mobility Radeon X1600 to an NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT—which offers DirectX 10 support for the Boot Camp- and Vista-inclined. There's also HDCP support built in, which means that lack of an HD DVD and Blu-ray drive aside, the MacBook Pro should be capable of outputting HD video over the requisite protected path.
     
  17. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #17
    Well I'd believe Apple on this one.
     

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