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Blu-Ray and HD-DVD Playback Under XP 278

An anonymous reader writes "In the last few weeks the first HD-DVD and Blu-Ray drives for PCs have slowly trickled onto the market. Up to now, it has not been clear what system requirements you need to actually be able to play HD-DVD and Blu-Ray discs. The operating system was the main cause of concern; many rumors cropped up that the new generation of video discs would not work under Windows XP. Hardware.Info put the question to Cyberlink, the company behind Power DVD, if the lack of a protected videopath in Windows XP would make it impossible to enable HD-DVD or Blu-Ray playback. They have answered the questions, and provide a complete checklist of what you need to play Blu-Ray and HD-DVD movies in HD resolutions on your home PC."
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Blu-Ray and HD-DVD Playback Under XP

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  • by also-rr ( 980579 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:36PM (#16061096) Homepage
    ...and a penatagram to use for the sacrifice Personally I hope that Blu-Ray and HD-DVD _never_ get cracked, or at least if they do it's never ported to Windows in an easy to use fashion. It's hard to think of any other way to get the formats dropped faster.
    • by jmorris42 ( 1458 ) * <{jmorris} {at} {beau.org}> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:12PM (#16061344)
      > Personally I hope that Blu-Ray and HD-DVD _never_ get cracked, or at least if they do it's never ported to Windows in an easy to
      > use fashion. It's hard to think of any other way to get the formats dropped faster.

      You mean like DVD was dropped? Nope, once they commit billions to pushing a format that have to follow through. At least once it hits a critical mass. If the crack doesn't appear until after millions of players are fielded and thousands of titles are released they are stuck.

      Since Vista dropped the requirement for TPCM we have all known the next gen DVD formats were going to get cracked. As soon as a software based player is available it is toast. And I'll tell ya something else. Mplayer won't need a dual core CPU and a 256MB video card for playback either.

      Regular DVDs could be played back with a 1X DVD drive, a Pentium 90 and a video card with hardware scaling and color space conversion (i.e. xv support). A little back of the envelope math tells me a fast single core Intel or AMD cpu is more than enough. If your video card can do scaled video and colorspace on 1920x1080 windows you should be in the ballpark. If you have XvMC support you should be golden. HD video isn't THAT many more bits or pixels per second, despite what the marketing would have you believe.

      Besides, I still don't understand your thinking. If it isn't cracked I ain't buying in. Didn't buy DVD until DVD Jon make it usable. So if this stuff ain't cracked it can all rot in hell for all I care.
      • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:26PM (#16061451) Homepage
        The dual core and 256 MB of video RAM does seem a little steep. I currently watch lots of quicktime trailers at 1080p, and haven't noticed any dropped frames with an AMD 3200+ and an ATI x550 (128 mb). I don't even see how dual core would come into it. I highly doubt that the number of cores will make a difference if you're just running a single process to display the video.
        • by benwaggoner ( 513209 ) <ben...waggoner@@@microsoft...com> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @04:41PM (#16061971) Homepage
          A QuickTime trailer is typically H.264 Main Profile @ 10 Mbps CBR. HD DVD supports VC-1 or H.264 High Profile @ up to ~27 Mbps, plus picture-in-picture video overlay, plus subtitles and graphics, plus up to three 7.1 audio tracks mixed in realtime (main audio + commentary + UI effects).

          Ther's a LOT more going on with these formats than just playing back a single moderate data rate file! Look at the above, and you can see why multiple threads + GPU decoder and rendering asssist are extremely helpful.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by jmorris42 ( 1458 ) *
            > Ther's a LOT more going on with these formats than just playing back a single moderate data rate file!

            Nice features to have, but most of us will only be watching the movie. One HD video stream and one audio, either decoded ijn software or passed out on an optical plug. And do the math on the movie itself. Assume a dual layer BD-ROM (by the time a crack appears these will actually be shipping in quantity) with a single movie. That gives you 50GB of data for a two hour movie. Compare to a DVD with 9
            • by benwaggoner ( 513209 ) <ben...waggoner@@@microsoft...com> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @05:19PM (#16062193) Homepage
              Well, many of us will mainly be watching the movie and main audio at any given time, but a vendor hardly would go to market with a player that didn't support big features of the disc (well, Blu-ray lets you do that by having a couple of different profiles, but not HD DVD). That'd be like having a DVD player that didn't support subtitles. To get a HD DVD logo for a player, you need to support the interactive features.

              I gather you haven't seen any of the IME (In Movie Experience) titles. For example, on Bourne Supremacy, on the fly you can have a video commentary track, where the director or producer will pop up as a picture-in-picture to give a face to the narration. Lots of very cool things along these lines will be coming in later titles, and its stuff you'd want to be able to access. And we're talking real-world titles - there are clearly the bits available to do it.

              Also, HD DVD absoutely mixes multiple audo sources in real-time, and this is used in real titles. They were required to be premixed on DVD, but not on HD DVD. This is a good thing, since you don't have to waste bits on doing the base audio when doing commentary tracks. This is also why audio decoding is moving out of recievers into the players, and the players output mixed PCM over HDMI as the optimum output mode.

              You're dramatically underestimating the load of rich media playback, and overestimating the load of decryption. And I'm not aware of any software players that'll be doing any sort of reencryption in software, or why that would be needed.

              I imagine free players like VLC will eventually support playback of non-AACS HD DVD discs. But they'll have similar decoder requirements. We're definitely talking about using GPU compositing, GPU codec decode assist, etcetera.

              And we're not even talking about Blu-ray, which has higher max codec complexity, plus it has to run a Java VM and another encryption layer...
        • Maybe not... the GOOD Blue laser discs use the VC-1 codec (as opposed to MPEG2)... I have a copy of the T2 extreme edition which comes with a 2nd disc that has the movie in 1080p encoded using the WM9 codec (which IIRC is based on VC-1). It's just a regular old DVD-9, basically MS's poor early attempt at HD content through their WMVHD-DVD discs (there was about 10 of them total I believe). Anyway, I've got an Athalon 2600+ and a decent 512MB ATi card and I can't even come close to playing that disc, nor can
      • by Darkforge ( 28199 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:31PM (#16061487) Homepage
        Personally I hope that Blu-Ray and HD-DVD _never_ get cracked, or at least if they do it's never ported to Windows in an easy to use fashion. It's hard to think of any other way to get the formats dropped faster.

        Besides, I still don't understand your thinking. If it isn't cracked I ain't buying in.
        That was the grandparent post's whole point. If (in a magical fantasy land) the formats didn't get cracked, no one would buy in, and the formats would rot, which would be a good thing.

        With that said, I think everybody agrees that the formats certainly will be cracked, so, meh.
        • by jmorris42 ( 1458 ) * <{jmorris} {at} {beau.org}> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @05:14PM (#16062159)
          > That was the grandparent post's whole point. If (in a magical fantasy land) the formats didn't get
          > cracked, no one would buy in, and the formats would rot, which would be a good thing.

          Why would it be a good thing?

          Fact: DVD is near the end of its life for a high quality movie format. Disney titles for the kids? Another ten years, just like VHS is still clinging to life if that niche. A format to drive a 50" HD monitor? No.

          Fact: Any new format will have all the DRM the industry thinks it can get away with.

          Fact: The original plan was for Vista to be a TPCM only horror, and for HD content to only be playable on PCs with TPCM (ie. Vista and OS X on Intel). Hollywood had banked everything on that and was betrayed. (Nobody ever wins in a 'partnership' with Microsoft.)

          Fact: If either/both of these new formats catch on they will be good enough to last 10-20 years, like DVD's eventual lifespan will probably end up and about like VHS's reign.

          Fact: If both fail, by the time Hollywood is ready to try again we might not be lucky enough to get something so crackable.

          Fact: If Hollywood has TPCM it is possible they might actually design something that can't be cracked. Or at least not cracked effortlessly, as DVDs are now. Microsoft's failure with Vista is our opportunity, we should seize it.
    • by indil ( 911425 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @04:46PM (#16062006)
      Too late. [kaist.ac.kr] High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection [wikipedia.org] (the Blu-ray and HD-DVD DRM) was broken years before it was ever put on the market. As expected, the industry has pulled the rug out from under itself by using a custom and unproven (and incidently, unsecure) encryption algorithm. Apparently, they had a requirement to keep the hardware gate count <= 10,000. According to the cryptanalysis, the following are possible for HDCP-compliant devices:

      • Eavesdropping on any data
      • Cloning any device with only their public key
      • Avoiding any blacklist on devices
      • Creating new device keyvectors

      And all you need to do that are 40 devices. You can extract their keys and quickly calculate the master key, which can then be used to circumvent the DRM.

      From the paper:

      An attacker can reverse engineer 40 different HDCP video software utilities, he can break open 40 devices and extract the keys via reverse engineering, or he can simply license the keys from the trusted center. According to the HDCP License Agreement, device manufacturers can buy 10000 key pairs for $16000. Given these 40 spanning keys, the master secret can be recovered in seconds. So in essence, the trusted authority sells a large portion of its master secret to every HDCP licensee. With the master secret in hand, one can eavesdrop on all device communications, spoof any device, and clone any device, all in real time. One can produce a device that, by parroting back the KSVs of its peers, cannot be disabled by any blacklist. With a reasonable amount of computation, an attacker can also produce new device keys not on any key revocation list.
  • DRM, just say no! (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    http://bluraysucks.com/ [bluraysucks.com]
  • by slightcrazed ( 973882 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:37PM (#16061100)
    A shit-load of cash and a bunch of new hardware, apparently. Seriously, I need a DUAL CORE CPU just to watch a fricken HD DVD? Are you serious? What is a new HD DVD set top box going to look like, a cray supercomputer?
  • What a deal! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by shawnmchorse ( 442605 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:37PM (#16061105) Homepage
    I would only need to purchase a whole new computer, video card, and monitor to support playback of movies in somewhat higher resolution. Hold me back...:p Do they really think that introducing new hurdles like HDCP and a "secure video path" to be able to watch this stuff will encourage people to buy and actually use it? Or do they just not care?
    • by winnabago ( 949419 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:40PM (#16061124) Homepage
      Hell, my computer can't even run the diagnostic utility that supposedly tells me how deficient I am. Guess my answer is "no".
      • Given that just about every time I've ever run some Cyberlink software, it has crashed and burned in some way, I can't say I'm surprised. WinDVD isn't much better. And they both have crap UI. Horrible, horrible software.
    • Most people will only hear "HD-DVD doesn't work with your old monitor, so you need to get a new one." That won't piss them off as much as hearing that it can technically work but manufacturers have chosen to make it not work. People accept that new technology often means all new hardware, so they eventually will be inclined to upgrade.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Well that's just freakin awesome then. My kick a$$ in every other way $1000 Dell 2405 LCD monitor won't display HD movies because it doesn't have HanDiCaPping techology. Well they can kiss my a$$ I'm not buying in. I'll stick with DVD thank you very much.
        • It'll play HD movies just fine.

          There is a technology called ICT (Image Constraint Token) that content publishers could turn on (but haven't) that'd reduce your output resolution to 940x540 if using a non HDCP output. But given how many players and sets there are out there that don't support it, all the released HD DVD titles don't use this, and will allow you to use every pixel of your current display.
    • Re:What a deal! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Trailer Trash ( 60756 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:42PM (#16061576) Homepage
      In a year or two the standard $500 pc from dell will have all of this stuff built-in, and the vast majority of people will neither know nor care that their pc has special hardware that enables this playback. These same people today don't know that their dvds can't be copied legally.

      Just to gauge the reaction, I explained the DMCA to my mother one day in plain English and she was aghast. People who don't hang out on here all day tend to not know these things.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Just to gauge the reaction, I explained the DMCA to my mother one day in plain English and she was aghast. People who don't hang out on here all day tend to not know these things.
        And it's really not for lack of intelligence or comprehension. It's due to a systematic, purposeful lack of education - the content companies are much happier with few people even knowing what DMCA means, much less what it actually does.
    • Re:What a deal! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Babbster ( 107076 ) <aaronbabb@gmai l . com> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @04:05PM (#16061742) Homepage
      I don't understand these recommendations at all. First off, as others have noted, HD playback is indeed possible with single-core CPUs. Second, the video card shouldn't have to have 256MB Of memory - video cards have supported resolutions higher than 1920x1080 ("1080p") for years, so video memory should be a minor concern. Finally, unless the HD-DVD and Blu-ray consortia are putting extra restrictions on PC playback (over and above those on current HD-DVD and Blu-ray players hooked up to TVs), HDCP won't be an issue until a content provider decides to enable the ICT flag - no current releases do, and supposedly the major studios have an agreement amongst themselves not to do so for at least a few years.

      In short, I find all of this information suspect and most likely just a way to get people to buy more new hardware. Since Cyberlink makes most of their money from OEM deals, they have a large incentive to do so.
    • by samkass ( 174571 )
      I'm wondering what the Mac specs will look like. Mid-range Macs have built-in monitors (iMacs), so the requirement that things be HDCP and a secure video path might not be as big a deal with the studios on the Mac.
      • by rikkards ( 98006 )
        Probably still will be. How long do you think it will be before someone comes up with some kind of interface that would go between the board inside the mac and the cabling running up to the monitor? The interface would loop back and drop the file in some acronymed video format. Even worse it may involve booting one of these evil Open Source communistic Operating Systems. Savages.
  • it has not been clear what system requirements you need to actually be able to play HD-DVD and Blu-Ray discs.

    Yes it has, 64-bits and a DRM-ridden OS

    I thought we already discussed this?
  • HD content from a Blu-ray or HD-DVD disc requires quite a bit of processing power; Cyberlink recommends using a dual-core processor like the Intel Pentium D, Core 2 Duo or AMD Athlon X2. As a graphics card you should at least use a nVidia GeForce 7600 or ATI Radeon X1600 series with a minimum of 256MB video memory.
    Nice. And that's just for watching movies. At least we now know who Microsoft's been collaborating with to ensure everyone buys new machines...
    • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:07PM (#16061311) Homepage
      funny part is that non drm HD quality and resolution mpeg4 content can play on paltry Celeron 2.4ghz processors with 512 meg of ram and a crappy video card.

      I demo real HD content on a HTPC next to a HDDVD to a customer and they love the HTPC's picture over the HDDVD player. BluRay is not even HD quality yet as they do not have dual layer discs available yet so they are EDDVD instead of HDDVD.
      • You measure a democracy by the freedom it gives its dissidents, not the freedom it gives its assimilated conformists.
        Awesome quote, I really like it.
  • Who cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Quiet_Desperation ( 858215 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:40PM (#16061129)

    You have to need psychotherapy to even consider buying into this format war.

    I'll wait until there's a format where, when I push the Menu button after inserting a disc, I DON'T get "operation prohibited by disc". Prohibit my shiny white ass, disc makers!

  • All we need now is either a drive that can read both HD-DVD and BluRay, or we need HD-DVD to be declared the winner of this silly war.
  • by mypalmike ( 454265 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:43PM (#16061151) Homepage
    echo "No"
  • by Anonymous Coward
    OK, I am now waiting for a DeCSS-like solution for Blue Ray/HD-DVD.

    Does anyone know if the DRM/encryption in BD/HD has been cracked yet? Is DVD Jon working hard on this?

    Once this crack becomes available, I should be able to play back the cracked BD/HD without having to "upgrade" to DRM-compliant hardware. However, I might have to replace my aging Radeon 8500 graphics card.
    • by pla ( 258480 )
      However, I might have to replace my aging Radeon 8500 graphics card.

      You really shouldn't need to, unless it doesn't support a high enough screen resolution. Playback of HD content has nothing to do with 3d rendering, just a series of 1920x1080 (at 1080p) 2d framebuffer fills.

      Granted, you may find that you get a better framerate by having the player fake the data as textures, but that has more to do with driver optimization favoring gamers over media playback, than the nature of the data itself.
    • I definitely hope a crack comes soon, but most people will still have to upgrade their hardware. It takes a LOT of power to play back HD smoothly, and a lot of storage space too. I have a computer capable of playing the latest games at decent resolution and framerate, but it struggles playing some HD content. There's no way it could play 1080 anything. 720 it can do sometimes depending on the codec and bitrate. I'm an artist and run a gallery that specializes in computer video, so I deal with quite a b
    • My guess is that a crack will be available in the next 6 months. Long before I have any intention of buying either HD-DVD or BluRay... Despite the fact that I'd have to buy several hundred DVDs all over again, I'm gonna sit back, make some popcorn, and wait to see which emerges the victor before I even consider upgrading. Heck... I didn't even buy a DVD burner until a month ago (well ok, a year ago... my laptop came with one). I'm not a luddite, I just don't see the point in buying into a new technology unt
    • Jon says he will (Score:4, Informative)

      by in2mind ( 988476 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:18PM (#16061385) Homepage
      Does anyone know if the DRM/encryption in BD/HD has been cracked yet? Is DVD Jon working hard on this
      AFAIK Not yet. But DVD Jon has said in his blog that he will. check his site

      http://nanocrew.net/2006/01/08/deaacscom/ [nanocrew.net]

      http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20060116-5989 .html [arstechnica.com]

    • I'll probably build a computer to meet these specs within the next five years, but until my current computers die or fail to perform some necessary function these specs will have to wait.

      BTW, are you sure you want to buy BluRay or HDDVDs?

      I saw 2001: A Space Oddysey in high definition on HD Movies last July. It looked beautiful. I have the DVD and I watched it after the premiere just to compare the images. The hi-def version was sharper and the colors were brighter. In fact, if you have the DVD and a h

      • Okay, I'm with the rest of the drooling HT crowd over higher definition sources, especially for larger screens. I also understand that the images will be sharper. But to have to decribe the difference as:

        On the inside of her left forearm there is a brown spot that is clearly visible on the hi-def version. On the DVD you have to know it's there to see it.

        Just makes me start to wonder how few applications there are where HD really matters. (Oh, I do have an aversion to watching football in SD, even on a small
        • The brown spot and the white speck are mentioned just so people can have an apples to apples comparison point.

          But, yeah, like you I wonder WHY I would want to have to repurchase my collection of movies for something that has a GREAT image (if you have a television that supports it) and little else.

          To be honest, I don't want DVD Jon to waste his time with this new format. I think in a few years these devices will be like Quadrophonic stereos and amplifiers from the 1970s.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Vinnie_333 ( 575483 )
        On the inside of her left forearm there is a brown spot that is clearly visible on the hi-def version.

        Great, but I'd prefer not to see the stewardess's brown spot.

    • You actually don't need HDCP to play back any released HD DVD or Blu-ray title. Since the Xbox 360 and PS3 will have lots of component analog units out there, studios have agreeed not to use the ICT (Image Constraint Token - forces downrez to 960x540 out of analog outputs) flag.

      That said, people are going to be buying new computers for the most part to do this, since you'll need a new blue laser drive anyway, which is a good chunk of the price of a machine for the time being.
  • by dgallina ( 665193 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:47PM (#16061173)
    Forget it. The article may as well suggest paying the movie industry a ransom directly. HDCP is a useless mandated solution in search of a problem.
    • Really makes you wonder though, doesn't it? I mean when faced with piracy and the myriad ways to get a movie for free, how else can they get revenue with their current business model? I'm sure the discs aren't much more expensive to produce than a DVD, yet they cost at least twice as much to consumers. A player? Yikes! That's quite a cost to consumers for them to pay for R&D.

      No, it is a racket to get the consumer to pay for all this equipment just so that they can further consolidate their power ag
  • does not matter. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:53PM (#16061207) Homepage
    I am in the high end Home theatre market and most of these people that these are targetted at are not buying it. BluRay right now sucks because you can only get single layer discs so blu ray is n ot full res HD and is on ly slightly better than DVD. HDDVD is better and is actually ready for market, but their choice in movies on HDDVD right now sucks. Plus, even the really rich get put off having to re-buy all their movies.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by chrisjwray ( 717883 )
      "I am in the high end Home theatre market"

      We call it future shop in Canada.
      • We call it future shop in Canada.

        No you don't. I've been to Future Shop, and it was awful. Magnolia HiFi or Definitive Audio are much better.

  • by pembo13 ( 770295 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @02:54PM (#16061210) Homepage
    they forgot to mention having to put down your soul, as a deposit, just incase you understand.
  • Will it play on freenix (for example, on Linux)?
    • No, obviously not, because Linux doesn't support DRM.

      Hell, the utility to check and see if it works doesn't even run on Linux.

      • Of course Linux supports DRM [sourceforge.net]. And right in the kernel no less. :P
      • No, obviously not, because Linux doesn't support DRM.
        It doesn't *support* DRM, but there are workarounds on Linux that make various DRMed things play.
  • Time for DVD-Jon to jump in and save us from the evil DRM monsters.

    Seriously, do they think the HDCP stuff will actually prevent people from using a HD-DVD drive and some fancy software to display the image at full resolution on the screen or even rip it directly to DivX? Even if Vista completely ensures through some black driver magic that applications are unable to access the higher-resolution data on video discs, what is to prevent a Linux or BSD based live CD that boots a HD-DVD player app? Wait, don'
  • Im confused. How will protecting the video from the graphics card to my monitor help anything? One blu-ray/hd-dvd is cracked HDCP will be moot.
  • by niceone ( 992278 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:02PM (#16061268) Journal
    .. after it just killed that aussie TV guy?!
  • Cripes. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Rob T Firefly ( 844560 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:05PM (#16061285) Homepage Journal
    What's powering the damned players? Is this all OS overhead and panicky DRM safeguards, or are they actually churning out set-top boxes with dual cores, flux capacitors, and proton packs?
  • That settles it... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MrPerfekt ( 414248 )
    I tend to be an early adopter and want, no.. need, to have the latest and greatest especially when it comes to TV/Movies. And now, I have absolutely no motivation to get what should be the new peak of HD entertainment. Why?

    Well, you're forcing me to use Windows. You're forcing me to get all new hardware, not just the new drive mind you, but the whole shebang. New monitor, new video card, new OS in addition to the new drive. That is lunacy, pure and simple.

    Let's not forget the obscene processor requirements
  • by rice_burners_suck ( 243660 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:17PM (#16061376)
    Let's make it so that in Windows XP, the video is read off the disc, unencrypted, saved to the hard drive in full resolution, and then played through an unprotected videopath. Then, the RIAA, MPAA, and Microsoft can sue Microsoft for making illegal copies of movies. It doesn't matter that Microsoft will be both a plaintiff and a defendant in this case. When a company is so big, it's not uncommon for one department to do something without another department's knowledge, such as sue itself. Hmmm... if their legal department worked the same way as their software, I wouldn't be surprised at all.
  • So, why the hell should I shell out roughly $500 just I can watch the same hollywood dreck in higher resolution?

  • Will be the guys working in the rendering labs in Industrial Light and Magic, since they'll be the only ones with access to the required hardware. This is gonna require more oomph than Vista, and boy is that saying something!

    Jeez, I gave up my Commodore 64 for this?
  • What about Linux? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Eravnrekaree ( 467752 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:36PM (#16061539)
    The really important question they should be asking, will they play under Linux?

    And, when will HD-DVD-R drives be avialable, so we can make our own data disks?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by smoker2 ( 750216 )
      And, when will HD-DVD-R drives be avialable, so we can make our own data disks?
      Don't know about HD but BD writers are available here [aprmedia.com].

      Single layer only though ...but 25 GB is enough for now I guess. (Not that I'll be investing at those prices !)

  • Not possible? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by skrolle2 ( 844387 )

    When your system lacks HDCP compatibility, it will not be possible to play the content in full HD resolution.

    No, the DRM technologies are required for you to be ALLOWED to play back the content you purchased in full HD resolution. It's not like the DRM is somehow technically necessary for the playback of HD video, although the article sure makes it sound like it.
  • by Nonillion ( 266505 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:51PM (#16061649)
    You know, with Microsoft's vast fortune; you think they would be in a position to dictate terms to the MPAA / RIAA, just like they do with computer and hardware manufactures.

    MPAA/RIAA: You will provide DRM (digital restrictions management) in your OS and ANY hardware we see fit. People are ripping us off left and right! Piracy is so rampant, we are going broke paying off politicians and lawyers to ram DRM down everyones throat.

    MICROSOFT: (with me in charge) Fuck you guys, our customers don't want this DRM shit. It crates enormous overhead and will require everyone to buy all new hardware. Our customers are getting tired of this draconian and Stalinist attitude of yours. You are going to be MY bitch, and do EXACTLY what I tell you to do.

    MPAA/RIAA: How dare you speak to us that way we'll sue!

    MICROSOFT: (with me in charge) Bring it on bitch! We have been sued by governments, you'll pose no challenge at all.
    • You know, with Microsoft's vast fortune; you think they would be in a position to dictate terms to the MPAA / RIAA, just like they do with computer and hardware manufactures.

      Actually they are, but the MPAA/RIAA hasn't caught on.

      The only reason Microsoft fixed the hole was because it allowed people to take their Windows Media files to other formats which may or not be compatible with non-Windows operating systems. Yeah... OS X has Windows Media Players... well sort of... but they are broke and usesless for a
  • My Checklist (Score:4, Interesting)

    by segedunum ( 883035 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:52PM (#16061662)
    To enable HD resolution playback of an HD-DVD or Blu-Ray videodisc your monitor, graphics card and the driver you use have to be compatibe with the HDCP standard.

    Bugger. That's me out in the first round. I'm not going to replace my good equipment, and especially my fantastic 19" CRT monitor, just to get 'high resolution' videos to play.

    Graphics cards are even worse, there is only a handfull of cards out there that sport HDCP support.

    Yes, and even those you buy yourself might have HDCP, but they won't have it switched on. However, many OEMs 'in the know' like HP, do. Sounds like lock-in to me.

    The purchase of a HD-DVD or Blu-Ray player will therefore have no added value to a normal DVD player without HDCP.

    Fantastic. I'm sorry, why do I need to monkey about getting high definition content on my PC again, and why would I want to pay more money for HD discs over DVD when there's no benefit whatsoever? That sounds like a lovely way to get a new format to take off. Not.

    I downloaded that checker and bugger, I can't play high definition disks. I'm...really...devastated.
  • Here's my alternative checklist:
    1. Bittorrent client
    2. Video player

    (3. profit?)

    Seriously though, I wonder when the media industry will figure out that they can fight piracy by making paying for something easier, faster and more convenient then obtaining a pirated copy. Or atleast close to as easy, fast and convenient..

    Now back to figuring out what to call my 47:th Ancient Domains Of Mystery character...

    http://www.physics.byu.edu/research/energy/htm7.ht ml [byu.edu]
  • by GweeDo ( 127172 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @03:59PM (#16061700) Homepage
    Here are my results [grebowiec.net] after running the application. It appears my dual core 1.83ghz Core Duo CPU needs to be upgraded already. On top of that, my Geforce Go 7800 appears to be lacking. This just goes to show how out of touch with reality the studio's are for trying to push this crap on people.
  • So, point number 1:

    Important to know is that all current first generation HD-DVD and Blu-Ray drives are suitable to play video discs, so no problems there.

    Is it just me, or is that not quite true [slashdot.org]?

  • Here's my semi-objective analysis, based on that screenshot:

    Processor: Maybe. They're looking at a 1 ghz machine. But dual-core processor? Mine plays HD fine, and it's only a 2.4 ghz amd64. In 32-bit and 64-bit mode. Think about it -- the only reason they're recommending dual-core is so that they can guarantee they have one mostly to themselves, so the other can run your spyware.

    Graphics card: 256 megs seems a bit much. I mean, I have that, but let's think here -- what exactly would it use video RAM