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Overcoming HDCP

Discussion in 'TVs' started by petecowie, Jul 15, 2005.

  1. petecowie

    petecowie Member

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    Hi,
    I like many poeple have a HiDef capable plasma but mine has no Digital Inputs, I connect everything via the component inputs and am very happy with the results. Assuming the new Sky HD Service requires (for some channels at least) HDCP is there a convertor I can buy to allow me to watch them or do I have to buy my 4th Plasma.

    I am sure I found one in Germany before but have benn unsuccesful in finding it again......
  2. GaryB

    GaryB Active Member

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    Sky have announced that their first generation boxes will have component outputs. I think their logic is that by the time those boxes die a natural death, most people would have replaced their TV.
  3. petecowie

    petecowie Member

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    I thought that although some programs will be available over the component outputs they will also have the option to only show perium content via the HDCP digital out.
  4. Starburst

    Starburst Member

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    SKY have said all their own branded HD channels will be accessible via component on the first gen STB however third party channels have the option to follow SKY's lead or specify the digital output only and of course the use of HDCP as applicable.
  5. petecowie

    petecowie Member

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    ....and then at some point in the future, maybe one or two years down the line they will switch everything to HDCP, I guess by then there will be loads of HDCP bypass boxes available on ebay!
  6. AML

    AML Active Member

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    It is a little early to be looking for boxes. I dont know of any that have been made yet.
    Once HD players like Blu Ray and HD DVD as well as HDTV become available, thats when you will see bypass boxes.

    Still, at some point you will need to get a TV that supports HDCP as it looks like this will be a standard for the future.
  7. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes Active Member

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    There are many examples of these boxes being marketted currently. Available in US, UK, Germany, some have multiple outputs, some have analogue outputs, some even have analogue and digital outputs. Most seem to come from Korea originally.

    Many of us talk about displaying things like HD but there are other uses like transfering digital signals to scalers and then using the better electronics in the scalers (like better video DACs), rather than going through poor video DACs and an addition AD stage in the scaler.
  8. Razor

    Razor Well-Known Member

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  9. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes Active Member

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    http://www.spatz-tech.de/spatz/dvi_hdcp.htm

    http://www.lektropacks.com/view_item.php?product=37&&category=12

    http://www.lektropacks.com/view_item.php?product=38&&category=12

    http://www.digitalconnection.com/Products/Video/DCDA1.ASP

    from the manufacturers site:

    http://www.dtrovision.com/dcda1.htm

    or even this (I think)

    http://www.dtrovision.com/ddd21.htm

    or this one, can't remember which ;)

    http://www.dtrovision.com/ds21r.htm

    personally the last one and the Analogue and Digital lectropacks CP254HDCP look best to me. There are others out there.

    and the teccy stuff for those interested

    http://cryptome.org/hdcp-v1.htm
  10. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes Active Member

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    beat me to it :)
  11. chaplic

    chaplic Member

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    http://www.dtrovision.com/dcda1.htm



    I didn't see any confirmation that the Dtrovision ones can support HDCP


    From my admitedly limited understanding, the HDCP devices do a key exchange similar to what you might do if you wanted to email someone PGP encrytped. However, this means issuing from a central authority who may be able to revoke over-the-air ?? In other words, we could spend our hard end on a little box just so I can watch TV on my "HD ready (honest)" TV only for a transmission to the sky box to say "these keys are invalid (i.e. the one in the box)

    Any idea ?
  12. DanH

    DanH Member

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    I remember reading that these boxes use the same chips as TVs from big manufacturers, so they cant block them without blocking the very same models of TV (or something like that).

    Maybe somebody with more knowlege can confirm?
  13. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes Active Member

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    Thats my understanding
  14. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand Active Member Assured Advertiser

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    Hello all

    I think you'll find anyone who manufactures a box that allows HDCP signals to pass though with the HDCP removed will find ways of marketing this feature that don't involve shouting out about it on a web site; otherwise the 'Powers that be' will visit and send you a big Invoice for licence infringement.

    Best regards

    Joe
  15. mattross

    mattross Member

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    On CDFreaks yesterday there was an article about a box that can remove HDCP and output unprotected content. It isn't cheap.
  16. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV Well-Known Member Assured Advertiser

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    The boxes from Dtro do what everyone wants. However just as there are issues with current DVI and HDMI sources and displays communicating with each other (regardless of HDCP) you can get the same issues with these boxes. You should check with your chosen supplier that your source and display work with them.....Arcam's do not work with Dtrovision product for instance.

    Gordon
  17. HeweyBoy101

    HeweyBoy101 Member

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    I may give the lektropacks DVI-D to analogue VGA a try on my Philips Plasma, using Denon DVD 3910 as the souce. Link above however does not mention if this will work with HDCP protected input or not. Have sent an email to Lektropacks to query this. Meanwhile, I can't seem to locate any reviews of this product. Does anyone have any experience of this unit, does it work well, and will it effectively remove HDCP and outputa clean analogue VGA signal?

    Wonder how many others there are out there like me who purchased a plasmaTV about 6 months too soon last year! Glad to hear that 1st gen Sky HD box will output HD format via component. However,this needs to be 1080i on my Philips - bloody thing won't accept any progressive signal on component!
  18. Welwynnick

    Welwynnick Active Member

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    Is it just me or do some of those boxes look identical?

    Only thing is the Lectropacks unit seems to do deinterlacing, scaling and FRC for the same price as the others. Be really useful to get some meaningful feedback on that. It doesn't appear to handle 1080p, and it's probably no substitute for a "proper" scaler, but it seems great value if it lives up to the advertising.

    So some just strip the HDCP (for displays with just DVI) and some also transcode to VGA (for displays without). But what would you do if you used that sort of thing in conjunction with a scaler?

    If you have a plain DVI scaler and any display, you would presumably connect a DVI-DVI decoder upstream, or else the scaler will not accept an HDCP input. (Unless the scaler has limitations on input formats over digital).

    If you have an "analogue" scaler, you would need a DVI-VGA decoder upstream again, though you would inevitably introduce additional ADC & DAC stages in the signal path.

    But what if you have a DVI + HDCP scaler but a VGA display? Would you connect a DVI to VGA decoder downstream of the scaler, which would otherwise have to disable it's analogue output? Or would you connect a DVI to DVI decoder upstream so the scaler doesn't see HDCP and can output in analogue?

    And do these devices really transcode any rate and resolution, even if it's a custom one set-up for a specific system?

    Nick
  19. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes Active Member

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    as I said look to Korea for a souce, a common source :)

    The reason I like the Lectropacks one is that it has both analogue and digital outputs so allows all sorts of tunes to be played, so either between player and scaler or scaler and proector. But although these devices work in most areas, there will always be the odd device where they 'might' not.
  20. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes Active Member

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  21. rigman

    rigman Active Member

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    Is there any device which actually outputs HDCP over DVI/HDMI available yet or are we just waiting for skyHD and HD DVD players which will do it?

    I dont really frequent the USA forums and I have certainly never heard of anyone over here buy one of these devices and say that it works as described.

    I have got a Barco 808s with a Rock pro and I will need one of these devices to play the HD devices so i have a lot of interest in purchasing one of these but I have wasted a lot of money over the years on things like D2Mac decoders and other wonder boxes and I have learnt my lesson.

    thanks
    Darren
  22. David Mackenzie

    David Mackenzie New Member

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    Keene Electronics sell one of these devices. Go to their site www.keene.co.uk and search for product code DVIFIX.
  23. Dutch

    Dutch Member

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    Darren,

    All the current DVD players with HDMI or DVI-HDCP outputs from the likes of Pioneer, Denon and Samsung. Some of them (eg Samsung) appear to be hackable to disable HDCP.

    Steve
  24. Dutch

    Dutch Member

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    Yes, that appears to be the Dtrovision DC-DA1 converter.

    Steve
  25. rigman

    rigman Active Member

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    Sorry I did not realise that the HDCP was enabled all the time on the HDMI ports. I thought it would be the software (or satellite signal) that would contain the encryption and that would only be contained in high def signals. Thanks for keeping me right :)

    The Keene device claims to do what is required so I think that will be the one I will go for when I need to hopefully when HD DVD is released. Has anyone tested one of these devices and how much the signal is degraded during the conversion.

    thanks
    Darren
  26. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand Active Member Assured Advertiser

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    Hello all

    rigman - HDCP is not an 'always on' protection scheme.

    The Disc you play in an HDCP enabled DVD player will trigger the copy protection encryption (you may for example get to watch the 'adverts' on a disc before HDCP is triggered) and likewise with Broadcast streams (High Definition or Standard Definition) over Digital connections the Broadcaster can switch the HDCP encryption on and off.

    As Gordon (Convergent-AV) points out there is no guarantee that the various HDCP 'workarounds' will work in all installations - there are various HDCP implementations across DVI and HDMI Transmitters and Receivers and some will work with HDCP strippers some wont.

    I think you'll find anyone who is manufacturing/supplying HDCP workaround devices will 'bury' the information rather than shout out about it - it could get expensive if the licensing folk get on your tail!!!

    Best regards

    Joe
  27. slingshot

    slingshot Member

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    Thanks for the info guys looks like my Sony PJ will have a bit more life in it yet, also looks like I'm not going to be on my own investing in some Korean electronics.

    Slingshot
  28. Boris Blank

    Boris Blank Member

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    I'm not overly convinced that these first-generation devices will survive a key revocation.

    These chips were no doubt sold in batches to various manufacturers, if so, then whole batches may well be made useless once HDCP actually gets implemented simply by revoking the keys for any given batch that ends up in an unlicensed (or dodgey) product.

    Whilst the chips in these devices may be the exact same chips used in (say) a Samsung HDMI-equipped tv, who's to say that the batch numbers of these unlicensed chips are not already known and only await the first aggressively protected HDCP source to be put through for them to be blocked!

    Tracking an individual chip is perfectly possible (indeed, as an example, each Intel CPU has a unique serial number) and if you know the number, you can address it individually by digital means through a Hi-def disc or say through Sky-HD.

    Speculation perhaps but given rampant piracy and the film studio's obsession to prevent digital copying, folks should perhaps be wary about thinking these devices will still be working 6 months from now. The studios were badly bitten once DVD copy protection was cracked, I doubt they will be so stupid as to allow unlicensed chips to circulate without some method of countering the problem.

    If anyone can give a catagorical assurance the devices will work then I'll be happy as Larry but I'll not be holding my breath.
    Paul
  29. rigman

    rigman Active Member

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    It is only people like me who have invested in very expensive analogue projectors and scalers that suffer.
    It makes no difference whatsoever to the far east crooks that deal in mass piracy as they have the money to get around any copy protection and will have copied HD discs on the streets within hours of the originals being released.

    I hope the protection is cracked and I will buy whatever is necessary to get around HDCP. The suits do not care about me and my thousands of pounds I have spent as an early adoptor so why should I care about them.

    :mad: :mad:
    Darren
  30. pjclark1

    pjclark1 Member

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    Depends what key you have in the box. A company that is totally legit may apply for their own key, and it could be revoked later.
    Someone a bit dodgy might be using a big brand name TV suppliers key (you can buy it from someone in the big company, or break the key from an existing chip with a PC and 10 days processing)
    Someone very dodgy would apply for their own key, then stick in someone else's key (surely no-one would stoop that low).

    1) Keys cannot be revoked on an individual basis, only in bulk
    2) You can insert your own keys, no need to buy premade chips
    3) Keys are produced using a keygen, so many opportunities lie there
    4) Keys can be extracted fairly easily from other peoples chips

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