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Monitor/TV/HDCP recommendation for films on Mac Pro
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Mar 4, 2013, 06:44 AM
 
Hi all,

Long time no posting for me.

I've got a Mac Pro with the HD5870 video card, running a gorgeous Eizo CG303W monitor that won't play HD films from the iTunes Store over dual-link DVI. Awful state of affairs, but the monitor is too good to biff.

I've got spare Mini DisplayPort outputs, though, and sufficient desk space that I could get another screen if necessary. What are my options for playing 1080p content from the computer? Here are a few as I understand it:

1) Pirate all the content I want to watch at home, instead of failing to watch it legally due to highly enjoyable copy protection
2) Play via an Apple TV into a telly (neither of which I have at the moment)
3) Get an HDCP-enabled Mini DisplayPort display and run it out the back of the Mac Pro, using it as a second display when I'm not watching flicks
4) Something I haven't thought of yet

(I'm not going for route 1), by the way - I've noted that above because it's such a shame that this is even worthy of a post. It should be really, really easy to do this.)

Thanks very much in advance for any help!
Ben
     
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Mar 4, 2013, 07:52 AM
 
Similar set-up here: Mac Pro, HD5770 Radeon, Apple Cinema 30". I can play HD TV-shows from iTunes over dual-link DVI–namely PanAm– but due to the lack of bandwidth and 'what if my hard disk die a natural death' I just buy the Blu-ray for the movies and TV-shows I want and watch them either with the Mac Pro (external LG BE12LU30 Blu-ray rewriter with no HDCP issues) or on my Philips HDTV set.
     
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Mar 4, 2013, 09:16 AM
 
Thanks for the reply, angelmb.

I'm assuming you never get these sorts of issues with your Cinema Display?
iTunes Store HD Movies Don’t Play on My Monitor: Solutions | iLounge Article

Looking increasing like an Apple TV and a normal telly is the more sensible route. A real shame - two screens would be great, but I don't want to worry about my non-HDCP Eizo upsetting things. What a palaver!
     
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Mar 4, 2013, 09:49 AM
 
That's right. I have never found any of those issues but please note that I don't any longer buy movies from iTunes due to several reasons:
a.- my internet connection being not that fast.
b.- iTunes Spain lacking on 1080p content.
c.- Finding more reliable buy the movies on Blu-ray.

So mine might not be the most up to date info on this regarding.
     
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Mar 4, 2013, 02:07 PM
 
There are a couple options not on your list that might be worth considering.

5) Buy the blu-ray, rip non-DRM copy to your HD with MakeMKV, play as desired. So far as I've heard, this format shift has not been prosecuted by anyone.
6) Buy an HDCP stripper that goes between the computer and existing monitor. They've been possible to build since the HDCP master key leaked a couple years ago. Intel threatened to sue anyone who started making them. I've read that Intel has filed a suit, so they are being made somewhere.
     
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Mar 6, 2013, 04:58 PM
 
Thanks for the other replies, everyone.

The Blu-ray option is a bit of a non-starter for me (no optical drive and no immediate gratification if I feel like watching...THAT), but the HDCP stripper might be interesting.

I think that it's most likely that I'll end up going a bit further than that, though (#2 or #3)...are there any 30" (or bigger) screens that people could recommend that would allow HDCP over either Mini DisplayPort or DVI without being upset by my non-HDCP Eizo?
     
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Mar 6, 2013, 06:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by all2ofme View Post
I think that it's most likely that I'll end up going a bit further than that, though (#2 or #3)...are there any 30" (or bigger) screens that people could recommend that would allow HDCP over either Mini DisplayPort or DVI without being upset by my non-HDCP Eizo?
Pretty much everything supports HDCP: Dell U3011, HP ZR30w, NEC PA301W-BK, etc
I don't know if OS X will allow playing the DRM-encumbered files on an HDCP display when other non-HDCP displays are present.
     
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Mar 13, 2013, 06:44 AM
 
Thanks, mduell - my Eizo supports HDCP, but only over single link DVI (and based on some reading this morning it appears that most things are hit and miss when it comes to dual link and HDCP).

I'll look into the ones you've mentioned and see what tickles my fancy. It'd be nicer to have a second screen (even if I have to unplug the Eizo whenever I want to watch HDCP-restricted content) than the Eizo plus a telly.
     
   
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