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Thread: CyberLink Interview for the HTPC HD Fans

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    TweakTown Forum

    Default CyberLink Interview for the HTPC HD Fans

    Please feel free to comment about our story entitled "CyberLink Interview for the HTPC HD Fans"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Re: CyberLink Interview for the HTPC HD Fans

    Nice article thanks!

    Two comments were quite interesting.

    1> The statement that CyberLink viewed the best way for one to enjoy the full HD movie experience on their HTPC as a setup controlled via HDMI 1.3 CEC.

    CEC is an optional part of the HDMI spec and I'd be surprised if (m)any PC component makers have bothered to implement it.

    Some of the Nvidia 8xxx series and many of the 9xxx series cards have implemented HDMI over the (physical) DVI port; in such cases it is not possible to implement CEC using a standard DVI port as there is no DVI equivilant of HDMI pin 13. (The ATI HD cards use a non-standard DVI-to-HDMI adaptor, but AMD/ATI makes no mention of CEC support.)

    Tweaktowns' question included "with currently available and upcoming hardware", but CyberLink seems to be speculating on an entirely new generation of hardware in the response.

    2> No mention of XP. And no mention of PUMA for Vista. It seems that CyberLink has given up waiting for MS to deliver PUMA, instead working directly with vendors on a proprietary equivilant.

    Confusing the matter is the statement "PowerDVD 8 does not support secure audio path at this time". Secure Audio Path is actually part of XP, not Vista (PUMA is the Vista replacement of SAP). MS says that SAP is able to protect content under XP, but no one uses it, under Vista it is disabled, and PUMA is a future product. If that is true, it would seem to be be simpler to get HD audio and video operating under XP.

    All in all, it seems there is still a long way to go. :-/

    PS Six months ago I found a heap of MS resources that go into this in quite a lot of detail. The one in bold is probably the best one (and is the source for some of the above comments).

    Media Advances for the Windows PC Architecture
    Universal Audio Architecture (UAA) High Definition Audio class driver version 1.0a available for Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows 2000 (replaces 835221 UAA HD Audio driver 1.0)
    Archived Paper: Digital Rights Management for Audio Drivers
    Output Content Protection and Windows Vista -- links to Output Content Protection and Windows Vista
    Protected Media Path and Driver Interoperability Requirements (short PowerPoint version of Code Signing for Protected Media Components in Windows Vista)
    Longhorn Output Content Protection (short PowerPoint version of Output Content Protection and Windows Vista)
    Code Signing for Protected Media Components in Windows Vista

    Kernel-Level Security (Secure Audio Path)
    Kernel-Level Security (Secure Audio Path)
    Microsoft Secure Audio Path (deprecated)
    Secure Audio Path: Trusted Audio Drivers

    Digital Media Content Protection
    Windows Vista Video Pipeline Architecture And Implementation
    Universal Audio Architecture notes that "UAA class drivers support current and planned content protection technologies in Windows."
    Universal Audio Architecture Hardware Design Guidelines notes that "In Windows Vista and earlier versions of Windows, the UAA class driver for HD Audio devices, hdaudio.sys, provides the following basic audio functions: Support for Secure Audio Path (Windows Media digital rights management)."

    Microsoft Device Driver Interface for HD Audio
    Windows Logo Program Requirements Version 3.09 for Client System, Server System, and Devices interestingly this notes the mandatory requirement that "Audio device implements DRM support".

    COPP Processing
    Supporting Output Protection Manager
    Using Certified Output Protection Protocol (COPP)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Re: CyberLink Interview for the HTPC HD Fans

    double post
    Last edited by Ajax9000; 04-11-2008 at 03:21 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Default Re: CyberLink Interview for the HTPC HD Fans

    Thanks TweakTown for an excellent, timely article documenting this sorry state of affairs. Ajax9000, many thanks for your very informative post.

    Everyone involved with establishing and creating the CURRENT protected path pc hardware and software implementations deserve a place in the "Hall of Shame." I am not picking on Cyberlink, their software problems are only the tip of the iceberg and are probably inevitable given the mass confusion about what the current requirements/limitations/capabilities actually are.

    The current "only combined audio and video output" approach to protected path is fundamentally flawed despite the fact that it has not yet been correctly implemented as designed for PC users. High end users like me need two separate CONCURRENT hdmi outputs - one output that can be designated for video and another for audio - both protected and at full output resolution. And one of those outputs should be designed to enable the user to select separate path or combined path usage. The reason is to enable playback equpment to be connected to separate external processors for both types of signals. And this applies to BOTH pc and standalone playback equipment. The current combined output signal approach to protected path is crude, too limiting, and not worth the investment.

    There is great potential for this technology to enable new levels of high definition video and audio. I hope all involved will learn from this mess and go back to the drawing boards.

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