Usually a product specification list is fairly accurate as to what the item in question offers. ATI is apparently being very sneaky
, however, and silently removing references to HDCP functionality in many of their card descriptions. This comes despite the fact that many ATI cards over the past year have been sold touted as supporting the new technology. After certain reviews demonstrated that many cards from multiple vendors didn't, strange things started happening.
Most of ATI's recent retail products are currently shipping with advertisements claiming that the products are HDCP-ready. On ATI's website, the term HDCP-ready was also used, for example on the X1900 series specifications page. Curiously, ATI's professional products such as FireGL list "HDCP-compliant". We spoke to ATI and asked it why the terminology difference and what the difference was in its view, between compliance and ready. Unfortunately, we did not receive a sound response to that question. In an interesting turn of events, today ATI has begun to silently remove references to HDCP-ready on its consumer products.
Retailers are affected too. Many retailers are selling products based partially on HDCP compliance, which will become more important as HDCP displays are found in more homes. People purchasing cards today might end up becoming sorely disappointed when trying to playback newer releases provided on BluRay or HD-DVD formats, finding themselves stuck with the resolutions of yesterday. More updates as they come.