Is Mac coming out with HDMI? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 03-19-2007, 12:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Has anyone heard any plans to release a Mac with HDMI (with 8 channel audio)?

Is Mac coming out with their Media center version?
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post #2 of 23 Old 03-19-2007, 01:00 PM
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Nothing has been announced, and officially Apple usually doesn't announce things like that until they're ready to ship, and usually at a "big deal" event.

There ARE lots of rumors, which may or may not ever become true.

The Apple TV, which is aimed squarely at TV sets unlike all current Macs, does have HDMI (or will have, to be precise).

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post #3 of 23 Old 03-19-2007, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xavier View Post

Is Mac coming out with their Media center version?

I doubt that Apple will have a seperate Media Center version. Whatever AV capabilities Apple includes in Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5) will be available to all Mac users. Apple has not (and most likely will not) segregate out OS features in bundles hoping to upsell consumers to a "premium" version like Microsoft. I look for one Leopard version, with a Server variant, just like with Tiger.
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post #4 of 23 Old 03-19-2007, 07:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wildrock View Post

I doubt that Apple will have a seperate Media Center version. Whatever AV capabilities Apple includes in Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5) will be available to all Mac users. Apple has not (and most likely will not) segregate out OS features in bundles hoping to upsell consumers to a "premium" version like Microsoft. I look for one Leopard version, with a Server variant, just like with Tiger.

Well, that and it seems that Apple TV is Apple's "Media Center" strategy.

No DVR, but Apple's wagering you won't need it when you can just download everything from the iTunes store.
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post #5 of 23 Old 03-20-2007, 08:36 PM
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One rampant rumor is that Apple will include hardware encoding and decoding for video codecs, including H.264, in all their hardware this year. This will enable realtime recording and simultaneous playback of HD broadcasts on any Mac from the cheapest to the top of the line. Let's hope it turns out to be more than a rumor.
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post #6 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 01:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by groschuni View Post

One rampant rumor is that Apple will include hardware encoding and decoding for video codecs, including H.264, in all their hardware this year....

Hardware H.264 decoding is already available from both ATI and NVIDIA on most of their mid/high-end cards. Presumably Leopard will provide OS X drivers to utilize such decoding - I'd be really surprised if it doesn't.

Hardware encoding is something entirely different. My limited understanding is that a CPU is more efficient at encoding H.264, than a GPU (other than stuff like CABAC.)

So I wonder, if the rumor is true, what kind of chip would Apple use for the purpose. On the other hand, 1x encoding is not all that demanding, so for time-shifting purposes, you wouldn't need anything really powerful. But I am really doubtful, in view of the strict limitations apparently placed on Apple TV, that Apple would push time-shifting of Live TV.

I would expect the new Macs to have HDMI, though, just like I expect the new Apple monitors to have it, too.
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post #7 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 03:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan1 View Post

So I wonder, if the rumor is true, what kind of chip would Apple use for the purpose. On the other hand, 1x encoding is not all that demanding, so for time-shifting purposes, you wouldn't need anything really powerful. But I am really doubtful, in view of the strict limitations apparently placed on Apple TV, that Apple would push time-shifting of Live TV.

I would expect the new Macs to have HDMI, though, just like I expect the new Apple monitors to have it, too.

Regarding the encoding chip that's rumored for future Macs. Personally, I agree with Ryan's assertion that time-shifting live TV is not the main feature. I think that these chips will be for quick/quality DVD-ripping for filling up :apple:TV's. It will allow iTunes to index DVDs just like it does CDs. I think (hope) Apple realizes that not everyone will purchase iTS movies to feed the :apple:TV and is looking to facilitate getting a user's legally purchased content into the :apple:TV. Of course, the DMCA is a big hurdle to overcome, but as long as I'm hoping/praying/begging for a nice simple device that can utilize lots of content ...

As for HDMI on Macs and ACD's, I sort of doubt it. I could be very wrong, but I think that HDMI does not support many resolutions outside of normal TV resolutions (i.e. 1920x1080i/p, 1280x720p, 854x480p, etc). A 30" monitor with 1080p resolution will be pretty worthless. That's not to say that Apple won't put an HDMI port in additon to the standard DVI one, but I really doubt it.

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post #8 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 07:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ftaok View Post

I could be very wrong, but I think that HDMI does not support many resolutions outside of normal TV resolutions (i.e. 1920x1080i/p, 1280x720p, 854x480p, etc).

Actually, HDMI is backwards compatible with DVI-D and DVI-I, so it supports all resolutions that those support. HDMI Type B is designed to support resolutions higher than WQSXGA (3200x2048), though.
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post #9 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 07:59 AM
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post #10 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 10:59 AM - Thread Starter
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The dates for Apple TV is very close and I hope it will be a great HTPC and support hddvd & blu ray.
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post #11 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 11:07 AM
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Um, I don't believe the Apple TV has a DVD drive of any flavor.

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post #12 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 11:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xavier View Post

The dates for Apple TV is very close and I hope it will be a great HTPC and support hddvd & blu ray.

What are you talking about? Apple TV is at best a media center extender. It allows you to play your videos stored on the PC/Mac on a TV. It is a cheap device (compartively). The cheapest HD-DVD player in the market right now is a Toshiba HD-A2 ($356 - Amazon). The cheapest Bluray player in the market right now is a Samsung BDP-1000 ($499 - Amazon). Apple TV is trying to not be these things. It has a minimal set of goals. I would assume future iterations of the AppleTV will do more stuff. Baby Steps.
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post #13 of 23 Old 03-21-2007, 07:47 PM
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HDCP is pretty much a given as soon as Apple starts shipping Blu-ray players. So I would have to say, yes, eventually we will see HDMI or DisplayPort or HDCP/DVI connectors on Macs.
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post #14 of 23 Old 03-31-2007, 04:29 PM
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Why would apple release a COMPUTER with HDMI? HDMI is for home theater components NOT computers. If anything apple will release a compute with DVI w/ HDCP.
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post #15 of 23 Old 03-31-2007, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptysell View Post

Why would apple release a COMPUTER with HDMI? HDMI is for home theater components NOT computers. If anything apple will release a compute with DVI w/ HDCP.

It appears most computer companies have eschewed HDMI in favor of something else. Apple, in press releases, has backed UDI as the future display connector of choice for computers.

They may even implement it first in order to drive the market. A good number of people credit the adoption of USB and Airport (802.11b) to the iMac and iBook respectively.
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post #16 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bommai View Post

What are you talking about? Apple TV is at best a media center extender. It allows you to play your videos stored on the PC/Mac on a TV. It is a cheap device (compartively). The cheapest HD-DVD player in the market right now is a Toshiba HD-A2 ($356 - Amazon). The cheapest Bluray player in the market right now is a Samsung BDP-1000 ($499 - Amazon). Apple TV is trying to not be these things. It has a minimal set of goals. I would assume future iterations of the AppleTV will do more stuff. Baby Steps.

In fact, Apple has an opportunity to allow people a way to bypass the whole HD-DVD vs. BluRay fiasco by selling downloadable HD video. You download to your computer and stream or sync to your Apple TV. They're not doing it yet, but this would be a logical next step if they can get fast enough servers or figure out an alternative distribution method
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post #17 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 10:34 AM
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You mean like OnDemand that the cable companies have? Except you don't have to wait for the show to download? The cable companies are ramping up their OnDemand offerings and will soon have movies available the same day as DVD's.
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post #18 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdubyu View Post

A good number of people credit the adoption of USB and Airport (802.11b) to the iMac and iBook respectively.

Also Firewire, and before that scsi. Apple is good at jettisoning legacy technology as soon as possible (for the most part -- "near DVD quality" downloads speak otherwise).

But with the UDI vs. HDMI connectors, is there a quick cheap conversion like there is with DVI->HDMI? Or will we be stuck with another $100 albatross like the ADC adapters?
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post #19 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 11:48 AM
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HD is still much for the Internet, at least in the states. Even Microsoft's HD downloads for the Xbox are relatively low bit rates compared to cable. Even those with 15Mbps connection have a hard time utilizing their potential because few other hosts can match their speed and considering how rare 15Mbps connections are in people's homes, I would hate to see how saturated the Internet would get if they were more common and everyone started to download HD movies.

The real problem is that early adopters are the ones who would buy HD downloads and they are the same one who would potentially buy HD DVD or Blu-ray, both of which offer better pictures, sound and additional features.

The movie download business for the most part is behind almost 10 years compared to packaged media. Sure there is a market for downloadable movies, but even as popular as digital downloads are for music, it is still far from surpassing the sales of CDs.

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post #20 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by bdraw View Post

Even those with 15Mbps connection have a hard time utilizing their potential because few other hosts can match their speed and considering how rare 15Mbps connections are in people's homes, I would hate to see how saturated the Internet would get if they were more common and everyone started to download HD movies.

I think that the upcoming availability of HD downloads will do much to change the internet infrastructure as we know it. There is still a huge availability of dark fiber that can be lit up, and a lot of work to be done in the "last mile" phase of high bandwidth rollout. But as Ben mentions, how you efficiently deliver all that content from the origination point still has problems. But there is a lot of research and development going on in this arena, and availability of HD content and demand should push out today's limitations. Various takes on bit torrent technology, pre-seeding, proxy, internal network caching, etc. all offer solutions. If people want downloadable HD content, they'll pay for it, and the content providers will find a way to make it viable and profitable. We'll look back 10 years from now at those 8-15 Mbps pipes and the content delivered like we look 10 years back today at those screaming new 56k modems that doubled the speed of downloaded porn pics .
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post #21 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 01:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan1 View Post

So I wonder, if the rumor is true, what kind of chip would Apple use for the purpose. On the other hand, 1x encoding is not all that demanding, so for time-shifting purposes, you wouldn't need anything really powerful. But I am really doubtful, in view of the strict limitations apparently placed on Apple TV, that Apple would push time-shifting of Live TV.

The Ambarella A2 would be the odds on favorite right now as it supports realtime 720p encoding and is about $30 a chip in lot. Apple could easily get a lower price per chip as they would be ordering millions.

As for HDMI Apple joined the Unified Display Interface (UDI) group which hopes to replace HDMI with a compatible but improved interconnect.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unified_Display_Interface
http://www.udiwg.org/home

However I heard recently that at CES 2007 both Intel and Samung bailed on UDI and went to DisplayPort VESA's competitor

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DisplayPort www.vesa.com

So it looks like Apple will have to choose HDMI or DisplayPort as VESA has a commanding lead of companies supporting DP
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post #22 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BSteely View Post

HDCP is pretty much a given as soon as Apple starts shipping Blu-ray players. So I would have to say, yes, eventually we will see HDMI or DisplayPort or HDCP/DVI connectors on Macs.

Apple won't be shipping any HD drives in the computer for a while. I expect support for Blu-ray and HD DVD to be Build-To-Order options for 2007 and by 2008 they will take a look at the options.

Recorders for both formats are too expensive and while Blu-ray is great for backups Apple has this nifty little thing called Time Machine that is much more flexible for backing up.
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post #23 of 23 Old 04-01-2007, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post

Recorders for both formats are too expensive and while Blu-ray is great for backups Apple has this nifty little thing called Time Machine that is much more flexible for backing up.

And external hard drives for doing so are very cheap, compared to a BD drive and $25 per disk.
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