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post #1 of 62 Old 02-17-2016, 09:17 PM - Thread Starter
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HTPC & Comcast Premium Channels H.264 - No Video

I recently switched back from DirecTV and went back to Xfinity/Comcast. I also re-setup my HTPC with my Ceton InfiniTV 4 Tuner cable card adapter. Tuning in the channels works fine for most channels such as ESPN HD, Local HD Channel etc.


The issue I have lies with tuning into the premium channels such as Starz, HBO, Showtime etc. I hear the audio however, I have no picture. At first I thought this had to do with an EDID Handshake Issue with my Denon 3312ci Receiver going to my Panasonic PT-AE8000U Projector but now I am having 2nd thoughts...


I recently read that Comcast recently switched to using H.264 codec on their premium channels and now this has me guessing if I really do have an EDID issue or if the root cause in the lack of H.264 support within Media Center?


I was hoping to see more posts from users on the forums with the same or related issue but I don't see that many related posts out there...


Anyone out there have this issue and know any workarounds? I would love to be able to utilize the Ceton Tuner in order to have the option for 4 additional extenders in the home!


Thanks!
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post #2 of 62 Old 02-17-2016, 10:24 PM - Thread Starter
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***thread update***

***UPDATE***


http://www.thegreenbutton.tv/forums/...9635&start=140


Looks like the root cause could be with Microsoft Playready not fully supporting MPEG4/H.264 on the premium channels that are running that encryption....Ceton is saying the issue is not their problem, and the fix needs to be handled by Microsoft. Hopefully an update will be released as Playready as far as I know is still an actively supported product.







Keep Fingers crossed!






Quote:
Originally Posted by User7007 View Post
I recently switched back from DirecTV and went back to Xfinity/Comcast. I also re-setup my HTPC with my Ceton InfiniTV 4 Tuner cable card adapter. Tuning in the channels works fine for most channels such as ESPN HD, Local HD Channel etc.


The issue I have lies with tuning into the premium channels such as Starz, HBO, Showtime etc. I hear the audio however, I have no picture. At first I thought this had to do with an EDID Handshake Issue with my Denon 3312ci Receiver going to my Panasonic PT-AE8000U Projector but now I am having 2nd thoughts...


I recently read that Comcast recently switched to using H.264 codec on their premium channels and now this has me guessing if I really do have an EDID issue or if the root cause in the lack of H.264 support within Media Center?


I was hoping to see more posts from users on the forums with the same or related issue but I don't see that many related posts out there...


Anyone out there have this issue and know any workarounds? I would love to be able to utilize the Ceton Tuner in order to have the option for 4 additional extenders in the home!


Thanks!
User7007
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post #3 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:16 AM
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There is no known problem with H.264 and playready. There are known problems with early Intel graphics drivers that just can't handle the protection with H.264. But Intel already updated their driver to have the support a year or two ago. H.264 is not new to cable systems.

Last edited by Foxbat121; 02-18-2016 at 04:20 AM.
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post #4 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply. Just some clarification...


My CPU and Mobo are all AMD based...So when you say "known problems with early Intel graphics drivers that just can't handle the protection with H.264" are you meaning if one were using the onboard Video that is built in if one were to have an Intel based graphics card on the Mobo?


My setup uses an Nvidia 660Ti based video card and I still get the black screen...And according to Ceton they are also saying it's not them, but an issue that lies with Media Center not being able to properly interpret the H.264 Codec within MS Playready within MCE as seen here:


http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/w...e8cdfc7?auth=1


Do you happen to own a MCE PC, with using either a Ceton based card, or HDHomerun setup? Just curious...


Thanks!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
There is no known problem with H.264 and playready. There are known problems with early Intel graphics drivers that just can't handle the protection with H.264. But Intel already updated their driver to have the support a year or two ago. H.264 is not new to cable systems.
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post #5 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 11:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
There is no known problem with H.264 and playready. There are known problems with early Intel graphics drivers that just can't handle the protection with H.264. But Intel already updated their driver to have the support a year or two ago. H.264 is not new to cable systems.
There is a problem with copy-once H.264 video on Extenders only (both the Xbox 360 and Echo). I've been following that TGB thread, and now that Comcast is switching many markets over to H.264, channels like HBO and other copy-once channels no longer play video on extenders. It's just a black screen with audio. Watching these copy-once H.264 channels directly on the HTPC still works (as long as it's not the early i3 like you said). Non copy-once H.264 channels still work on the Xbox 360 and Echo. This issue seems to happen with both the infiniTV and Prime, and Ceton says it's Microsoft's fault, which it probably is.
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post #6 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by User7007 View Post
Thanks for the reply. Just some clarification...


My CPU and Mobo are all AMD based...So when you say "known problems with early Intel graphics drivers that just can't handle the protection with H.264" are you meaning if one were using the onboard Video that is built in if one were to have an Intel based graphics card on the Mobo?


My setup uses an Nvidia 660Ti based video card and I still get the black screen...And according to Ceton they are also saying it's not them, but an issue that lies with Media Center not being able to properly interpret the H.264 Codec within MS Playready within MCE as seen here:


http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/w...e8cdfc7?auth=1


Do you happen to own a MCE PC, with using either a Ceton based card, or HDHomerun setup? Just curious...


Thanks!

Yes, I have HDHomerun Prime setup. Like I said, I have heard and encountered H.264 issue a few years back with Intel iGPUs. That was a driver problem. No sure about AMD. NVidia cards work fine. Media center itself have no problem with copy-once H.264 AFAIK.
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post #7 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rc05 View Post
There is a problem with copy-once H.264 video on Extenders only (both the Xbox 360 and Echo). I've been following that TGB thread, and now that Comcast is switching many markets over to H.264, channels like HBO and other copy-once channels no longer play video on extenders. It's just a black screen with audio. Watching these copy-once H.264 channels directly on the HTPC still works (as long as it's not the early i3 like you said). Non copy-once H.264 channels still work on the Xbox 360 and Echo. This issue seems to happen with both the infiniTV and Prime, and Ceton says it's Microsoft's fault, which it probably is.
I have tested H.264 copy-once premium channels a few years back on Cox. It works on my Xbox 360s and maybe Echo. But not very reliably. Occasionally, when you tune to such channel, you do get a black screen. All you have to do is channel up and down and it will recover.
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post #8 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
I have tested H.264 copy-once premium channels a few years back on Cox. It works on my Xbox 360s and maybe Echo. But not very reliably. Occasionally, when you tune to such channel, you do get a black screen. All you have to do is channel up and down and it will recover.
Interesting, are you still able to watch H.264 copy-once channels on the Xbox 360 on Cox today? It seems like people in Comcast markets all over can't. Flipping the channel up and down doesn't seem to work for them either (on copy-once channels at least, it seems like they're still running into the black screen issue with non copy-once H.264 channels, which flipping does still fix).
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post #9 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 03:49 PM
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I don't subscribe to those channels. I only test them when they were on free preview weekend. Didn't pay much attention recently. Comcast re-compresses pretty much all its channels to save bandwidth in order to avoid using SDV (and tuning adapter). I won't be surprised that Comcast did something un-orthodox about these video streams. These premium channels have been switched over to H.264 for couple years already on various cable and FIOS providers.
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post #10 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
These premium channels have been switched over to H.264 for couple years already on various cable and FIOS providers.
FiOS doesn't flag anything on the H.264 channels copy once. I'm glad too since I have three Echo extenders in use.
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post #11 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken.F View Post
FiOS doesn't flag anything on the H.264 channels copy once. I'm glad too since I have three Echo extenders in use.
FIOS does flag copy-once on premium channels like HBO from what I read.
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post #12 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
FIOS does flag copy-once on premium channels like HBO from what I read.
FiOS flags HBO, Cinemax and the FOX owned cable networks copy once. None of those channels are H.264.
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post #13 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:17 PM
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Interesting. Cox here used h.264 on those channels for a while now.
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post #14 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
I don't subscribe to those channels. I only test them when they were on free preview weekend. Didn't pay much attention recently. Comcast re-compresses pretty much all its channels to save bandwidth in order to avoid using SDV (and tuning adapter). I won't be surprised that Comcast did something un-orthodox about these video streams. These premium channels have been switched over to H.264 for couple years already on various cable and FIOS providers.
If you tested them on a free preview weekend, then they weren't Copy-Once. They were Copy-Freely (or even QAM/completely unprotected) for the duration of the free preview. Hence why you had no problem. No one is having problems with h.264 Copy-Freely on extenders, they are having issues with h.264 Copy-Once content on extenders.

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post #15 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:28 PM
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Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post
If you tested them on a free preview weekend, then they weren't Copy-Once. They were Copy-Freely (or even QAM/completely unprotected) for the duration of the free preview. Hence why you had no problem. No one is having problems with h.264 Copy-Freely on extenders, they are having issues with h.264 Copy-Once content on extenders.
Nope. They are copy-once for sure. Free preview simply means everyone can watch it. It doesn't mean there is no copy-protection. I used to have a few recorded movies from these channels with H.264 just for testing purposes. But since I moved on to a new PC, these recordings are no longer playable.

Now I think of it, I used to use these H.264 recording to test Echo during beta. Echo had a horrible frame rate issue with these recordings. The final firmware is slightly better but Xbox 360 is much smoother.

Last edited by Foxbat121; 02-18-2016 at 04:33 PM.
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post #16 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:37 PM
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Nope. They are copy-once for sure. Free preview simply means everyone can watch it. It doesn't mean there is no copy-protection.
Yes it does. I was able to watch HBO/Showtime/etc on my current provider with only a QAM tuner during free preview weekends for years before I ever got/had a Cable Card tuner. At my old location, which had Comcast - I couldn't (cause I still only had a QAM tuner) - but my friend who had a CableCard tuner in his machine could record things for me and I moved them over to my own PC and could play them back at will - they were only Copy-Freely there. The same for another friend on Time-Warner in CA. He records stuff with a CableCard tuner on free preview weekends, but only watches them on his work laptop (which is not the machine that recorded them) when he's on the road.
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post #17 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:42 PM
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That simply means those providers do a lousy job. After all, Verizon FIOS won't use copy-once at all on anything until very recent years. That's all. My recordings from Cox are all copy-protected.
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post #18 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
That simply means those providers do a lousy job. After all, Verizon FIOS won't use copy-once at all on anything until very recent years. That's all. My recordings from Cox are all copy-protected.
And out of all the multiple people on TGB who have confirmed that the Echo and 360 can not play Copy-Once h.264 content - you're magically the only one who can, the only one who's doing it correct, right?
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post #19 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:50 PM
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Seriously, what are you implying? I said I don't have Comcast. So I can't say for sure Comcast works or not. You can search the old threads here about Echo beta testing. I remember I posted my results there. And H.264 with copy-once problem on old Intel driver problem are well documented here a few years back.
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post #20 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 04:57 PM
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That you don't know what you are talking about.

You state emphatically there's no problem with h.264 and Playready. The people at TGB, people from Comcast, and Ceton - would beg to differ, as seen here in this thread: http://www.thegreenbutton.tv/forums/...php?f=6&t=9635
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post #21 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post
That you don't know what you are talking about.
Sigh! Read the old thread here https://www.avsforum.com/forum/26-hom...-screen-2.html
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post #22 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 05:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
I did - Show me where there is someone stating h.264 Copy-Once content is working on their extender in that thread. The only guy who said his Xbox works fine, at the very beginning, never said it was h.264 Copy-Once, only h.264. We know h.264 Copy-Freely works fine. That was never disputed. The rest of that thread, is talking about it on the HTPC itself w/Intel GPUs (and a Linksys is mentioned, but we know Copy-Freely nor Copy-Once h.264 will play back on a Linksys extender).

Now, like I linked you to already, read this thread: http://www.thegreenbutton.tv/forums/...php?f=6&t=9635

and go tell everyone what they're doing wrong seeing as you insist h.264 Copy-Once works on extenders. Explain to Ceton they should stop sending this out too while you're at it:


Quote:
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
This has been cropping up more and more and appears to be an issue with Media Center Playready. You'll want / need to bring this to the attention of Microsoft the more people the better.

One option is the Microsoft Community Forums. If you would like to try asking for assistance there, please go to https://support.microsoft.com/oas/defau ... prid=14019 and then follow the directions below.

Select Your product type, example: "Windows Premium"
Select " Other"
Select "Don't use a Product Key - charges may apply"
Select "Community Answers" - No Charge
Select "Window 7"
Select "TV and Movies on Windows"
Select "Ask a Question" You will be asked to "Sign In"

Thanks,
Ceton Support
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


----------------------------------
There is nothing your we can do with firmware or software as we are completely removed from this aspect of the process. We are not involved or have access to playready, as the entire DRM platform of Windows, it's is one of Microsoft's most guarded codebase on the planet. Unfortunately, this will never be an InfiniTV issue, we are not in the video pipeline, we don't encode,decode,display,process,or alter the mpeg file in anyway. We are a network device responsible for communicating with the cableCARD and tuning frequencies. The InfiniTV does not know or care what data is on those infrequence either. We wish this was an issue we could fix with a firmware update but its not. Microsoft will have to update Media Center to add support, as Microsoft has listed under Media Center support formats that while it does support MPEG4, it does not support MPEG4 between Media Center and it's Extenders. We think there many be a Playready DRM issue that prevents them from doing it.

-- Ceton Support
----------------------------------
Or why Comcast is telling people:

Quote:
Comcast is in compliance with the HDCP spec and newer HDCP SDK's have outpaced the HDCP code base of the extenders. The extenders will need to be recoded, with newer HDCP development kits, to comply with HDCP for this mpeg-4 content. Comcast feels there is nothing that can be done, or should be done, from their end.

Please - if you insist there is no problem whatsoever with Playready and h.264 like you do - tell them all how to resolve their issues instead of keeping it all to yourself.

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post #23 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 05:48 PM
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I use extenders exclusively. In that thread I stated that I found a Cox 3D channel is using H.264 and copy once for testing. I use WMC recording information + HDHR Prime web page tuner status to positively identify copy-once flag. I use 411+info on PC, not extenders, to identify H.264 encoding. And I tested all H.264 copy-once program I can have my hands on back then. They work fine on my extenders but not Intel HD4000 graphics until later driver update. This is all confirmed 4 years ago.

Unfortunately, Cox shuts down the 3D channel a few years back and I have no access to any H.264 channels right now (that I know of). That's my own experience.

Now let's see what you have experienced instead of accusing me not knowing what I'm talking about. I didn't claim I know what's is going on with Comcast. But if it works for me four years ago with Cox, I can say there is no problem with PlayReady and H.264 programs that Cox provided. What happens with Comcast doesn't necessary mean there is a problem with WMC/PlayReady with all providers.

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post #24 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
Now let's see what you have experienced instead of accusing me not knowing what I'm talking about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
Nope. They are copy-once for sure. Free preview simply means everyone can watch it. It doesn't mean there is no copy-protection.
Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post
Yes it does. I was able to watch HBO/Showtime/etc on my current provider with only a QAM tuner during free preview weekends for years before I ever got/had a Cable Card tuner. At my old location, which had Comcast - I couldn't (cause I still only had a QAM tuner) - but my friend who had a CableCard tuner in his machine could record things for me and I moved them over to my own PC and could play them back at will - they were only Copy-Freely there. The same for another friend on Time-Warner in CA. He records stuff with a CableCard tuner on free preview weekends, but only watches them on his work laptop (which is not the machine that recorded them) when he's on the road.
That above exchange, and reading the thread at TGB that I've linked you to - prior to reading what you have said here - was when I knew you don't know what you're talking about. Again, if you know it works - state what those people are doing wrong then. Explain to Ceton why they're wrong in what they sent out to a user in that thread. Explain how Comcast is wrong in what they sent to a user in that thread.

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post #25 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 05:58 PM
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As I already said, the recording I used to have is copy-protected H.264 movie from HBO channel. I verified it. Just because you received copy freely copy from other providers doesn't mean anything for what Cox provided. In other words, you have nothing to prove that my copy is not copy-protected. As for Ceton, if you read my link you will see they often don't have a clue either. Again, I don't/can't vouch for what's happening with Comcast. I know it worked for me on Cox. That's all I would say. Unless you have Cox and proved otherwise, you have no clue what you are saying.
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post #26 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 06:02 PM
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Then why do you state things emphatically, as across the board statements like:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
There is no known problem with H.264 and playready. There are known problems with early Intel graphics drivers that just can't handle the protection with H.264. But Intel already updated their driver to have the support a year or two ago. H.264 is not new to cable systems.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
Free preview simply means everyone can watch it. It doesn't mean there is no copy-protection. .
When both of those clearly aren't the case? I don't see 'for me at least' or 'on Cox at least' in either of those statements.

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post #27 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post
Then why do you state things emphatically, as across the board statements like:
I know it worked for me. So, it sounds like a Comcast problem rather than PlayReady problem.



Quote:
When both of those clearly aren't the case?
I already proved to you that Cox doesn't provide copy-freely programming on previews. So, you are the one have little or no clue.
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post #28 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 06:09 PM
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As I said:

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Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post
I don't see 'for me at least' or 'on Cox at least' in either of those statements.
I only see you stating (or copping to) that after the fact - after your broad, sweeping, emphatic statements were disproven.
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post #29 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 06:13 PM
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So, now you are nitpicking? I'm no lawyer and don't feel the need to write a perfect post. Give it a rest already. You contributed nothing to this thread other than accuse me of lying from what I gather.
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post #30 of 62 Old 02-18-2016, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post
So, now you are nitpicking? I'm no lawyer and don't feel the need to write a perfect post. Give it a rest already. You contributed nothing to this thread other than accuse me of lying from what I gather.
You came here and stated emphatically there was no problem whatsoever with Playready and h.264 after @User7007 pointed out to you they heard there was after seeing TGB link. I proved you were incorrect by that same post at TGB. You said emphatically that free preview weekends are marked copy-once, they weren't ever without encryption. I proved you wrong through my own experiences and still got the files to prove it. You were giving out blatantly false information trying to pass it off as factual. You got corrected. Deal with it and learn from it instead of trying to still assume you were never wrong in the first place.

Last edited by staknhalo; 02-18-2016 at 06:23 PM.
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