Amongst the many functions and features HDMI cables offer, there is something known as HDCP. This is commonly found in most HDMI cables, but not everyone understands what it is or why it is important, so let’s take a look.

HDCP stands for High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection, and it is a form of digital copy protection. The system is designed to stop digital audio and video content from being copied as it travels through HDMI cables and other connections.

How does HDCP work?

There are three parts to an HDCP protected system – the HDCP transmitter (e.g. the DVD player), the digital interface (e.g. the HDMI cable) and the HDCP receiver (e.g. the TV). The content is encrypted at the transmitter and this signal is passed through the HDMI cable to the receiver. Unless both transmitter and receiver comply with HDCP standard, the video will not be displayed properly.

What this means for you is that any content that has been HDCP encrypted will not be able to be played on devices that either do not support HDCP or that have been modified so as to copy HDCP content.