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HDCP 2.2: What’s Here, What’s Coming

Here is what some A/C receiver suppliers offer in the way of HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2 and what they plan:

Anthem: No current products use HDCP 2.2, but :we look forward to providing support for 4K60 in 4:4:4 and BT2020 once the dust settles and UHD Blu-ray appears,” said product manager Nick Platsis.

Denon and Marantz:  No models currently support HDCP 2.2, but the brands will offer a free hardware upgrade to the flagship Denon AVR-X7200W and Marantz AV8802 products in the spring. The upgrade, covering all inputs except for the front-panel HDMI in, will not be color/bandwidth-limited input available on some other-brand products but will be “full-spec 4K60@4:4:4 color with HDCP 2.2,” said product manager Paul Belanger. “New D&M products (yet to be announced) shipping later this year will incorporate HDCP 2.2.”

Harman Kardon: Some current AVRs are HDMI 2.0-certified but without HDCP 2.2. Next-generation product will support both HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2. The first product will be a soundbar, expected in the fall, with other products following. “There are currently no source players available with 4K, HDCP 2.2 content, and this should not happen before the end of 2015 best case,” said Emmanuel Millot, director of home product marketing at Harman.

Krell: The Foundation 4K UHD has four HDCP 2.2 inputs out of 10 total and two HDMI outputs. The processor handles 1080p60 4:4:4 with 12-bit deep color or 4K 60Hz 4:2:0 with 8-bit color for any input. Although HDMI 2.0 specifies a maximum resolution of 4k 60Hz 4:4:4, “ no parts exist yet to handle that,” said Krell president Bill McKiegen. “It’s twice the bandwidth of the current parts.”

Meridian: The company doesn’t offer HDMI 2.2-compliant products, but it separates its HD621 HDMI audio processor from its surround controller to enable the company to make future changes to the HDMI hardware without changing the entire surround controller product. “While there is quite a bit of buzz around the potential benefits of HDMI 2.2, until we see real sources and implementation, we are cautious of committing clients’ money to an evolving technology,” said Ken Forsythe, Meridian America VP.

NAD: The company’s Modular Design Construction allows all major digital circuits to be replaced to add new features and capabilities, and a module with full-bandwidth HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2 copy protection is planned for 2015.

Onkyo and Integra: Multiple components are HDCP 2.2-compliant, each with one HDMI input and one HDMI output.

Outlaw Audio: Sometime later in the year, the company plans a step-up processor with Dolby Atmos, DTS-X, HDMI 2.0, and HDCP 2.2. The number of HDCP 2.2 inputs is still up in the air because of availability of just-announced chips, said president Peter Tribeman.

Pioneer: “The majority of the company’s A/V receivers support full bandwidth (18Ggbps) HDMI 2.0 but not HDCP 2.2. “Moving forward Pioneer understands the need to support both full bandwidth HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2 for compatibility with next-generation 4K sources and upcoming video technologies such as high dynamic range (HDR) and expanded color gamut. Full details on our new line-up will be announced in the next few weeks,” said Chris Walker, director of product planning and marketing.

Rotel: CES 2016 is a target for components with HDCP 2.2, “but our view is that without sources, it’s still a non-issue. The presumption, as well, is that future 2.2 sources will have dual outputs to maintain backward compatibility,” said Doug Henderson, president of B&W Group North America.

Sony: Three ES receivers support HDCP 2.2, two with one HDMI in and out and one with two HDMI ins and outs. Two lower priced AVRs announced at CES also support HDCP 2.2 with 1 in/1 out, as do three new soundbar models available in spring,” said Samantha Albright, consumer and brrand marketing.

Yamaha: Nothing yet,but we are closely viewing HDCP for future product implementation,” said a spokesperson.

John Sciacca is principal of Custom Theater and Audio in Myrtle Beach, S.C.