Print 29 comment(s) - last by Weaselsmasher.. on May 10 at 11:43 PM

Somehow people knew this was coming

Earlier this year DailyTech reported that ATI had been making false claims about its products being HDCP-ready when in fact they were not. To recap, for a video card to be fully able to output a HDCP-DVI signal, it must contain the necessary circuitry within the GPU and it must also come with a unique key. Without a unique key, a HDCP-compliant GPU cannot output an encrypted HDCP-DVI signal. The technology is used so that high-definition content can be played back on a display without the risk of being captured (or ripped) in the middle.

Two men in northern California have filed a class action lawsuit against ATI for making false claims about HDCP. The men claim that despite clear definitions in the HDCP specifications, ATI proceeded to sell video cards with claims such as "HDCP-ready" or "HDCP-compliant" when the products were not able to output a HDCP-DVI signal. For Microsoft's upcoming Windows Vista, HDCP output is supported for high-definition play back. The claim also said that many users purchased video cards believing that they were buying Windows Vista-ready cards.

Stanley Batsalkin and Kenny Vargas filed the claim at San Jose District Court on behalf of themselves and hundreds of other ATI customers. Interestingly, some of ATI's other board partners also used similar claims on box art as well as website information. ATI has since changed certain areas of its website. ATI responded to DailyTech earlier this year after we published our findings, saying that a full HDCP-capable video card requires a key and this feature was up to the board manufacturer to include and not ATI. Unfortunately, ATI, unlike NVIDIA, manufactures its own boards.

Despite the debacle, Sapphire previously announced that it would have a fully capable HDCP-HDMI video card ready by Q2'06. We also reported that other manufacturers were developing boards that had true HDCP support.

ATI has not released an official response to the class action.

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Uh.... so what?
By Master Kenobi on 5/9/2006 9:51:52 AM , Rating: 2
I like how they are trying to blur the cards being Vista Ready, versus being HDCP-Ready. The two are different folks. No the cards are not HDCP ready, however they ARE Vista Ready. You can load up vista and enjoy all the features short of HDCP. But really lets think about this not legally, but realistically.... How many people do you really think are going to use HDCP? Yea less than 1%. Its an absolutely tiny tiny market that hooks their PC's into a HighDef TV, AND watches high def movies on it from HDDVD or Blu-Ray. So I think ATI should simply refund the idiots whining about how their cards, and have the suit settled that way.
On a side note, who's to say the actual HDDVD and Blu-Ray player drives won't have the necessary chip installed on it? I mean that would be the ideal way to distribute this sort of thing. Stick it straight on the optical drive and all you would need is a card with the proper connectors and GPU. But that would be too much like right...

RE: Uh.... so what?
By PAPutzback on 5/9/2006 10:34:13 AM , Rating: 1
That is another topic right there. DX10 wil only be available for Vista. Looks like I will want a new video card for Vista that isn't even out yet.

RE: Uh.... so what?
By Master Kenobi on 5/9/2006 11:20:16 AM , Rating: 2
Then for once in your life, be patient if you can't handle it. There are no DX10 cards on the market yet, so buying with Vista in mind, is pointless at best. I just put down on a 1900XTX because its unlikely that I will see DX10 cards until the November-January timeframe, in which case I will have already rotated out my Mobo and CPU to an Asus/Conroe setup, followed shortly by a new Power Supply in October, Video card will simply be upgraded in December during its normal rotation.

RE: Uh.... so what?
By PAPutzback on 5/9/2006 3:52:05 PM , Rating: 2
Well Msiter for once in your life. Not all of us can afford to upgrade our system annually. That is why I know I won't be buying a new system until atleast mid next year when AM2, VISTA and DX10 cards have been out, tested and benchmarked. And with consoles getting so powerful, versatile and dependable I am seriosuly thinking about jumping ship from my 19in monitor to a decent HDTV and a 360 and still come under the cost of a new rig. What's a decent system cost these days that is future proof or atleast for a couple of years. 400 dollar grahpics card, 300 physics card, 100 bucks for good sound, 150 for mobo, 6-700 bucks for cpu. PC's were getting more powerful and cheaper,. Oh well this has gotten off topic, sorry. Griefers just tick me off.

RE: Uh.... so what?
By Wwhat on 5/9/2006 5:23:03 PM , Rating: 2
Well don't expect any dx10 games right on the releasedate of vista, I think 'old' computers and graphics cards will do quite some time.
How long did it take before a few games started to support dualcore? and that only reuquires a patch often.
As for HDCP, who in his right mind would want that crap anyways? let's boycot it to its grave for it's a idiocy that deserves to die and be forgotten, and with any luck will be, it's clear the manufacturers don't like it either.

RE: Uh.... so what?
By Master Kenobi on 5/10/2006 2:56:15 PM , Rating: 2
Eh...... Well short of trying to get the best of the best. I'll try to meet you halfway on this and put forth a little of the logic I build my systems around.
Motherboard- 200 bux.
Power supply- 100-150 bux.
CPU- 300-400 bux.
GFX Card- 400 bux.
RAM 2G- 250 bux.
Physics cards are at this moment worthless, just get a motherboard with a spare PCI-1x slot, and an extra 32bit PCI slot. If you want PhysX later, kewl get it and plug it in, and your set, but for now, theres no benefit.
You don't need to have the top AMD dual core (thats where your 600-700 came from, and because you talked about AM2).
Unless your doing heavy multi-tasking, stick with a single core, if you do want the dual core, don't get the 700 dollar one, get the 400 dollar one. If you want to upgrade it later, do so.

The point I'm pushing here is that the only thing you really need to sink serious cash into is your Motherboard. Make sure it has the potential to handle components coming down the line in the future. You like AMD, thats fine, get an SLI capable Motherboard with 1 or 2 PCI-1x slots, and 1 or 2 PCI slots, make sure it can handle 4-8GB of DDR2 RAM, and have PATA/SATA(2) storage. If you want the best of the best later, thats kewl, but you don't necessarily need it now. Budget yourself to save like 100 dollars a month towards your computer, and when you want a new part, you can get it. This is how I work, although I set aside 150 a month. You can scale that number to suit your budget. Didn't mean to be a prick about it, just that its feasible to upgrade gradually. Rather than all at once, which is more costly, and every month you hang onto the same system piece for piece you fall off the cutting edge further and further, eventually forcing you to buy/build an entire computer from the ground up because none of the new boards/cards/chips are compatible with your older hardware.

Staying on a constant upgrade lets you take advantage of the cross-compatability found when new technologies emerge. Give it another 3 years, motherboards probably won't have PATA ports, only SATA. But for now you get both. It's a transition phase, and the parts are built around that.

Just my $0.02

By KeithTalent on 5/8/2006 6:58:39 PM , Rating: 1
This is the most asinine thing I have ever heard. Pointless lawsuits, gun laws, and GWB are the only things I do not like about the US.

Where is the disgusted smiley when you need it?

RE: Ridiculous
By CKDragon on 5/8/06, Rating: 0
RE: Ridiculous
By KeithTalent on 5/8/2006 10:04:55 PM , Rating: 2
Um, hyperbole FTL?? :-/

RE: Ridiculous
By KeithTalent on 5/8/2006 10:06:56 PM , Rating: 2
BTW, see my comment below as to why I think it is asinine.

RE: Ridiculous
By boredstudent on 5/9/2006 3:30:16 AM , Rating: 2
How is this a pointless law suit? This is a clear case of false advertising. Although I do not believe any plaintiff involved in this lawsuit should recieve anymore than the cost of the falsely-advertised board, I do believe that ATI "board manufacturer" should be penalized in some way for this gross oversight.

Heck yeah they need to be sued
By PAPutzback on 5/9/2006 9:07:20 AM , Rating: 1
I have one MCE with a 9800 and another one being built with an X800. And now I know I wasted my money by sticking with go with an ATI cards based on their claims.

Where is the list for this lawsuit. I want on it. Frivolous and assinine my @$$. Someone must have a lot of change to throw around and not worry about it. I don't want money. I want an exchange of my product.

RE: Heck yeah they need to be sued
By Wwhat on 5/9/2006 5:17:15 PM , Rating: 2
pardon me but nobody ever claimed the 9800 or x800 were hdcp ready or capable AFAIK, try pouring some mcdonalds coffee in your lap instead mr hopeful

By The Battōsai on 5/9/2006 6:02:16 PM , Rating: 2
almost all of nvidia's cards save for the 6600 made by sony i believe are hdcp ready. i am unsure if they adverstise for it or not but if they do and its not available this is no better than ati

By Burning Bridges on 5/10/2006 6:28:32 AM , Rating: 2
pardon me but nobody ever claimed the 9800 or x800 were hdcp ready or capable AFAIK, try pouring some mcdonalds coffee in your lap instead mr hopeful ;D

By shabby on 5/8/2006 6:29:31 PM , Rating: 2
For how many billion are they suing?

RE: ...
By Rock Hydra on 5/8/2006 6:44:55 PM , Rating: 2
This was only a matter of time. I along with numerous others predicted this event

RE: ...
By Weaselsmasher on 5/10/2006 11:43:24 PM , Rating: 2
Not all lawsuits seek cash (compensation). Many lawsuits seek a court order to force the defendant into doing something (or stopping doing something). Once the court order is in place, when the lawsuit is won, if the defendant fails to comply they are in contempt of court. This then is a criminal offense, not a civil one, which involves handcuffs not checkbooks.

That being said, what is likely being sought is a full refund at the defendant's expense for any of the "class members" (as defined by the filing) who want it. No one person is going to get rich from this.

I have not reviewed the filing in this particular case; I just want to clear the misconception that "lawsuit ALWAYS equals 'gimme money'."

By ZombieRitual on 5/8/2006 7:09:54 PM , Rating: 2
How is it asinine? They're being sued for false advertising!

RE: Asinine?
By KeithTalent on 5/8/2006 7:25:06 PM , Rating: 4
Well, I think it is a little gray to be honest. Misleading, yes, false, not so sure.

I just remember reading this thread:

and being disgusted by how things were being handled by the lawyers. The only reason this thing is happening is because the lawyers are seeing dollar signs, as is the case with most of these types of lawsuits.

By ira176 on 5/9/2006 1:06:06 AM , Rating: 1
I wonder if the men that are suing, work for NVIDIA??

RE: ???
By shadowzz on 5/9/2006 1:10:59 AM , Rating: 2
NVIDIA are guilty of doing pretty much the exact thing as ATI. Don't throw stones in a glass house?

RE: ???
By mathew7 on 5/9/2006 2:12:30 AM , Rating: 2
For your information, they sued the ATI "board" manufacturer, not the ATI "chip" manufacturer. Like the article says at the end, ATI manufactures it's own boards while NVIDIA manufactures only the chips.
The chip is HDCP-ready, but it requires another chip from HDCP patent holders (or whatever they are). This chip is the board manufacturers responsability. So nVidia will never be sued for this.

this was predictable
By One43637 on 5/8/2006 7:23:32 PM , Rating: 2
that's what they get for false advertising. i'm surprised it took this long for someone to sue.

RE: this was predictable
By Burning Bridges on 5/10/2006 6:25:34 AM , Rating: 2
personally, I think they should wait untill the know vista doesnt work on it, then they can complain that it's not "Windows Vista ready" :)

Which, given Vista's current outlook would be about this time next year ;)

Commented long ago...
By CZroe on 5/8/2006 8:36:14 PM , Rating: 3
I commented here long ago and got this emailed to me:
"I found your posting on the web and would like to talk with you about the issue with ATI’s assertions about their chips are either HDCP compliant or ready. Please reply or give me a call so that I can make a sound determination of what the issues are.

Thank you for helping me to clarify this matter.

Louis P. Nevitt, JD

Law Clerk for Brian Kabateck

Kabateck Brown Kellner LLP
[address and phone numbers removed]"

I didn't get it for a month due to spam and the fact that I sometimes check my email LESS than monthly. ;) Anyway, he had sent a followup asking me to please respond. I did but never heard anything back.

By rykerabel on 5/10/2006 11:07:20 AM , Rating: 2
Even Hollywood is backing off of HDCP. Microsoft may follow.

Time for the pain
By Rampage on 5/10/2006 6:14:01 PM , Rating: 2
Those who falsely advertise shall fall.

By pornpassplanet on 5/10/06, Rating: -1
"This week I got an iPhone. This weekend I got four chargers so I can keep it charged everywhere I go and a land line so I can actually make phone calls." -- Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg
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