Which Macs, both desktop and portable, support HDCP on their native displays? The web is awash with information on connected displays, and which support it, don't support it, and stories of people who weren't warned that theirs don't support it, paid $15 for a movie, and are now screwed.

But for internal displays, I can find nothing. Apple's own Technical Specifications do not list HDCP support. Everymac.com has nothing. I was once able to play an HD iTunes movie on my Late 2008 MacBook Pro, but had to take a leap of faith that it supported HDCP. A StackOverflow answer indicates even a motivated developer couldn't make an app that determines whether a given Mac has HDCP support for its built-in display.

It seems the only way - not exaggerating here - is to buy some protected content from iTunes and hope it works.

1 Answer 1


Basically every modern mac with an embedded screen supports HDCP.

iTunes will play all copy protected HD content on all integrated displays (MacBooks and iMacs) but not on non HDCP displays.

This lets us deduct that the integrated displays are HDCP compliant or at least that Mac OS ignores the DHCP flag when playing protected HD content on the integrated screen.

Apparently you might get this strange error, which leads me to think that Mac OS simply bypasses the HDCP check when using integrated displays.

  • 3
    Sure, but the question is, what's the cutoff for "modern"?
    – duozmo
    Mar 27, 2012 at 2:29
  • Any intel mac ;)
    – Coyote
    Mar 27, 2012 at 2:31
  • 2
    Sounds reasonable. Do you have a source?
    – duozmo
    Mar 28, 2012 at 0:08
  • 1
    Hi! It seems that there is no problem with playing protected content on any Macbook as long as you use the internal display. If the signal doesn't leave the computer no need for HDCP. On the other hand Apple started including HDCP or DPCP on external connectors starting with the 2008 Macbook line.
    – Coyote
    Apr 2, 2012 at 23:34
  • You are a genius. When I bought my MacBook I also bought the 27" Thunderbolt Display. Over the years every time I tried to watch a VUDU HDX movie I got the dreaded "Oops! This movie won't play on your display due to copyright restrictions. It can be played only if both your output and display support HDCP. [#3342]". When I read your answer I did a silly simple little thing and IT WORKED!. I changed the output to Display 2 (MacBook Pro) and now all my VUDU movies play in HDX.
    – Jack Webb
    Jan 20, 2018 at 13:19

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