Intel DRM chips

At CES this week Intel will debut the second generation of its Core processors for personal computers, that include content-protection features aimed at reassuring content owners on piracy.

The chip architecture, code-named Sandy Bridge, has been developed in partnership with studios and retailers including Best Buy’s CinemaNow, Sonic Solutions and Warner Bros. Digital Distribution — to let PCs with the chips securely play back HD content.

The 2nd Generation Core processors’ content-security features, dubbed Intel Insider, give content owners and video services the ability to release more movies in HD via Internet digital downloads the same day they become available on DVD and Blu-ray Disc, according to Intel.

In addition, Intel expects to show Wireless Display 2.0, which wirelessly transmits high-bandwidth content from PCs to big-screen HDTVs. Enhancements in WiDi 2.0 include support for 1080p HD as well as protected content either streaming from the Internet or played locally from a Blu-ray or DVD player.

Intel also will highlight a Sandy Bridge feature called Quick Sync Video, which provides built-in hardware acceleration for video compression. The company estimates that the chips can convert a four-minute HD video to play on an iPod in 16 seconds.