Move over MPEG4... H.264?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
46,769
8,954
EE Times has an interesting article about an emerging codec called H.264, that threatens to stall interest in the current MPEG-4 standard.

Nevertheless, H.264's potential impact on MPEG-4 is causing some discomfort in the industry. The codec was intended as an extension of the MPEG-4 standard (hence the "MPEG-4 Part 10" moniker embraced by some). But with the newest video codec emerging so quickly, the budding MPEG-4 Advanced Simple Profile video spec might wind up dead on arrival or at least instantly irrelevant in certain parts of the world.

As simply an emerging codec, it should be relatively easy to adopt into future versions of Quicktime, and in fact, Apple's vice president of their interactive-media group, Tim Schaaff, endorses H.264 by stating that it is "no doubt the best codec there is, offering a great coding efficiency" according to this article. It appears that this emerging codec will also provide stiff competition for Microsoft's Windows Media.
 

vniow

macrumors G4
Jul 18, 2002
10,266
0
I accidentally my whole location.
Great, another codec to deal with. :rolleyes:
Why can't they all just agree on one thing?
MPEG-4, RealMedia, WMV9, blah, blah, blah.
You'd thing that consumers wouldn't have enough confusion when they go out to say, buy a DVD burner or something. More codecs = more confusion.

With that said.....
If and only if it is a superior format to MP4 and can be integrated into new products quickly and can kick WMV9's ass (the guys at the AVS Forum have gone gaga over it's HD and 5.1 encoding capabilities) then I say go for it Apple.:)
 

Buggy

macrumors regular
Oct 14, 2001
133
0
Canada
I agree that all of these new codecs are frustrating, but if it can be incorporated into quicktime, then i twill not be too difficult to deal with (for producers or consumers)

I don't think that this trend changing of video codecs is going to go away very soon. Bandwidth is a big issue.
 

j763

macrumors 6502a
Nov 25, 2001
660
0
Champaign, IL, USA
yep, yet another codec...

except, this time, this one sounds good...

apple -- integrate it into quicktime.
real -- support mpeg4 and h.264 and kill off your old propriatery codecs.
m$ -- f:eek:k off our platform... take wmp, exploder and office with you.
 

steve53e

macrumors newbie
Sep 1, 2002
23
0
Bring it on!

Any technology which wins out over Microsoft's proprietary b.s. is a plus for consumers.
 

mangis

macrumors member
Jan 23, 2002
76
0
I hope the new codec makes mp4 obselete.

Remember, the only reason it has taken mp4 so long to reach us is because of greedy lawyers holding up the technology. I truly hope that those patents become meaningless because something better has come along, leaving those patent holders holding nothing of value. That's hwhat they get for dragging their winged tipped feet.

Up the new codec!
 

surfnsell

macrumors newbie
Sep 30, 2002
7
0
Alberta
Broadcast quality video via highspeed interbet

Regardless of who or what: The ability to watch broadcast quality video via the internet has my vote as long as all the big programs (Quicktime, Real, and yes WMP) can use each others files easily I'm happy.

Too watch TV on my computer without a local cable payment is worth $49.00 Canadian a month, thats 370.00 US per year. Putting that towards a big Monitor capable of HDTV (an eventuality for broadband) is way cooler for me.

I just hope that M$ isn't in control.
 

P-Worm

macrumors 68020
Jul 16, 2002
2,045
0
Salt Lake City, UT
Wow, I didn't thinkthat so many people would think that this is a good thing. It is only a good thing if it is supported by most if not all fo the media players. I know that Windows Media Player sucks, but it is unfortuantely the standard for video codecs.

However, It would be cool to see Quicktime have access to the best of the best codecs from the start with out all of this plug-in crap. That would shows those PC weenies what is up. :eek:

P-Worm
 

Ibjr

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2002
513
21
Eastern seaboard
Originally posted by P-Worm
I know that Windows Media Player sucks,
Does QT also suck? No, and MS was caught stealing Apple's QT code!

Second, WM9 audio/video codec are incredible. I hate Microsoft, I refuse to use their DRMed codec, but if you can’t see their superiority to current apple’s current offerings you are one really blinded zealot.

IbJR
 

Ibjr

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2002
513
21
Eastern seaboard
Originally posted by edvniow
WMV9... (the guys at the AVS Forum have gone gaga over it's HD and 5.1 encoding capabilities)
Doom9's regular are spending a lot of time on it, it takes awhile to encode but the quality (they say) is great. Hydrogen Audio’s OSS zealots are being ripped new ones whenever this topic comes up. WM9 is really good.

But playing WMV9 HD without dedicated hardware requires a 2.2ghz p4... I know my p4 2.0 ghz 512L2 has problems playing HD video. (From A MS rep was on the AVS forms)

ibjr
 

cryptochrome

macrumors regular
Jan 4, 2002
123
0
According to the article, the codec is significantly more complex than MPEG-2. Quoth the article "HHI's current H.264 decoder software does not run in real-time, but the institute says it plans to complete a real-time version running on a Pentium 4 platform before year's end. " and "Chip gate counts will likely increase at least threefold compared with MPEG-2 silicon, observers said. ZetaCast's McCann estimated that the complex H.264 algorithm requires a chip to carry out at least two or three times more decoding instructions. "

In other words, it's greater coding efficiency at a higher computational price. Even if every DVD player on the market had the capability to upgrade it's codecs through software, the hardware would undoubtedly be insufficient. To say nothing of older computers and cheap, less powerful consumer devices in general. So frankly the cost of "upgrading" would be prohibitive, unless you wrote a codec that could scale quality to suit less-than-ideal processors.
 

Ibjr

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2002
513
21
Eastern seaboard
Re: Broadcast quality video via highspeed interbet

Originally posted by surfnsell
The ability to watch broadcast quality video via the internet
This will not happen w/ a mac. I'm sorry, unless Apples starts sticking DRM into the OS and getting their CPU's w/ DRM, the content providers will not ignore your platform.
 

vniow

macrumors G4
Jul 18, 2002
10,266
0
I accidentally my whole location.
Originally posted by Ibjr


Doom9's regular are spending a lot of time on it, it takes awhile to encode but the quality (they say) is great. Hydrogen Audio’s OSS zealots are being ripped new ones whenever this topic comes up. WM9 is really good.

But playing WMV9 HD without dedicated hardware requires a 2.2ghz p4... I know my p4 2.0 ghz 512L2 has problems playing HD video. (From A MS rep was on the AVS forms)

ibjr
It's supposed to be a killer format (quality-wise)
There a couple samples in the HTPC section of it (like you said, requires 2.2 ghz PIV) so I haven't actually seen it with my lowly 666Mhz PIII.:(

The only problems I have with it are:
1. Microsoft
2. DRM
3. Requires WMP9*
4. Microsoft
5. Hollywood's on their side

*I refuse to install WMP9 on my PC for these reasons:
1. You can't uninstall it wihout risking a computer f*ck up
2. It allows M$ to spy on your PC
3. DRM. Need I say more?

I tried the beta out a few weeks ago and it was sorta cool, then I read an article about it on ZDnet and looked at the Talkback. Turns out there was a LOT of 'fine print' I missed.
I then formatted my drive (other reasons) and downloaded Winamp (why? Cuz it really whips the llama's ass.:D)
I tried to completely remove WMP from my system after that, but it stayed. Turns out it's 'integrated into the OS' like IE so if you remove it, there's no telling what could happen.

I hope this new format kicks some serious monopoly ass.
This means war.
 

Ibjr

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2002
513
21
Eastern seaboard
Originally posted by edvniow



The only problems I have with it are:
1. Microsoft
2. DRM
3. Requires WMP9*
4. Microsoft
5. Hollywood's on their side

*I refuse to install WMP9 on my PC for these reasons:
1. You can't uninstall it wihout risking a computer f*ck up
2. It allows M$ to spy on your PC
3. DRM. Need I say more?

1. Yes, but that does not mean the it "sucks"
2. DRM is needed for the content providers.
3. No the pro codec does, from doom9 regulars’ testing its pretty backwards compatible.
4. Yes, but they will push for hardware, imagine where you can play this.
5. Hollywood’s efforts to protect its intellectual property is reasonable. Given MS’s history, their DRM will be fixed by exes.

2.1: Why would you want to install it? (see 2.2)
2.2: Windows Media player 7 also spied on you, if you are in league with the devil its best to get their best software.
2.3: the DRM is necessary to bring the content people want. Yes I dislike this watermark idea, but people want this content.

IBjr
 

vniow

macrumors G4
Jul 18, 2002
10,266
0
I accidentally my whole location.
Originally posted by Ibjr

1. Yes, but that does not mean the it "sucks"
I never said it sux, I actually said that the player was pretty cool, I just don't trust it. Now that I have Winamp, I haven't touched WMP yet


2. DRM is needed for the content providers.

Is it? Only if they're afraid that it's going to be ilegally copied


3. No the pro codec does, from doom9 regulars’ testing its pretty backwards compatible.

Okay you got me there.


4. Yes, but they will push for hardware, imagine where you can play this.

M$ is trying that now with their Media Center PCs and in the future with Pallidinium.
So far, the MC PCs have not ben well recieved at all.



5. Hollywood’s efforts to protect its intellectual property is reasonable. Given MS’s history, their DRM will be fixed by exes.

Yes Hollywood does have a right to protect their property, but not at the expense of the consumer.


2.1: Why would you want to install it? (see 2.2)

I thought, what the hell, can't hurt if I try it.


2.2: Windows Media player 7 also spied on you, if you are in league with the devil its best to get their best software.

You're right about WMP7, but I didn't know that until I read up on it a bit. That's why I haven't touched WMP or installed any 'security patches' for it.
If I'm in league with the devil, why should I sell more of my soul when I can install a 3rd Party media player? Quicktime and Winamp seem to do fine for me.




2.3: the DRM is necessary to bring the content people want. Yes I dislike this watermark idea, but people want this content

I still don't see why DRM is absolutely neccecary to deliver content, the only reason why DRM is implemented in M$ products is cuz they're in bed with Hollywood. You're never going to see an MP3 encoder in WMP for that very reason. I know that it can be turned off, but I don't like the idea of it being there in the first place.
 

Ibjr

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2002
513
21
Eastern seaboard
I really can't reply point by point, but heh

Hollywood wants DRM. Look at the washout rate of digital cable subscribers, something like 10%. That is reduced to under 1% if you have video on demand, which Hollywood fears giving cable companies because of lack of DRM, so VOD movies are not nearly as current as they could be. Cable Corp's know this, but Hollywood wants at times 70-30 splits in profits and DRM on their content.
 

Choppaface

macrumors 65816
Jan 22, 2002
1,187
0
SFBA
Originally posted by edvniow
You're never going to see an MP3 encoder in WMP for that very reason. [/COLOR]

I thought you could buy some sort of 'encoder pack' that included an mp3 encoder....?


Hollywood’s efforts to protect its intellectual property is reasonable.
is hacking people all that reasonable?
they should have had DRM years and years back. sticking it in now just because of the growing net is a bad excuse; if they're so incopetant that they only get ideological when they lose money, their cause is tainted and unreasonable.
 

vniow

macrumors G4
Jul 18, 2002
10,266
0
I accidentally my whole location.
Originally posted by Choppaface



I thought you could buy some sort of 'encoder pack' that included an mp3 encoder....?

I think you can by either M$ or a third party.
My complaint was that it wasn't there in the first place.

One thing that suprised me about WPM9 is that it doesn't support MPEG-4 files. I would have figured that it did cuz they helped write the code for it, but, no. They had to make a new one that can only be encoded and viewed by their players.:rolleyes:
(although Winamp and RealOne do support the WMV format (at least up to WMP8, I don't know about 9), they can't encode it.



I really can't reply point by point, but heh

Hollywood wants DRM. Look at the washout rate of digital cable subscribers, something like 10%. That is reduced to under 1% if you have video on demand, which Hollywood fears giving cable companies because of lack of DRM, so VOD movies are not nearly as current as they could be. Cable Corp's know this, but Hollywood wants at times 70-30 splits in profits and DRM on their content.

That they do.
The MPAA and the RIAA are so paranoid that they're going to go out of business if people continue to illegally swap files.
Yes legally they do have a right to stop this, but the way they're going about it is all wrong. They are propsing that they have 100% control of their products while the consumer is only given one choice.
I don't know about you, but I wouldn't buy something if I could only view my content on that same product.

I may be typing this on a Windows XP PC but that't the last time I'll ever buy a Microsoft product again. As soon as I get a Mac, IE WMP and anything else made by MS is going in the trash.


And remember kids.......
 

Attachments

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,684
1
LaLaLand, CA
Originally posted by edvniow


It's supposed to be a killer format (quality-wise)
There a couple samples in the HTPC section of it (like you said, requires 2.2 ghz PIV) so I haven't actually seen it with my lowly 666Mhz PIII.:(

The only problems I have with it are:
1. Microsoft
2. DRM
3. Requires WMP9*
4. Microsoft
5. Hollywood's on their side

*I refuse to install WMP9 on my PC for these reasons:
1. You can't uninstall it wihout risking a computer f*ck up
2. It allows M$ to spy on your PC
3. DRM. Need I say more?

I tried the beta out a few weeks ago and it was sorta cool, then I read an article about it on ZDnet and looked at the Talkback. Turns out there was a LOT of 'fine print' I missed.
I then formatted my drive (other reasons) and downloaded Winamp (why? Cuz it really whips the llama's ass.:D)
I tried to completely remove WMP from my system after that, but it stayed. Turns out it's 'integrated into the OS' like IE so if you remove it, there's no telling what could happen.

I hope this new format kicks some serious monopoly ass.
This means war.
You have just listed most, if not all, of the reasons I will not install WMP 9. I still use 6.4 and WinAmp 2.81 (the best MP3 player in the world IMO). WMP 7.1 screwed up several of my former WinTel systems, especially after trying to unistall it.

I'm not a Zealot or anything, but when QT 6 came out, I downloaded it right away, and haven't looked back since.

Stick that in you pipe and smoke it.

(insert iTunes 2 hard drive formatting comment here)
 

vniow

macrumors G4
Jul 18, 2002
10,266
0
I accidentally my whole location.
Originally posted by solvs
WMP 7.1 screwed up several of my former WinTel systems, especially after trying to unistall it.

I think starting with WMP7, they integrated it into the OS (illegally) like they did with IE (v4? also illegally) so if you try to remove it, it will cripple your machine.
I tried to uninstall WMP8 from my XP box after the format, and it didn't go away. I only use IE for one site, but I could live without it. The only reason that both are still on my computer is that I can't get rid of them.
Oh how I long for the days when I can get rid of something by just trashing it.:)
 

beatle888

macrumors 68000
Feb 3, 2002
1,690
0
Originally posted by edvniow


It's supposed to be a killer format (quality-wise)
There a couple samples in the HTPC section of it (like you said, requires 2.2 ghz PIV) so I haven't actually seen it with my lowly 666Mhz PIII.:(
.

you've gotta be kidding me. requires 2.2ghz? SEEE this is exactly why
im worried about my 667 tibook, in a year or maybe two im not going
to be able to run simple applications.
 

vniow

macrumors G4
Jul 18, 2002
10,266
0
I accidentally my whole location.
Originally posted by beatle888



you've gotta be kidding me. requires 2.2ghz? SEEE this is exactly why
im worried about my 667 tibook, in a year or maybe two im not going
to be able to run simple applications.


It's because there's no dedicated hardware involved.
There's a few cards for the PC that can record HDTV at it's native res. (1920x1080i), but all of them have a special chip on them that takes about 90% of the load off the CPU.
When you're encoding HDTV with M$'s new WMV9 codec, there is no dedicated hardware so 90% of the load is on the CPU.:)