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Elemental set to support HEVC codec

Thu, 01/31/2013 - 2:46pm
Brian Santo

Elemental Technologies announced support for the HEVC (high-efficiency video coding) H.265 codec.

Elemental, whose video processing systems have a software-based architecture, said it can offer support for the new codec through a software upgrade.

The bandwidth efficiency associated with the adoption of HEVC promises to greatly expand delivery of high-quality, high-resolution video over bandwidth-constrained networks.

International Telecommunications Union (ITU) members gave the new standard first-stage consent late last week.

Elemental cited the Cisco Visual Networking Index forecast that Internet-based video consumption will grow twelvefold each year through 2016, at which point 1.2 million minutes of video content will cross the network every second. As massive amounts of video data distributed over the Internet consumes more network capacity, HEVC/H.265 offers bandwidth efficiency gains between 30 to 50 percent as compared to the MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 standard.

Elemental prides itself on its experience developing video codecs from open specifications to full implementation using general-purpose programmable architectures (GPUs and CPUs). Elemental said that enables it to incorporate new compression approaches with a software upgrade much more quickly than fixed hardware encoding and decoding platforms (typically ASICs and DSPs).

The company also boasts that its approach provides greater processing power, a distinction that could make a difference when using HEVC. The new codec requires up to 10x more processing power for encoding compared to H.264 and relies on software capable of more complex decisions and tradeoffs across a wider array of decision points.

“The computational intensity of HEVC lends itself perfectly to the processing performance advantage available with graphics processing units,” said Keith Wymbs, vice president of marketing at Elemental. “Video processing software from Elemental delivers H.265 content at very low video bit rates to a wide variety of viewing devices, creating ubiquity that will richly reward content providers, broadcasters and consumers.”

The company said H.265 support will be commercially available in Q2 on its Elemental Live and Elemental Server.

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