Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 26th Feb 2010 13:12 UTC, submitted by poundsmack
Multimedia, AV The debate about HTML5 video is for the most part pretty straightforward: we all want HTML5 video, and we all recognise it's a better approach than Flash for online video. However, there's one thing we just can't seem to agree on: the codec. A number of benchmarks have been conducted recently, and they highlight the complexity of video encoding: they go either way.
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RE[2]: Blind test?
by pgeorgi on Sat 27th Feb 2010 15:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Blind test?"
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The ARM SoCs I work with have a codec accelerator subsystem. It's basically a coprocessor that you initialize with some opaque piece of (non-ARM) code, which does h.263, h.264 and VC1 decoding and encoding (to various degrees).

The total size of this driver (that you upload) is about 80KB, so I guess they'd have the space to add another codec in there (given that address spaces are usually in powers-of-two).

Once there's a demand, this coprocessor will gain an updated firmware (that is uploaded on boot), and supports whatever codec the demand is for.

I just looked for a number of ARM codec support options, and all I found are advertized with "Upgradeable with new codecs" and similar statements.

With that in mind, "hardware acceleration" is a non-issue for new contenders in video.
Other than with MP3 players which actually used special MP3 decoding chips, video decoding is too complex to be done "in silicon" - I'd guess it's always software.

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