Choosing a codec


The State of Video Codecs 2016

015 was a tumultuous year for codecs. HEVC seemed like a sure thing in January, looked to be in trouble in July, but was happily resuscitated in December, albeit with some missing productive months from its useful life. Open source codecs began the year with the entropy normal only in the codec world, as entities with clearly aligned goals evolved in completely different directions. Then, in the rarest of occurrences, the companies reversed course and converged toward a single standard, which almost certainly helped shove HEVC back on its intended path. Along the way, there were some interesting new technologies making the usual bold (and unproven) claims of pristine quality at seemingly impossible data rates (PERSEUS, Tveon). In case you missed it all, here is your codec year in review.

Current Status of HEVC Royalties

This post will quickly summarize the current status of HEVC royalties. There are two existing patent pools. The first was assembled by MPEG LA and calls for royalties of $0.20/unit on encoders and decoders, after a 100,000 de minimus exception, wi...

HEVC Advance Royalties: Onerous or Not?

There has been lots of discussion about how onerous the content royalties proposed by HEVC Advance are for streaming distributors. In this article, I analyze the impact of those royalties on HEVC adoption and usage using two models, the M-Go model, f...

HEVC Advance: What Do the Royalties Mean for Video Publishers?

HEVC Advance shook up the codec world when they announced proposed royalty policies in July, 2015, that included much higher hardware royalties then MPEG LA is seeking, without a cap, as well as royalties on content. In this article on streaming me...

VP9 vs. HEVC Quality Comparison is up on StreamingMedia.com

My article, The Great UHD Codec Debate: Google's VP9 vs. HEVC/H.265, is up on Streaming Media. Here's the intro that describes what I tried to do. As of today, the great UHD codec debate involves two main participants: Google’s VP9 and HEVC/H.265. ...

The State of Video Codecs 2015

My article, The State of Video Codecs 2015, from the Streaming Media Sourcebook, is up on StreamingMedia.com. Here are the first few paragraphs to let you know what I covered.  Video compression is the critical enabler of all video streaming, and to...

Microsoft Dooms HEVC to Obscurity (by including it in Windows 10)

I'm not one to go negative, but when I saw that Microsoft was including HEVC in Windows 10, scheduled for release in 2015, I just had to laugh. Over two years after Windows 8 shipped, I still use it only when I absolutely have to. The most ardent rec...

More on MPEG LA HEVC Royalty Policy

My recent column, MPEG LA's HEVC Licensing Terms Are Flawed, Will Prevent Adoption, has generated lots of comments in the LinkedIn HEVC/H.265 Group. One comment, from Anthony Mai, sparked a lengthy response, which I wanted to share. By way of backgro...

MPEG LA's HEVC Licensing Terms Are Flawed, Will Prevent Adoption

The more I think about MPEG LA's proposed HEVC royalty policy, the more I think it's flawed, primarily because there's no incentive for Adobe to pay $25 million to add HEVC playback to Flash. Why is this important? Because Flash is still the only del...

Simple Survey on HEVC Data Rates

One of the benefits of HEVC is supposed to be that it delivers the same quality of H.264 at 50% of the data rate. However, since there’s little data rate standardization, it’s tough to tell what that means. After all, it means one thing if you pr...