Saturday, October 30, 2010

LifeSize HD Video Conferencing System

Two main products, LifeSize Team 220 and LifeSize Bridge, support 1080p30 video conferencing.

The LifeSize bridge is a high-end conferencing product that provides immersive HD conferencing (including symmetric video at 720p60 and 1080p30 and multiple codec support), sustained frame rates, up to 4 Mbps throughput, muti-party calls that don’t get downgraded, and a system that supports both on-demand and scheduled calls. Of course, quality like this doesn’t come cheaply; the LifeSize Bridge 2200 costs around $4,000 per port (the total cost for the 16-port product is $64,999).

The LifeSize Team 220 costs more than $10,000 with dual high definition display and camera support, digital input and output connections, an embedded 4-way, Full HD multipoint control unit (MCU) and dual microphones.

Sony Enhances HD Field Recorder

Adds SxS media recording to PDW-HRI model

By George Winslow -- Broadcasting & Cable, 10/29/2010 4:08:11 PM

Sony has enhanced the recording capabilities of its PDW-HR1 high definition field recorder with the addition of two SxS media slots, a move that gives users the flexibility of recording to solid-state media in the field or archiving the content to Sony's Professional Disc media.

Sony is billing the upgraded model, which has been renamed PDW-HRI/MK1, as the industry's first hybrid field recorder. Shipments of the field recorder are expected to begin in November.

"Sony offers the unique combination of both Professional Disc and SxS solid state in our camera line, which is the main reason why XDCAM technology continues to be the system of choice for professional video production," said Kaori Uno, XDCAM senior product marketing manager for Sony Electronics, in a statement. "The addition of hybrid media capabilities combined with fast file-based operations and superb reliability and capacity makes this recorder even more ideal for applications where speed is critical. It's compact enough to fit in a car or helicopter and also offers 4:2:2 HD image quality for news programming or motion picture production, where the right look is critical."

The PDW-HRI/MK1 recorder now features voice-over recording capabilities. A microphone can be connected directly to the HR1. After a narration is recorded in the field, a rough cut can then be edited in the field and either saved on Professional Disc media or sent by microwave via the recorder's DVB-ASI output.

"The optional MPEG TS adaptor board can offer customers significant savings in operational costs because they don't need to have an expensive HD encoder in their OB van," Uno added.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Elecard StreamEye Studio Pro v.1.0

The new version of Elecard StreamEye Studio Pro including Elecard StreamEye Pro provides a visual representation of the encoded video features and a stream structure analysis of MPEG-1/2 or AVC/H.264 video streams, MPEG-1 System Streams, MPEG-2 Program Streams and MPEG-2 Transport Streams. Elecard StreamEye Pro includes many new modules that are synchronized to show every possible stream parameter and provide additional diagnostic information on video frames.


Click to Enlarge

Download Demo Version
(v.1.0.100115, ZIP, 8.45 MB),
updated Jan 15, 2010

Friday, October 8, 2010

H.265 TMuC

TMuC is the initial test model of JCT-VC, but it is not formally adopted as a test model of the draft standard, as no thorough testing has been performed for such a possible combination of tools. The coding tools in TMuC will be further tested to confirm their effectiveness, before adopted in a formal test model.

TMuC provides more flexibility than H.264/AVC. The basic coding unit, called coding tree block (CTB), which has a similar role to the macroblocks in H.264/AVC, can have variable sizes (a power of 2). The sizes of the largest and smallest CTBs are specified in the sequence parameter set (SPS). A frame is divided into non-overlapped largest CTBs (LCTB), e.g., 128×128, and then each LCTB can be further divided in a recursive tree representation.

Each CTB has its own prediction type (intra/inter) and prediction partition. The partition can be symmetric, just as in H.264/AVC, or asymmetric, e.g., 64×64 block can be partitioned into 64×16/64×48 or 16×64/48×64. Furthermore, geometrical shapes for partition are also allowed.

The increased flexibility means the valid sizes of the basic coding unit and the prediction block can be much larger than those in H.264/AVC, and consequently, related modules need modification accordingly. For example, transforms with larger sizes 16×16, 32×32, and 64×64 are developed; 33 intra prediction directions for large blocks are also developed.

Supporting variable sizes of CTB enables the codec to be readily optimized for a wider spectrum of content, applications and devices. Support of CTB sizes greater than the conventional 16×16 macroblocks benefits the efficiency of high or even ultra-high definition video coding, because homogeneous regions can be represented by a smaller number of symbols. On the other hand, support of small CTB sizes is also remained. It is useful for low resolution video services, which are still commonly used in the market.

Some design elements are borrowed from KTA and H.264/AVC, such as adaptive interpolation filter (AIF), adaptive loop filter (ALF), mode-dependent directional transform (MDDT), and quantization.

The design elements in TMuC are summarized as below. More details of TMuC can be found in JCTVC-A033.

Unit definition

  • Coding Tree Block (CTB)
  • Prediction unit (PU)
  • Transform unit (TU)

Motion representation

  • Motion vector prediction for rectangular partitions
  • Motion vector prediction for geometric block partitions
  • Interleaved MVD coding
  • Adaptive interpolation
    • Single pass Switched Interpolation Filters with Offsets (single pass SIFO)
    • Choice of filter set and offsets
  • Adaptive motion vector resolution

Intra-frame prediction

  • Adaptive reference sample smoothing
  • Planar prediction
  • Angular prediction
  • Arbitrary Directional Intra (ADI)
  • Combined Intra Prediction (CIP)

Spatial transforms

  • Large transform (16×16, 32×32, 64×64)
  • Rotational transform (ROT)
  • Mode Dependent Directional Transforms (MDDT) for intra-prediction residuals

Quantization – as in AVC

Deblocking filter

  • Luma filtering
  • Chroma filtering
  • Intra planar mode filtering

Adaptive loop filtering

Entropy Coding

  • Low complexity entropy coding with VLC codes
  • High coding efficiency entropy coding with V2V codes

It was agreed that not all technical features should be considered equal priority. Therefore, a relative prioritization of the design features described in the TMuC was established. The initial assignment of priorities to technical features was shown as below.

Priority 1: CTB, PU, TU, scaling for MV prediction, interleaved MVD coding, adaptive interpolation, adaptive motion vector resolution, planar prediction, angular prediction, combined intra prediction (CIP), large transforms (16×16, 32×32, 64×64), MDDT for intra-prediction residuals, quantization, luma & chroma deblocking filter, planar mode deblocking filter, adaptive loop filtering, low-complexity entropy coding with VLCs, and high coding efficiency entropy coding with V2V codes.

Priority 2: asymmetric partitions, non-rectangular partitions, motion vector prediction for non-rectangular partitions, adaptive reference sample smoothing for intra prediction, ADI, rotational transform, switched KLT for inter, and augmenting prediction, and residual signals as input to the filter.

Priority 3: block-based illumination compensation, edge detection based intra prediction.

The software download link is

Friday, October 1, 2010

Xilinx HD Camera Core

The pipeline as follows but it was discontinued in ISE12.x

Bayer Color Filter Array Interpolation


Color correction:


WebP vs JPEG

WebP is a method of lossy image compression and is an open source format like WebM. Due to its prediction coding and better entropy coding, it may save around 40% of bits, comparing to JPEG.

A WebP file consists of VP8 image data, i.e., a VP8 intra frame, and a container based on RIFF. JPEG uses JIF container.

WebP uses predictive coding to encode an image, the same methodology used by the VP8 video codec to compress keyframes in videos. Predictive coding uses the values in neighboring blocks of pixels to predict the values in a block, and then encodes only the difference (residual) between the actual values and the prediction. The residuals typically contain many zero values, which can be compressed much more effectively. The residuals are then transformed, quantized and entropy-coded as usual. WebP also uses variable block sizes, 4x4 and 16x16. However, 4x4 transform tends to blur and lose more image detail than JPEG 8x8 transform. JPEG does not support intra prediction, but JPEG has more features, such as YUV 444 and YUV 422, while WebP only supports YUV 420 which is not good for text encoding. JPEG also supports lossless coding.

Google provided a comparative study of JPEG, WebP, and JPEG 2000:

An image encoded with WebP.

This image has been encoded with WebP. Because browsers can't show WebP natively today, this WebP image actually is displayed here as a PNG graphic that captures the WebP version without changes. In its WebP incarnation, the image is 36,154 bytes.

(Credit: Google)
An image encoded with JPEG. Its file size is 46768 bytes.

The same image encoded with JPEG. Its file size is 46,768 bytes.

(Credit: Google)

Google released a conversion tool to convert images to WebP format.


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