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-   -   HEVC (x265) Is Here.....Any Media Players Capable ? (http://www.avsforum.com/forum/39-networking-media-servers-content-streaming/1515895-hevc-x265-here-any-media-players-capable.html)

isolar801 02-04-2014 01:07 AM

Ive been a happy owner of a Micca EP-950 for a couple of years now.....plays anything I've thrown at it perfectly..
Except for HEVC that is......this codec is amazing and will soon be the standard.
I have Season 3 of Sherlock encoded with x265 and it is flawless, at about 10 gigs per episode.
But my trusty Micca wont play them, and from what I've seen...no current media machine will.
Anyone hear of any development on this front ?

techflaws 02-04-2014 02:34 AM

Soon, really? I don't see the codec on Blurays to change anytime soon (nor manufacturers follow the lead of the scene).

elario 02-04-2014 02:36 AM

It's fair to say that HEVC capable chipsets are coming from all the major vendors. As for when you can get it in a media player....probably not for a while. It will be driven by demand and right now there is no demand.

x265 is still in the relatively early stages of development. The same can be said for most other HEVC encoders. They don't achieve the 50% compression gains that they eventually will. Last time I checked x265 doesnt achieve any gains over x264, the output looks worse currently (very blurry) despite taking much longer that even the slowest x264 preset. This is normal and expected, it was the same for x264 in the early days.

Another thing to note is that HEVC has multiple profiles and levels. It's quite possible that early HEVC chipsets will only support Main8 but perhaps Main 10 or even higher will become the 'popular' level for consumer use. So if you buy the first ones, it may be similar to buying a H.264 Baseline-only capable media player some years ago. It's too early to say.

Alx330 02-04-2014 05:31 AM

Yup for now x265 is inferior to x264, go over to Doom9 forums and in x265 thread you can see comparisons. x264 has had years of optimizations done to it and it will be a long while before x265 catches up.

The only area you will see H.264/HEVC sooner rather than later is in internet streaming media services as the lower bitrates help in that area, boxes like Roku or AppleTV. There are some usable software H.265 decoders for Android provided you have good enough hardware that it's running on, uses CPU/GPU with decoding done via OpenCL but I'm not sure if it's really usable by consumers more a licensing tech demo.

Eventually Arm & Intel chips will adopt H.265 and the various Android boxes out there will be able to hardware decode.

isolar801 02-04-2014 05:57 AM

I have been following the Doom forum and have seen some individuals having problems with encodes...blurriness, etc.
I personally did an encode of a Sherlock episode using the Divx 10 program and it came out perfect...took a little longer than x264.
This is what I got..and it looks perfect..

Unique ID : 177257336785655403706439041306791884135 (0x855A857275F4C33197A164FF7BB5B567)
Complete name : D:\Hidef Video\Sherlock HEVC\303-His Last Vow.mkv
Format : Matroska
Format version : Version 4 / Version 2
File size : 8.37 GiB
Duration : 1h 29mn
Overall bit rate mode : Variable
Overall bit rate : 13.4 Mbps
Encoded date : UTC 2014-01-22 14:21:40
Writing application : mkvmerge v6.2.0 ('Promised Land Rovi v1.0.4') built on Aug 29 2013 13:59:38
Writing library : libebml v1.3.0 + libmatroska v1.4.0

Video
ID : 1
Format : HEVC
Format/Info : High Efficiency Video Coding
Codec ID : V_MPEGH/ISO/HEVC
Duration : 1h 29mn
Width : 1 920 pixels
Height : 1 072 pixels
Display aspect ratio : 16:9
Frame rate mode : Constant
Frame rate : 25.000 fps
Language : English
Default : Yes
Forced : No

Audio
ID : 2
Format : DTS
Format/Info : Digital Theater Systems
Format profile : MA / Core
Mode : 16
Format settings, Endianness : Big
Codec ID : A_DTS
Duration : 1h 29mn
Bit rate mode : Variable
Bit rate : Unknown / 1 509 Kbps
Channel(s) : 6 channels
Channel positions : Front: L C R, Side: L R, LFE
Sampling rate : 48.0 KHz
Bit depth : 24 bits
Compression mode : Lossless / Lossy
Language : English
Default : Yes
Forced : No

Alx330 02-04-2014 06:05 AM

I don't really see the the point for high quality personal encodes, space isn't really an issue these days which is the main thing H.265 brings to the table, H.265 absolutely makes sense for internet media services & low bitrate videos but for home use not so much.

Also Divx 10 isn't x265, Divx are Mainconcept the number 2 a in terms of quality behind x264, I'm guessing Divx 10 is mainconcepts H.265 encoder.

isolar801 02-04-2014 06:16 AM

I agree about the space issues....what intrigues me is the bitrate...usually a file this size will have around a 9000 or so average....this one came out at 13.5, and bitrate is where its at !
I just see a lot of promise in this new codec..

Wendell R. Breland 02-04-2014 08:16 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by isolar801 View Post

Anyone hear of any development on this front ?

The folks at NanoTech claims the Nuvola NP-1 can use it once it is made available. May want to look at the Nuvola thread here.

I believe the Sony player that was announced at 2014 CES will support HEVC. Very few details available.

Wendell R. Breland 02-04-2014 08:22 AM

Sony press:
Quote:
Together with Sony's new 4K X850B series models, all 2014 4K TVs come with Sony's 4K 60p HEVC hardware decoder built-in to enable playing new forms of 4K content. Sony is also developing its next-generation 4K Media Player with expanded codec support (AVC, HEVC and XAVC-S) to support streaming of 4K content, as well as storage and playback of footage shot with Sony 4K Handycam® camcorders.

halfelite 02-04-2014 09:41 AM

I dont expect any major media player company to support it till next year. BDA will decided the format for 4k h265 by end of the year they have said so once there is viable retail content out there is when more media players will start to jump on board.

elario 02-04-2014 09:59 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by halfelite View Post

I dont expect any major media player company to support it till next year. BDA will decided the format for 4k h265 by end of the year they have said so once there is viable retail content out there is when more media players will start to jump on board.

If a HEVC disc format was released, it would certainly help to bring HEVC capable chipsets down in price. But apart from that it would have very little impact on HEVC adoption. Discs are becoming irrelevant nowadays.

HEVC playback in media players will be driven by two things:
-Streaming providers (Netflix etc) will begin offering HEVC streams. It is inevitable for future versions of WDTV, Roku, AppleTV etc to have HEVC capable chipsets. Not necessarily 4K capable initially.
-Piracy

The second one is a taboo topic but it is the truth unfortunately. A significant number of people buy media players to play files they have ripped or torrented. Hardware manufacturers know this
http://torrentfreak.com/images/lg-warez.png

halfelite 02-04-2014 11:20 AM

Correct but Pirated Items will not really kick off till there is disc based to rip.

The streaming devices of course will get HVEC support before anything else. But the stand alone media players will hold off till there is content out there.

I would say we will see streaming devices support it before the year end but most of them will be closed systems like netflix. But stand alone players for local content will be past the year end

pittsoccer33 02-04-2014 12:05 PM

H264 showed up on HD discs when, 2006? Maybe 2005? When would you say it finally became the "standard" for diy encoding?

I continued using xvid much longer than most people simply due to CPU required to code for H264. What kind of FPS could someone expect with a basic i3 on HEVC?

evilengineer 02-04-2014 04:54 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by halfelite View Post

Correct but Pirated Items will not really kick off till there is disc based to rip.

The streaming devices of course will get HVEC support before anything else. But the stand alone media players will hold off till there is content out there.

I would say we will see streaming devices support it before the year end but most of them will be closed systems like netflix. But stand alone players for local content will be past the year end

I'm sure the Blu-ray Association will spend longer hammering out a new DRM system for 4k Blu-ray than they will on the codec specs.

And then you'll have wait for Slysoft to crack it! rolleyes.gif

x265 02-15-2014 10:02 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by elario View Post

It's fair to say that HEVC capable chipsets are coming from all the major vendors. As for when you can get it in a media player....probably not for a while. It will be driven by demand and right now there is no demand.

x265 is still in the relatively early stages of development. The same can be said for most other HEVC encoders. They don't achieve the 50% compression gains that they eventually will. Last time I checked x265 doesnt achieve any gains over x264, the output looks worse currently (very blurry) despite taking much longer that even the slowest x264 preset. This is normal and expected, it was the same for x264 in the early days.

Another thing to note is that HEVC has multiple profiles and levels. It's quite possible that early HEVC chipsets will only support Main8 but perhaps Main 10 or even higher will become the 'popular' level for consumer use. So if you buy the first ones, it may be similar to buying a H.264 Baseline-only capable media player some years ago. It's too early to say.

x265 development is going well.  x265 is often able to exceed the HM reference encoder in quality, with performance that is orders of magnitude faster.  The x265 HEVC encoder is easily able to encode with quality / compression efficiency that far exceeds the best H.264 encoder available, x264.  We've just passed the 0.7 milestone.  Although we have more algorithmic improvement and performance optimization on the development roadmap ahead, x265 is quite usable today, and it includes many advanced features.

 

It would be reasonable to expect mobile phones and other hardware to support HEVC playback by the end of 2014.  I agree that 10 bit/sample playback will be something you'll want to look for in home theater (UHD) media players.


tubetwister 02-15-2014 10:38 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by pittsoccer33 View Post

H264 showed up on HD discs when, 2006? Maybe 2005? When would you say it finally became the "standard" for diy encoding?

I continued using xvid much longer than most people simply due to CPU required to code for H264. What kind of FPS could someone expect with a basic i3 on HEVC?

SB/IB/Haswell etc i3 + CPU and most AMD products and lots of other stuff including Atom ,Bay trail and ARM should not any trouble at HDTV and UHDTV frame rates

Quote:
Encode/decode support, meanwhile, is already going to be possible on a vast range of products. Modern CPUs are more than capable of decoding H.265 in software, OpenCL support is coming in future iterations, and hardware GPU support, while not formally guaranteed by AMD, Intel, or Nvidia for next-generation products, is a mid-term certainty. All three companies have previously leapt to include advanced video pipelines in their products — as the H.265 presentation notes, video is something that’s become ubiquitous across every type of device.
http://www.extremetech.com/computing/162027-h-265-benchmarked-does-the-next-generation-video-codec-live-up-to-expectations/2

Quote:
HEVC Decoder / H.265 Decoder
target devices:
 Smart-phones & Tablets
 Desktop & Laptops
 TV & Set-up boxes

• HEVC Decoder / H.265 Decoder target platforms:
 ARM Cortex-A processors.
 Intel Atom and Core-i3/i5/i7 processors
 Android, iOS, Windows 8, Windows 7, Mac OS, Linux
http://www.acethought.com/AceThought_HEVC_Solutions.pdf

elario 02-16-2014 05:43 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by x265 View Post

x265 development is going well.  x265 is often able to exceed the HM reference encoder in quality, with performance that is orders of magnitude faster.  The x265 HEVC encoder is easily able to encode with quality / compression efficiency that far exceeds the best H.264 encoder available, x264.  We've just passed the 0.7 milestone.  Although we have more algorithmic improvement and performance optimization on the development roadmap ahead, x265 is quite usable today, and it includes many advanced features.

It would be reasonable to expect mobile phones and other hardware to support HEVC playback by the end of 2014.  I agree that 10 bit/sample playback will be something you'll want to look for in home theater (UHD) media players.

Yes, I know it is going well and my comment was not a criticiscm. More a realistic evaluation of where it is at currently.

In my opinion it does not yet outperform x264. The output is much too soft, especially in regards to skin textures etc. I don't think one could say that it outperforms x264 if all the fine details are smudged even at identical bitrates.

That's fine, it is expected, and I can see that it gets better every milestone. As I said, it is not a criticism, more an explanation of why it's not necessary right now for HEVC in a media player. By the time that x265 or other encoders are delivering compelling efficiency, I am sure that there will be much more to report in regards to media players and set-top boxes.

x265 02-18-2014 09:15 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by elario View Post


Yes, I know it is going well and my comment was not a criticism. More a realistic evaluation of where it is at currently.

In my opinion it does not yet outperform x264. The output is much too soft, especially in regards to skin textures etc. I don't think one could say that it outperforms x264 if all the fine details are smudged even at identical bit rates.

That's fine, it is expected, and I can see that it gets better every milestone. As I said, it is not a criticism, more an explanation of why it's not necessary right now for HEVC in a media player. By the time that x265 or other encoders are delivering compelling efficiency, I am sure that there will be much more to report in regards to media players and set-top boxes.

Elario,

Take a look at these test encodes, and let us know which encoder you prefer ...  http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?p=1669118#post1669118


elario 02-18-2014 11:24 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by x265 View Post

Elario,
Take a look at these test encodes, and let us know which encoder you prefer ...  http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?p=1669118#post1669118

Take a look at this and you will see what im talking about:

http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/63247
x264 looks pretty ragged at such a low bitrate but at least it is making an attempt to preserve fine detail. x265, yes the edges are less ragged but it is blurred all over, the texture on the concrete barriers, the ridges on the tyres, the detail in the brickwork, all gone.

If I can't preserve fine detail, then I don't see how it can be said to outperform x264. I can just blur the hell out of my source with a denoise filter and x264 will perform identically.

I will do a fresh encode with x265 on preset slow and a lower RF to see what difference it makes.

elario 02-18-2014 12:10 PM

So x265 on preset slow with RF 18, the resultant encode is 3765kbps. If x265 is to be considered 2x as efficient as x264 then 4Mbps should be a pretty reasonable bitrate for 1080p content, considering we often use ~8Mbps for 1080p with H.264.

http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/63267

But it looks terrible, look at the texture on his coat.

x265 02-18-2014 12:26 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by elario View Post


Take a look at this and you will see what im talking about:

http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/63247
x264 looks pretty ragged at such a low bitrate but at least it is making an attempt to preserve fine detail. x265, yes the edges are less ragged but it is blurred all over, the texture on the concrete barriers, the ridges on the tyres, the detail in the brickwork, all gone.

If I can't preserve fine detail, then I don't see how it can be said to outperform x264. I can just blur the hell out of my source with a denoise filter and x264 will perform identically.

I will do a fresh encode with x265 on preset slow and a lower RF to see what difference it makes.

Elario,

I understand what you're saying.  Your point is well taken that x264 is a much more mature codec (> 10 years) than x265 (~ 1 year).  We are constantly working to improve x265's encoding algorithms, and a fair bit of work remains.  Still, I don't think it's at all accurate to say that under most circumstances x265 produces an inferior result.  When you encode with identical bit rates, the feedback that I am hearing from industry professionals and most commenters is that most people prefer the HEVC encode, most of the time.

 

I would note a couple of things...

  • Your example test was performed using a build of x265 from several weeks ago.  We've improved adaptive quantization and a number of other things in that time.  
  • As I'm sure you know, to evaluate video quality, you can't simply compare individual frames side by side.  I understand why you did this, and it is certainly valid to use individual frames to point out specifically what you are concerned with, but you miss all the temporal issues when you examine static frames.  Also, one encoder might have produced an I frame where another produced a B frame, and the frame sizes are vastly different.  
  • The average user doesn't go looking for specific defects - they judge the overall experience.  To grade fairly, you can't go looking for one thing but miss another important issue.  Of course we don't want to lose details, or soften/blur everything.  But we also don't want static objects to appear to have motion on their surfaces (we don't want the walls to be crawling, or the motion of objects to be inaccurate).  Did you see all the temporal noise in the H.264 encode?  
  • If you're doing your own tests, you might want to experiment with higher AQ strength to see if that gives you what you are looking for.

elario 02-18-2014 12:54 PM

Yep, I know it's an old build but the newer builds have some kind of edge ghosting artifacts, which can be seen very clearly in the Tears of Steel encodes you linked above. I was doing x265 a favour by not using the latest build.

As I said in the initial post, im not criticising x265. Im just giving my opinion of where it is at currently, for the benefit of some people such as the OP who may see x265 encodes flaoting around and think "oh no! x265 is here, I better upgrade my media box".

Being in a relatively early phase of development is not something to be ashamed of, or something that needs to be defended. It is what it is.


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