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Generally speaking, why are MPEG2 and DTS supported less often by media players?

418 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Kelson
I've been playing with my Logitech Revue for the first time in a long while and among the biggest knocks against it is lack of MPEG2 and DTS support. Lots of the new smart tvs and other devices (such as the Roku) don't support these formats either, or if they do, they do in limited containers.

I understand there is a cost involved. The MPEG2 license for the Raspberry Pi is like $4. So if you need to meet a tight $99 price point I can see the problem. But MPEG2, even though it is becoming more of a legacy codec, is all around us - DVD, HDTV, digital cable, some blurays, etc. DTS has become the more popular codec on bluray discs but often support for it is skipped.

If it is just a few dollars worth of fee, why not enable the option for the user to purchase the decoder? Id definitely spend the money for my Revue and would probably buy a Roku if I could get that support. It would transfer the cost from everyone to the people who will use it only.

I'm just hoping somebody with more knowledge of the industry might know if something other than a few dollars in licensing costs are preventing more widespread support.
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Yes, it is mostly licence costs. A few dollars times hundreds of thousands of units is a lot of money.

And most devices which don't support them are not capable of supporting them - they don't have the necessary hardware by design. We are not talking about general purpose computers which have lots of spare processing power and can be updated to run arbitrary code. Hardware devices are inherently limited to what they were designed to do.

In cases where decoding could be added after purchase, it is not made easy by the licence holders.
It's just a licensing issue and in this market with price is the end all, even a device a $1 is at a disadvantage. It's unfortunate that vendors don't at least take the route that the Raspberry Pi did and at least provide an option to purchase the license for mpeg and/or dts.
I guess when I look at the title of your thread and read "media players" I think of real media players like WD, Mede8er, PCH, Dune etc. and not media player wannabes like disk players, Internet streaming boxes and "smart" TV's.

When you consider real media players, they pretty much all support MPEG-2 and DTS along with a host of most other formats in use.

So I would come back at your premise and say that if you want support for a wide range of formats, buy a real media player and not a multi-function wannabe.
FYI, WD released a stripped down version of the Live, the PLAY, which has no mpeg2 or DTS support.
Yes, and the Live Play is exactly what I would characterize as being a media player wannabe. It's primary purpose is as an Internet streamer like the cheaper Roku or the Netgear NTV and they throw in some media player functionality for marketing. I would hope that an informed buyer would never buy the Live Play as a serious media player.
The media industry is moving away from physical media, DVD's are pretty old hat and the most popular media players are internet streaming media ones. As others have said little reason to include DVD codecs that aren't used because Internet media is overwhelmingly H.264 video with AAC/MP3 or AC3 5.1 for surround audio.

So called "real media players" are a declining niche these days, even WD knows it which is why they did the WD Play model. The media player market is currently in the process of realigning towards online media, the people here in this part of avsforum are one of the few remaining outposts of the 1:1 DVD/Blu-ray playback media player scene, isn't much of a market left for those now.

So if your doing a media player that appeals to mainstream there is no need to burden yourself with legacy codec support as far as the Internet is concerned.
^^^ I keep hearing that. Been hearing it for years actually. Still waiting for it to happen, though.

Time will tell, one way or the other.
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