Ways Video Encoder Performance Improves Video Experience Mark Donnigan Vice President Marketing Beamr
Get the original LinkedIn article here: How Video Encoder Computing Efficiency Can Impact Streaming Service Quality
Mark Donnigan is Vice President of Marketing for Beamr, a high-performance video encoding technology company.
Computer system software is the bedrock of every function and department in the enterprise; accordingly, software video encoding is vital to video streaming service operations. It's possible to enhance a video codec implementation and video encoder for 2 however rarely 3 of the pillars. It does say that to provide the quality of video experience customers expect, video distributors will need to examine business options that have actually been efficiency optimized for high core counts and multi-threaded processors such as those available from AMD and Intel.
With so much turmoil in the distribution model and go-to-market business strategies for streaming entertainment video services, it might be tempting to press down the concern stack selection of new, more effective software video encoders. With software application eating the video encoding function, calculate efficiency is now the oxygen needed to prosper and win versus an increasingly competitive and congested direct-to-consumer (D2C) marketplace.
How Video Encoder Computing Efficiency Can Impact Streaming Service Quality
Till public clouds and ubiquitous computing turned software-based video operations mainstream, the process of video encoding was performed with purpose-built hardware.
And then, software ate the hardware ...
Marc Andreessen, the co-founder of Netscape and a16z the famous equity capital company with investments in Foursquare, Skype, Twitter, box, Lyft, Airbnb, and other equally disruptive companies, penned an article for the Wall Street Journal in 2011 entitled "Why Software application Is Eating The World." A variation of this post can be found on the a16z.com site here.
"6 decades into the computer transformation, four years since the creation of the microprocessor, and 2 decades into the increase of the modern-day Internet, all of the innovation needed to transform markets through software application finally works and can be widely provided at worldwide scale." Marc Andreessen
In following with Marc Andreessen's prophecy, today, software-based video encoders have actually almost totally subsumed video encoding hardware. With software applications devoid of purpose-built hardware and able to operate on ubiquitous computing platforms like Intel and AMD based x86 makers, in the data-center and virtual environments, it is completely precise to say that "software application is eating (or more appropriately, has actually consumed) the world."
What does this mean for an innovation or video operations executive?
Computer system software is the bedrock of every function and department in the business; appropriately, software video encoding is necessary to video streaming service operations. Software video encoders can scale without needing a linear boost in physical space and energies, unlike hardware.
When handling software-based video encoding, the three pillars that every video encoding engineer needs to attend to are bitrate efficiency, quality conservation, and calculating performance.
It's possible to enhance a video codec implementation and video encoder for two however rarely 3 of the pillars. Most video encoding operations therefore concentrate on quality and bitrate performance, leaving the compute effectiveness vector open as a sort of wild card. As you will see, this is no longer a competitive method.
The next frontier is software application computing performance.
Bitrate efficiency with high video quality needs resource-intensive tools, which will lead to slow functional speed or a significant increase in CPU overhead. For a live encoding application where the encoder should run at high speed to reach 60 frames-per-second (FPS), a compromise in bitrate effectiveness or outright quality is typically required.
Codec complexity, such as that required by HEVC, AV1, and the forthcoming VVC, is outmatching bitrate efficiency developments and this has produced the requirement for video encoder efficiency optimization. Put another method, speed matters. Generally, this is not an area that video encoding practitioners and image scientists have needed to be interested in, however that is no longer the case.
Figure 1 illustrates the advantages of a software encoding application, which, when all characteristics are stabilized, such as FPS and objective quality metrics, can do twice as much work on the precise same AWS EC2 C5.18 xlarge instance.
In this example, the open-source encoders x264 and x265 are compared to Beamr's AVC and HEVC encoders, Beamr 4, and Beamr 5.
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For services requiring to encode live 4Kp60, one can see that it is possible with Beamr 5 but not with x265. Beamr 5 set to the x264 comparable 'ultrafast' mode can encode four private streams on a single AWS EC2 C5.18 more info xlarge circumstances while x265 operating in 'ultrafast' can not reach 60 FPS at 4K. As you can see in this poignant example, codec efficiency is straight related to the quality of service as a result of fewer makers and less complex encoding frameworks needed.
For those services who are mainly interested in VOD and H. 264, the ideal half of the Figure 1 graphic programs the performance advantage of an efficiency enhanced codec execution that is set up to produce extremely high quality with a high bitrate effectiveness. Here one can see approximately a 2x benefit with Beamr 4 compared to x264.
Video encoding compute resources cost real money.
OPEX is considered thoroughly by every video supplier. Suppose entertainment experiences like live 4K streaming can not be provided reliably as a result of a mismatch between the video operations capability and the expectation of the consumer. Remembering that many mobile devices sold today can 1440p if not 4K display. And consumers are wanting material that matches the resolution and quality of the devices they carry in their pockets.
Due to the fact that of efficiency constraints with how the open-source encoder x265 makes use of calculate cores, it is not possible to encode a live 4Kp60 video stream on a single device. This does not suggest that live 4K encoding in software application isn't possible. But it does state that to provide the quality of video experience consumers anticipate, video suppliers will need to examine industrial services that have been efficiency enhanced for high core counts and multi-threaded processors such as those available from AMD and Intel.
The need for software to be optimized for higher core counts was recently highlighted by AMD CTO Mark Papermaster in an interview with Tom's Hardware.
Video suppliers desiring to utilize software application for the versatility and virtualization alternatives they provide will encounter excessively complicated engineering obstacles unless they choose encoding engines where multi-processor scaling is belonging to the architecture of the software application encoder.
Here is a post that reveals the speed benefit of Beamr 5 over x265.
Things to believe about concerning computing efficiency and performance:
It's appealing to think this is just an issue for video streamers with tens or hundreds of millions of customers, the same compromise considerations need to be considered regardless of the size of your operations. While a 30% cost savings at 1080p (H. 264), which is encoded at 3.5 Mbps, will provide more than triple the return, at a 1 Mbps savings. The point is, we need to thoroughly and methodically think about where we are investing our compute resources to get the optimum ROI possible.
An industrial software application service will be built by a dedicated codec engineering team that can balance the requirements of bitrate efficiency, quality, and calculate efficiency. Exactly why the architecture of x264 and x265 can not scale.
Insist internal groups and experts perform compute efficiency benchmarking on all software application encoding options under consideration. The three vectors to determine are outright speed (FPS), individual stream density when FPS is held consistent, and the total number of channels that can be produced on a single server utilizing a nominal ABR stack such as 4K, 1080p, 720p, 480p, and 360p. All encoders should produce equivalent video quality throughout all tests.
With so much turmoil in the distribution model and go-to-market company plans for streaming entertainment video services, it may be tempting to push down the top priority stack choice of brand-new, more effective software video encoders. With software eating the video encoding function, calculate efficiency is now the oxygen required to flourish and win versus a significantly competitive and congested direct-to-consumer (D2C) marketplace.
You can check out Beamr's software video encoders today and get up to 100 hours of complimentary HEVC and H. 264 video transcoding on a monthly basis. CLICK ON THIS LINK