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Sandy Bridge video encoding enhancements available now?

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January 29, 2011 8:37:01 PM

Are Intel Sandy Bridge's video encoding enhancements available in current encoding software such as x264? I read an Intel engineer converse with x264's key developer, Dark Shikari, on an API for video encoding. This implies that current day software much be updated to use Intel's API to truly see a speed boost when encoding video.
January 30, 2011 1:53:15 AM

I believe at this time there 2 (maybe a few more) programs of note that take advantage of sandy bridge tech for encoding. Sorry, not sure which ones for sure.
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January 30, 2011 2:17:19 AM

Whats more important is using that tech WITHOUT the use of onboard video
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January 30, 2011 3:16:58 AM

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/sandy-bridge-core-i...

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Unfortunately, you have to be using Intel's integrated graphics core in order to take advantage of Quick Sync. Neither MediaEspresso or MediaConverter are able to recognize the pipeline with a discrete card installed. So, if you're doing media work on a gaming PC, Quick Sync might not be an option for you.


Let me get this straight. So even though Sandy Bridge beats discrete GPU CUDA and APP, transcoding software gives priority to the discrete GPU? Your computer must be built without a discrete GPU for the software to utilize Sandy Bridge's Quick Sync? That's just too bad, because I'd rather have a machine that can do both gaming and transcoding...
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January 30, 2011 3:33:10 AM

tokyotech said:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/sandy-bridge-core-i...

Quote:
Unfortunately, you have to be using Intel's integrated graphics core in order to take advantage of Quick Sync. Neither MediaEspresso or MediaConverter are able to recognize the pipeline with a discrete card installed. So, if you're doing media work on a gaming PC, Quick Sync might not be an option for you.


Let me get this straight. So even though Sandy Bridge beats discrete GPU CUDA and APP, transcoding software gives priority to the discrete GPU? Your computer must be built without a discrete GPU for the software to utilize Sandy Bridge's Quick Sync? That's just too bad, because I'd rather have a machine that can do both gaming and transcoding...

You'll have to wait for the Intel Z68 Express chipset for that.
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January 30, 2011 3:39:56 AM

lancerzero9 said:
I believe at this time there 2 (maybe a few more) programs of note that take advantage of sandy bridge tech for encoding. Sorry, not sure which ones for sure.


You were right. Only 2 applications currently use Quick Sync.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-rev...

Quote:
Currently Intel’s Quick Sync transcode is only supported by two applications: Cyberlink’s Media Espresso 6 and Arcsoft’s Media Converter 7. Both of these applications are video to go applications targeted at users who want to take high resolution/high bitrate content and transcode it to more compact formats for use on smartphones, tablets, media streamers and gaming consoles. The intended market is not users who are attempting to make high quality archives of Blu-ray content. As a result, there’s no support for multi-channel audio; both applications are limited to 2-channel MP3 or AAC output. There’s also no support for transcoding to anything higher than the main profile of H.264.


And as expected, the software is not highly configurable. I'm not impressed when you can 100 FPS with a crappy x264 preset. I was doing 200 FPS years ago on CUDA with Badaboom, but the quality of horrendous. It's just way too hard for programmers to use hardware acceleration for video transcoding.
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January 30, 2011 8:30:27 PM

I would like to see benchmarks of Sandy Bridge on video transcoding software that wasn't specifically programmed to utilize Quick Sync. Something like Handbrake using plain x264. Since Sandy Bridge has been sweeping the charts on all other benchmarks, it still might fair well in old school video transcoding, just not as well as we previously thought.
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