Sony HDR-HC1: A Quantum Leap For Video Buffs

Lost Connection: DivX 6.1 Only Supports 1280 Resolution

A leading light in the market that has long earned accolades from insiders because of its savvy capabilities, DivX appears headed down a dead-end track. How else can one explain why this fast codec, which even supports the MPEG-4 algorithm, only allows a maximum resolution of 1280x720 pixels? Of course, those interested in HD video want to record their videos at the maximum resolution of 1920x1080 pixels. Boosting video resolution from SDTV DV resolution to an intermediate value of 1280x720 doesn't reach the quality of 1440x1080, let alone the 1920x1080 typical of broadcast quality HDTV.

We have worked with the developers at DivX for years, and have been among the first publications to report on the HD phenomenon. Our test lab videos have also always been encoded into DivX format for downloads. But for this test, the DivX codec doesn't make the grade for the very first time. If the company can't further extend its codec to handle the higher resolutions quickly and effectively, things don't look good for its future. The power that Microsoft wields with its WMV9 shouldn't be underestimated. Even Apple has taken note of this sign of the times and has adopted the modern H.264 codec in QuickTime 7.

The current DivX codec 6.1.1 supports a maximum resolution of only 1280x720 pixels. Those who want full HD quality have to stick with the WMV9 codec from Microsoft.

THG has advised and supported DivX for years. The current version works with multiple CPU cores concurrently. Now, as before, this codec continues to offer the best image quality for a given overall data rate.