Live VVC/H.266 UHD Encoder Announced by Spin Digital
Berlin, August 2, 2022 – Spin Digital announced today the availability of the first version of a real-time VVC/H.266 encoder designed for live UHD (4K and 8K) streaming and broadcasting applications.
The new VVC encoder can reduce the bitrate at the same or better quality than a state-of-the-art UHD HEVC live encoder while, at the same time, providing the performance required for processing 4K and 8K video in real time.
Live VVC encoding enables next-generation media applications such as live sports and music events in UHD (4K and 8K) and VR formats to be streamed over the Internet, at very high quality and with very low bitrate. Live VVC streaming offers new opportunities for service providers and better experience for end users.
VVC for UHD Live Applications
Also known as H.266, VVC is the newest video coding standard designed to significantly reduce the bitrate beyond HEVC/H.265, and to facilitate next-generation video applications, such as cost-effective 4K and 8K streaming over the internet and broadcast channels, more efficient adaptive bitrate streaming (ABR), and higher quality live VR and immersive video streaming.
Although VVC targets up to 50% bitrate reduction with respect to HEVC for the same visual quality, this compression gain level is only possible for VoD offline applications, and at the expense of a significant increase in computation time and cost. For live applications, a more moderate but still significant improvement in compression efficiency has been achieved by Spin Digital’s VVC encoder with a practical and affordable increase in computational cost.
A High-performance CPU-based VVC Encoder
The new VVC encoder developed by Spin Digital is based on a flexible CPU-based software solution that relies on advanced decision algorithms, a modern encoder design, and a highly optimized implementation for the latest CPU architectures.
The VVC encoder has been extensively optimized for the latest generation of Intel Xeon Scalable processors (known as Ice Lake) to run in real-time and to improve quality and compression compared to HEVC. The encoder has been optimized with SIMD processing using Intel AVX-512 and Intel’s Deep Learning Boost instructions, advanced multithreading for systems with tens of CPU cores, and advanced decision algorithms with a modern encoder software architecture.
The first version of the encoder achieves an average of 18% bitrate reduction for the same quality with respect to Spin Digital’s HEVC real-time encoder – Spin Enc Live – an industry-leading encoder for its high performance, quality, and compression efficiency.
The new encoder can process 4Kp60 10-bit HDR video in real-time on a single server equipped with two Intel Xeon Platinum processors with a total of 76 CPU cores. On the same server, it is also possible to compress 8Kp30 videos in real-time with similar compression gains.
As HEVC compression efficiency is reaching a point of diminishing returns the new VVC encoder offers a path for future video coding improvements. Spin Digital is working on further enhancing the VVC encoder by using new advanced encoding algorithms and the next generation of CPU architectures. As a result, it will be possible soon to encode 8Kp60 video in real-time for live streaming at lower bit rates.
Ready for VVC Live Streaming
The new VVC encoder has been integrated into a complete live streaming framework that includes input capture (SDI and IP), pre-processing, advanced rate control, audio and video encoding, and HTTP and TS-over-IP streaming. As a companion product Spin Digital already offers a highly optimized VVC software decoder and media player – called Spin Player VVC –.
A complete encoding, streaming, and playback system for UHD VVC video has been successfully validated by Spin Digital and close partners. It includes an encoding server with 12G SDI video capture, VVC encoding, and RTP and HLS streaming; and a playback PC running Spin Digital’s VVC media player performing the VVC decoding, video rendering, and 4K and 8K video output.
This proof-of-concept demonstrates that VVC UHD live encoding and streaming is possible with current computing technologies and highly optimized VVC encoder and decoder software solutions.
“VVC UHD live encoding and streaming is possible with current CPU-based computing technologies and highly optimized VVC encoding and decoding software solutions.”
Industry Collaboration and Ready for Next-gen Live Applications
Spin Digital is working with industry partners on enabling next-generation live media applications based on VVC. 8K live can become mainstream as the quality and compression levels offered by VVC will allow streaming and broadcasting over bandwidth constrained networks such terrestrial TV or streaming over the Internet. 4K HDR premium content, including 4Kp120 – HFR (High Frame Rates) video, can be delivered to more users and with lower streaming costs, and Full HD video can become the new standard resolution as it will be possible to stream it in extremely low bitrates. Live VR streaming can offer an immersive experience of live events such as concerts and sports at higher quality and lower transmission cost.
Live VVC Demos Coming Soon: IBC 2022 and Beyond
A demo of live VVC encoding, streaming and playback will be presented at IBC 2022 in Amsterdam in September at Spin Digital’s booth – 1.D98. Other events that will be announced soon.
More Information in the Whitepaper
A companion whitepaper titled “A VVC/H.266 Real-time Software Encoder for UHD Live Video Applications” is being published together with this press release and includes detailed results of the new VVC encoder in terms of compression, quality, and performance for live applications.
The whitepaper can be downloaded from Spin Digital’s website.
A preview version of the UHD VVC live encoder is available now. A demo version or a quote can be requested online.
About Spin Digital
Spin Digital Video Technologies GmbH (Spin Digital) develops high-performance video codecs for the next generation of ultra-high-quality video applications. Spin Digital software solutions enable media applications that require the latest image and video processing enhancements including very high resolution (4K, 8K, and 16K), high dynamic range, high frame rate, wide color gamut, and 360° video and virtual reality. Spin Digital is based in Berlin, and operates in an international B2B environment, collaborating with customers and partners around the world and across market segments.
For more information, visit: https://spin-digital.com/.
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Spin Digital, Spin Enc Live and Spin Player VVC are trademarks of Spin Digital Video Technologies GmbH.
Other trademarks remain the property of their owners and are used here for descriptive purposes.