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View Poll Results: matroska support in hardware devices - would you accept to pay more ?
I am planning to buy a MPEG4 device in the next 1 - 2 years ( its mandatory to vote here !!! ) 52 75.36%
I expect MKV support in MPEG4 devices without extra cost, even if i cant use all profiles then 11 15.94%
I would spend 20,- €/$ more for a hardware device with MKV support for user profiles 1,2 and 3 20 28.99%
I would spend 50,- €/$ more for a hardware device with MKV support for user profiles 1,2 and 3 29 42.03%
I would spend 100,- €/$ more for a hardware device with MKV support for user profiles 1,2 and 3 4 5.80%
I am using AVI currently, but would consider to switch to MKV if there was hardware support for it 19 27.54%
I am using another MPEG4 container currently, but would consider to switch to MKV if there was hardware support for it 9 13.04%
I already have a MPEG4 player, but would consider to sell it and buy a new one if i can play MKVs with it 3 4.35%
I already have a MPEG4 player, but would love to get a firmware to play MKVs, even only for user profile 2 2 2.90%
I am using Vorbis 5.1 or AAC 5.1 a lot, without support for these i am not interested in MKV playback on a MPEG4 device, whatever it may cost 20 28.99%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 69. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 20th October 2003, 09:21   #1  |  Link
ChristianHJW
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matroska support in hardware devices - would you accept to pay more ?

Hi,

This poll allows multiple choices !! Please read the description here carefully before voting !!!

Please do NOT participate in this poll if you dont have plans or the intention to buy a MPEG4 hardware player, maybe as replacement for your existing DVD, in the next 1 - 2 years !!

This poll does allow multiple selections, to give a clear market overview to the interested companies. However, to be able to use the information correctly it is essential to know how many people have been voting in total, and therefore its mandatory to vote for option nr. 1 in any case if you vote to any other given option !!


Background :

As you may know we are in contact with a couple of hardware manufacturers since some time now about the implementation of matroska support into MPEG4 playback devices, as an alternative to AVI. Well, there is good news here as we are definitely a big step forward, there is at least one company now where the management is seriously consider ing to undertake this and to make the necessary development resources available ( which costs a lot ). We expect a final decision from them hopefully until end of this year, maybe even earlier.

To support this from a technical point of view, one of our team members has started on a small, slim library written in C, focussed on decoding ( = parsing ) existing MKV files. We also promised to this company to create our first hardware profiles according to their needs, so they can claim for their products to support these hardware profiles.

However, we need some help from your side to finally make this happen :

Currently it seems that our fans are using the following typical profiles :

1. MPEG4 video ( DivX, XviD ) + Vorbis + SRT ( 40 % )

2. MPEG4 video + AC3/MP3 + SRT ( 25% )

3. MPEG4 video + AAC + SRT/SSA ( 15 % )

4. RV9 video + AAC/Vorbis + SRT/SSA ( 15 % )

5. Others ( 5 % )


Now, very unfortunately the existing devices based on the old EM 8500 and EM 8550 chips will only be able to read profile 2 with a suitable picture resolution ( like 720 x 304 for a typical 2 CD rip ), and there is even a questionmark behind SRT here because it will be hard to support all the existing unicode code pages in a hardware device, so maybe only typical western character sets can be supported correctly. BTW, Vobsub in MKV will work fine even on older units ..

However, there are new devices in development currently that will be based on the new SIGMA chips of the 86xx series, and they will have more processing power. Still, to support at least the profiles 1 and 3 ( 4 is currently not possible and not planned either, sorry Sirber ), the senor engineer of the company we are talking to would like to add some more processing power to the current development layout, but this would lead to devices that will have a higher price.

This leads us to the reason for this poll :

If you are interested to buy a MPEG4 hardware player, how much more would you be prepared to pay for it if it has matroska hardware support, if ever ? All the other options have an informative character for us, they are intended to give us some background about the potential users of such a device.

Thanks for your time

Last edited by ChristianHJW; 20th October 2003 at 10:52.
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Old 20th October 2003, 09:40   #2  |  Link
alexnoe
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As a learner of french and russian, being able to *switch* between western european charsets, like french, and cyrillic ones, would be mandatory for me, even if it costs some $$. Profile 2 suffices.
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Old 20th October 2003, 09:57   #3  |  Link
ChristianHJW
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It seems that option #1 is useless, i didnt know that the forum software would count the total number of votes anyhow .... which of course makes sense ....
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Old 20th October 2003, 11:45   #4  |  Link
robUx4
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I personally want AAC support above other things. And I want it in matroska movies
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Old 20th October 2003, 12:01   #5  |  Link
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I don't want vorbis but 5.1 HE/LC AAC Playback in Matroska movies is a necessary factor to these H/W Players.

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Old 20th October 2003, 12:41   #6  |  Link
ChristianHJW
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Quote:
Originally posted by robUx4 I personally want AAC support above other things. And I want it in matroska movies
The senior manager of one of the companies we are talking to confirmed to me that they have AAC audio support already implemented and its working fine, however, their management is reluctant to pay for the high licensing costs right now, as from their point of view there are not enough files out there to justify the high investment. BTW, this is also the reason why they have no MP4 support implemented as of yet, but of course this may change with the Nero Digital launch being sheduled to come soon.

Even if they decide to pay the licensing fees, another problem is the necessary processing power to decode a 5.1 HE-AAC with SBR ( Spektral Band Replication ) technology ... dont expect this from any hardware device in the next 2 - 3 years guys, it may be hard or impossible to do to decode a 5.1 LC AAC file with hi-resolution MPEG4 video already, even with a strong alternative processor supporting the EM 86xx ....

BTW, this brings MPC ( musepack ) back in the race, as its based in principal on MP2, which has very low necessary power for decoding, as its using subband filtering. Even better, Frank Klemm has coded a very fast, L-GPLed decoding library in C, so that playing MPC on any PC takes almost no CPU at all ... if he only had more time to work on MPC SV8, including a proper 5.1 encoding profile .... :sigh: ....
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Old 20th October 2003, 13:35   #7  |  Link
ChristianHJW
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Quote:
Originally posted by ChristianHJW Even if they decide to pay the AAC licensing fees
Hmmm .... Haali on the #matroska IRC channel had a good idea actually .. why not offer firmware upgrades specific for each unit, maybe depending on the serial number that gets hardcoded into the flash, so that users can buy AAC decoding for say 10,- €/$ ??

Anybody has got a link to the Dolby AAC licensing pages somewhere ?

EDIT : found it : http://www.vialicensing.com/products.../standard.html

http://www.vialicensing.com/products...nse.terms.html

As the FAQ says, a DVD player is the same as a software decoder, means 0.25 US$ / user / channel , or a maximum of 25,000 US$ maximum .... not as bad as i expected ?

How big was the effort to make specific firmwares for every unit, to prevent the spreading of these firmwares via the internet ?

Last edited by ChristianHJW; 20th October 2003 at 14:36.
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Old 20th October 2003, 19:33   #8  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by ChristianHJW

BTW, this brings MPC ( musepack ) back in the race, as its based in principal on MP2, which has very low necessary power for decoding, as its using subband filtering. Even better, Frank Klemm has coded a very fast, L-GPLed decoding library in C, so that playing MPC on any PC takes almost no CPU at all ... if he only had more time to work on MPC SV8, including a proper 5.1 encoding profile .... :sigh: ....
I would SERIOUSLY like to see MPC support in portable audio players (I know that is is not what you are reffering to). But money has a way of making more time. If you could come up w/ finaces for Frank maybe there would be more time.

In addition, I think there is a group of MPC enthusiasts that would be willing to donate some money. After alot of reading and some audio tests I count myself among them. MPC is an AMAZING audio codec that seriously deserves wider support.
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Old 20th October 2003, 19:36   #9  |  Link
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I already have a player but I'd be willing to pay quite a bit extra for full MPEG-4 ASP support (QPel, 3 reference point GMC, multiple b-frames) and full DivX3 compatibility. Matroska support would certainly be a bonus that I'm also willing to pay for (but only 50€, I reserve the 100€ for MPEG-4 ASP and full DivX3 compatibility.. I think they go in hand as MPEG-4 ASP already takes enough computing power to properly convert a DivX3 on the fly even if it has a high bitrate).
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Old 20th October 2003, 20:28   #10  |  Link
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Does SRT(SSA) mean that there will be all glyphs in Unicode, includng Arabic Hebrew etc. which will be shown properly?
If so... I guess it's not that easy.
If not... I know that "hw suport" can't be a world-standard, but will be like "for W Europe/US"

I suppose image-based subs might be better for hw. Additionally I don't think SSA is realistic for many reasons in this case. If it's text-based, USF is the way to go.

MusePack support will be nice anyway
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Old 21st October 2003, 07:31   #11  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally posted by Liisachan I suppose image-based subs might be better for hw.
... yes, vobsub in MKV can be supported easily they tell us. Mosu has it almost done, for both muxing in mkvmerge and playback in mplayer .... but where is Gabest to update vsfilter.dll !!!
Quote:
Additionally I don't think SSA is realistic for many reasons in this case.
... correct again ... forget SSA support in hw players, in best case people could make a parsing tool that can read the pure text, and discards all the advanced features ...
Quote:
If it's text-based, USF is the way to go.
... Liisachan, your expertise about subtitles strikes me once again ... we discussed about this yesterday on IRC, and decided to push USF on the way now ( finally ), as its maybe the easiest thing to support on hardware units, and the existing editors from unmei and KovacsEndre allow SSA parsing already, so a simple SSA --> USF or SRT --> USF converter should be too hard to do based on them.
Quote:
MusePack support will be nice anyway
I already pointed them to Frank's L-GPL decoder library for SV7 ....

Last edited by ChristianHJW; 21st October 2003 at 08:12.
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