Well I managed to get a hold of the new hardware assisted ATI video converter for the x1... series radeon cards.
All I can say is WOW!! My god is this thing sick.
Heres some spec's for you all:
Test set 1:
Original File: DVD quality Mpeg2(720x480) 5:32 312478KB
Conversion 1 using software only via virtualdub/x264:
Default H264 Settings around 13MB/m
Time to convert: 23min 46 secs (approx)
CPU Usage Avg: 100%
Conversion 2 using Avivo Video Converter
Default H264 Settings 29MB/m
Time to convert: 1 min 34 secs
CPU Usage Avg: 80%
Conversion 3 using Avivo Video Converter
Default H264 Settings 14.99MB/m
Time to convert: 1 min 39 secs
CPU Usage Avg: 78%
NOTE: Image sizes were not adjusted (so all the conversions are 720x480). Coversion2 is virtually identical to the original, Conversion1 & 3 both have notable artifacts. All copies would be watchable+
NOTE2: The files are viewable but they do not work in quicktime (im not sure why - could be a fluke), also they do not seem seekable.
Test set 2:
Ok so for those who have never done this let me say I wouldnt even try this normally. It would take in excess of 10hrs to do this conversion.
So here goes - test description:
NOTE: the avivo software will not directly convert transport streams, they must be ported to mpeg2 first!!!
1 HDTV transport stream converted to mpeg2 via HDTVtoMpeg2
Beginning File Specs: 1920x1080 (ie 1080p)
Length: 30 mins
File Size: 3,424,459KB
Post Edit Specs:
Length: 21 mins 51secs
File Size: 2,470,381KB
Setup Avivo to: Standard H264 w/ 43.13MB/m setting
Estimated time: 32minutes
Actual time: 29 mins 5 seconds
File Size: 965,278KB
Output resolution is the same (1920x1080) and it beats the crap out of my cpu to play it. Thus far I have had trouble playing the HD file.
The best playback has been with VLC but as my cpu gets nuked I havent been able to completely check it out. The picture does show pixelation but considering the resolution and size its surprisingly good.
In either case what a great first effort. The software supports the following formats:
DVD (with a make it fit to DVD option)
Mpeg4 (divx compatible)
"Portable media center" (whatever this is)
The funny thing is this software apparantly doesnt even use the GPU yet. Thats a few versions ahead... The software will only work on ATI X1000 based cards and will reject any and all others.
For those with X1000's you can get the converter for free here:
And remember next Tuesday is 5.13 day (aka Avivo full kick in drivers) - the new drivers include the hardware accelerated h264 codec's for your viewing pleasure.