Intel Arc AV1 encoder beats AMD and Nvidia’s H.264 encoders in early exams

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In short: Intel has had a tough time launching its freshman sequence of devoted graphics playing cards, struggling to get them to shoppers on time and probably with unimpressive ends in gaming benchmarks. Nevertheless, they characterize the debut of AV1 {hardware} encoding, and early exams present massive effectivity features towards Nvidia and AMD’s H.264 encoders.

The AV1 {hardware} encoder in Intel’s new Arc A380 destroyed Nvidia and AMD’s H.264 encoders in preliminary real-world exams this week. The outcomes are sorely wanted excellent news for Intel’s entry into the GPU house and bode effectively for AV1’s future in content material creation.

Late final month, computer systems that includes Intel’s entry-level Arc Alchemist graphics playing cards hit the worldwide market after weeks of delays. YouTuber EposVox purchased one of many first accessible A380s and measured its AV1 encoding towards a number of H.264 encoders.

Additionally see: TechSpot’s Intel Arc A380 Evaluate

Help for the brand new AV1 video codec has expanded quickly during the last a number of months. It guarantees extra environment friendly compression than rivals like VP9 or H.264 and is royalty-free, in contrast to H.265.

Nevertheless, decoding AV1 requires comparatively latest {hardware} like Nvidia’s RTX 30 sequence graphics playing cards, AMD’s Radeon 6000 GPUs, or eleventh technology or later Intel CPUs.

Apple gadgets do not assist it but, however a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip will subsequent 12 months. Streaming companies like YouTube, Twitch, and Netflix at the very least partially assist AV1 in the mean time and can doubtless develop their assist sooner or later. Firefox added AV1 {hardware} decoding in Could after relying solely on software program decoding.

Whereas {hardware} decoding to view AV1 content material is gaining broad assist, encoding to provide AV1 movies was solely attainable via software program till Intel Arc. EposVox’s outcomes point out content material creators could wish to swap to the codec as its use widens.

When streaming video games like Halo Infinite and Battlefield 2042, Intel’s AV1 encoder produced considerably cleaner video than H.264 encoders like Nvidia’s NVENC, AMD’s AMF, and Intel’s QSV, even at decrease bitrates. The Intel AV1 encoder at 3.5Mbps seems to beat AMD and Nvidia’s at 6Mbps. AV1’s lead shrinks at increased bitrates, however at 6Mbps it nonetheless outperforms the opposite GPU distributors’ 8Mbps outcomes.

These exams recommend that as extra gadgets and companies add AV1 compatibility, they may ship better-looking streams utilizing much less knowledge. AV1 {hardware} encoding may very well be featured in next-gen GPUs from each Nvidia and AMD, set to reach later this 12 months.



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