ATI Radeon X1800 Linux Preview
While we knew the Radeon X1000 support was eventually coming to Linux, we had not known that ATI would begin so soon with implementing Avivo (Advanced Video in Video Out) features. ATI's Avivo is designed for video and display perfection. In fact, the initial v8.24.8 release already contains a new accelerated video playback option. This TexturedVideo option uses the 3D engine for video playback rather than 2D and is supported by the X1000 series. ATI's TexturedVideo option is similar to other TexturedVideo capabilities in XGL and other drivers. Certainly, ATI has the capabilities to leapfrog NVIDIA when it comes to Linux video capabilities as long as they continue in their prolific monthly drivers.
This 3D accelerated playback option is compatible with any applications that support the XV (X-Video) extension. There is also a high probability that additional Avivo features will be brought to Linux in upcoming driver releases. For reference, Avivo capabilities were brought to the Windows CATALYST drivers with version 5.13. Some of the Windows Avivo features include H.264 decode acceleration, offloading CPU intensive tasks for media PCs onto GPUs, and a transcode utility for conversion between video formats. For those still running XFree86 4.1 and 4.2, it will no longer be supported as of the 8.26.x, which should be the June 2006 release. Notice: Now a few days before the launch is set to occur we have learned from ATI that the TexturedVideo option will not ship as an option with aticonfig in the 8.24.8 release. However, we have also been briefed that TexturedVideo will require Xorg 6.9 or later. While ATI does not support or suggest modifying the xorg.conf, this line: Option "TexturedVideo" "on" should allow TexturedVideo to be enabled on Xorg 6.9 or later systems. This feature has been UNTESTED by Phoronix and it now appears this item will not be officially supported in the 8.24.8 release. The aticonfig option is not expected to come until the 8.26 drivers. Also, in order for TV-Out to function with the X1000 series, Xorg 6.9 or later will be required and the feature should appear in next month's 8.25 release. Below are a few mplayer images of the ATI Radeon X1800XL without the TexturedVideo option being active.
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