Fluendo, the well-known company that backs the development of GStreamer and has also sponsored projects like PiTiVi and other open-source multimedia projects, has released Codec Pack 18. Special about Codec Pack 18 is that it's intended for use with GStreamer 1.0.
GStreamer 1.0 was released last September ahead of GNOME 3.6. GStreamer 1.0 is a long-time coming and most GStreamer-based open-source programs have been adopting the new APIs. For ensuring there is high-quality codec coverage, Fluendo released Codec Pack 18 this morning.
Fluendo's Codec Pack 18 has been officially tested on Fedora 18, Ubuntu 13.04, and openSUSE 12.3 while they are enabling support for other distributions too. Aside from supporting GStreamer 1.0, the updated codec pack also has improvements to the hardware-accelerated video decoders, Windows Media Video decoding improvements, and enhancements to the ASF demuxer / AAC audio decoders / MPEG-4 Part 2 / MP3.
The hardware-accelerated video work includes improving the state of XvBA (X-Video Bitstream Acceleration) for the AMD Catalyst driver on Linux to make the decoder more usable, fixing Intel VA-API related problems, basic QoS support to skip frames when hardware can't maintain pace, improved MPEG-4 decoding, and better support for adaptive switching through on-the-fly codec reconfiguration.
The Windows Media Video improvements are notable due to major performance improvements in handling WMV1 and WMV2 files. As part of the Codec Pack 18 release, Fluendo is also reaffirming its commitment to the GStreamer project.
I've started testing out a closed beta of Fluendo Codec Pack 18 this week and will have more details on my experiences with this collection of GStreamer codecs in a future Phoronix article. The complete set of playback plug-ins for use by GStreamer applications includes WMV, WMA, MMS, MPEG-2, H.264, MPEG-4, MP3, AAC, Dolby AC3, and DivX 3.11 Alpha, among others. GStreamer 1.0 is supported as well as the older GStreamer 0.10 series.
For hardware-accelerated video playback, the AMD XvBA, Intel VA-API, and NVIDIA VDPAU interfaces are supported. There's also support for hardware-accelerated video with the Clutter tool-kit using the Fluendo Codec Pack. However, hardware acceleration right now is only exposed via GStreamer 0.10 and not the 1.0 release.
The Fluendo Codec Pack 18 is available for purchase at the Fluendo Store. Fluendo is a sponsor of Phoronix. The pricing of the codec pack is 28 EUR (about $36 USD), but if using the promo code of "codec18" they are offering Phoronix readers a 10% discount.
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