Faster VP9 Decoding Is On The Horizon
Written by Michael Larabel in Google on 23 January 2015 at 12:28 PM EST. 30 Comments
For those frustrated by the current lack of hardware supporting VP9 encode/decode and the slow decode speed when playing back VP9 content on the CPU, improvements are coming.

There's a "frame-parallel" branch of libvpx to enable frame parallel decoding. This is designed to speed up the VP9 decoding process for multi-core processors. The work is explained by its developers as, "In frame parallel decode, libvpx decoder decodes several frames on all cpus in parallel fashion. If not being flushed, it will only return frame when all the cpus are busy. If getting flushed, it will return all the frames in the decoder. Compare with current serial decode mode in which libvpx decoder is idle between decode calls, libvpx decoder is busy between decode calls. VP9 frame parallel decode is >30% faster than serial decode with tile parallel threading which will makes devices play 1080P VP9 videos more easily."

Better 1080p VP9 video playback will be appreciated by users, especially in the range of a greater than 30% speed improvement. The work was merged to libvpx and WebM Git this week but sadly this morning it was reverted -- hopefully it will be merged back in better shape soon!
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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