What would be a realistic but challenging level for Bryce announced trophy money for video playback on the Neo1973? Re: h.264 format is now open?

Bryce Leo bryce.leo at gmail.com
Fri Feb 2 22:44:35 CET 2007

Now there is some most promising news, sound like with some simple
optomizations for scaling that this shouldn't be too difficult eh? I
put the full post about the bounty to the Dev maliing list. but the
link to the wiki page is
That's the current home of the full rules for the contest. Your news
is great but it's almost a shame that it looks like it'll be trivial
to do.

> A few technical questions here. Is image data constantly transferred to LCD
> from system memory (60 times per second)?
> If we compare it to Nokia 770, Nokia 770 has a similar design with framebuffer
> stored in the system memory with data getting transferred to graphics chip
> using DMA when needed (graphics chip has its own video memory). Anyway,
> screen update requests do not seem to have any visible impact on video
> decoding performance (tested with 640x480 24 fps video). So DMA transfers
> are not too expensive and cpu can do some other useful things while DMA
> transfer is in process.
> If video is really heavy on memory bus, is it possible to reduce refresh rate
> somewhat (to 50Hz for example) to improve performance?
> By the way, initially some people also considered Nokia770 hardware
> to be too slow for video playback with full fps and more or less acceptable
> quality, check built-in video player limitations [1], but now using MPlayer
> build for maemo [2], it can handle even some nontranscoded video files
> more or less successfully. For example when using the following video clip
> (http://www.divx.com/movies/detail.php?movieID=57&cID=1), it can
> be watched fullscreen with ~30% frames dropped (resulting in jerky
> playback on fast moving scenes).
> If we compare Neo 1973 to Nokia 770, it:
> * has ~5% faster cpu clock frequency
> * does not have enhanced dsp instructions support (these instructions provide
> ~10-15% decoding performance improvement currently)
> * does not have DSP to relay audio decoding to it (mp3 audio takes ~15% cpu
> resources if libmad decoder is used on ARM core)
> * does not have hardware YUV support (that may result in more cpu resources
> needed for video output and a lot frames dropped because of software YUV->RGB
> conversion)
> So while Nokia 770 should be faster for video, Neo 1973 is not too far behind.
> But one of the most important performance statistics is memory bandwidth, can
> anyone benchmark memcpy on copying a large data block? Nokia 770 has memory
> copy bandwidth up to 110MB/s, if Neo 1973 has a similar memory performance,
> it should be not so bad for video.
> Just for some experiment, I compiled mplayer for arm920t (not using armv5te
> instructions), and benchmarked it with sdl video output (software YUV->RGB
> conversion, generic nonoptimized scaling 320x240 => 640x480) and libmad
> mp3 audio decoder. This test was run on Nokia 770, but the intention was to
> simulate how it can possibly behave on Neo 1973.
> # mplayer -endpos 100 -vo sdl -ac mad -framedrop -quiet -benchmark test.avi
> VIDEO:  [DIVX]  320x240  24bpp  23.976 fps  401.2 kbps (49.0 kbyte/s)
> AUDIO: 44100 Hz, 2 ch, s16le, 128.0 kbit/9.07% (ratio: 16000->176400)
> BENCHMARKs: VC:  46,446s VO:  38,929s A:  13,574s Sys:   2,082s =  101,031s
> BENCHMARK%: VC: 45,9718% VO: 38,5312% A: 13,4359% Sys:  2,0611% = 100,0000%
> BENCHMARKn: disp: 1368 (13,54 fps)  drop: 1031 (42%)  total: 2399 (23,75 fps)
> Actually VO: part in this benchmark can be heavily optimized and video
> playback without dropping frames for this resolution and bitrate should be
> possible. Also if we badly need to watch some video at any cost and can't
> transcode it, video can be watched in grayscale, in this case video decoding
> is a bit faster and we don't need resource consuming YUV->RGB conversion
> (conversion to grayscale is cheap).
> Anyway, let's wait for the information from the first Neo 1973 owners. I think
> that the information about real Neo 1973 multimedia capabilities will be
> available really soon :)
> [1] https://maemo.org/maemowiki/VideoEncoding
> [2] https://garage.maemo.org/projects/mplayer/
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