Call for fourth MSU HEVC codecs comparison - 2018

Thirteenth modern video codec comparison
For real researchers, developers and professional users in field of high-end video compression

MSU Graphics & Media Lab (Video Group)

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UPDATE 06/03/2018
Hardware info and speed requirements is anounced
Developers could send codec with presets to

Important Dates

March, 5 18 Deadline for applications
Participant has to send us name of codec (with name of encoding standard if not HEVC), name of company and number of presets that he wants to use.

March, 31 Deadline for receipt of a codec with required presets
April, 25 Deadline for settling technical problems with codec’s functioning
August, 7 Draft version of report that will be sent to all participants
August, 14 Deadline for reception of comments to the draft
August, 25 Comparison report release

Task of the Comparison

To perform comparative unbiased analysis of the current software and hardware (GPU-based) implementations of HEVC/H.265 video coding standard and compare it to the best implementations of other video coding standards (H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, VP9, VP8 and MPEG-4) using objective metrics.

Typical Scope of Test

Summary report topics:
  • Objective measurements + Subjective analysis
  • Encoding time
  • Bitrate keeping
  • Speed/Quality trade-off analysis
  • Averaged objective results analysis
  • Leaders in different use-cases
Comparison methodology main points:
  • 2 metrics: SSIM and PSNR + New objective metrics: VMAF, NIQE
  • 3 color-planes (Y,U,V) and integral metric values
  • 25-30 HD video sequences (main report) + 10-12 4K video sequences (report appendix)
  • prosumer-level modern hardware
  • 8-10 different target bitrates (1-12 Mbps for HD and 2-16 Mbps for 4K)
  • 3 various use-cases (Fast, Universal and Ripping) differ by speed/quality trade-off
  • fully automatic testing system
  • 5000+ result figures

Software and methodology for encoder analysis

MSU team has up to 21 years of experience in video codec analysis, testing, optimization. Here are some facts about the Previous MSU Video Codecs Comparisons:
  • There were more than 400.000 downloads of previous H.264 and HEVC video codec comparisons results
  • Many codec's bugs were found and reported to developers
  • More than 25 private reports for codec developers (describe weak and strong points for codec) after public report versions
  • Here you can see Selected comments for MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 video codecs comparison
  • In addition, you can check out some useful links about previous video codec comparisons:
  • MSU HEVC/H.265 Video Codec Comparison - 2017
  • Eighth Annual MSU MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 Video Codec Comparison
  • See all our comparisons

  • Comparison Rules

    This year encoder developers send us a bundle of same presets (with different speed/quality characteristics) for all use-cases. Please pay attention that we will use multi-core CPU for encoding, so you can use multi-threading.
  • Decoding is performed with reference decoder.
  • We do not limit GOP size and intra-period.
  • Before results' publishing each developer will receive the results of its codec and competitive free codecs. Developers of each codec can write a comment (one paragraph) about the comparison results. That comment will be included in the report.
  • We are willing to completely or partially delete information about some codec in the public version of comparison report only in exceptional cases (e.g. critical errors in a codec).
  • The participation is free with results publishing
  • You can join comparison for free if you agree that your codec's results will be published.
  • If your company wants to receive results of your codec testing with possibility to exclude it results from publication and information disclosure, you should pay for measurements and report preparing before comparison begins.
  • Enterprise version of comparison report is available for direct participants for free
  • All participants will receive following deliverables to verify the results for free:
  • video sequences used in comparison
  • binaries of all free encoders used in comparison to verify the results
  • all raw video quality metric and encoding speed data for its encoder and for all of free encoders used in comparison

  • Test Hardware Characteristics

    Next hardware for codec testing will be used:
    • CPU: Intel Socket 1151 Core i7 8700K (Coffee Lake) (3.7Ghz, 6C12T, TDP 95W)
    • Mainboard: ASRock Z370M Pro4
    • RAM: Crucial CT16G4DFD824A 16GB DIMM DDR4 2400MHz CL15
    • OS: Windows 10 x64

    Encoding speed requirements

    For encoder alignment selected presets should provide following encoding speed:
    All speed requirements are for 1080p sequence encoded at 6Mbps: