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shavkat_n_
Beginner
672 Views

hardware-accelerated HEVC transcoding support

Good day, 

On IMSS 2017 product page (https://software.intel.com/en-us/intel-media-server-studio/details) following supported features are listed

  • Video Encoders: H.265 (HEVC): 8-bit (hardware-, GPU-accelerated and software), 10-bit (software and GPU accelerated only), H.264 (AVC), MPEG-2, MVC (Windows Server* OS only), MJPEG (software).

Here for HEVC 8-bit hardware-, GPU-accelerated and software encoding is possible, but for 10-bit software and GPU accelerated only encoding possible.

Here was an answer given for difference between hardware and gpu:

quote start-  

" 'Hardware-accelerated' and 'GPU-accelerated' HEVC encoders are different because of using different areas on Intel(R) Processor Graphics:

Hardware-accelerated implementation uses fixed functions (FF) - parts of GPU dedicated for special coding purposes. FF for HEVC encoding exists starting Skylake (6th gen of Intel processors) - HEVC encoding is possible only on Skylake now on Linux and on Skylake and KabyLake on Windows with client Media SDK(not MSS). But to have HEVC encoder on earlier generation of processor (Broadwell) GPU-accelerated plugin was developed. It uses GPU's Execution Units (EUs)  - general purpose cores."

quote end-  

1st question: Is hardware-accelerated better than GPU-accelerated HEVC(and AVC) transcoding? If better then how much ?

2nd question: If hardware-accelerated is much better. As I understand only following platforms support hardware-accelerated transcoding:

http://ark.intel.com/products/codename/37572/Skylake#@server

Is that correct ?

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6 Replies
shavkat_n_
Beginner
672 Views

Update to question 2: I wanted to clearify my requirements. After correlating https://software.intel.com/sites/default/files/managed/85/7c/Intel-Xeon-Processor-E3-1500-v5-Performance-May-2016.pdf & http://ark.intel.com/products/codename/37572/Skylake#@server Processor specs it seems only following CPUs support HEVC Encode & Decode (8-bit and 10-bit, Linux and Windows) :

Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1585 v5

Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1585L v5

Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1565L v5

Is it that only those 3 CPUs qualify for my requirements ?

Artem_S_Intel
Employee
672 Views

Hi Shavkat

Any Skylake based processor with integrated graphics support hardware accelerated HEVC encode, e.g. any Intel(R) Xeon Processor E3-15* v5 any 6th generation Intel Core, So if your target OS is windows - MSS will work at any of them. Linux is limited almost to Xeon only(validated).Please note that to get integrated graphics support with Xeon Processors you need specific C236 chipset, so pay attention to the motherboard specs. KBL processors(e.g 7th Generation Core) supports 10 bit HW accelerated encode.

To your question about HW Accelerated vs GPU accelerated - it depend on your needs, so GPU accelerated will be pretty fast comparing to pure SW encoder, but realtime won't be reached for 4K resolutions, when HW Accelerated can allow you run transcoding/encoding at realtime. The same time GPU accelerated will have higher encoding quality comparing to HW encoder on Skylake and Kabylake based platforms.

 

Artem_S_Intel
Employee
672 Views

additional note, if you are looking for Xeon variant, it is better to search for Xeon E3 v5, here list is more full.

http://ark.intel.com/products/series/88210/Intel-Xeon-Processor-E3-v5-Family

shavkat_n_
Beginner
672 Views

Hi Artem,

So if I buy and use Skylake Xeon processor then I can achieve hardware acceleration and also get 10bit hevc encode.

Before transcoding can I select  between Hardware, GPU or Software acceleration ? So I do performance/quality testing on my own and then decide which mode to use.

Artem_S_Intel
Employee
672 Views

On Skylake for HEVC 10 bit encode you will be able to use only SW or GPU accelerated, hardware HEVC 10 bit encode available starting Kabylake(7th generation Intel Core)

Max_M_3
Beginner
672 Views

HI INTEL Skylake Gurus, We need to transcode around 130 MPEG2 channels to HEVC 8 bit 1080p, 720p and 480p. Which Scalable CPUs and server architecture would you recommend to get the most channels transcoded?