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CPU Load at HD Video Playback: Free HD Content

Once the most popular codec for illegally distributed video, DivX has lost its ground by now. MPEG4-AVC is getting more popular for HD content while Xvid is used for ordinary DVD ripping. However, Divx company is making efforts to get back to the scene. Perhaps they will succeed.

But it is clear that the GPU developers do little for hardware acceleration of DivX decoding. Many graphics cards, including the Radeon HD 4550, require more than half of the CPU resources to decode DivX HD.

Considering that every modern GPU incorporates an MPEG2 decoder, no wonder that all of them deliver good results when playing MPEG2 clips or movies with a resolution of 1920x1080.

MPEG4-AVC/H.264 enjoys tremendous popularity, so it is good that the average CPU load is no higher than 3.5% when decoding a 720p stream.

The 720p clip encoded with VC-1 has a frame rate of 60fps, so playing it requires a lot of resources, particularly CPU resources. The Radeon HD 4550 copes with the job well enough. It is equal to its opponents in this test.

The WMV HD format is leaving place for VC-1, but we still publish the results of this test. The graphics cards deliver similar performance here in terms of CPU load. However, we had expected more from the Radeon HD 4550 considering its targeting at HTPCs.

 
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