TANDBERG Encoder Boosts Compression Efficiency 15%-30%, Uses 50% Less Power

By Adam Goldberg

TANDBERG Television (Booth SU5108) is demonstrating the EN8100 MPEG-2 SD encoder, a 1RU six-channel MPEG-2 SD encoder that achieves 15%-30% additional compression efficiency compared with any current MPEG-2 encoder, with 50% less power consumption.

TANDBERG engineers found the additional efficiency during investigation of compression algorithms for MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 encoding and applied these newly discovered techniques in a SD MPEG-2 encoder, which maintains compatibility with the existing MPEG-2 receiver population. Silicon developments provide significantly greater processing power, with attendant power savings.

“It has been designed from the ground up to deliver revolutionary encoding performance in a high-density, low-power chassis with 50% greater density per rack unit than any other existing MPEG-2 encoder,” says VP of Technology Matthew Goldman. “It’s the biggest improvement to MPEG-2 video in the last five years and will allow our customers to lower costs, reduce their carbon footprint, and better utilize their available bandwidth.”

The high density, high efficiency, and low power consumption together offer multichannel providers significant saving in infrastructure/HVAC and bandwidth. The bandwidth saving will help terrestrial broadcasters maintain their existing SD multicasts and begin experimenting with ATSC Mobile/Handheld services, according to TANDBERG. For multichannel providers, the additional compression efficiency increases utilization of existing transponder bandwidth, allowing more SD channels or HD channels, with decreased OPEX due to lower power consumption and heat dissipation. Power dissipation is stated to be as low as 47 W per channel.

The EN8100 brings some of the advantages MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 compression techniques to the existing MPEG-2 receivers and MPEG-2 systems. These efficiency benefits are available without accelerating STB replacement.

MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 encoding techniques adapted and applied to MPEG-2 SD encoding include Rate Distortion Optimization (RDO) and Adaptive GOP structures, as well as advanced preprocessing and multipoint encoding.