News For Pocket PC Video FanaticsNews For Pocket PC Video Fanatics

I'm getting a bit tired of all the iPod coverage in the press recently, including my own iPod versus PDA article recently.

This has just been tempered with excellent technology news for the Pocket PC video playback freaks among us.

If you've spent most of your waking life waiting for videos to finish transcoding into a suitable Pocket PC format, read on.

ATI has introduced GPU-acclerated video transcoding in its latest video card for digital media hounds. This translates into a way, way shorter duration as the GPU actively assists in tasks like this.

I once told someone a couple of years ago that pigs would fly before such technology came to fruition.

Consider this article a public apology. Hope you're reading.

Jason Cross reported on the ExtremeTech site that their new Radeon X1800 XT video card can quite possibly make ATI the king of the video encoder mountain.

You'll remember that I referenced the Pocket TV application in a recent article as a Pocket PC answer, of sorts, to the ever increasingly ubiquitous video iPod in their WalMart-like pervasiveness.

As it turns out, you'll have to spend some time doing the dreaded video encoding dance with this app.

There are a number of Pocket PC encoders for optimal playback in Pocket TV.

If you're looking to encode with a smaller size and bitrate, the Radeon X1800 is your answer to Pocket PC transcoding hell.

Of course, prepare to give your financial pound of flesh when it hits the market on November 5th, 2005 for $549 USD ($648 CDN) for the 512 MB version.

I'm not really looking forward to paying the hideous GST and PST inflicted on we Torontonians, either.

Still, it may be worth your while if time is of the essence.

The Extreme Tech author conducted some encoding tests on a video clip of The Rock.

The clip, said to be brutal enough to make any CPU cry uncle, is used as a common benchmark.

The 5 minute DVD clip, at DVD resolution, was clocked at 2 minutes 17 seconds using DivX.

In the ATI Avivo Transcode app, the same clip took 24 seconds.

Both test were run on an Athlon 64 X2 4800+ with 1 GB RAM.

He discovered a general 5 to 1 super boost over CPU transcoding speed.

Not bad at all if you're on a quest to encode all three Harry Potter movies into an optimal format for your Pocket PC SD card in one evening.

Nevertheless, video iPod users are probably covering their grins right now.

by Damian Julien
References and Bibliography

Damian Julien is a Pocket PC gaming authority and long time general gaming hobbyist and reviewer.

He is an IT specialist by trade and has posted numerous articles on Pocket PC emulators, gaming and trends in the industry.

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