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Intel® Atom™ Processor E6xx Hardware Accelerated Video Encoding

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Intel® Atom™ Processor E6xx Hardware Accelerated Video Encoding

Introduction

The features and wide acceptance of the H.264 video standard make it applicable to a wide variety of applications and markets including the embedded devices segment.

While providing good video quality at a very low bit rate, H.264 encoding requires significant computing power, which makes it a challenging task for the embedded CPUs that operate within a very limited power envelope. Low-power platforms based on the Intel® Atom™ processor E6xx series allow offloading this specific task to the POWERVR* VXE core, thus releasing the main CPU for other workload.

Under Linux*, this capability is made available to application developers through the same open source Video Acceleration API* (VAAPI*) that also supports the more ubiquitous task of offloading video decode when doing video playback. There are many articles and open source applications that show how to use VAAPI for video decoding and playback. Video encoding remains a less known feature of VAAPI.

Intel also provides support for hardware accelerated video encoding through the GStreamer* framework, by means of closed source GStreamer plugins. Application writers who would want more control of the encoding process—targeting more specific and high performance applications—might still want to use the VAAPI directly.

This paper covers the step-by-step application of the VAAPI for video encoding of a raw video data stream captured using a simple web camera.

Read the full Intel® Atom™ Processor E6xx Hardware Accelerated Video Encoding White Paper.