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NAB 2019: NETINT Talks High-Density H.265 Encoding
Streaming Media's Jan Ozer and NETINT's Ray Adensamer discuss NETINT's Codensity T400, which is aimed at companies that need to do large live video encoding jobs at scale.
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Transcript

Jan Ozer: I'm here today with NETINT Technologies. Ray Adensamer who's got here at the show a very high-density H.264 and HEVC encoder that he's going to tell us about.

Ray Adensamer: Yeah, hi Jan, how are you?

Jan Ozer: I'm good, how are you? So tell us about this new product. What's the name, and what's it do?

Ray Adensamer: So our new product is the Codensity T400 video transcoder, and it brings three things together in a unique packaging. So first off is this ASIC-based encoding and decoding that gives us very, very high-density, 4Kp60 throughput, or up to eight sessions of 1080p H264/H265 transcoding. The second thing we've done is we've packaged this into a U.2 form factor, most people looking at this would say it looks like an SSD drive and in fact that's the technology it's based on. It's an NVMe interface designed to go into storage servers. And the third thing we do is we package that with an FFmpeg integration so anybody using FFmpeg port flows can quickly benefit from the densities that we can offer in this unit.

Jan Ozer: So who is the target customer and what are they going to use it for?

Ray Adensamer: Target customer would be anyone that needs to do large encoding at scale, right? So it could be live video streaming companies, it could be a CDN or cloud or edge computing company or even media companies themselves. We could package this up as capex deal or we're even discussing with some customers to do transcoding as a service.

Jan Ozer: Okay, the typical knock against hardware-based encoding has always been quality is basically lower than what you get with FFmpeg. What are you seeing in terms of quality?

Ray Adensamer: Yep. Fair comment. Our quality level has been tested by some of our customers and they've been pleasantly surprised by the quality levels that we can get with this. We currently tell customers we can do x265 medium in that range.

Jan Ozer: And that's real-time.

Ray Adensamer: And that's real-time. And that's the key to this is we're trying to address the market, the long tail, that 80% of that user-generated content that really needs to do these encoding ladders at scale in a high volume.

Jan Ozer: Okay, and tell me about the density of this unit again? Get a bit more specific, so how many inputs and outputs can I get from a single device?

Ray Adensamer: So, it's 4Kp60 throughput, and with that you can slice and dice it in a variety of ways. So for example, we can do eight sessions of 1080p H.264 coming in and transcode it to eight sessions of--

Jan Ozer: When you say 4Kp60, what are my outputs from that?

Ray Adensamer: So it could be 4Kp60 out, or it could be an encoding ladder. I think most of our customers would use this to generate encoding ladders. So, typically you could have four 1080ps coming in, and then you can do eight step encoding ladder for each one. 32 streams going out.

Jan Ozer: Okay, and what are you saying about the retail price?

Ray Adensamer: Retail price is U.S. $2,500, and when you model that economics out it's very, very cost-effective to any of the software encoding on compute or even GPU or FPGA accelerator options that are out there on the market.

Jan Ozer: Okay, and I know the product is just shipping, do you have any customers yet?

Ray Adensamer: Yeah, one of our notable customers that we announced just before the show is Wangsu. Wangsu is a very, very large CDN and data center operator based out of China and they've been doing extensive testing with our product for a number of months already and they were pleasantly surprised by the encoding quality. With our product they're doing better encoding than what they're doing on software on CPUs today, and the announcement is they've begun the deployment of our product into their data centers.

Jan Ozer: Okay, congratulations.

Ray Adensamer: Thank you.

Jan Ozer: What are you seeing in terms of interest in HEVC versus H.264?

Ray Adensamer: We see them as the number one and number two codec in the world, so we think most of the tools and contribution that's coming in from a lot of the professional toolkits are still H.264, but most of the content, especially for user-generated content, that's being consumed are on mobile devices and there's H.265 decoders on many mobile devices, so that's our target market and we continue to see that as the strength of our product offering.

Jan Ozer: Okay, and how many of these on a 1RU server?

Ray Adensamer: In a 1RU server, so typically there's a number of NVMe storage class servers that are available, and a 1RU you can get 10 of these units in there, and in a 2RU you can get 24. And that's how we get the really, really high density to get the encoding at scale that we're talking about.

Jan Ozer: Okay, listen, good luck at the show and thanks for taking the time to talk to us.

Ray Adensamer: Thanks for coming by, Jan. Thank you.

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