WC4 Remake

Wedge009

Rogue Leader
Thanks. I was also aware of the basic grid concept from JPEG, which is obviously related to MPEG. As you say, I suppose the bulk of the improvement somehow comes from refining how they compress the data in those squares while still retaining as much of the data as possible, improving with each generation. I'm aware there's some interpolation that can be done between frames too, that helps with relatively static scenes. If they're really squeezing that much more detail out of the same bit-rate (or conversely, reducing bit-rate while maintaining detail), that's remarkable. They did it with the move from MP3 to AAC, so I suppose AVC/HEVC/VVC/etc is all just more work on the same. And then there's the royalty-free VP9 -> AV1... oh, it makes my head spin to keep up with all these standards...

Ah well, clearly you must be having an impact then.
 

Panther1.0

Ensign
I've also compared h.265 with older h.264 video files and I've noticed color improvement with the smaller x265 compressed files, TV episodes I compared some time ago, not sure if the colors were entirely accurate but the general quality seemed improved if the resolution does not fall to low or the compression not to severe like for example below 480p,

Like you mentioned I noticed higher CPU demand on them but it is very interesting what can be achieved going h.265...
 
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Vidmaster

Rear Admiral
I know folks (...) in places with reliable, high-bandwidth Internet are happy to 'stream' videos from on-line
People like that will be be doom of us all, jumping head-first in the trap called platform economy because it is so convenient in the short-term.
Yes, I am exaggerating :). But also yes, I think this is a massive problem.

Disney, GamePass, Netflix, HBO and the bane-of-all-existence, Amazon, all provide a great service at what is actually a pretty good bargain. But no one thinks of the long-term consequence of voting with their wallet for these kind of things.

At least Stadia is dying... for now.

There will be a day when you can still play Wing Commander 4 but are unable to enjoy last year's Madden (to stick with EA).
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
People like that will be be doom of us all, jumping head-first in the trap called platform economy because it is so convenient in the short-term.
Yes, I am exaggerating :). But also yes, I think this is a massive problem.

Disney, GamePass, Netflix, HBO and the bane-of-all-existence, Amazon, all provide a great service at what is actually a pretty good bargain. But no one thinks of the long-term consequence of voting with their wallet for these kind of things.

At least Stadia is dying... for now.

Yeah, the deal is irresistable here - for the subscription price, I get many more hours of entertainment than I could buying up discs. The overwhelming majority of things I only ever would have watched once, so it's essentially like I'm renting content for pennies on the dollar.

And the situation is magnified enormously when you have kids. It's one thing if you're comparing me watching a movie on my television via streaming or Bluray. But I don't just watch on one TV. It's not just a matter of walking over to the DVD shelf to pop discs in - in some cases it'd mean walking across the house and to a different floor to get a certain disc. I have Xbox/streaming setups in place in literally no less than ten rooms in my house right now. And at any given time, four to six of these might be on. Most services have some kind of family plan that lets you simultaneously stream to numerous devices for a couple more dollars. And that doesn't count mobile devices. On top of the TV, I've got five smartphones and four tablets that all actively get used for Netflix/DisneyPlus/YouTube/etc. And sometimes these get taken to the backyard, the park or the doctor's office and the content stream continues unbroken. Discs are just a complete nonstarter in my household in 2021.

There will be a day when you can still play Wing Commander 4 but are unable to enjoy last year's Madden (to stick with EA).

There's an easy enough modern EA/Wing Commander example! Wing Commander Arena will probably die when Microsoft no longer supports XBox 360 Live games. That's awful, but it doesn't change how for the 99% of other content, service-based delivery is the way to go. The converse example is that Wing Commander Academy could go out of print on DVD any day - but it's also available for streaming on Peacock at a moment's notice (and Peacock is free to most Comcast subscribers, so that's millions and millions of people with easy free access to the Wing Commander TV show!).
 

Wedge009

Rogue Leader
People like that will be be doom of us all, jumping head-first in the trap called platform economy because it is so convenient in the short-term.
That's another reason why I still prefer physical media even if I just wind up archiving it all on my HDD. As Chris alluded to, for the masses the immediate convenience trumps long-term concerns. Not saying 'streaming' itself is bad, but the market moves in a certain direction that alienates minorities like me. This applies to other things besides movies too and I know many here think I'm a fool for making these choices, but at least I still have choice... for the moment.

Edit: Back on topic, I belatedly realised UHD BDs exclusively use h.265 compared with h.264 on regular BDs. I suppose that's why they can pack in a wider spatial resolution when the disc data capacity is not much more than regular BDs.
 
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Pedro

Admiral
I'm huge on streaming of TV. I will still buy Blu-Rays but it's super rare.
I don't think that not owning the content is a big deal, I went from VHS to DVD to Blu-Ray for a number of movies; my iTunes purchases were all upgraded for free.
I wish the digital codes that come with some discs were done better, it'd be nice to see discs being a collectors item, that will still work in years, but realistically you're going to use the streaming versions.

Games are another matter entirely - they are active rather than passive so I don't play them whilst doing something else; I tend to play the same game broken up over months (once or twice a year I get hooked on a single game for a week, but nothing to justify the subscription). I can see the point in subscriptions though, just not for me.

Streaming is another matter though. The lag introduced in gaming for me makes it unusable. Every gaming purchase has reducing it in mind; the high refresh g-sync monitors, the quality of a TVs gaming mode, low latency gaming mice etc. Action games feel better than they have since the CRT days; the idea of losing those advantages is insane to me. I'll accept the compression artefacts no problem but streaming, even within the home, is 30ms I'm not willing to give up.
I can't even play action games on a TV anymore, they are frustrating rather than fun (admittedly you can get some TVs with great gaming modes now)- add streaming into that mix, especially with something like stadia and I'd rather watch TV which isn't negatively impacted by those delays.
 

AD

Finder of things, Doer of stuff
Regarding h.265, what is it that makes it compress so many times more?
It's also a case of hardware finally getting up to speed with decoding video fast enough. h265 is pretty essential in making it possible to stream 4k because it keeps the data sizes below the limits of the average person's bandwidth. The tradeoff though is that it's more CPU/GPU intensive than h264, which on current hardware isn't really as big of an issue.
 
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