The Effects Of Video Compression

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If it was necessary to download every pixel of an 1080p HD video, running at 25 frames per second, I would be necessary to download almost 1.1 gigabits a second. That’s enough to max out the connections of nearly 54 average South Korean homes1, in a country with stronger internet speeds than nearly everyone else. A computer able to process such a huge amount of information at such high speeds would be massively expensive, to the point where it would be inaccessible to the majority of households. How, then, is video streaming at all possible? The answer lies with one of the most important standards in modern communication systems: Video Compression. Much of the desire behind more efficient compression algorithms lies in the problem of …show more content…

This process is carried out by pretty much every program dealing with images in modern computers, as without them, single images could take up multiple megabytes each, and result in easy clutter of data storage. This is further complicated with video, as it requires 25+ pictures to be evaluated each second, which could quickly overcome even some of the strongest home computers. Basic image compression acts as a simple touch-up to modern video, as it allows for a decent chunk of size to be easily cut down. On the contrary, however, it will significantly lower the quality of a video if used in excess, so it often acts as merely a supplement to other, more powerful compression techniques. This trade-off can be seen in the GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) standard4, which uses heavy intra-frame compression in order to save space, causing image quality to drop significantly. The most powerful technique seen in modern video compression is described as inter-frame compression, and it allows for many of the pixels of a video to simply be “repeated”, rather than replaced. While pure static may never be the same frame-by-frame, most videos will have some captured colors that appear the same between each frame captured. In order to save space, most modern standards can tell a computer to simply ‘replicate’ that color, instead of create it once again, in a much more fluid process, requiring much less data. Modern MPEG-1 and MPEG-2

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