Keyword - Blu-Ray

Entries feed - Comments feed

18 October 2012

VLC media player 2.0.4 and VLC for Android 0.0.6

VLC 2.0.4

So, yet another release for VLC is around the corner. Why should you care?

Well, first, it shows that the VLC project is still quite alive and that we care about our users, even if we are focusing on 2.1.0.

Then, a bit of stabilization of the 2.0.x branch cannot be bad. :)

For a summary of the most important features, you have:

  • Support for Opus codec, including multi-channel and icecast streams,
  • Support for MSS1 and MSS2 codecs through DMO on Windows and Linux (this can still be hard to use until 2.1.0).
  • Support for Youtube Live Streams,
  • Support for BluRays correctly on OSX,
  • Karaoke control on OSX interface.

For important fixes, we have also:

  • Youtube, Vimeo, Koreus and Soundcloud are back,
  • Ogg duration should be fixed in most cases,
  • HLS, Dash, HTTPS, MKV and Ogg playback fixes,
  • Wallpaper is back on Windows 7 and 8,
  • Huge improvements in the OSX interface,
  • Lots of fixes in the Qt interface,
  • Windows 8 look is now correct,
  • Crashes in subtitles, hardware acceleration fixed,
  • Web interface improvements,
  • Audio devices selections fixes and synchronizations,
  • Security issues.

And of course, translations!

VLC for Android Beta 6

At the same time, you might have seen that we have done quite a few VLC for Android releases:

After 0.0.3 and 0.0.4, 2 weeks ago, 0.0.5 and 0.0.6 have been released in the last week.

So, what are the cool things in?

More devices

One of the big issues we have been facing was to support the maximum of devices with only one package.

The first thing was the port of VLC on Android to Intel x86 chips.

Then, we had to work on NEON autodetection, in order to support all Tegra2 tablets and phones directly. A bit hard to do, but, now, our ARMv7 packages work on both NEON and devices without NEON.

Finally, we've done quite a few fixes for devices like the Nexus 7, that allocate the memory in a different way than other devices...

More Android support

We have also been working quite hard to fix our behaviour on all android versions, from 2.1 to 4.1.

Android 2.1 is really slow and buggy, but we need to support it while adding the coolest features from 4.0 and 4.1.

A lot of fixes for compatibility went in, notably in 0.0.4 and 0.0.5.

New interface

As you can see in the following screenshot, we have also been working in having a better User Interface and User eXperience on both tablets and phones.

VLC 0.0.6 on Android

VLC 0.0.6 on Android - Audio

This is long and difficult, and we move step-by-step, but we are going in the right direction.

Performance

In terms of video performance, VLC is still in beta, in debug mode, and therefore slower than it should be.

We are also improving there, but it is not easy, especially with the very limited numbers of devices we have on our hands. We have still quite a few ideas to improve.

In terms of the UI, we are decreasing the CPU and the memory used for snapshots and audio cover arts, so that the UI is smoother. You can see that in 0.0.6 and will see it more in 0.0.7.

Our background audio service is now completely asleep when not used, and is awaken on phone calls, as needed.

Still in beta

Yet, as you might know about it, this is still not perfect, and needs some work, so this is still a beta!

6 February 2012

VLC 2.0 pour MacOS X

Intro

La nouvelle version de VLC, nommée TwoFlower ou 2.0, apporte de nombreuses améliorations et modifications spécifiques à MacOS X. Ce petit article permet de passer en revue ces améliorations, qui sont souvent peu décrites dans les articles plus généralistes.

Ces dernières années, le développement de VLC sous OSX a été un peu chaotique et incertain, avec un vrai questionnement sur le futur du projet. Néanmoins, sur l'année passée, Félix, aidé par plusieurs autres développeurs externes, par le reste de l'équipe de VLC et par un jeune designer, a pris le taureau par les cornes. Il est évident que de nombreux bugs resteront sur les premières moutures, mais les versions devraient se suivre rapidement pour réparer vos bugs les plus gênants.

Nouvelle Interface

La modification la plus visible de Twoflower est la nouvelle interface. Cette interface remplace l'ancienne interface, qui datait des premières versions de OSX.

Tout d'abord, cette interface se présente en une seule fenêtre, pour mieux coller au look actuel des applis OS X. Ensuite, elle existe en deux couleurs: une version noire, qui ressemble au look QuickTime X, et une version grise, comme pour Lion. De plus, sous Lion, elle permet de choisir entre le plein écran natif Lion ou le plein écran classique de VLC.

La plupart des fenêtres utiles lors de la visualisation des vidéos, notamment les filtres audio et vidéo, ont migré vers le style gris transparent HUD. De nombreuses autres fenêtres ont évolués, mais sans bouleversement.

Extensions

La nouvelle interface supporte les extensions lua de VLC pour créer des nouvelles fenêtres et fonctionnalités, comme l'intégration IMDB, Wikipedia, OpenSubtitles et autres. Ce support a été fait tardivement dans le développement, donc une période de stabilisation sera probablement nécessaire.

Périphériques

Jusqu'ici, sous Mac, VLC ne pouvait lire que la webcam intégrée. À partir de VLC 2.0, un support générique des périphériques QTKit a été ajouté pour l'audio (QTSound) et pour la vidéo (QTCapture). Cela devrait permettre de visionner et de rediffuser les webcams externes USB et FireWire, les microphones ainsi que les cartes DVB et SDI compatibles.

Au niveau du support Blu-Ray, VLC 2.0 permet de lire des disques et des dossiers non chiffrés de façon limitée, sous Linux et Windows. Une fois que certains bugs seront résolus, cela devrait être aussi le cas sous MacOS X, mais probablement seulement sous Snow Leopard et Lion. Pour les Blu-Rays chiffrés, la bibliothèque libaacs, n'est pas encore porté sous MacOS X. Avis aux amateurs!

Codecs

La version MacOS X de VLC 2.0 bénéficiera du même support amélioré des codecs, des formats et des filtres vidéos que les versions des autres plate-formes. La partie la plus intéressante concerne le décodage multi-threadé des codecs majeurs pour profiter des machines modernes multi-cores. De nouveaux codecs sont supportés, comme le ProRes, l'AVC/Intra, les codecs 10bits et certaines nouvelles variantes WMV. Le support des formats de fichiers existants a aussi nettement été amélioré, notamment pour le MKV et le MOV.

Le décodage GPU sous OSX, aka VDADecoder, n'est pas de la partie dans cette version, pour des raisons de priorité de développement. Sébastien, développeur VLC, a porté le code dans FFmpeg, mais la partie VLC n'est pas encore prête. On espère que cela arrivera dans une version mineure suivante.

Sortie vidéo

La sortie vidéo, en OpenGL a subit quelques modifications, simplifications et améliorations. Dorénavant, les sous-titres sont rendus à la taille de la fenêtre de sortie, quel que soit la source et directement fusionnés avec la vidéos en OpenGL. Cela améliore la qualité et la netteté des sous-titres. De plus, l'utilisation de fragment shaders pour faire les conversions d'espace de couleurs, même lorsque la source est en 10bits, devrait améliorer les performances.

Support OS X et PowerPC

Cette version 2.0 est compatible Leopard, Snow Leopard et Lion. La version intel 64 bits est la version prioritaire pour Snow Leopard et Lion, car elle seule a le support natif du plein écran sous Lion. La version intel 32 bits fonctionne quant à elle aussi sous Leopard. Il existe toujours une version powerpc pour Leopard, mais qui n'est testée que sous G5, faute de matériel. Cette version powerpc supporte aussi le multi-threading pour le décodage des formats HD, pour ne pas jeter tout de suite les derniers Mac Pro G5 ;) Il est cependant possible que la prochaine version majeure (2013?) ne supporte plus cette architecture.

Le futur

Plusieurs pistes de travail sont en cours: finir l'interface et la peaufiner pour palier aux manques qui seront forcément présents dans les premières versions, travailler sur le support Blu-Ray qui reste trop basique, intégrer le code pour le décodage GPU et changer la licence de VLCKit vers la LGPL afin de permettre de construire des applications non-GPL au-dessus du moteur de VLC.

Nota Bene: Cet article a été écrit par mes soins et donné gracieusement à MacBidouille et Mac4ever.

5 December 2011

VLC 1.2.0 features: part 2, formats

VLC 1.2.0

I've spoken already about VLC 1.2.0, especially about video, video again and authoring.

However, I haven't spoken about the format supported in VLC 1.2, even if there were some hints in my last post.

Discs and devices

Blu-Ray

One of the major cool thing of 1.2, will be a (very partial) support for Blu-Rays.

Through the VideoLAN project libbluray, VLC 1.2 should be able to open unencrypted disks and backup folders.

Playback of commercially encrypted disks is also doable, but I won't detail the setup here.

DVDs

The whole stack of DVD playback libraries has been updated for VLC 1.2.0.

The releases of libdvdnav, libdvdread, libdvdcss should help to playback more recent disks and fix quite a few annoying issues.

Capture devices

  • In addition to quite a few fixes on DirectShow and V4L2 capture modules, QTCapture and QTSound capture modules were added for VLC for MacOS X. Requiring QuickTime 7.6.3, it should allow VLC to play, record and stream any QTKit device.
  • Decklink and DVEO/Linsys/ComputerModules SDI and SDI-HD cards are now supported as input.
  • PulseAudio devices are now supported as input too.

File formats and protocols

Adaptive Streaming

VLC 1.2 should support, at least partially:

  • HTTP live streaming, aka HLS, in both live and VOD mode;
  • MPEG DASH, aka Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP, in at least 2 profiles.

Those are still under heavy work, help is welcome.

File formats

First, we will have a completely rewritten support for still images playback. The removal of the old fake module should help to make simpler diaporamas with VLC.

Of course, VLC supports new formats, like caf, mtv, awb, f4v, amr, vro (DVD-VR), VDR recordings folders, EBU subtitles (stl). It also supports sid files, from Commodore 64.

The most important improvements to our existent formats should concern Matroska and TS.

A lot of work has been spent on our Matroska demuxer, to handle split-segments and correct seeking. There is still some work to do, but it should be light-year ahead of VLC 1.1.x.

For broadcast and professional people, in addition to the STL subtitles, we have now durations in the Mpeg2 TS files.

Metadata

Finally, we've worked quite a bit on the Metadata support for most file formats.

APE tags, Ogg tags, seeking in flv, mxf, amr should be better supported. Also, as frequently requested, embedded cover arts in wmv, asf, wma are now correctly detected. The missing bits for cover art support are mainly for MKV and APE formats.

Styles for various subtitles formats are also better supported, especially for simple file formats.

Codecs

Codecs support has also improved quite a bit, but that's for the next blogpost. :D

3 December 2011

Disc libraries releases: bluray, aacs, dvdcss

So, we are working quite actively on VLC 1.2. Many improvements were merged into VLC 1.2, notably for DVD and Blu-Ray playback.

Therefore, there were a few releases of libraries used by VLC, lately.

libbluray 0.2.1

A contrario of this weird number, this is actually the first release of libbluray that is usable.

libbluray is an open-source library designed for Blu-Ray Discs playback for media players, like VLC, xine or MPlayer.

It could be seen as the equivalent to libdvdnav, but for Blu-Ray Discs.

libaacs 0.3.0

In spite of this weird number too, this is actually the first release of libaacs.

libaacs is an open-source library implementing the AACS specification, for all systems, for interoperability.

True, stand-alone, it is of very little use :D

libdvdcss 1.2.11

I am, de facto, the new maintainer of libdvdcss. Congratz to me!

Therefore, I've done a release: 1.2.11.

This is just a boring release, just to incorporate patches and small maintenance, but shows that the project is still alive.

Other libraries

I just wanted to mention that:

  • libdvdnav 4.2.0
  • libdvdread 4.2.0
  • libdvbpsi 0.2.2 (not disc related)

were released too, in the last weeks.

Those projects are still alive and maintained. Cool.

8 August 2010

So, I bought a blu-ray drive... [Part 2]

This is the follow-up to the part 1.

Update to the part 1

In the first part, I was wrong when I said that there were 4 programs scheduled to start with Windows... There are 5 of them...

Oh, and one of them (the LG fwupdate.exe) requires UAC to launch, and asks for permission at each start... Oh, why?!?

Initial success over HDCP

Whatever, I've spent some time to fight the HDCP problem... I will not detail all the steps I went through here, but the solution.

Funnily, the only way I could play the BD, was to replace by DVI cable with a VGA cable, since my Monitor is able to get input from VGA. My GPU only has a DVI, so a VGA/DVI convertor was used.

Initial success

Going the VGA way helped me to have a playback with PowerDVD of more than 3 seconds. Yay!

A few questions though:

  • Is it full resolution? No idea!
  • So, using VGA is ok, but not DVI? Don't you think I can copy the same?
  • Why is PowerDVD deactivating Aero? It is 2010, and Vista has been out since more than 3 years...
  • Why is the taskbar still on top when I play with PowerDVD? Very nice to playback a Video with it above...
  • Why can't I navigate in the menus with the mouse?

Anyway, I can play one disc, so let's say that I won almost a point on it:
Blu-Ray: 1 - 1 :JB

Initial failure

Let's be a bit less optimistic though, out of the 4 BD-Video, 2 of them play, 2 don't...

No error messages, updated drive, software, player, nothing to do...

Maybe I'll install another player, like WinDVD...

6 August 2010

So, I bought a blu-ray drive... [Part 1]

Going to buy a drive

Today, after getting out of work, I went to buy a Blu-Ray drive, so I can watch HD movies on my computer.

My computer is a big tower, with eSata and a few drives and enough horsepower to decode those Hi-Def movies. I even have a Windows 7 on it!
So, it should be working.

I went to my local computer store and bought a LG drive, pretty standard one.

Drive Installation

It took me some times to plug everything in, since my tower is a bit crowed, and my easy-to-access eSata ports are running short :D

Reboot and everything... Tada, it will work now :D

First playback... or not... and more installation

I put my new MGM movie in it. WMP12 doesn't like it at all:

"Windows Media Player cannot play the DVD. The disc was created in a manner that the Player does not support". Bleh, I'll try the software from the DVD delivered with the drive.

Installation

I then install Blu-Ray Power Suite with a lot of software and PowerDVD installing 160MB of mess (why that much?). And I reboot.

After reboot, PowerDVD warns me about updates. I download 100MB from Internet and install them and reboot...

And so does the LG drive update firmware... And reboot...

At each start-up, they launches 4 software to enable "me": brs.exe, PDVDServ.exe, Language.exe and fwupdate.exe. Why? Oh, why?

Second playback... or not...

Now that all is up-to-date, I can play movies, yay... not!

At each start, PowerDVD switches back from Aero to Basic colors and ask me to register: "I DON'T WANT TO REGISTER, YOU BAST**D"!

And, it still doesn't work, with any of my discs, because it wants HDCP, and I use my old DVI to connect to my screen...

Conclusion

Blu-Ray: 1 - 0 :JB

Let's see how this will go on: in part 2.

- page 2 of 3 -