Video Technology Magazine July 2004               

Video Software Development services
John Sokol is video streaming veteran, and has created many Unix, Linux and Windows video streaming applications in C and C++. John and team have just finished a Security CCTV DVR on Windows and are now available for long or short-term contracts or possibly fulltime Hire.

For more information see: John Sokol's Resume

First IPV6 Network Camera
Panasonic KX-HCM280v6 and KX-HCM230v6 are the first IPV6 based cameras. They have a built in web server and support Motion JPEG 30fps at 320x240 and 10fps at 640x480. Both also have built in PTZ (Pan Tilt Zoom) Functionality and a 21x optical zoom.

Toshiba/Matsushita Release Cellphone TV Display
6/25/04 Toshiba/Matsushita released the LTM024D260 display. This is a 240x345 display. A 320x240(QVGA/quarter NTSC) plus and additional 25 pixels for a control interface.

The TFT-LCD is a semi-transparent polysilicon, which incorporates a new color filter giving it visual similiarity to LEDs (we'll believe it when we see it). The display has 260,000 Colors, and is 6.1 cm(2.4 inches) diagonal.

Macromedia Flash Video Streaming and FlashCast
There is a new video format in town, FLV (FLash Video) I have also seen them show up at .xl files. Flash MX video white paper

See here for Demo

The installed base for flash is 98% where java is only 88% and MS MediaPlayer is 64%, Real 58% Apple Quicktime 53% and ViewPoint 43%. (Source)
Although only Flash 6 and 7 support Flash Video that has an installed base of 93.5% in the US as of March 2004.

From the white paper: Flash Video is based on the H.263 video compression standard. Itís based on the version of H.263 dated May 1996, sometimes referred to as H.263v1. This is distinct from the revised version of H.263, dated February 1998, sometimes referred to as H.263v2 or H.263+.

The following H.263 features have been removed from the Flash Video format:
* GOB (group of blocks) layer
* Split-screen indicator
* Document camera indicator
* Picture freeze release
* Syntax-based arithmetic coding
* PB-Frames
* Continuous presence multipoint
* Overlapped block motion compensation

The following non -H.263 features have been added to the Flash Video format:
* Disposable frames (difference frames with no future dependencies)
* Arbitrary picture width and height up to 65,535 pixels
* Unrestricted motion vector support is always on
* A deblocking flag is available to suggest the use of a deblocking filter

Detailed technical information about the FLV file format is published as part of the SWF specification at
An open source implementation of the FLV video format is available at

Flash Lite for Symbian allows flash video to play on cell phones, it also enables phone play for MP3, PCM, ADPCM, and SMAF audio formats.


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Microsoft's Media Center PC
Microsoft Media Center PC Officialy called "Windows XP Media Center Edition 2004" is Microsoft's PVR Solution. It is also so poorly marketed at this point it's almost a secret.

MCP (Media Center PC) is a new Windows XP operating system available only on Media Center personal computers, what this means is even though it just a PVR application, it only comes with XP and only with selected vendors PC, and not available standalone, Although rumor it that internal to Microsoft it is available standalone and works great.

Many smaller companies like RicaVision are comming up with integrated systems for the PVR market that are essentialy PC's with appliance exteriors like a VCR/DVD player.

ViewSonic M2000 NextVision M2000 Digital Media Center billed as a "digital entertainment hub." is powered by a 2.8 GHz Pentium 4 processor with a 160GB hard drive. For $1900 US.

Sony VAIO VGC-RA810G Media Center PC uses quiet liquid cooling to makes it living-room-friendly
based on the new Intel 915P (Grantsdale) chipset. Intel Pentium 4 550 (3.4-GHz), 1GB DDR 400 SDRAM, 250GB SATA hard drive, ATI Radeon X600XT graphics, dual-layer DVD +/- RW drive, DVD-ROM drive, integrated Intel audio, Sony 2.1 speakers, Windows XP Media Center Edition 2004
Also comes with a 19-inch LCD monitor SDM-HX93 which accounts for $899.99 of the final price $3100

HP Media Center PC, PV m1050y Photosmart PC is the TOP RATED SYSTEM
a 3.6GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, DVD+RW drive and a DVD-ROM drive, an ATI Radeon X600 graphics card, and last, but not least, a 160GB removable Personal Media Drive which fits into a special docking bay through a slot on the front for removable hard drive cartridges.
$2,876 direct ($5,048 with 23-inch HD monitor)

Support and user sites :
The Green Button

Other PVR alternatives

MSI™ Media Center has it's own flavor of PVR software but also looks like an appliance.

MSI also has the MEGA 180, MEGA 400, MEGA 865 These are barebones PC's, add memory , CPU and Hard Drive to make a complete PVR/PC system. These system retail for $250 to $300 US.

View TV on your Computer Monitor
ViewSonic NextVision N6 allows you to use your High Res VGA monitor as a TV or HDTV display. and supports 480i, 480p, 576p, 720p, 1080i. It also has a built in tuner, S-Video, composite and YPbPr) RGB pass-through

The NextVision N6 provides reverse 3:2 pull down correction that eliminates jitter from DVD movies that originated from motion picture film. A digital 3-D comb filter, motion and adaptive de-interlacing improves the clarity and sharpness of the video image.
See What is EDTV and DCDI - Make NTSC/PAL look like HDTV for more info on these techniques

Copyright © 2004, John L. Sokol
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