Xbox 360 gets new 1080p HD video codecs
Ah, nothing like the smell of fresh codecs in the morning. Hidden inside the list of new features to be bundled with the spring dashboard update is a handful of new video codecs that will be supported by the Xbox 360. The new codecs are H.264 and MPEG-4 Part 2. What does all this mean? Honesly, we have no idea. Lucky for us, our similarly bewildered kin at Joystiq found an answer. According to the video wiz kids at Red Kawa, "This puts Microsoft at the head of the pack in the Apple TV vs PS3 vs Xbox 360 video battle royale." The 360 will be able to display 1080p H.264 Level 4.1 and H.264 High Profile. This bests Apple TV which is maxed at 720p H.264 Level 3.1 and H.264 Main Profile. As for the PS3, it supports 1080p H.264 but only at H.264 Main Profile. Take that ... probably!
One important note, this does not mean that the Xbox 360 will finally support DivX or Xvid. All your torrenting fantasies will have to wait. Still, this will add some more decent HD video capability to the Xbox 360, and that's always a good thing.
[Via Joystiq. Thanks to the video junkies that sent this in.]
Reader Comments (Page 1 of 2)
4-10-2007 @ 1:55PM
I don't see Microsoft doing DIVX anytime soon. why? the Video Marketplace.
Then again, the people who use DIVX aren't the people who buy on Video Marketplace.
4-10-2007 @ 2:05PM
I beg to differ. The ease of use of Xbox Live marketplace will definately attract folks who use torrents simply because the quality is better and its so freaking easy.
I am an avid user of uTorrent and believe you me...I would gladly pay money for Lost and The Office if they were available on the marketplace.
4-10-2007 @ 2:23PM
I just love the MGS ref: I always think of it when I hear the word 'codec' :)
4-10-2007 @ 2:58PM
I knew I was transcoding my MST3K archive for a reason!
4-10-2007 @ 3:03PM
I use Videora 360 video converter and then i can watch my torrent movies on my tv thru my 360...so yea. doesnt really affect me...but still...360 FTW!
4-10-2007 @ 3:10PM
Shawn Smith said...
When the Xbox 360 version of MGS4 is completed, it likely will use VC-1 at 720p resolution, which will mean the amount of space used for the movie-scene sequences will take up many times less space on the disc. Remember, a 720p files is automatically six times smaller than a 1080p file, yet there is very little difference between the two in terms of what the human eye can see, particularly when you consider that the Xbox 360 upconversion chip will be upconverting the 720p file to 1080p resolution, anyways.
So, there is no doubt about it, Metal Gear Solid 4 can easily fit on ONE disc for the Xbox 360.
Sony's marketing bafoons might say stupid things like, The Playstation 3 is a gormet dinner you eat only at anniversaries, while the Xbox 360 is a special meal you eat twice a month, and the Wii is just an everyday cafeteria meal...or something to that effect, and ANY third-party developer who agrees with that sort of marketing nonsense is just a zombie with no personality of his own, regardless of how he changes that analogy. That is the whole reason why Sony's Ken Kutaragi got his face placed on George Foreman's body, while the Playstation 3 ended up looking like a George Foreman grill in that famous picture!
A much better analysis would similar to saying that the Playstation 3 is like a cheap movie theater in a small town, where there are outdated speakers make with lead-coated tweeters, and a projector that has all sorts of video problems that make it so it isn't even as good as your TV at home.
The Xbox 360 is more like one of the high-definition downloaded files such as a high-definition movie or high-definiton TV show, and you are watching it on one of those HUGE 60", 70" or 103" Panasonic or Sharp HDTV sets, with an awesome Denon THX audio/video receiver with speakers that have Titanium coated tweeters that blow away the stuff at movie theaters!
That is why the Xbox 360 has sold so much better than the Playstation 3. The same reason that Sega ended up leaving the hardware industry. Sega just couldn't come to the reality that the home console hardware had reached the point of the arcade hardware; Sega always wanted to keep the arcade hardware better, so that you always were motivated to go to play their arcade games. But Sega's competition didn't see it that way.
In that same way, Sony doesn't want to lose money from their CD's that people might purchase, so they don't let people listen to MP3 or WMA or iPod songs while playing games, the way that the Xbox 360 does. Microsoft wants what is best for gamers, so that is why they let Xbox 360 gamers do that.
The Xbox 360 offers the best gaming experience available today, because of the offline features with the music and rumble, along with all of the online features such as Online Voice-Chat that is in all of those third-party Xbox 360 games, while the PS3 versions of those third-party games don't offer the Online Voice Chat.
I think we all agree Metal Gear Solid 4 will come to the Xbox 360, even if Konami has to let another development team do a port of the game. But, the Xbox 360 version will actually be superior in many ways, and Kojima-san will end up looking like an unskilled programming idiot when it is all over, because the Xbox 360 version of MGS4 will have Rumble, it will have Online features the PS3 version doesn't, it will have the ability to let you listen to whatever music you want to while playing, it will have better lighting and textures, along with a smoother framerate.
4-10-2007 @ 3:19PM
Divx should be supported but only as a MArketplace purchase for the codec. This gives Microsoft and Divx some income against those who'd solely use it for illicitly obtained content. If they cut in the MPAA for a small piece of the action it might keep their complaints at bay, too.
4-10-2007 @ 3:26PM
whoa, whoa, whoa... shawn this has nothing to metal gear solid 4 stop it.
4-10-2007 @ 3:45PM
Michael Paul said...
Has Microsoft ever said they are ducking DiVx for a GOOD reason? A small amount of setup and a large amount of time and any DiVx file you can get can be converted to a slightly-larger WMV, so is the 360-ban just to annoy people into using WMV directly?
I am waiting for an anti-TVersity patch, that detects on-the-fly DiVx-to-WMV encoding, maybe all non-indexed WMV, and refuses to play it. Again, the annoyance factor will make at least one or two people out there mend their evil ways...
4-10-2007 @ 3:52PM
For the guy that said the quality of xbox live marketplace videos is better than videos you can download through torrents, obviously doesnt have very good sites. I have a TON of 1080p movies i've downloaded throughout the year in various different formats, and they ALL look better than marketplace videos, as the marketplace videos are compressed HD.
Dont use Tversity to stream, use orb, it works soooo much better. It would be nice if the 360 supported divx/xvid.. but it wont effect me.
4-10-2007 @ 4:07PM
Otis Whitaker said...
"When the Xbox 360 version of MGS4 is completed, it likely will use VC-1 at 720p resolution, which will mean the amount of space used for the movie-scene sequences will take up many times less space on the disc."
MGS games' movies are rendered in real time, not videos.
4-10-2007 @ 4:20PM
Silver R. Wolfe said...
And the whole gourmet dinner thing came from Kojima, the creator of MGS. Way to go off on a tangent Shawn.
4-10-2007 @ 4:36PM
I'd love for MS to add Divx support to the 360, but I doubt it will ever happen. I for one use both the video marketplace AND transcode360 for my divx needs, so I'm good either way if they implement divx support
4-10-2007 @ 6:00PM
Well I'm still using my modded xbox to play divx and xvid off my pc on to my HD but is this divx support will come I could finaly bood my old Xbox out. But that will not happen any time soon I'll sooner buy my self a media center ore use the transcode360 than that microsoft will give ore sell us the codec.
@shawn Wow that is a big ass comment, but the reson is very simple why 360 is out selling the ps3.
1. 12 months head start
4. Xbox live
The normal gamer does not care for playing movies of his PC on his 360. They do care about marketpalce..
P.s. #5 is comming ;) and it starts with an H
4-10-2007 @ 8:28PM
so will i be able to straem movies from my ipod onto my 360?
4-10-2007 @ 11:29PM
"When the Xbox 360 version of MGS4 is completed, it likely will use VC-1 at 720p resolution, which will mean the amount of space used for the movie-scene sequences will take up many times less space on the disc"
ASfar as i know.... VC-1 is a HD codec and nothing more which only work on a HD player HD-dvd/Bu-ray
The xbox 360 dvd could not even read VC-1........ SO how in the hell would a game run on it :P .....sorry i could be wrong
4-11-2007 @ 12:07AM
@2, sorry, but i too am an avid utorrent user, utorrent ftw, and have many 1080p tv and movies. Before that i got many a axxo files which i converted to mp4 for my ipod. so this makes me a happy camper as the 360 is isnt hooked up to the hdtv, women you cant live with um, you cant kill em am i right?
4-11-2007 @ 1:47AM
It hasn't been mentioned yet, more than likely because its pretty obvious... But as one of the companies that is hit the hardest be piracy, I don't feel very optimistic that xvid or dvix will ever be compatible on the 360. Case in point is the number of users that unethically download files via p2p. I'm not pointing fingers or anything like that... I'm not all that innocent either. I think that anyone that has the internet has at least tried it once... 'it' being a torrent or p2p client.
But especially with MS pushing the HD DVD format the way they are, it would be foolhardy to allow those codecs to work properly on the 360... The main reason being that the company wants to attract more studios to its cadre... which could very well happen with the general consensus on the PS3 these days.
Most people would say its because MS wants to push the XBLM, but I think they're equally invested in their want for the HD DVD format to gain ground...
4-11-2007 @ 1:49AM
Shawn Smith said...
Xbox 360 allows you to use the Xbox Live Marketplace to download all sorts of high-definition movies and high-definition TV shows. All of those end up being displayed in 720p resolution.
4-11-2007 @ 1:55AM
Shawn Smith said...
If the stuff about MGS4 being in real-time rather than CG is true, then there is absolutely no reason why the game would not fit on a dual layer DVD.
When Sony claims that cames like Genji, Untold Legends, and Resistance: FOM are taking up all of that extra space that a DVD could not hold it, they are obviously telling more of their marketing nonsense lies. Just look at the way each of those games had disappointing graphics. Even the developers of Resistance admitted that Gears of War had much better graphics after Resistance receive only a score of 6 out of 10 in some of the European reviews.
Also, games like Gears of War, Lost Planet, Crackdown, Mass Effect, and Bioshock prove the Xbox 360 does real-time graphics better than the Playstation 3.
Also, Sony can't be trusted with their demo stuff that is supposedly real-time. Just look at the way all of those games from the 2005 E3 ended up being announced as real-time, but at the 2006 E3, we found out none of them were real-time.
Metal Gear Solid 4 didn't look good at all when it was shown at the Tokyo Game Show. The stuff at the Tokyo Game Show, which showed the game being played, looked very disappointing. Not impressive at all. If that is the way the actual game ends up, then it won't matter if the game comes to the Xbox 360 or not.