How to play HDTV videos on your PC

Posted on Thursday, Dec 07 2006 @ 13:15 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
K-Rad explains what you need to play HDTV content on your PC:
h.264 / MPEG-4 AVC files. The latest, greatest MPEG codec, which can’t seem to decide on a name. This is the same encoding technology used by Blu-Ray, but these are not direct Blu-Ray rips. These often come in the .MKV file format, which is simply an alternative to .AVI, but open-source and with more features. TV shows like CSI and Heroes often come in this format, and are usually 1.2 GB per 40 minute episode.

Xvid/DivX MPEG-4 files. These are becoming rare, as once you get up there in resolution and bit rate, the demands on the CPU are quite high. Still, they are out there. I have the full collection of BBC’s Planet Earth in 1080p XviD. Playing these files yields the highest CPU usage (over 30% on a Core 2 Duo 6800). Each 60 minute episode is about 3 GB...

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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