Transcoding video takes ages and ATI decided to make this faster by using the GPU for these kind of tasks. ExtremeTech got their hands on a beta version of Avivo Transcode:
The application only works with X1000 series graphics cards, and it only ever will. That's the only architecture with the necessary features to do GPU-accelerated video transcoding well.
So how fast is it? We shouldn't get into serious benchmarks while the application is in such an early state, but just to give you a taste of the numbers, we ran a few tests. Our test machine was an Athlon 64 X2 4800+ with 1 GB of very low latency RAM and a Radeon X1800 XT graphics card. We encoded a test clip from the movie The Rock,—a4-minute and 50-second clip that tends to be very tough on encoders. It's the same one we use in our CPU benchmarks..