Evaluating the Robustness of Commercial Video Codecs on Wireless Networks

J. Silvestre, P. Manzoni, M.P. Malumbres, and J. Pons (Spain)


Video Coding, Wireless Networks, Robust Video Transmission, Performance Evaluation.


Currently, the research and development of multimedia networking systems is getting an great impulse due to the demand of applications and services from the entertainment and audio-visual industry. Both, networks and media coding systems are tightly coupled with this kind of applications. In particular, we are working with video transmission over wireless networks, where the poor quality of transport service of these networks becomes the task of sending video a very exciting challenge. In this paper, we will study the robustness of commercial implementations of the most popular video coding techniques (i.e.: MPEG-4, H.263 and MJPEG) when video is sent across a wireless ad-hoc network. We will analyze the impact on the reconstructed video quality of the behaviour of wireless network. Experimental results show that those video codecs that do not employ temporal redundancy (MJPEG) reduction are significantly more robust that the others. However, MJPEG offers very poor video quality when it works at low to very-low bit rates. Finally, H.263 video codec offers the best results in terms of robustness, but if video quality is the main target, then MPEG-4 (DivX) would be the best candidate.

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