H.264 Video Codecs Comparison

The MSU Graphics & Media Lab has released its eighth H.264 video codecs comparison. The main goal of this report is the presentation of a comparative evaluation of the quality of new H.264 codecs using objective measures of assessment.

The comparison was done using settings provided by the developers of each codec. The main task of the comparison is to analyze different H.264 encoders for the task of transcoding video—e.g., compressing video for personal use. Speed requirements are given for a sufficiently fast PC; fast presets are analogous to real-time encoding for a typical home-use PC.

The overall ranking of the software codecs tested in this comparison is as follows:

  1. x264
  2. MainConcept
  3. DivX H.264
  4. Elecard
  5. Intel Ivy Bridge QuickSync
  6. XviD
  7. DiscretePhoton
  8. MainConcept CUDA

This rank is based only on the encoders’ quality results. Encoding speed is not considered here.

Click to enlarge

x264 HDTV “High Quality” Settings
1-st pass:
--tune ssim --pass 1 --keyint 500 --preset slow

2-nd pass:
--tune ssim --pass 2 --keyint 500 --preset slow

Source: MSU Graphics & Media Lab