Summary: For FiringSquad's first video review, we'll be comparing the video processing capabilities of ATI AVIVO and NVIDIA PureVideo. Don't worry, we agree with you that most video reviews are boring. This one's different. This one isn't boring. We promise. UPDATE 12:30PM: In case you attempted to download the AVIVO vs PureVideo Shootout video earlier today and gave up due to slow download speeds, we've just updated the article with a new host, Gigex. Your download should proceed much faster now.
This is an experiment. You are a participant.
For our first video feature, we've decided to take a look at the current status of ATI AVIVO and NVIDIA PureVideo decoding technology. After all, what better way to explain video technology than with a video?
So what's our experiment? Well, it's common knowledge that most video reviews of graphics cards are boring. Someone will stand in front of a camera and ramble for a bit and when you're done, you really haven't learned anything that you couldn't have gotten from a regular written review.
Our question was: what happens if someone takes the time to make video reviews interesting? What if we try to entertain while we inform? Instead of aiming to be a Motor Week or an America's Test Kitchen, why not try to do something that has the cheekiness of Top Gear, the technical passion of Fifth Gear, and the over-the-top drama of Best Motoring or Iron Chef? And if we did this, would anyone care?
Well, you tell me.
Windows Media Video HD (1280x720p 1.66Mbps)
Right click on the thumbnail to save this video to your PC
Primary Location: http://www.gamedaily.com/download/info/?packageid=0078701179
Please watch the video before you continue reading. The video is not reproduced in the text.
SIDEBAR: We played with H.264 but decided that Windows Media Video offered better compression for the bitrates that we were targeting. We weren't concerned about cross-platform support for the video since AVIVO and PureVideo technologies are exposed primarily through Windows XP.
If I've done my job, you will have been entertained and been informed. If you hated the video, then there's really no need for you to read on. If you're interested in seeing more videos like this, then read on.
Producing videos at this level of quality is substantially more expensive than producing written reviews. At the end of the day, you'd rather have a website stay alive than burn all of its cash doing video reviews. Compounding to the problem is that tracking how many people have watched a video is substantially tougher than tracking the number of page views a written article has received. The vast majority of you will read the articles straight off the FiringSquad.com, but videos get mirrored and transferred among friends.
Did you notice that the title referred to "March 2006" even though we're publishing this in late April? This video has been in the works since February or so. Video reviews take more time to produce, and for many products, it's helpful to have our content available in a timely manner. Consider our CES Video or Fatal1ty interview which was released several months after the video footage was takenů
This video was high-definition 720p @ 30Hz. We'll likely switch to a 720p @ 24Hz to decrease the size of the download. Would you have preferred lower-resolution streaming video instead of downloading the video? How were your download speeds? Would you prefer torrent distribution?
In the End
It'll be up to you, the reader, to decide whether FiringSquad does more video reviews or not. There are definitely hurdles that we'll have to address, but we'll do video reviews it if that's what you guys want. As this is our first attempt, it'll take time before we can really get the production values up to the level that we want to reach. Still, we hope that this was the best 10 minutes you've spent at a hardware website. For all the problems associated with video reviews, it's still the best way to understand the purpose of various video quality features and of course, it's fun.
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