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List of the Best AV1 Hardware Support in 2024 – Encode & Decode

List of the Best AV1 Hardware Support in 2024 - Encode & Decode

The AV1 video codec has emerged as a game-changer, offering significant improvements in compression efficiency compared to its predecessors like H.264 and H.265.

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This translates to higher quality video streaming and playback at lower bitrates, leading to reduced bandwidth consumption and improved user experience.

However, like any new technology, widespread adoption hinges on hardware support. So, in 2024, where do we stand with AV1 hardware compatibility?

AV1 Hardware Support in 2024 – Current Landscape: Table

Device TypeManufacturerModelEncodeDecode
SmartphoneAppleiPhone 15 Pro/Pro MaxNoYes (SDR & HDR)
SmartphoneMediaTekDimensity 1000NoYes (up to 4K 60 FPS)
SmartphoneQualcommSnapdragon 8 Gen 2NoYes
SmartphoneSamsungExynos 2100/2200NoYes
SmartphoneGoogle (rumored)Tensor G3YesYes
Streaming DeviceGoogleChromecast HDNoYes
ComputerVariousHigh-end models with powerful CPUs/GPUsNoSoftware decode (performance varies)

1. Smartphones:

  • Apple: The iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max are the first Apple devices to boast dedicated AV1 hardware decoding, supporting both standard dynamic range (SDR) and high dynamic range (HDR) content with FairPlay DRM protection. This marks a significant step forward for AV1 adoption in the mobile space.
  • Android: While official support from major Android manufacturers like Samsung and Google materialized with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, other manufacturers like MediaTek had earlier adopters. The first smartphone chipset to support AV1 decode was the MediaTek Dimensity 1000, which supported up to 4K 60 FPS. Samsung’s Exynos 2100/2200 both support AV1 decoding as well. It’s also rumored that the Tensor G3 may support AV1 encoding as well.
  • Other manufacturers: Some high-end smartphones from brands like Asus and Xiaomi might offer limited AV1 software decoding through their powerful processors, but performance and compatibility may vary.

2. Smart TVs:

  • Major TV manufacturers like LG, Samsung, and Sony haven’t yet released models with specific AV1 hardware decoding. However, some high-end TVs might offer limited software decoding capabilities using their processors.

3. Streaming devices:

  • Popular streaming devices like Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Apple TV currently lack dedicated AV1 hardware support. However, the Chromecast HD supports AV1 decode. 

Computers:

Recent high-end computers with powerful CPUs and GPUs, especially those with dedicated media processors, might be able to software decode AV1 videos at acceptable performance levels.

However, this depends heavily on the specific hardware configuration and may not be a universal solution. See table below:

GPU ModelEncodeDecode
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 SeriesHardwareHardware
AMD Radeon RX 7000 SeriesSoftware (Limited)Not Supported
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 SeriesSoftwareSoftware
AMD Radeon RX 6000 SeriesSoftware (Limited)Not Supported

Factors Driving Growth:

Despite the current limitations, several factors indicate a positive outlook for AV1 hardware support:

  • Continued industry efforts: Leading companies like Apple, Qualcomm, and others are actively investing in AV1 hardware integration, paving the way for wider adoption.
  • Demand for high-quality streaming: The increasing popularity of high-resolution streaming services and content creators seeking efficient compression for their videos are driving the need for AV1 support.
  • Open-source nature: AV1’s open-source nature fosters collaboration and innovation, encouraging wider adoption across various platforms.

Looking Ahead:

While predicting the exact timeline is challenging, experts anticipate significant growth in AV1 hardware support in the coming years. The entry of major players like Apple and the potential inclusion in upcoming chips from various manufacturers signal a turning point. We can expect to see:

  • More smartphone manufacturers integrating AV1 decoding capabilities into their devices.
  • Smart TV brands potentially releasing models with dedicated AV1 hardware support.
  • Streaming devices adopting AV1 decoding to cater to the growing demand for efficient streaming.

Staying Informed:

As the AV1 landscape evolves rapidly, it’s crucial to stay updated on the latest developments. Following industry news, announcements from major manufacturers, and tech blogs like this one can help you stay informed about the ever-changing landscape of AV1 hardware support.

Conclusion:

While widespread AV1 hardware support is still under development, the advancements witnessed in 2024 showcase a promising future. With continued industry efforts and the growing demand for efficient video compression, we can expect AV1 to become the mainstream choice for video encoding and playback in the years to come.

Additional Resources:

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