The LEADTOOLS H.264 Codec is a state-of-the-art DirectShow filter and Media Foundation Transform for compressing and decompressing video data using H.264/AVC standard (ISO/IEC 14496-10). H.264 is one of the most popular and advanced video standards developed jointly by ITU and MPEG. H.264/AVC provides a far more efficient algorithm for compressing video than most other compression methods available. H.264 typically outperforms all existing standards by a factor of three to four, especially in comparison to MPEG-2.

In addition to the standard compression advantages H.264 brings, the LEADTOOLS implementation adds a proprietary "super compression" option, even further increasing compression while still having the ability to be decoded by standard H.264 decoders.

Overview of the LEADTOOLS H.264 Codec Technology

  • Full support for encoding, decoding, and transcoding H.264/AVC-compressed video data adhering to ISO/IEC 14496-10 standard
  • Decode and play high-definition 720i, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p formats in real time
  • Decode and encode with hardware acceleration for optimal speed
    • Intel Quick Sync Video
  • Encode H.264 videos using both CUDA asynchronous and synchronous modes
  • Highly optimized to take advantage of multiple threads on multi-core machines
  • Achieves efficient compression by saving only the difference between motion vectors
  • Generate High, Main, and Baseline profiles for encoding onto Blu-ray media
  • Preset compression options for iPhone, iPod, and other devices and Smart Phones
  • Correct audio and video synchronization issues with automatic timestamp drift correction
  • Provides a mechanism for smoother playback of corrupted video data
  • User-defined motion estimation settings controls the balance between encoder speed and quality
  • Precise interprediction and network packet-loss protection achieved through multiple reference frames
  • Intraprediction may be performed either on 4x4 or 16x16 blocks
  • Efficient computation through Discrete Cosine Transform (DCT) as an integer transform
  • Motion vector prediction is performed before the frame is prepared for compression (pre-DCT), improving prediction and compression performance
  • Implements the SAD HADAMARD calculation to increase the compression ratio
  • Employs several contextual algorithms that improve both visual fidelity and compression ratios
    • Context-sensitive deblocking filter smooths out internal edges for improved visual quality
    • Context-Adaptive Variable Length Coding (CAVLC) to encode transform coefficients
    • Context-Adaptive Binary Arithmetic Coding (CABAC) method continually updates frequency statistics of the incoming data and adjusts the compression algorithm
  • Control the number and types of frames encoded into the video stream
  • Produce and consume RTP H.264 streams that work with video conferencing systems such as TANDBERG and Polycom
  • Use Windows Media Server to stream H.264 encoded video
  • Includes .NET (C# & VB) and C DLL libraries for 32 and 64-bit development

What is H.264?

H.264 is a high quality video compression algorithm and is suited for all types of applications with different ranges of bit rates. In addition to MP4 files, H.264 compressed video data can be stored inside AVI, OGG, MPEG-2 Program, MPEG2 Transport Stream, MKV (Matroska), and MXF files with the option of saving the file with or without the audio data. The technology is also known as AVC (Advanced Video Coding) or MPEG-4 Part 10 (ISO/IEC 14496-10).

Technology Related to H.264 Codec

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Documentation Links for H.264 Codec

Code Tips That use H.264 Codec

LEADTOOLS SDK Products that Include H.264 Codec

LEADTOOLS Medical Imaging Suite v20

Develop powerful PACS and Medical imaging applications with LEADTOOLS Medical Imaging Suite. Features include LEAD's Zero-footprint HTML5 DICOM Viewer, Medical Web Viewer Framework, Medical 3D, DICOM Multimedia codecs, high and low-level PACS SCP and SCU functions and controls, secure PACS communication, Print to PACS, comprehensive DICOM data set support, image annotation, extended grayscale image display such as window level and LUT processing, DICOM Hanging Protocol, and specialized medical image processing. Other features include lossless JPEG compression, JPIP, and signed and unsigned image data processing.

LEADTOOLS Medical Multimedia Module v20

The LEADTOOLS Medical Multimedia Module includes the LEADTOOLS Multimedia SDK and a collection of state-of-the-art DirectShow filters and Media Foundation Transforms to compress and decompress video and audio data within DICOM files. This feature-rich product is designed to eliminate the complexity from converting multi-frame (cine) images and video streams to DICOM objects, including X-ray Angiography (XA), Ultrasound (US), Visible Light (VL), and Secondary Capture (SC). The LEADTOOLS Medical Multimedia Module utilizes the most advanced compression algorithms in the industry and approved by the DICOM standard, including MPEG-2, HD MPEG-2, Motion JPEG, Motion JPEG 2000, and H.264.

LEADTOOLS Streaming Module v20

The LEADTOOLS Streaming Module is perfect for developers who need to stream audio and video over the Internet or corporate networks for a wide variety of applications. This module adds on to the LEADTOOLS Multimedia SDK and includes the Media Streaming Server, a high-level framework for implementing professional multimedia streaming servers that can stream any file to any device. The Streaming Module also provides a programmer-friendly set of peer-to-peer tools for creating video conferencing and security/surveillance applications. In addition to the SDK features, the Streaming Module bundles together several of LEAD's world-class audio and video codecs that will lower costs and improve user experience through reduced bandwidth requirements and high-quality playback.

LEADTOOLS MPEG-2 Transport Module v20

The LEADTOOLS MPEG-2 Transport Module adds advanced MPEG-2 Transport and MPEG-2 Program streaming, playback, capture, and conversion capabilities to the LEADTOOLS Multimedia SDK. Developers can utilize robust UDP and TCP streaming with DVR and KLV metadata to create a wide spectrum of applications, including security systems, HDTV playback, and UAV ground stations.

NOTE: LEADTOOLS Video Codecs are very diverse and cover the gamut of multimedia features and technologies. Many codecs are included with the base SDK products above, while some can be added á la carte or bundled together with various add-on modules. See the Multimedia Product Comparison Chart for more details on how to obtain each video codec.