Over the last three years, we have published a number of Daala technology demos. With pieces of Daala being contributed to the Alliance for Open Media's AV1 video codec, now seems like a good time to go back over the demos and see what worked, what didn't, and what changed compared to the description we made in the demos.
Here's my new contribution to the Daala demo effort. Perceptual Vector Quantization has been one of the core ideas in Daala, so it was time for me to explain how it works. The details involve lots of maths, but hopefully this demo will make the general idea clear enough. I promise that the equations in the top banner are the only ones you will see!
After more than two years of development, we have released Opus 1.1. This includes:
- new analysis code and tuning that significantly improves encoding quality, especially for variable-bitrate (VBR),
- automatic detection of speech or music to decide which encoding mode to use,
- surround with good quality at 128 kbps for 5.1 and usable down to 48 kbps, and
- speed improvements on all architectures, especially ARM, where decoding uses around 40% less CPU and encoding uses around 30% less CPU.
With the changes, stereo encoding now produces usable audio (of course, not high fidelity) down to about 40 kb/s, with surround 5.1 sounding usable down to 48-64 kb/s. Please give this release a try and report any issues on the mailing list or by joining the #opus channel on irc.freenode.net. The more testing we get, the faster we'll be able to release 1.1-final.
As usual, the code can be downloaded from: http://opus-codec.org/downloads/
Also of interest at the convention was the Fraunhofer codec booth. It appears that Opus is now causing them some concerns, which is a good sign. And while we're on that topic, the answer is yes :-)
We just released Opus 1.1-beta, which includes many improvements over the 1.0.x branch. For this release, Monty made a nice demo page showing off most of the new features. In other news, the AES has accepted my paper on the CELT part of Opus, as well as a paper proposal from Koen Vos on the SILK part.