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Posts Tagged ‘HDR10’

Samsung & Amazon Introduce HDR10+ Standard with Dynamic Metadata & Tone Mapping

April 20th, 2017 7 comments

Most recent 4K Ultra HD televisions support high dynamic range (HDR) through standards such as HDR10, Dolby Vision, or Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG). Samsung and Amazon have jointly introduced an update to HDR10 with HDR10+ that adds dynamic tone mapping & metadata.

The companies describe the issues for HDR10′ static metadata as follows:

The current HDR10 standard utilizes static metadata that does not change during playback despite scene specific brightness levels. As a result, image quality may not be optimal in some scenes. For example, when a movie’s overall color scheme is very bright but has a few scenes filmed in relatively dim lighting, those scenes will appear significantly darker than what was originally envisioned by the director.

HDR10+ will be able to adjust metadata for each scene, and even for each frame, hence solving the issue of darker scenes. If you already own a Samsung TV with HDR10,  it’s not already outdated, as all 2017 UHD TVs already support HDR10+, and 2016 UHD TVs will support HDR10+ through a firmware update.

Amazon Video will be the first streaming service to deliver HDR10+ content, and Samsung also collaborated with other companies to integrate HDR10+ into products such as Colorfront’s Transkoder for post-production master, and MulticoreWare x265 video encoder.

HDR10 – and HDR10+ – is also said to be an open standard, but it could not find the specifications online, and only managed to find that HDR10 Media Profile main  must support EOTF: SMPTE ST 2084, 4:2:0 color Sub-sampling, 10-bit color depth, ITU-R BT.2020 color primaries, and SMPTE ST2086, MaxFALL and MaxCLL metadata defined in CTA 861.3-A standard (free preview) which you can purchase for $67. There must be some sort of CTA Standard for HDR dynamic metadata extensions for HDR10+, but I could not find anything [Update: Maybe SMPTE ST 2094-20-2016?]

Samsung showcased a static vs dynamic tone mapping demo at NAB 2016 last year, but it’s quite hard to see any differences in the video.

Categories: Hardware Tags: amazon, hdr, HDR10, samsung, standard

Allwinner H6 Processor for 4K HDR Set-Top Boxes Supports USB 3.0, PCIe, and Smart Card Interfaces

April 1st, 2017 36 comments

Allwinner H6 is a new quad core Cortex A53 processor designed for 4K set-top boxes. It will support “6K” video decoding for 10-bit HEVC, VP9, and H.264, integrate HDR10 and HLG video processing, support high speed interfaces like USB 3.0 and PCIe, as well as security features like two ISO7816 smart card interfaces and DRM solutions.

Click to Enlarge

Allwinner H6 specifications:

  • CPU –  Quad-core ARM Cortex A53 with NEON, hardware Java acceleration, and FPU
  • 3D GPU – Dual shader ARM Mali-T720 with support for OpenGL ES3.1/3.0/2.0/1.1, OpenCL 1.1/RenderScript, Microsoft DirectX 11 FL9_3
  • Memory I/F – DDR4/DDR3/DDR3L interface
  • Storage I/F – 1x eMMC 5.0 flash interface, 1x NAND Flash interface for SLC/MLC/TLC flash memory with up to 80-bit error-correcting code (ECC), 1x SPI NOR Flash interface, 1x SD Card 2.0
  • Multimedia via Allwinner Phoenix 3.0 VE Engine
    • Video Decoder
      • H265/HEVC Main/Main10 [email protected] High-tier ;[email protected], up to [email protected]
      • H264/AVC [email protected], MVC, [email protected]
      • VP9,Profile 0/2, [email protected]
      • VP6/VP8, [email protected]
      • MPEG1/MPEG2 [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
      • MPEG4 [email protected] 0~3, [email protected] 0~5, GMC, short header format, [email protected]
      • AVS+/AVS JIZHUN [email protected] 6.0, [email protected]
      • VC-1 [email protected], [email protected], [email protected] 0~3, [email protected]
      • Supports Frame Buffer Compression(FBC)
      • Output pixel format configurable,YUV420/YV12/NV12
    • JPEG hardware decoder up to 65536 x 65536 resolution
    • Video and Image Encoder
      • H264 [email protected] 4.2 video encoding,up to [email protected]
      • MJPEG video encoding,up to [email protected]
      • JPEG image encoding- maximum resolution up to 8Kx8K
      • Supports [email protected][email protected][email protected] simultaneous encoding
  • Audio Encoding/Decoding
    • MPEG-1,MPEG-2(L1/L2/L3), MP3, AAC-LC, HE AAC V1/V2, APE, FLAC, OGG, AMR-NB, AMR-WB,G.711(u/a) decoding
      • G.711(u/a), AMR-NB, AMR-WB, AAC-LC encoding
      • Karaoke sound effects, supports automatic gain control, voice enhancement and echo/reverberation.
      • 3~5m far field sound acquisition, supports speech enhancement, acoustic echo cancellation and direction of speaker estimation.
      • Dolby Digital/Dolby Digital Plus decoding (option)
      • Dolby DMA2.0 audio effect (option)
      • DTS-HD decoding(option)
      • Dolby Digital/DTS transparent transmission
  • TS Demultiplexing/PVR
    • 4x TS inputs supporting 32 PID each
    • DVB-CSA/AES/DES descrambling
    • PVR,recording of scrambled and non-scrambled streams
  • Security/ DRM
    • Full Disk Encryption(FDE) with support for AES-ECB/CBC
    • 4K bits Efuse (OTP)
    • Protection for JTAG and other debugging port
    • HDCP 2.2/1.4 protection for HDMI outputs
    • Trusted execution environment(TEE)
    • Digital rights management(DRM)
    • Mainstream advanced CA
    • Secure boot, Secure Storage, Secure upgrade
  • Display Processing ((Smartcolor 3.0 DE Engine)
    • HDR10 and HLG HDR processing
    • HDR conversion between SDR
    • Dual independent display support
    • 16 layers, video and UI input layers to overlay
    • 3D video processing and display
  • Audio/Video Interfaces
    • Video Output
      • 1x HDMI 2.0a TX with HDCP 2.2 output
      • 1x CVBS interface , supports PAL/NTSC mode
      • 1x RGB interface up to1920x1080
    • Video Input – CSI camera (DVP)
    • Audio Interfaces
      • Analog audio input/output
      • Digital MIC interface
      • 2x I2S supporting 7.1 channel
      • S/PDIF audio interface
  • Other Interfaces
    • USB – 1x USB 3.0 host port, 1x USB2.0 OTG port, 1x USB 2.0 host port
    • 1x PCIe 2.0 interface
    • 1x SDIO 3.0
    • Ethernet – 1x 10/100 Mbps Ethernet with PHY, 1x Gigabit Ethernet MAC
    • 5x UART, 5x TWI/I2C, GPIOs
    • 2x ISO7816 Smart Card interfaces
    • IR receiver and keypad control interface
  • Misc
    • USB, SD card and flash boot supported
    • Adaptive voltage scaling (AVS)
    • Dynamic voltage and frequency scaling (DVFS)
  • Package – 15 x 15 mm BGA451 package

The CPU is not that important in TV boxes and set-top boxes, so there are no changes here except potentially a higher frequency (TBC). The dual shader Mali-T720 GPU should provide 3D performance in the same range as other competing solutions based on Mali-450MP and Mali-T820MP GPU, and includes OpenCL support for GPU compute applications. AFAIK it’s the first Allwinner processor to support HDR, so the company is mostly catching with competitors on the multimedia front. The video decoder supports 4K H.265 and VP9 at up to 60 fps, and 4K H.264 up to 30 fps, as well as 6K up to 30 fps. The processor can also support HD audio formats (as an option), while the transport stream (TS) interfaces to connect one or more more tuners, and Smart Card interfaces make it ideal for set-top box with free or premium content. The addition of USB 3.0 and PCIe will allow for fast storage options, with external PCIe to SATA chips potentially providing better performance than the SATA IP found in Allwinner R40, especially when it comes to write speed.

I found all this information in Allwinner H6 product brief published on linux-sunxi website. There’s no information anywhere else about H6 processor, even on Alibaba, so it will likely take many more months before products and boards are launched with the new SoC.

MINIX NEO U9-H 4K HDR Amlogic S912-H Android TV Box Coming in October

September 5th, 2016 21 comments

MINIX may have officially announced MINIX NEO Z83-4 Cherry trail mini PC at IFA 2016, but they also showcased NEO U9-H Android TV box based on an “Octa-core cortex A53 processor with ARM Mali-820MP3 GPU”, which the company confirmed to be Amlogic S912-H processor with Dolby and DTS licenses.

MINIX-NEO-U9-HI also asked the company whether they had specs sheet for the new model, but the replied they did not have finalized specifications to share, nor exact pricing and release date. But we can still derive info from a video on HDBlog.it showcasing an early development model at IFA 2016.

MINIX NEO U9-H preliminary specifications:

  • SoC – Amlogic S912-H octa-core ARM Cortex A53 processor @ up to 1.5 GHz with ARM Mali-820MP3
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 16GB eMMC flash and micro SD card slot
  • Video Output – HDMI 2.0 up to 4K @ 60Hz with CEC, HDCP 2.2, and HDR/HDR10 support
  • Audio Output – HDMI, optical S/PDIF, 3.5mm headphone jack, 3.5mm microphone jack
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac 2×2 MIMO, Bluetooth 4.1
  • USB – 3x USB 2.0 ports, 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Misc – IR receiver, power button, security lock

The TV box will run Android 6.0.1. We can see the unit in action below (in Italian).

One interesting point is that Widewine Level 1 DRM is supported, so some premium video streaming app will support HD and maybe 4K UHD, and HBO Go might be one of the apps to benefit. HDR videos were also showcased in the video.

HDBlog also mentioned the box should be ready mid October, and expects the price to be around 150 Euros, likely including an air mouse, and VAT.

Amlogic S912 Processor Specifications

April 6th, 2016 20 comments

Amlogic plans to launch at least three new processors for OTT boxes and set-top boxes this year: Amlogic S905X, Amlogic S912, and Amlogic S905D.  We already knew Amlogic S905 specifications, but I’ve recently received a document with some more details about Amlogic S912 revealing Mali-T820 GPU, a lack of USB 3.0 support, but still some interesting features such as HDMI 2.0a, 4K VP9, 10-bit H.265, Gigabit Ethernet Mac, and so on.

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

Amlogic S912 specifications with highlights in bold showing differences with Amlogic S905X:

  • CPU Sub-system –  Octa core ARM Cortex-A53 CPU up to 2 GHz (DVFS) with two CPU clusters one optimized for high performance (big) and the other for low power (LITTLE)
  • 3D Graphics Processing Unit –ARM Mali-T820MP3 GPU up to 750MHz (DVFS) with 3 shader engines supporting OpenGL ES 1.1/2.03.1, DirectX 11 FL9_3, OpenCL 1.1/1.2 full profile and RenderScript.
  • 2.5D Graphics Processor – Fast bitblt engine with dual inputs and single output, programmable raster operations (ROP) and polyphase scaling filter, etc..
  • Crypto Engine – AES/AES-XTS block cipher with 128/192/256 bits keys, DES/TDES block cipher, hardware crypto key-ladder operation and DVB-CSA for transport stream encryption,  built-in hardware True Random Number Generator (TRNG), CRC and SHA-1/SHA-2/HMAC SHA engine
  • Video/Picture CODEC
    • Amlogic Video Engine (AVE-10) with dedicated hardware decoders and encoders
    • Supports multiple “secured” video decoding sessions and simultaneous decoding and encoding
    • Video/Picture Decoding
      • VP9-10 Profile-2 up to [email protected]
      • H.265 HEVC [email protected] up to [email protected]
      • H.264 AVC [email protected] up to [email protected], H.264 MVC up to 1080p @60fps
      • MPEG-4 [email protected] up to [email protected] (ISO-14496)
      • WMV/VC-1 SP/MP/AP up to [email protected]
      • AVS-P16(AVS+) /AVS-P2 JiZhun Profile up to [email protected]
      • MPEG-2 MP/HL up to [email protected] (ISO-13818)
      • MPEG-1 MP/HL up to [email protected] (ISO-11172)
      • RealVideo 8/9/10 up to [email protected]
      • WebM up to VGA
      • MJPEG and JPEG unlimited pixel resolution decoding (ISO/IEC-10918)
      • Supports JPEG thumbnail, scaling, rotation and transition effects
    • Video/Picture Encoding
      • Independent JPEG and H.264 encoder with configurable performance/bit-rate
      • JPEG image encoding
      • H.264 video encoding up to [email protected] with low latency
  • Video Post-Processing Engine – Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG HDR processing, motion adaptive 3D noise reduction filter, advanced motion adaptive edge enhancing de-interlacing engine, 3:2 pull-down support, deblocking filters, etc..
  • Video Output
    • Built-in HDMI 2.0a transmitter including both controller and PHY with 3D, CEC, HDR and HDCP 2.2, [email protected] max resolution output
    • CVBS 480i/576i standard definition output
    • RGB888 TTL interface up to 1920×1080
  • Camera Interface – ITU 601/656 parallel video input with down-scalar, supports camera input as YUV422, RGB565,16bit RGB or JPEG
  • Audio Decoder and Input/Output
    • Supports MP3, AAC, WMA, RM, FLAC, Ogg and programmable with 7.1/5.1 down-mixing
    • I2S audio interface supporting 8-channel (7.1) input and output
    • Built-in serial digital audio SPDIF/IEC958 output and PCM input/output
    • Built-in stereo audio DAC
    • Dual-channel digital microphone PDM input
    • Supports concurrent dual audio stereo channel output with combination of analog+PCM or I2S+PCM
  • Memory and Storage Interface
    • 16/32-bit SDRAM memory interface running up to DDR2400
    • Supports up to 2GB DDR3/4, DDR3L, LPDDR2, LPDDR3 with dual ranks
    • Supports SLC/MLC/TLC NAND Flash with 60-bit ECC
    • SDSC/SDHC/SDXC card and SDIO interface with 1-bit and 4-bit data bus width supporting up to UHS-I SDR104
    • eMMC and MMC card interface with 1/4/8-bit data bus width fully supporting spec version 5.0 HS400
    • Supports serial 1, 2 or 4-bit NOR Flash via SPI interface
    • Built-in 4k bits One-Time-Programming memory for key storage (That must be where DRM / HDCP keys are programmed)
  • Network
    • Integrated IEEE 802.3 10/100/1000M Gigabit Ethernet MAC controller with RGMII interface
    • Integrated 10/100M PHY interface
    • Supports Energy Efficiency Ethernet (EEE) mode
  • Digital Television Interface
    • Transport stream (TS) input interface with built-in demux processor for connecting to external digital TV tuner/demodulator and one output TS interface
    • Built-in PWM, I2C and SPI interfaces to control tuner and demodulator
    • Integrated CI+ port and ISO 7816 smart card controller
  • Integrated I/O Controllers and Interfaces
    • 3x USB 2.0 high-speed USB I/O, 2x USB Host and one USB OTG
    • Multiple UART, I2C and SPI interface with slave select
    • Multiple PWMs
    • Programmable IR remote input/output controllers
    • Built-in 10bit SAR ADC with 2 input channels
    • General Purpose IOs with built-in pull up and pull down
  • System, Peripherals and Misc. Interfaces
    • Integrated general purpose timers, counters, DMA controllers
    • 24 MHz crystal input
    • Embedded debug interface using ICE/JTAG
  • Power Management
    • Multiple external power domains controlled by PMIC, and internal ones controlled by software
    • Multiple sleep modes for CPU, system, DRAM, etc.
    • Multiple internal PLLs for DVFS operation
    • Multi-voltage I/O design for 1.8V and 3.3V
    • Power management auxiliary processor in a dedicated always-on (AO) power domain that can communicate with an external PMIC
  • Security
    • Trustzone based Trusted Execution Environment (TEE)
    • Secured boot, encrypted OTP, encrypted DRAM with memory integrity checker, hardware key ladder and internal control buses and storage
    • Protected memory regions and electric fence data partition
    • Hardware based Trusted Video Path (TVP) , video watermarking and secured contents (requires SecureOS software)
    • Secured IO and secured clock
  • Package – LFBGA 15 x 15 mm, 0.65 ball pitch, RoHS compliant

That means Amlogic S905X and S912 have the exact same video playback capabilities, although S912 will also support Dolby Vision HDR standard. The main differences are the eight Cortex A53 cores clocked at 2.0 GHz (instead of 4x A53 @ 1.5 GHz), and the more power ful Mali-T820MP3 GPU, as well as support for LCD panel (e.g. for tablets) thanks to an extra RGB interface. Finally S912 has three USB interfaces, instead of just two for S905X.

Amlogic 2016 roadmap shows S905X is scheduled for Q1 2016, and S912 for Q2 2016,  but it’s likely we need to add one or two more quarters before we get any Android 6.0 devices based on the new processors.

HiMedia Q10 Pro Android TV Box Supports 4K HDR, H.265 & VP9 Video Playback, Comes with a 3.5″ SATA HDD Bay

March 30th, 2016 19 comments

Hisilicon HI3798C V200 is a promising processor with four Cortex A53 cores, ARM Mali-T720, 4K video output (HDMI 2.0a),  4K H.265/H.264/VP9 decoding with Dolby Vision & HDR10 high dynamic range standards support, native SATA, Gigabit Ethernet and USB 3.0 interfaces, and TS inputs to support tuners. That means products based on the SoC should be both decent media players and NAS, and one of the first product to hit the market will be HiMedia Q10 Pro.

Q10_ProHiMedia Q10 Pro specifications:

  • SoC – HiSilicon HI3798CV200 quad-core ARM Cortex A53 processor with ARM Mali-T720 supporting OpenGL ES 3.1/2.0, OpenVG1.1, EGL, and Imprex 2.0 PQ engine with HDR,Dolby vision support.
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 16GB eMMC flash, 3.5″ SATA bay, and 2-in-1 card reader  (MMC/SD)
  • Video Ouput – 1x HDMI 2.0a up to 4K @ 60 Hz, 1x composite video (RCA)
  • Audio Output – HDMI, stereo audio (RCA), coaxial and optical S/PDIF  ports.
  • Video Codecs / Formats – 10-bit H.265/HEVC, H.264, VC1, MPEG4, MPEG2, VP9, VP8, VP6, AVS video decoding up top 250 Mbps bitrate. 3D blu-ray, BD-ISO, 3D BD-ISO
  • Audio Capabilities – 7.1 HD Audio pass-through and downmix for Dolby TtrueHD, DTS HD, and Dolby Atmos, 192K/24bit audio decoding and output
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet (with remote wakeup and standby support), 802.11 b/g/n/ac WiFi with external antenna, Bluetooth 4.0
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 host port, 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x USB 3.0 device port (to connect to your computer)
  • Misc – Front LED display and smart touch key, IR receiver
  • Power Supply – 12V/2A
  • Dimensions – N/A (aluminum shell)

The device runs Android 5.1 with a 1080p user interface, is pre-loaded with Kodi 16.0 (likely customized for HiSilicon processors), and supports Google Play, local and OTA firmware updates, network video playback (SAMBA/NFS/UPnP), Miracast, and more.

Source: Eddy Lab http://muritzy.tistory.com/1143

Image Source: Eddy Lab

The box will ship with an IR remote control, a power adapter, an HDMI cable, and a quick start guide. Although bear in mind there will be Chinese and International version of the firmware,  and according to a post on Futeko: “Q10 Pro international firmware will be similar in appearance to Q5/Q10 4K3D with a new simple launcher. So ignore the interface photos on the Chinese reviews”. That link also points to various reviews of the Chinese model in Chinese and Korean. Also note that I’ve discovered recently HDR support will require new UHD Premium TVs, as many (most?) current UHD television do not support HDR capabilities.

HiMedia Q10 Pro will soon be available for pre-sale on Futeko for 178 Euros including VAT, and shipping is scheduled for April 13, 2016. I could not find the device for sale on other site yet, but this should just be a question of time. Make sure the product comes with the international version of the firmware. A few more details may be available on the official Himedia Q10 Pro product page.

Thanks to Jack for the tip.

Amlogic S905X Processor Specifications

January 12th, 2016 19 comments

[Update September 2016: Removed Video Input Unit and Gigabit Ethernet MAC, since the latest documents have removed them]

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the upcoming Amlogic S905M quad core Cortex A53 processor support 4K VP9 and 10-bit HEVC, but the silicon manufacturer seems to struggle with sticking with a name, as after the initial S908 part, they moved to S905M, before hopefully settling on Amlogic S905X, for which I received more information include a block diagram, and more detailed specifications.

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

These are most of the specifications currently available for Amlogic S905X processor with highlights in bold:

  • CPU Sub-system –  Quad core ARM Cortex-A53 CPU up to 1.5GHz (DVFS) with Neon and Crypto extensions
  • 3D Graphics Processing Unit – Penta-core ARM Mali-450 GPU up to 750MHz+ (DVFS) with two geometry/vertex processors, three pixel processors supporting OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0 and OpenVG 1.1.
  • 2.5D Graphics Processor – Fast bitblt engine with dual inputs and single output, programmable raster operations (ROP) and polyphase scaling filter, etc..
  • Crypto Engine – AES/AES-XTS block cipher with 128/192/256 bits keys, DES/TDES block cipher, Hardware crypto key-ladder operation and DVB-CSA for transport stream encryption,  built-in hardware True Random Number Generator (TRNG), CRC and SHA-1/SHA-2/HMAC SHA engine
  • Video/Picture CODEC
    • Amlogic Video Engine (AVE-10) with dedicated hardware decoders and encoders
    • Supports multiple “secured” video decoding sessions and simultaneous decoding and encoding
    • Video/Picture Decoding
      • VP9 Profile-2 up to [email protected]
      • H.265 HEVC [email protected] up to [email protected]
      • H.264 AVC [email protected] up to [email protected], H.264 MVC up to 1080p @60fps
      • MPEG-4 [email protected] up to [email protected] (ISO-14496)
      • WMV/VC-1 SP/MP/AP up to [email protected]
      • AVS-P16(AVS+) /AVS-P2 JiZhun Profile up to [email protected]
      • MPEG-2 MP/HL up to [email protected] (ISO-13818)
      • MPEG-1 MP/HL up to [email protected] (ISO-11172)
      • RealVideo 8/9/10 up to [email protected]
      • WebM up to VGA
      • MJPEG and JPEG unlimited pixel resolution decoding (ISO/IEC-10918)
      • Supports JPEG thumbnail, scaling, rotation and transition effects
    • Video/Picture Encoding
      • Independent JPEG and H.264 encoder with configurable performance/bit-rate
      • JPEG image encoding
      • H.264 video encoding up to [email protected] with low latency
  • Video Post-Processing Engine – HDR10 & HLG HDR processing, REC709/BT2020 processing, motion adaptive 3D noise reduction filter, advanced motion adaptive edge enhancing de-interlacing engine, 3:2 pull-down support, deblocking fliters, etc..
  • Video Output
    • Built-in HDMI 2.0a transmitter including both controller and PHY with 3D, CEC, HDR and HDCP 2.2, [email protected] max resolution output
    • CVBS 480i/576i standard definition output
  • Camera Interface – 2x ITU 601/656 parallel video input with down-scalar, supports camera input as YUV422, RGB565,16bit RGB or JPEG
  • Audio Decoder and Input/Output
    • Supports MP3, AAC, WMA, RM, FLAC, Ogg and programmable with 7.1/5.1 down-mixing
    • I2S audio interface supporting 8-channel (7.1) input and output
    • Built-in serial digital audio SPDIF/IEC958 output and PCM input/output
    • Built-in dual-channel audio DAC with amplifier
    • Dual-channel digital microphone PDM input
    • Supports concurrent dual audio stereo channel output with combination of I2S+PCM
  • Memory and Storage Interface
    • 16/32-bit SDRAM memory interface running up to DDR2133
    • Supports up to 2GB DDR3/4, DDR3L, LPDDR2, LPDDR3 with dual ranks
    • Supports SLC/MLC/TLC NAND Flash with 60-bit ECC
    • SDSC/SDHC/SDXC card and SDIO interface with 1-bit and 4-bit data bus width supporting up to UHS-I SDR104
    • eMMC and MMC card interface with 1/4/8-bit data bus width fully supporting spec version 5.0 HS400
    • Supports serial 1, 2 or 4-bit NOR Flash via SPI interface
    • Built-in 4k bits One-Time-Programming memory for key storage (That must be where DRM / HDCP keys are programmed)
  • Network
  • Integrated I/O Controllers and Interfaces
    • 2x USB 2.0 high-speed USB I/O, one USB Host and one USB OTG
    • Multiple UART, I2C and SPI interface with slave select
    • Multiple PWMs
    • Programmable IR remote input/output controllers
    • Built-in 10bit SAR ADC with 2 input channels
    • General Purpose IOs with built-in pull up and pull down
  • System, Peripherals and Misc. Interfaces
    • Integrated general purpose timers, counters, DMA controllers
    • 24 MHz crystal input
    • Embedded debug interface using ICE/JTAG
  • Power Management
    • Multiple external power domains controlled by PMIC, and internal ones controlled by software
    • Multiple sleep modes for CPU, system, DRAM, etc.
    • Multiple internal PLLs for DVFS operation
    • Multi-voltage I/O design for 1.8V and 3.3V
    • Power management auxiliary processor in a dedicated always-on (AO) power domain that can communicate with an external PMIC
  • Security
    • Trustzone based Trusted Execution Environment (TEE)
    • Secured boot, encrypted OTP, encrypted DRAM with memory integrity checker, hardware key ladder and internal control buses and storage
    • Protected memory regions and electric fence data partition
    • Hardware based Trusted Video Path (TVP) , video watermarking and secured contents (requires SecureOS software)
    • Secured IO and secured clock

While we’ve now got much more details, the main features of Amlogic S905X have not changed since last month, so they’ll probably stay that way. I don’t have specific information about availability of the processor yet.

MediaTek MT8581 Media Processor Supports 4K UHD Blu-rays, 10-bit H.265, VP9, and HDR Imaging

January 6th, 2016 5 comments

Mediatek has unveiled MT8581 processor for UHD Blu-ray players at CES 2016, with support the latest 10-bit H.265 and VP9, as well as  High Dynamic Range (HDR) for better video quality.

Mediatek_MTK8581

The press release provides limited info, but I found a temporary? page with more details (screenshot), and MT8581 specifications should be as follows:

  • CPU – Quad core ARM Cortex A53 processor
  • GPU – N/A, but could be ARM Mali-820MP2 according to AndroidPC.es
  • Optical Disks support – Blu-ray, DVD and CD playback, including the latest BD-ROM format, such as BD-Live and BonusView. When combined with MT8577A
  • Video Codecs – HEVC/H.265 10-bit, H.264 and VP9 Profile 2, Ultra HD 60p video decoder (3840×2160), MPEG-1/2/4, VP8 and VC-1 for Full HD 60p. Encode: H.265 and H.264.
  • High Dynamic Range – HDR10 open standard and Dolby Vision IP
  • Audio – AAC, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, and DTS HD
  • Network Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet
  • USB – USB 2.0 and USB 3.0

MT8581/MTK8581 will also support DVD upscaling up to 4K resolution, and 4K downscaling to for Full HD and HD ready screens.

The processor’s mass production is scheduled for H2 2016.

Amlogic S905X and S912 Processors To Support 4K VP9, HDMI 2.0a, Built-in DAC and More

December 17th, 2015 13 comments

I had heard some news that Amlogic S912 was delayed, and even possibly canceled, while talks about a new S908 processor surfaced recently with support for VP9 up to 4K resolution. We now have some more details as I’ve received some more information about Amlogic product roadmap, and S908 should be renamed S905M [Update: The name will apparently be changed to S905X now, the saga continues…]

Amlogic S905 Amlogic S908 / S905M / S905X
Amlogic S912
CPU Quad core Cortex A53 @ up to 2.0 GHz Quad core Cortex A53 @ up to 1.5/2.0 GHz Octa core Cortex A53 @ up to 2.0 GHz
GPU Penta-core Mali-450 up to 750 MHz High perf gaming GPU
Memory 16/32-bit DDR3, LPDDR2/3
Up to 2GB, DDR2133
16/32-bit DDR3/4, LPDDR2/3
Up to 2GB, DDR2400
Storage NAND [email protected]
eMMC 5.0, SD, Nor Flash
Video Decoding 4Kp60 10-bit HEVC, 4Kp30 H.264 4Kp60 10-bit HEVC, VP9
4Kp30 H.264
Video Encoding H.264, [email protected] H.265, [email protected]
Ethernet 10/100/1000 RGMII 10/100/1000 RGMII, 10/100M PHY
Audio DAC N/A Built-in Stereo DACs
USB 2.0 2.0 and 3.0 (TBC)
TV Output 4K2K HDMI 2.0, CVBS 4K2K HDMI 2.0a, CVBS
HDR N/A HDR10 Dolby Vision, HDR10
DTV Ts in
Products 4K HDMI dongle, OTT/IP-STB Cost effective low power 4K HDMI dongle, OTT/IP-STB High-end 4K OTT/IP-STB, gaming box

While Amlogic S905 and S905M will have a hard-limit to 2GB RAM, S912 will support dual channel memory and up to 4GB RAM. The two new processors will also support 4K VP9 video decoding, feature a DAC, HDMI 2.0a, support for HDR10 media profile and/or Dolby Vision. Both will also an embedded 10/100M PHY which will bring the cost down for devices with Fast Ethernet. Amlogic S912 will also support USB 3.0 interface and H.265 video encoding up to 1080p60. The document did not reveal the details about the GPU used in the two new processor, but it’s clear Amlogic S912 will have a powerful one good enough to be used in Android gaming console, and there have been some clues that S912 GPU could be Mali-T830 in the past.

Amlogic S9xx DRM Secure OS

Amlogic S9xx DRM Solution with TrustZone and Secure OS

The company has also improved DRM support in their latest processors, including S905 itself, with support for Google Widewine Level 1 & 3, Verimatrix Standard and Advanced, Microsoft Playready 2.0 (TVP and non TVP), Internet Marlin 1.7, and Vudu DRM. DRM is enabled thanks to “Secure OS”, but it’s not needed for the most basic DRM solutions such as Widewine Level 3, Verimatrix Standard, and  PlayReady 2.0 Non-TVP. So as we’ve seen recently that most Amlogic S905 TV box lack DRM support, a firmware upgrade should be enough to enable these, but any DRM scheme that requires Secure OS is likely impossible on devices that have not been flashed with Secure OS at the factory.

Amlogic S905M/S905X will come before Amlogic S912, but so far I don’t have exact ETA for either processors, so we’ll need to be patient.