Intel GPUs AV1 Encoder Outperforms NVIDIA and AMD H.264 Alternatives

AV1 will dominate the future of video streaming

Intel is the first graphics card manufacturer in the world to offer AV1 encoding capability in the Arc line. And this finding came from tests carried out by youtuber EposVox, with an Arc A380 GPU. He found that AV1 is highly efficient for streaming video that produces low bit rates. By comparison, the AV1 outperforms all H.264 hardware encoders, including rival NVIDIA’s NVENC.

Tests include AMD’s AMF, Intel’s Quick Sync, and streaming software such as OBS. EposVox used Netflix’s VMAF benchmark to assess video quality by assigning a score from 0 to 100. The tool compares video quality to uncompressed video and is tested at 3.5 MBps, 6 MBps, and 8 MBps. Battlefield 2042, Apex Legends and Halo Infinite are some of the games that the youtuber used to make the comparisons.

Overall, Intel’s video codec provides 16% better performance than NVIDIA and AMD. Although OBS offers a great streaming result at 3.5MBps and 6MBps transmission speeds, EposVox comments that AV1 encoding at 3.5MBps is ideal for consuming fewer resources and delivering greater accessibility to the public.

Intel’s AV1 was developed in 2015 by the Alliance for Open Media as a royalty-free, open source video encoding format. The revolutionary, free format produces fewer file sizes than the H.264 format, offering much greater compression capability.

AV1 is increasingly being adopted on video streaming platforms and has seen more extensive use in graphics card architectures such as the NVIDIA RTX 30 series, AMD’s RDNA 2 architecture, and recently, Intel’s iGPUs. Even the PlayStation 4 Pro relies on encoding, implemented by Sony in the console’s gaming system.

In streaming, AV1 has not yet been fully utilized, even though video encoding has been available for quite some time. Current graphics cards do not support it, while others need software to be able to use the AV1 codec. And except for Intel’s recent Arc GPUs, hardware capable of accelerating AV1 encoding has not been created properly.

Intel launches AV1 video codec for CPUs

Intel launches AV1 video codec for CPUs
AV1 codec promises to handle super high resolutions


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