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Real-Time Parallel MPEG-2 Decoding in Software

Report ID:
February 1996
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The growing demand for high quality compressed video has led to an
increasing need for real-time MPEG-2 decoding. With the widespread
availability of multiprocessors, a parallel software implementation
provides an effective solution to the decoding problem.
We present a parallel decoder for the MPEG-2 standard, implemented on
both centralized and distributed shared memory machines.
The goal of this work is to provide an all-software
solution for real-time, high-quality video decoding and to investigate
the important properties of this application as they pertain to
multiprocessors systems.
Both coarse and fine grained implementations are considered for
parallelizing the decoder. The coarse-grained approach exploits
parallelism at the group of pictures level, while the fine-grained
approach parallelizes within frames, at the slice level. A
comparative evaluation of these methods is made, with results
presented in terms of speedup, memory requirements, load balance,
synchronization time, and temporal and spatial locality.

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