Happy New Year 2010 to all my readers!
First post of the year. And it's bad news for ATI, yet again.
*note: this post is a follow-up to my post here.
With the recent changes (additions) to the popular open-sourced H.264 encoder, x264, encoding at ref 16 with b-pyramid normal and weighted-p 2 (which is default), playback on ATI cards with the Arcsoft decoder will exhibit bad artifacts, as if using MPC-HC's internal DXVA decoder on ref 16 encodes. Meanwhile, it's all well and dandy over at the green camp. nVidia owners will find that their cards can decode these streams without even the slightest artifact, and with just about any DXVA decoders you could get your hands on - even the Win7 Microsoft DTV-DVD. If you intend to encode with b-pyramid normal + weighted-p 2, you should reduce the ref to 12 (haven't tried anything in between) to ensure artifact-free DXVA playback with ATI+Arcsoft.
So there you go, even with the best combo, ATI still looses out to nVidia. So again, my advice is, sell your ATI cards and stick to nVidia.
Let's see if this is the year ATI catches up (My bet is on NO. Perhaps never. Frankly, ATI doesn't care about the HTPC scene).