Tuesday, January 31, 2006

OS X does not use the X1600's H.264 decode acceleration

Although the new iMac Core Duo does extremely well at H.264 playback, it apparently does so without the help of the Radeon X1600. OS X does not (yet) use this GPU's H.264 decode acceleration capabilities.

While that is a bit of a disappointment, there is a silver lining. It means that Core Duo CPU alone is very well-suited to this task, and given the fact that HD H.264 playback usually uses less than half of the computing power of a mid-clocked Core Duo, it may bode well for a future single-core Yonah-based Mac mini for use as an HD HTPC. Even if the first Yonah Mac mini is borderline for this usage, it certainly will be a vast improvement over the current G4-based Mac mini.

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