IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

10 Pages V   1 2 3 > »   
Reply to this topicStart new topic
Vorbis development, status & patent issues, PART 1 - NON-technical discussion
2Bdecided
post Sep 24 2003, 12:22
Post #1


ReplayGain developer


Group: Developer
Posts: 5364
Joined: 5-November 01
From: Yorkshire, UK
Member No.: 409



Moderator comment
Currently the Vorbis patent issue covers these threads:
Vorbis development, status & patent issues PART 1 - NON-technical discussion (This thread)
Vorbis development, status & patent issues PART 2 - Technical discussion
/Moderator comment

To my ears, the compromises Vorbis makes at 64kbps are much more obvious than those of some other codecs. Simple as that.

As I noted, the stereo problems are much more annoying over headphones than they would be over speakers, listening off-centre.


What amazes me is when people say (see Slashdot!) "I encode at vorbis q0 and it sounds perfect". Do you encode stereo content? Do you own a pair of headphones? Can't you hear that all the sounds that used to be over there and over there, are now all lumped together in the centre?

Obviously not. They're probably like my wife: just can't hear stereo. Some people, having determined this fact, decide that they're not qualified to comment on audio quality, and leave it at that. But hey - on Slashdot, everyone is an expert! And Vorbis must be the best.

Cheers,
David.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
c_haese
post Sep 24 2003, 13:59
Post #2


Xiph.org Ogg Traffic editor


Group: Developer
Posts: 72
Joined: 7-July 02
Member No.: 2500



QUOTE (2Bdecided @ Sep 24 2003, 06:22 AM)
To my ears, the compromises Vorbis makes at 64kbps are much more obvious than those of some other codecs. Simple as that.

As you point out with the phrase "to my ears," this is all subjective and dependent on personal preference. None of the codecs are transparent at 64kbps, so they all have differences from the original. It comes down to which difference is more annoying, and that's highly subjective.

When I listen to my q0 Vorbis files by themselves, I don't notice the stereo collapse or the high frequency boost. Real Audio's temporal smearing (Proposed Motto: "We make real hi-hats sound like real maracas.") on the other hand is obvious even when I listen to it by itself. This is essentially the definition of differences versus artifacts. Differences are loss of fidelity. Artifacts are obviously foreign sounds. On 99% of my music collection, Vorbis produces differences, not artifacts.

Don't get me wrong, Vorbis needs to improve, and it will improve. Monty is working on Vorbis 1.1 already. However, keep in mind that the current q0 mode is still essentially the same as it was back in RC3, except for noise normalization added in 1.0 and minor tuning bug fixes in 1.0.1. It was intended to be a respectable first cut. And it's patent-free. Yet it has still managed to come out third best, in a close field of leaders, and beating WMA with its tons of money and development time behind it. It's not perfect, but I'd say it's pretty darn good.

Just my two cents,

Carsten Haese
Ogg Traffic Editor, Xiph.org Foundation

Edit: typo fix

This post has been edited by c_haese: Sep 24 2003, 14:01
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Garf
post Sep 24 2003, 14:50
Post #3


Server Admin


Group: Admin
Posts: 4886
Joined: 24-September 01
Member No.: 13



QUOTE
Differences are loss of fidelity. Artifacts are obviously foreign sounds. On 99% of my music collection, Vorbis produces differences, not artifacts.


On 99.9% of my music collection, Vorbis produces an instantly audible, very annoying HF boost.

It's a difference, and it sure as hell is an artifact. I cannot say that of MP3Pro or HE-AAC.

Vorbis is simply no longer the top contender in low bitrate audio. It's a respectable second ranker, but sure as hell not the best. That's _objective_ data that this test produced.

QUOTE
However, keep in mind that the current q0 mode is still essentially the same as it was back in RC3, except for noise normalization added in 1.0 and minor tuning bug fixes in 1.0.1. It was intended to be a respectable first cut.


...and no improvement has been made ever since.

If Vorbis does not develop further, it will fall even more behind. And as for 1.1, I'll apply what Xiph applied to Matroska/MCF: I'll comment when I see the code, not the claims.

Edit: rewordings
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
JohnV
post Sep 24 2003, 16:03
Post #4





Group: Developer
Posts: 2797
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 6



QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 03:59 PM)
And it's patent-free.

It is claimed to be patent free by Xiph. However there are no single official document online or any other documents of patent searches available.

Fraunhofer guys at IBC2003 claimed that Vorbis is indeed infringing patents, but that no action will be taken yet because it's not bothered at this point, because there's not enough financial gains at stake yet. And this time the FhG guys specified at least one infringement: Vorbis' usage of windowed MDCT filterbanks with adaptive window switching.


--------------------
Juha Laaksonheimo
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
c_haese
post Sep 24 2003, 16:16
Post #5


Xiph.org Ogg Traffic editor


Group: Developer
Posts: 72
Joined: 7-July 02
Member No.: 2500



QUOTE
On 99.9% of my music collection, Vorbis produces an instantly audible, very annoying HF boost.

It's a difference, and it sure as hell is an artifact. I cannot say that of MP3Pro or HE-AAC.


This just underlines the point that I was making. The distinction between differences and artifacts is often a subjective matter of personal taste. Our preferences are different, so we will always agree to disagree.

QUOTE
Vorbis is simply no longer the top contender in low bitrate audio. It's a respectable second ranker, but sure as hell not the best.


I never said Vorbis was the top contender. Thank you for agreeing with me.

QUOTE
QUOTE

However, keep in mind that the current q0 mode is still essentially the same as it was back in RC3, except for noise normalization added in 1.0 and minor tuning bug fixes in 1.0.1. It was intended to be a respectable first cut.

...and no improvement has been made ever since.


Well, there was a small improvement from 1.0 to 1.0.1, but I know your point is that the HF boost is still the Number One problem.

QUOTE
If Vorbis does not develop further, it will fall even more behind.


Monty is well aware of this fact.

QUOTE
And as for 1.1, I'll apply what Xiph applied to Matroska/MCF: I'll comment when I see the code, not the claims.


Well, the seeming lack of movement is par for the course for Monty. Throughout all the previous releases, improvements happened in fits and starts, with each release being significantly better than the previous one.

Also, let's not forget that Monty spent considerable time on implementing portable player support, which was a necessary step towards greater recognition. So, Vorbis may not the best low-bitrate codec on the planet, but it's the best low-bitrate codec that my Neuros player can handle.

Best regards,

Carsten Haese
Ogg Traffic Editor, Xiph.org Foundation
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Ivan Dimkovic
post Sep 24 2003, 16:28
Post #6


Nero MPEG4 developer


Group: Developer
Posts: 1466
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 8



I must say some things regarding Vorbis, WMA, HE-AAC and such...

From the algorithmic point of view, Vorbis is more effective than WMA (which is a dumb MDCT based codec with window switching and perceptual noise substitution, M/S stereo and vector quantization - i.e. - basic stereophonic codec described in 1992 patent, with addition of noise substitution)

Vorbis, from the other hand - has several more tools, like various lossy stereo coding modes, adaptive huffman codebooks (that won't help that much) and ability to 'peel' the bitstream (never really widely adopted)

HE-AAC has everything that these two codecs have but with addition of powerful TNS algorithm, very effective bitstream syntax, SBR algorithm for very low bit rates etc...

So, WMA sounds very good for the basic set of tools it has - because they tuned encoder well (as good as it can be, actually - not that much smile.gif - Vorbis can of course be better than current state, but - IMHO - it can never be better than HE-AAC without changing the bitstream and adding new tools.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Garf
post Sep 24 2003, 16:32
Post #7


Server Admin


Group: Admin
Posts: 4886
Joined: 24-September 01
Member No.: 13



QUOTE
This just underlines the point that I was making. The distinction between differences and artifacts is often a subjective matter of personal taste. Our preferences are different, so we will always agree to disagree.


What the test strongly suggests is that for most people, the arti^Wdifferences that vorbis produces, are more annoying than those of MP3Pro and HE-AAC.

QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 05:16 PM)
Also, let's not forget that Monty spent considerable time on implementing portable player support, which was a necessary step towards greater recognition. So, Vorbis may not the best low-bitrate codec on the planet, but it's the best low-bitrate codec that my Neuros player can handle.

Portable support an advantage for Vorbis? Hah! You can't even get a Neuros in Europe.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
c_haese
post Sep 24 2003, 16:38
Post #8


Xiph.org Ogg Traffic editor


Group: Developer
Posts: 72
Joined: 7-July 02
Member No.: 2500



QUOTE (JohnV @ Sep 24 2003, 10:03 AM)
QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 03:59 PM)
And it's patent-free.

It is claimed to be patent free. However there are no single official document online or any other documents of patent searches available.

The fact that the findings aren't available online doesn't mean they don't exist. However, I have asked one of the people that were involved in the patent search if some evidence can be made available to appease constant skeptics like you.

Update: http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-sv...03May/0059.html contains some information about this.

Of course, you are free to do your own search. Vorbis is completely open, and Patent documents are available online.

QUOTE
Fraunhofer guys at IBC2003 claimed that Vorbis is indeed infringing patents, but that no action will be taken yet because it's not bothered at this point, because there's not enough financial gains at stake yet. And this time the FhG guys specified at least one infringement: Vorbis' usage of windowed MDCT filterbanks with adaptive window switching.

Do you happen to have a patent number to go with that allegation? Words are cheap, and FhG can throw around buzzwords as long as they want, but without specific evidence, this is just hollow FUD that puts them in the same league as SCO with their Linux IP claims.

Also, even if there is a patent that covers a similar technique, that doesn't automatically mean that Vorbis is infringing. There might be prior art, or the patent might not apply due to significant differences between the patented method and Vorbis. We will never know for sure until an infringement suit is brought before a court of law, but as you said, FhG is not interested in doing so. Why? They say it's because they don't have anything to gain. I say it's because they have a lot to lose. It's much more fruitful to make hollow claims and scare away the gullible than to fail proving your claim in court and lose a valuable patent.

Best regards,

Carsten Haese
Ogg Traffic Editor, Xiph.org Foundation

Edit: Added link to more info about the patent searches.

This post has been edited by c_haese: Sep 24 2003, 16:45
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Ivan Dimkovic
post Sep 24 2003, 16:45
Post #9


Nero MPEG4 developer


Group: Developer
Posts: 1466
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 8



QUOTE
They say it's because they don't have anything to gain. I say it's because they have a lot to lose. It's much more fruitful to make hollow claims and scare away the gullible than to fail proving your claim in court and lose a valuable patent.


FhG is an research institute and they usually do not sue for infringing of their patents - if someone sues Xiph, that could be either Thomson or Dolby, which are in licensing charge for the patented codecs like MP3, AC3 or AAC.

Nobody is doing that because of the simple fact - it would bring more lose than gain anyway - because suing of non-for-profit projects is just not the way things are being done, and anyway - nobody would benefit from that.

And Vorbis is certainly not a competitor to any of those standards - not at the current state of development and market share, at least.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Garf
post Sep 24 2003, 16:47
Post #10


Server Admin


Group: Admin
Posts: 4886
Joined: 24-September 01
Member No.: 13



QUOTE
However, I have asked one of the people that were involved in the patent search if some evidence can be made available to appease constant skeptics like you.


Good luck, this was asked several times before.

Nobody from Vorbis has ever wanted to back up the patent-free moniker with any real facts, nobody wants to give any guarantees.

Vorbis has always used 'patents' as an argument against MPC, but the reality is that the situation with Vorbis is no different than the one of MPC. If you're going to throw mud, expect to receive some too.

Show something tangible to support the claims, not again hollow things we are supposed to believe, just as we were supposed to believe bitrate peeling would be a major feature advantage of Vorbis, like, 4 years ago already?

QUOTE
Do you happen to have a patent number to go with that allegation? Words are cheap, and FhG can throw around buzzwords as long as they want, but without specific evidence, this is just hollow FUD that puts them in the same league as SCO with their Linux IP claims.


Difference is, Linux vendors such as HP are idemnifying their clients from SCO's claims. Is Xiph.org going to do the same?
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
JohnV
post Sep 24 2003, 16:50
Post #11





Group: Developer
Posts: 2797
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 6



QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 06:38 PM)
The fact that the findings aren't available online doesn't mean they don't exist. However, I have asked one of the people that were involved in the patent search if some evidence can be made available to appease constant skeptics like you.

Great, finally we will get something online about this. I and many people are looking forward to this. smile.gif
And I don't think it is unreasonable to ask some evidence of something which is usually just taken as granted by many people..

I don't have/know the actual patent number, but the description of the patent is pretty clear, so it shoudn't be too hard to verify.


--------------------
Juha Laaksonheimo
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
rjamorim
post Sep 24 2003, 16:56
Post #12


Rarewares admin


Group: Members
Posts: 7515
Joined: 30-September 01
From: Brazil
Member No.: 81



QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 12:38 PM)
Update: http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-sv...03May/0059.html contains some information about this.

QUOTE (Jack Moffitt)
I'm sorry that I'm not able to give a clear black and white answer on this issue, but one is certainly not possible.  After all, aren't hyperlinks patented? smile.gif  We do the best we can.


Hehe. The situation is still the same.

This post has been edited by rjamorim: Sep 24 2003, 16:58


--------------------
Get up-to-date binaries of Lame, AAC, Vorbis and much more at RareWares:
http://www.rarewares.org
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
c_haese
post Sep 24 2003, 16:58
Post #13


Xiph.org Ogg Traffic editor


Group: Developer
Posts: 72
Joined: 7-July 02
Member No.: 2500



QUOTE (Garf @ Sep 24 2003, 10:47 AM)
QUOTE

However, I have asked one of the people that were involved in the patent search if some evidence can be made available to appease constant skeptics like you.


Good luck, this was asked several times before.

Nobody from Vorbis has ever wanted to back up the patent-free moniker with any real facts, nobody wants to give any guarantees.

Vorbis has always used 'patents' as an argument against MPC, but the reality is that the situation with Vorbis is no different than the one of MPC. If you're going to throw mud, expect to receive some too.

Show something tangible to support the claims, not again hollow things we are supposed to believe, just as we were supposed to believe bitrate peeling would be a major feature advantage of Vorbis, like, 4 years ago already?

QUOTE
Do you happen to have a patent number to go with that allegation? Words are cheap, and FhG can throw around buzzwords as long as they want, but without specific evidence, this is just hollow FUD that puts them in the same league as SCO with their Linux IP claims.


Difference is, Linux vendors such as HP are idemnifying their clients from SCO's claims. Is Xiph.org going to do the same?

Please let me know when you're interested in bringing this discussion back to the rational level on which it began. Until then, I consider this discussion closed and have nothing more to add.

Sincerely,

Carsten Haese
Ogg Traffic Editor, Xiph.org Foundation
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Garf
post Sep 24 2003, 17:07
Post #14


Server Admin


Group: Admin
Posts: 4886
Joined: 24-September 01
Member No.: 13



Rational level? Sure, here are the facts:

1) Vorbis keeps touting patent-free-ness as a major feature.

2) Nobody is willing to turn up any verifyable evidence that this is true. (And we asked _several_ times.)

3) Claims are made the the contrary.

4) Vorbis claims that is FUD, but is not willing to give any guarantees about
it's patent-free-ness either.

5) Vorbis dismisses other (better) codecs as having 'patent issues'.

You see my big problem here?

This post has been edited by Garf: Sep 24 2003, 17:09
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Garf
post Sep 24 2003, 17:13
Post #15


Server Admin


Group: Admin
Posts: 4886
Joined: 24-September 01
Member No.: 13



QUOTE (JohnV @ Sep 24 2003, 05:50 PM)
I don't have/know the actual patent number, but the description of the patent is pretty clear, so it shoudn't be too hard to verify.

US5357594 (Not from FhG, but one of the Ahead AAC developers was questioning this specifically)
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
JohnV
post Sep 24 2003, 17:17
Post #16





Group: Developer
Posts: 2797
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 6



QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 06:58 PM)
Please let me know when you're interested in bringing this discussion back to the rational level on which it began. Until then, I consider this discussion closed and have nothing more to add.

I sure hope you will at least provide some patent search documentations you promised.
Thank you.


--------------------
Juha Laaksonheimo
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Ivan Dimkovic
post Sep 24 2003, 17:17
Post #17


Nero MPEG4 developer


Group: Developer
Posts: 1466
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 8



QUOTE
US5357594 (Not from FhG, but one of the Ahead AAC developers was questioning this specifically)


Actually, it was a nice discussion on IBC2003 regarding this one - although not related to Vorbis, but it applies to Vorbis case as well to my best knowledge.

I find it extremely hard to avoid this one if you are using adaptive window switched MDCT filterbank in your codec.

This post has been edited by Ivan Dimkovic: Sep 24 2003, 17:20
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Gabriel
post Sep 24 2003, 17:19
Post #18


LAME developer


Group: Developer
Posts: 2950
Joined: 1-October 01
From: Nanterre, France
Member No.: 138



QUOTE
US5357594 (Not from FhG, but one of the Ahead AAC developers was questioning this specifically)


This one is analysis/synthesis windowing.

US5214742 is windows switching.

I am also wondering about intensity stereo, used in both Vorbis and Speex.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
c_haese
post Sep 24 2003, 17:19
Post #19


Xiph.org Ogg Traffic editor


Group: Developer
Posts: 72
Joined: 7-July 02
Member No.: 2500



QUOTE
1) Vorbis keeps touting patent-free-ness as a major feature.

And it may continue to do so until it's been proven to be infringing.
QUOTE
2) Nobody is willing to turn up any verifyable evidence that this is true. (And we asked _several_ times.)

See the link above for explanations.
QUOTE
3) Claims are made the the contrary.

See my responses above.
QUOTE
4) Vorbis claims that is FUD, but is not willing to give any guarantees about
it's patent-free-ness either.

That's because Xiph.org can't afford to indemnify anybody. You get what you pay for.
QUOTE
5) Vorbis dismisses other (better) codecs as having 'patent issues'.

I am not fit to comment on MPC, since I don't know enough about it, but then again, we're talking about low bitrate performance here, so MPC is out the window. And you do agree that the remainder of the competitors, namely MP3Pro and HE-AAC do have patent issues, don't you?

Thanks for listening.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
spoon
post Sep 24 2003, 17:25
Post #20


dBpowerAMP developer


Group: Developer (Donating)
Posts: 2758
Joined: 24-March 02
Member No.: 1615



QUOTE
Difference is, Linux vendors such as HP are idemnifying their clients from SCO's claims. Is Xiph.org going to do the same?


Actually some of the major ones are not, I remember names but at least one of the major ones said they wouldn't.

QUOTE
FhG is an research institute and they usually do not sue for infringing of their patents


FhG are masters of FUD, without bringing lawsuits - that is why Lame is hosted on russian servers, they made all the noises and sent the offical solicitor letters, but no lawsuits have even come about - even for mp3...

FhG are never going to be interested in Ogg Vorbis, for a start (correct me if I am wrong) the holding organization has no serious capital to be handed over in damages, and even then the outcry would (at least from Open Source Community) would fund an effective defence.


--------------------
Spoon http://www.dbpoweramp.com
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
c_haese
post Sep 24 2003, 17:26
Post #21


Xiph.org Ogg Traffic editor


Group: Developer
Posts: 72
Joined: 7-July 02
Member No.: 2500



QUOTE (JohnV @ Sep 24 2003, 11:17 AM)
I sure hope you will at least provide some patent search documentations you promised.
Thank you.

I didn't promise anything, but if something tangible is available, I'll let you know.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
menno
post Sep 24 2003, 17:26
Post #22


Nero MPEG4 developer


Group: Developer (Donating)
Posts: 1218
Joined: 11-October 01
From: LA
Member No.: 267



QUOTE (Gabriel @ Sep 24 2003, 05:19 PM)
I am also wondering about intensity stereo, used in both Vorbis and Speex.

Those probably do not apply to Vorbis as they all talk about using stereo coding in scalefactor bands. Patent numbers: EP0910927 and EP0910928.

About speex: looks like a CELP codec to me, I don't know if that is patented.

Menno
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Garf
post Sep 24 2003, 17:27
Post #23


Server Admin


Group: Admin
Posts: 4886
Joined: 24-September 01
Member No.: 13



Here's some other 'rational' thing that I have an axe to grind with:

Vorbis keeps touting itself as supporting features such as bitrate peeling, while still not having any usable utility to do so, and in the meantime downplays things like Matroska/MFC because 'they haven't actually made anything yet'.

You are now implying Vorbis is good because it has spent a lot of time on portable support. If I look at the results (0, as far as it applies to me), I have to seriously wonder whether that time would not have been MUCH better spent on keeping the codec up to date.

It went from being the best codec in some areas, with some issues in other areas, and a lot of promise, to something that's no longer the best in any area, still having serious issues in other areas, and having seriously failed to deliver any of the promises. All of this in space of less than 2 years.

Vorbis went from something that was great because it was just good to something that must be kept alive by its 'supporters' spewing FUD at other things.

I know the reason of some of this degradation was mismanagement and that these issues have been 'fixed', but I have seen no proof or indication of any improvement in the situation lately, on the contrary.

I'm in the situation where I am very seriously wonder whether the time I spent on Vorbis was not just wasted work, and I'd hate _that_ to be true.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
rjamorim
post Sep 24 2003, 17:31
Post #24


Rarewares admin


Group: Members
Posts: 7515
Joined: 30-September 01
From: Brazil
Member No.: 81



QUOTE (spoon @ Sep 24 2003, 01:25 PM)
FhG are masters of FUD, without bringing lawsuits - that is why Lame is hosted on russian servers, they made all the noises and sent the offical solicitor letters, but no lawsuits have even come about - even for mp3...

Well, they never brought lawsuits because everyone they mailed acomplished to what they demanded.

SoloH is dead. 8Hz-mp3 is dead. Blade and Lame are only (legally) distributable in source form...

If someone didn't acomplish what they wanted, it's pretty much probable that FhG would bring lawsuits.


--------------------
Get up-to-date binaries of Lame, AAC, Vorbis and much more at RareWares:
http://www.rarewares.org
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Ivan Dimkovic
post Sep 24 2003, 17:32
Post #25


Nero MPEG4 developer


Group: Developer
Posts: 1466
Joined: 22-September 01
Member No.: 8



QUOTE (c_haese @ Sep 24 2003, 04:19 PM)
performance here, so MPC is out the window. And you do agree that the remainder of the competitors, namely MP3Pro and HE-AAC do have patent issues, don't you?

Thanks for listening.

Crap,

MP3Pro and HE-AAC DO NOT have patent issues, they have clear defined patent list, and well established patent pool - so the company that pays knows what are they paying for. There is also an ISO policy about being fair and reasonable and granting everyone license under equal terms.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post

10 Pages V   1 2 3 > » 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 



RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 28th December 2014 - 19:06