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Essential Video Coding

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EVC / MPEG-5 Part 1
Essential Video Coding
Year started2018 (Initial Requirements Document)
DomainVideo compression

MPEG-5 Essential Video Coding (EVC), standardized as ISO/IEC 23094-1, is a video compression standard that has been completed in April 2020 by decision of MPEG Working Group 11 at its 130th meeting.[1][2][3] [4]

The standard consists of a royalty-free subset and individually switchable enhancements.[2][3][5]


The publicly available requirements document[5] outlines a development process that is defensive against patent threats: Two sets of coding tools, base and enhanced, are defined:

  • The base consist of tools that were made public more than 20 years ago or for which a Type 1 declaration is received. Type 1, or option 1, means "royalty-free", in the nomenclature used in ISO documents.[6]
  • The "enhanced" set consists of 21[7] other tools which have passed an extra compression efficiency justification and which can be disabled individually.

Each of the 21 payable tools can have separately acquired and separately negotiated and separately Traded License agreements. [7] Each can be individually turned off and, when necessary, replaced by a corresponding cost free baseline profile tool. This structure makes it easy to fall back to a smaller set of tools in the future, if, for example, licensing complications occur around a specific tool, without breaking compatibility with already deployed decoders. [7]

A proposal by Samsung, Huawei and Qualcomm forms the basis of EVC.[8]


  • XEVE (eXtra-fast Essential Video Encoder)[9] is self-described as a fast open source EVC encoder. It is written in C99 and supports both the baseline and main profiles of EVC. Its license is a custom 3-clause BSD license.


MPAI aims to significantly enhance the performance of EVC by improving or replacing traditional tools with AI-based tools, with the goal of reaching at least 25% improvement over the baseline profile of EVC.[10][11][12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Pennington, Adrian (6 April 2019). "NAB 2019: Five trends to watch". IBC. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  2. ^ a b Timmerer, Christian (14 February 2019). "MPEG 125 Meeting Report". Bitmovin. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  3. ^ a b Gibellino, Diego (4 March 2019). "Introducing MPEG-5". Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  4. ^ "MPEG-5 EVC gets final approval". CSImagazine.com. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Requirements for a New Video Coding Standard". 12 October 2018. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  6. ^ Chiariglione, Leonardo (28 January 2018). "A crisis, the causes and a solution". Retrieved 6 April 2019. I saw the danger coming and designed a strategy for it. This would create two tracks in MPEG: one track producing royalty free standards (Option 1, in ISO language) and the other the traditional Fair Reasonable and Non Discriminatory (FRAND) standards (Option 2, in ISO language).
  7. ^ a b c Samuelsson, Jonatan; Choi, Kiho; Chen, Jianle; Rusanovskyy, Dmytro (2020). "MPEG-5 Part 1: Essential Video Coding". SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal. 129 (7). SMPTE: 10–16. doi:10.5594/JMI.2020.3001795. S2CID 225463271. Retrieved 26 June 2021.
  8. ^ Ozer, Jan (October 15, 2019). "Inside MPEG's Ambitious Plan to Launch 3 Video Codecs in 2020". Retrieved June 12, 2020. Though the EVC Main profile uses royalty-bearing "tools," these can be switched on and off with "limited loss of performance." This was the model deployed by Divideon and their xvc codec, and, in theory, it allows those deploying the technology to pick and choose both the performance and the associated royalty cost. (…) Two proposals were submitted in response to MPEG's call for proposals for MPEG-5 Part 1, and MPEG selected the proposal from Samsung, Huawei, and Qualcomm
  9. ^ "eXtra-fast Essential Video Encoder (XEVE)". January 9, 2023 – via GitHub.
  10. ^ "AI-Enhanced Video Coding (MPAI-EVC)". Moving Picture, Audio and data Coding by Artificial Intelligence.
  11. ^ "Basic Applications, Technologies and Benefits for Video Coding by means of Artificial Intelligence". mpai.community/news/presentations/#ShortPresentation. 23 February 2021. Retrieved 21 September 2022.
  12. ^ "Video Basic Applications, Technologies and Benefits for Video Coding by means of Artificial Intelligence". mpai.community/news/presentations/#ShortPresentation. 23 February 2021. Retrieved 21 September 2022.

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