Archive for December 23rd, 2010

DELL Vostro V130 video performance

So my Christmas present arrived today, a Dell Vostro V130 laptop, with an i3 1.33 Ghz CPU (equivalent to Cure2Duo 1.86Ghz ULV), Win7 64bit, and Intel HD Graphics. The laptop is nice, but its touchpad driver would crash on me, so I had to uninstall the custom DELL Synaptics driver, and install the generic one, which worked better and had the options I needed (I couldn’t disable horizontal scrolling with DELL’s UI).

I needed an ultra-portable at a good price, and I found this to be the best solution out there. I was hoping that the device would be able to manage 1080p h.264 video, but unfortunately, it’s a hit and miss. Here’s the review about it:

YouTube/Vimeo Flash 1080/30p at 16:9 aspect ratio: CHOPPY
YouTube/Vimeo Flash 1080/24p at 1:85:1 aspect ratio: SMOOTH (less area, and fewer frames to decode — decoder at its limits)
YouTube/Vimeo Flash 1080/24p at 16:9 aspect ratio: CHOPPY but watchable
YouTube/Vimeo Flash 720/30p at 16:9 aspect ratio: SMOOTH
Windows Media Player 1080/30p: SMOOTH
VLC 1080/30p: CHOPPY/FROZEN at times
Quicktime: CHOPPY, no matter what res (no big surprise there)
Sony Vegas Pro v10.0b 64bit: When project properties are set properly, and preview window is set to preview/auto and 640×360 preview resolution, it’s smooth for the most part, at any video resolution! At 1080/30p is struggling a bit, but it manages better than other editors. The laptop is obviously at its limits there. 720/30p editing is smooth.
HULU desktop app, connected to TV as a secondary monitor via HDMI: In “High” Hulu video quality (480p), when the TV resolution is set to 1080p, the decoder drops frames. When the TV resolution is set to 720p, it manages ok. If Hulu was to upgrade its “High” 480p standard to actual 720p video, then I reckon the decoder wouldn’t manage anymore.

The biggest disappointment here is Adobe and it’s badly optimized Flash player. I tried both 10.1 and 10.2b, but performance was the same. Windows Media Player showcases that the GPU is able to do just fine with these full-HD files, but Flash falls short. I do put the blame to Adobe here and not Intel. It’s just another clue that some Adobe teams are much worse than others, and much worse than the Microsoft ones.

In conclusion, I believe that this laptop is fine for editing 720p files. Since this is a very portable laptop, you can easily use it for editing your Canon digicam 720p video files. 1080p is possible, but it will put lots of strain on the machine.