There is a company in the video content adaptor business that makes some lofty claims that I think need to be put into perspective.
Content adaption is the process of converting one video coding format to another format or taking one image/frame size and converting it to another. It is applicable in the Mobile market where not all handsets are capable of processing the formats in which the content is originally stored.
This company is considered by some to be a leader in this industry, but their solution is based on DSP technology. Their lofty claim is that their solution is much greener than their competition because they can do in a single 90W 1U pizza box what it takes software media servers 20 (175W) servers to do. Well, if you look at the math, they get up to 48 channels in a single box. They have 16 DSPs and they can do up to 3 channels of any transcode operation per DSP.
Well, I am not sure whose media server they were comparing against, but it certainly wasn't anything from Dialogic. The Dialogic HMP Linux media server is capable of up to 240 channels of any transcode function on a single dual-quad core 1U server. While we haven't benchmarked the new octal core servers due out later this year, we fully expect to at least double this performance.
Now, a dual-quad core or especially a dual octal core server is definitely going to exceed 90W, but even at 450W (the extreme high end for a quad core server), the Dialogic HMP would match the power/channel density of this company's DSP box but at 5 times the volume/channel density. When Octal core comes out, this difference will grow dramatically.
One lesson to be learned in this is how DSPs have fallen behind in the performance curve relative to the general purpose processor, at least when it comes to complex mathematical functions on high volumes of streaming data like video.
So the next time you hear some competitor claim about how their solution is 'Greener,' make sure they aren't just talking about the color of your money.