Re: [codec] #16: Multicast?

"Christian Hoene" <> Thu, 27 May 2010 10:45 UTC

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From: Christian Hoene <>
To: 'Koen Vos' <>, "'Raymond (Juin-Hwey) Chen'" <>
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Date: Thu, 27 May 2010 12:45:07 +0200
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Subject: Re: [codec] #16: Multicast?
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Hello Koen and Raymond,

yesterdays, I had a brief look on ITU-T G.114
It might help in your discussion...

Regarding Moore-law and so: We shall keep in mind that cannot continue forever. Already today, due to Quantum tunneling and
subthreshold leakage current very small semiconductor structures consume increasing amounts of energy. Thus, it might not always be
advisable to use the latest technology if power consumption shall be low. 

It is know that "CMOS circuits dissipate power by charging the various load capacitances (mostly gate and wire capacitance, but also
drain and some source capacitances) whenever they are switched. The charge moved is the capacitance multiplied by the voltage
change. Multiply by the switching frequency on the load capacitances to get the current used, and multiply by voltage again to get
the characteristic switching power dissipated by a CMOS device: P = CV²f".

C is the capacity (depending on the size of the structure)
V is Voltage
f is the powering frequency
P is the power

Thus, the power does not decrease if the calculation (e.g., the encoding and decoding) is done faster or slower. 

In order to save power in mobile device, Dynamic frequency scaling and Dynamic voltage scaling change the frequency and/or the
voltage to save power.  If power consumption needs to be reduced, the device reduces voltage and frequency and thus the calculation
takes longer. Thus, even if the CPU can do the encoding/decoding at full speed and in a fraction of the frame duration, it is not
always advisable to do it like that. Instead, if energy supply is limited, then calculations shall be slowed down.

My argumentations above support the position of Raymond that device with low processing power will be used and that this increases
to the transmission delay. However, I am not an expert in system or chip design and thus, I might have missed a few details or

Nevertheless, in the end, my position is simple. The lesser the computational complexity, the smaller the battery. This statement
will remain true for future semiconductor technologies, too. Thus, a low complexity mode and low delay mode is advisable for small,
portable battery-powered devices such as wireless headsets, hearing aids, or wireless sensor nodes. Or other kind of devices, which
have problems with head dissipation.

With best regards,

 Christian Hoene

Dr.-Ing. Christian Hoene
Interactive Communication Systems (ICS), University of Tübingen 
Sand 13, 72076 Tübingen, Germany, Phone +49 7071 2970532

>-----Original Message-----
>From: [] On Behalf Of Koen Vos
>Sent: Thursday, May 27, 2010 6:43 AM
>To: Raymond (Juin-Hwey) Chen
>Subject: Re: [codec] #16: Multicast?
>Quoting "Raymond (Juin-Hwey) Chen":
>> My point is that we should not expect that future IP phones or gateways
>> will operate at a very low percentage point of the processor load just
>> because Moore's Law can improve processor speed over time.
>In other words, future manufacturers won't spend a few dimes on
>reducing delay, even though today they're happy to add several dollars
>to the price just to enable wideband?  That's a statement about the
>relative importance of delay.
>For the discussion about transmission delay vs. frame size, see e.g.
>> Hi Koen,
>> In-line below...
>> You wrote:
>>> The essence, if I understand you correctly, is that there still exist
>>> low-end platforms with barely enough processing power to run a VoIP
>>> call.  If such platforms use a naive FIFO scheduler, they'll create up
>>> to one frame of processing delay for encoder and decoder each, on top
>>> of the frame of buffering delay.
>> [Raymond]: It doesn't have to be low-end platforms.  I wouldn't consider
>> high-density VoIP gateways "low-end".  What matters is whether the
>> processor is heavily loaded (i.e. busy at a high percentage of time)
>> with real-time tasks (and thus is just fast enough). I think this is
>> true for typical implementations of IP phones and VoIP gateways.
>> I also wouldn't use the term "a naïve FIFO scheduler" to describe the
>> "run to completion" real-time scheduler that I talked about in my last
>> email, because that term seems to imply that it is a very simple-minded
>> and inferior approach used by an inexperienced person who doesn't know
>> anything better.  My understanding from talking to the three senior
>> technical leads of Broadcom is that the reality is when you have many
>> real-time tasks that you need to handle concurrently, using a
>> prioritized interrupt-driven scheduler is just way too complex and
>> messy, and it doesn't even guarantee that you will get a lower delay if
>> you do go through the trouble.  In contrast, the kind of "run to
>> completion" real-time scheduler that I talked about is a more elegant
>> solution as it simplifies the scheduling problem substantially and also
>> allows you to have more efficient utilization of the processor.
>> Other than these two points, your understanding of my main point is
>> correct.
>>> The good news is that Moore's law will continue to drive down the
>>> fraction of platforms with such processing delay problems.
>> [Raymond]: This may be true for PC but probably not true in general.
>> PC is a general-purpose computing device that has to handle numerous
>> possible tasks, and a voice phone call takes only a very small fraction
>> of the worst-case computational power requirement of a PC.  In contrast,
>> for special-purpose dedicated hardware devices such as IP phones or
>> VoIP gateways, it would make no sense to use a processor that is many
>> times faster than the worst-case computational power requirement.  For
>> the sake of cost and power efficiency, the designers of such special-
>> purpose devices will want to use a processor that's just slightly faster
>> than required, because then they can use the cheapest and/or lowest
>> power-consuming processor that's fast enough to get the job done.
>> If they choose to use a processor much faster than is required, then
>> competitors using processors just fast enough can have lower costs
>> and power consumption and can take market share away from them.
>> A case in point: after its first appearance several decades ago, 8-bit
>> microprocessors are still widely used in many devices today despite the
>> several orders of magnitude of speed improvement provided by Moore's
>> Law, because those devices just don't need anything faster, so using
>> anything faster would be a waste of money and power consumption.
>> My point is that we should not expect that future IP phones or gateways
>> will operate at a very low percentage point of the processor load just
>> because Moore's Law can improve processor speed over time. Therefore,
>> don't expect the 3X multiplier for codec frame size to go down much
>> below where they are now.
>> In fact, if in addition to a VoIP call, a PC is heavily loaded with a
>> lot of other concurrent tasks, many of which may be real-time tasks
>> (e.g. video, playing/burning CD/DVD, networking, etc.), then it will be
>> difficult for the PC to have small encoding and decoding RTS delays (d2
>> and d5 in my delay analysis).  In this case, the codec frame size
>> multiplier will be closer to 3X than to 1X, unless you are willing to
>> let the voice stream occasionally run out of real time and produce an
>> audible glitch (which is not acceptable from the voice quality
>> perspective).  If you agree with this and agree that a PC sometimes
>> does get very heavily loaded, then if you don't want the voice stream
>> to run out of real time, the worst-case codec-dependent delay for
>> PC can still be around 3X the codec frame size.
>>> I'm a bit surprised by your analysis of "packet transmission delay",
>>> as it has little bearing on our multiplier (ie the change in delay as
>>> a function of frame size). See old posts.
>> [Raymond]: I am not sure I understand what you are saying.  You probably
>> misunderstood the goal of my analysis. I mentioned in my last email that
>> my delay analysis aimed to derive the lower and upper bounds of the
>> codec-dependent one-way delay as functions of both the codec frame size
>> AND the packet size.  That "packet transmission delay" does depend on
>> the packet size, so it should be included.  Also, including it doesn't
>> increase the lower bound of the delay (and the codec frame size
>> multiplier there); it only affects the upper bound.
>> Or, are you saying the "packet transmission delay" depends on the packet
>> size, not the codec frame size, and therefore is not codec-dependent?
>> Well, we know the packet size should be a positive integer multiple of
>> the codec frame size.  Once the codec frame size is determined, there
>> are only limited choices of packet sizes you can use, so in this sense
>> the packet size does depend on the codec frame size.  Therefore, the
>> "packet transmission delay" indirectly depends on the choice of the
>> codec.
>> Best Regards,
>> Raymond
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