With the new PSP Firmware 2.0 Sony added the AVC codec support for videos played from the memory stick. AVC (Advanced Video Coding a.k.a. MPEG4-10 or h.264) is a much more efficent means of compressing video. Basically this means for us PSP users is smaller video files at the same quality or higher quality videos as the same file size. So just how much better is the video using this new compression method?
I encoded a video using PSP Video 9 (using custom settings near the AVC default settings) and the new AVC enabled PSP Video 9 AVC (currently in beta) from the same source file. Below is a comparison of the output.
In this pic (PNG format) the old codec is the left half of the screen and the new codec is the right half:
The difference may not be immedetly noticble, so heres a section detailed:
As you can see the AVC version has no macroblocking, much truer color representation and a bit more detail.
With PSP Video 9 AVC in beta we can only expect the quality to improve. Its important to note that this is a comparison of video quality, not file size. So if video quality is not as important you will be able to fit more video on a memory stick without sacraficing your current video quality settings.
As for PSP Video 9 AVC itself, I myself am still having audio sync issues. There are people working on this and hopefully those issues will be fixed soon.