MPEG-2 Decoder

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A device (hard- and/or software) that decodes a MPEG2 Elementary Stream and prepares data for (e.g. audiovisual) presentation.

Since the decoding algorithms are usually quite complex (and thus implementation is error-prone) vendors are moving in modern STB and DVD player chipsets from fixed-function silicon to Firmware-driven designs which allow late hotfixes.

Very modern approaches even implement the entire decoding process in software on the host processor.

See also VDR Software Decoder Plugin for a further distinction of hardware and software decoding.