USBOSDM2: USB-Powered MPEG2 Encoder with Colour OSD, Multi-Input Picture-in-Picture & Comprehensive SDK

Inventa Australia has released USBOSDM2 --- a USB-powered PC encoder/capture-box that converts multi-channel video with colour text/graphics overlay into MPEG2/MPEG1 streams. Incorporating on-board hardware video / audio multiplexing, colour text and graphics overlay and dedicated-IC MPEG compression, USBOSDM2 allows multiple picture-in-picture video mixed with unlimited overlay items to simultaneously appear on PC monitor, TV screen, record to MPEG file, and stream over network using many powerful functions & features:

1. With multi-channel video inputs, USBOSDM2 allows 4 video channels to simultaneously appear on the output video frame, each to be independently adjusted with:

-- Arbitrary size and location on the output video frame: thus forming various picture-in-picture, picture-by-picture scenarios;

-- Signal source from 6 possible sockets (1 SVideo, 5 RCA): same input socket can be used simultaneously by multiple channels;

-- Both PAL and NTSC input are supported, including simultaneously mixed PAL and NTSC inputs from different channels;

-- Colour brightness, contrast, hue, saturation and sharpness;

-- Horizontal and vertical mirroring: each channel can be flipped left-right, top-bottom;

-- 2-Times Zooming from any point inside the video frame;

-- Input pixel cropping;

-- Channel boundaries.

For audio input, USBOSDM2 can select 4 stereo audio channels from among 4 line-in sockets and 2 microphone sockets, to be simultaneously mixed into one MPEG audio stream. All audio channels have input gain and mute/un-mute adjustment.

2. Overlaying (Superimposing) colour text and graphics on the video before MPEG compression,  USBOSDM2 allows the user to define un-limited Text, Text-File, Timer/Counter, Rectangle, Transparent Box, Graphics File and Geometric Shape overlay items anywhere on the video frame, that can be used as colour annotation, caption, time stamp/count-down timer, logo, text legend, footnote etc., to simultaneously appear on the PC screen, encoded/streamed MPEG video and external TV Output: Different Transparency (Alpha Channel) Values and Blinking Intervals can also be applied on various overlay items.

-- Text overlay can use any font under Windows, inc. different alphabet, colour, typeface, style and any size, plus alpha transparency and blinking options. Text background can be either transparent or opaque. Text can also Auto Scroll across video frame:

-- Text File overlay allows text from files to be displayed on video frame using the various options as Text Overlay. Multiple lines of text from a file can also be Auto-Scrolled from right-to-left across the video frame:

-- Timer overlay continuously updates current time per second with optional date display. Counter Timer can also be defined to Count Down or Count Up similar as a Stopwatch:

-- Rectangle overlay draws lines with any width, height and colour, therefore can be used easily to cover any area on the video frame. Typical application examples include covering the shivering noise lines at the top or bottom of analogue video input. 

-- Box overlay with partially transparent background can be used to highlight the text:

-- Graphics File overlay loads bitmap files (.bmp, .gif, .jpg, etc.) onto the video with Transparent or Opaque background mode: using the Transparent mode, complex graphs with uniform background can be clearly overlaid on live video showing all details without any trace of the background colour, similar as the "Blue Screen" effects used in video editing process.

-- Geometric Shape overlay allows lines, arcs, circles, rectangles, polygons, arrows etc. symbols defined with different colour, length, thickness to appear on video frame.

-- Overlay can be displayed outside the video window, or on video output without input signal (so the MPEG output contains only overlaid text/graphics).

Overlay items defined can be reloaded each time the USBOSDM2 program starts. Convenient overlay operations inc. instant moving, clear screen, font downloading, overlay disable/enable, alpha value, blinking, background mode, etc are provided through Overlay Setup Dialog Window.

3. Live Video Preview on PC is provided by a floating Video Window that can be arbitrarily resized and moved around on PC screen, made into full-screen mode or minimized as an icon on the task-bar: live video from all input channels or from one channel can be selected to fill the preview window or full screen. The Video Window also has a Drop-down Menu offering many useful functions inc. start/stop/pause/resume recording and streaming, image grabbing, maximize/minimize window, etc. This live video preview can also be utilized by third-party DirectShow-enabled software such as VideoLan etc. to further process the un-compressed analogue video.

4. Two TV Out Ports output the channel-mixed and text/graphics-overlaid video to TV or VCR in real-time:, allowing USBOSDM2 to function as a real-time video overlay device, while live previewing video on PC screen, recording MPEG file, and streaming over network. Two stereo audio pass-through sockets are also available.

5. MPEG File Recording has many useful options:

-- All MPEG Compression Parameters are user-definable through tabbed dialog boxes. MPEG compression bit-rates from 1Mbps to 25Mbps, DVD, SVCD, VCD, MPEG2 and MPEG1 encoding types, Constant and Variable bit-rates, GOP structure, etc parameters are supported. Encoded DVD/VCD/SVCD files can be burned as DVD/VCD/SVCD movie disks immediately without any software conversion.

-- Recording file name can have many user-defined fields such as date/time, MPEG-compression bit-rate, frame-size, video signal type, device number, etc.

-- Recording timer and calendar scheduler are provided. Timer can be adjusted after recording started. Scheduler allows flexible file name prefix and daily/weekly etc. repeat recording modes.

-- Recording MPEG file can be real-time arbitrarily Split manually or according to pre-defined file size or recording time -- useful for creating multiple fixed-sized files for easy DVD/CD burning.

-- Recording can be paused and resumed without closing the current file.

-- Recording status can be displayed on the video window in used-selectable text size, colour, location, etc.

6. USBOSDM2 records high quality MPEG video up to 25Mbps with always lip-synched audio: at the default 8Mbps DVD-format recording setup, the recorded video can play back in visually indistinguishable result as the original input. Even at lower bit rate and frame size setups such as SVCD and VCD settings, the resulting video also have very good quality and keep A/V sync all the time: sample recording clips can be downloaded here.

7. USBOSDM2 can function as a MPEG video streaming server: Video Streaming can be started at any time independent of video recording status, both multi-cast and uni-cast UDP streaming are supported. Streamed video can be received by client software such as VideoLan etc. in real-time over any IP network.

8. PAL and NTSC video input are both supported, incoming video signal's TV type is automatically detected and displayed, PAL or NTSC MPEG encoding video standard can be user-selected, mixed PAL and NTSC signals among input channels are allowed: PAL video can be displayed and encoded as NTSC format and vice-versa.

9. Still Image can be grabbed at any time: the grabbed video frame can be saved as graphics files in the format of BMP, JPEG, GIF, TIFF or PNG.

10. Multiple USBOSDM2 Devices can run simultaneously on one PC: all devices can operate independently with live video preview inside the same Video Window. All devices can start/stop recording or streaming simultaneously or separately with their own MPEG encoding parameters.

11. Various Command-Line Parameters facilitate the USBOSDM2 software to be launched and exit in batch mode with automatic recording, streaming operation enabled at start-up.

12. Many Device Setup Options including hardware IC reset, DirectX parameters, colour bar generation etc. are provided.

13. Comprehensive Software Development Kit (SDK) is optionally available for writing customized software to implement all the above functions plus many more using simple function calls from programming language such as C, C++, C#, VisualBasic, Delphi, etc, without directly interfacing the complicated hardware.

14. USBOSDM2 runs under Microsoft Windows 7, Vista or XP on laptop or desktop PCs with moderate hardware requirement: no host CPU time is consumed for MPEG compression, encoded text/graphics overlay quality is independent of PC graphics card quality. 

Combining hardware-based multi-channel video mixing, colour overlay and MPEG compression in one portable USB-powered box, USBOSDM2 creates high-quality, versatile and interesting video results that can be simultaneously previewed on PC, recorded to MPEG file, streamed over network and output to TV/VCR. Compare USBOSDM2 with other hardware MPEG encoder devices here.

USBOSDM2 comes with full User Manual, installation CD, the device box, USB and Audio/Video cables.  Further information can be obtained from Inventa Australia at telephone 61-2-95186100, e-mail

USBOSDM2 Hardware Specification:

Host Interface: 2 X USB2.0 Type B Sockets

Power Supply: through USB Cables

Video Input: 5 X Composite (RCA), 1 X SVideo (4-Pin Mini-DIN)

Video Output (for Real-time Monitoring): 2 X Composite (RCA)

Audio Input: 4 X Line-in 3.5mm Stereo Mini Socket, 2 X Microphone 3.5mm Stereo Mini Jack

Audio Output: 2 X Line-out 3.5mm Stereo Mini Socket


Encoded Video Formats: MPEG2, MPEG1 MP@ML, Program Stream / System Stream

Constant Bit Rate (CBR) and Variable Bit Rate (VBR) Encoding

Video 4:2:2 to 4:2:0 Conversion

Video Inverse telecine (3:2 pulldown)

Video Encoding Frame Rates: 25 fps, 29.95 fps

Video Encoding Bit Rates: 1.00 Mbps ~ 25.00 Mbps

Video Encoding Resolution in Pixels: PAL:   352X288,480X576,720X576,

                                                             NTSC: 352X240,480X480,720X480

Video Encoding Aspect Ratio: 4:3

Audio Encoding Format: MPEG1 Layer 2

Audio Sampling Rates: 32KHz, 44.1KHz, 48Khz

Audio Encoding Bit Rates: 192Kbps, 224Kbps, 256Kbps, 320Kbps, 384Kbps


Device Dimension: Top Width 138mm, Bottom Width 168mm, Depth 120mm,  Height 40mm