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Multimedia Systems with features or characteristics

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  • Difficulty Level : Easy
  • Last Updated : 03 Aug, 2021
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What are Multimedia Systems:

A multimedia system is responsible for developing a multimedia application. A multimedia application is a bundle of different kinds of data. A multimedia computer system is one that can create, integrate, store, retrieve delete two or more types of media materials in digital form, such as audio, image, video, and text information.

Following are some major characteristics or features of a Multimedia System: 

Very High Processing Power: 

To deal with large amount of data, very high processing power is used.

File System:

File system must be efficient to meet the requirements of continuous media. These media files requires very high-disk bandwidth rates. Disks usually have low transfer rates and high latency rates. To satisfy the requirements for multimedia data, disk schedulers must reduce the latency time to ensure high bandwidth.

File formats that support multimedia:

Multimedia data consists of a variety of media formats or file representation including ,JPEG, MPEG, AVI, MID, WAV, DOC, GIF,PNG, etc. AVI files can contain both audio and video data in a file container that allows synchronous audio-with-video playback. Like the DVD video format, AVI files support multiple streaming audio and video. Because of restrictions on the conversion from one format to the other, the use of the data in a specific format has been limited as well.


In multimedia applications, the input and output should be continuous and fast. Real-time recording as well as playback of data are common in most of the multimedia applications which need efficient I/O.

Operating System:

The operating system must provide a fast response time for interactive applications. High throughput for batch applications, and real-time scheduling,

Storage and Memory:

Multimedia systems require storage for large capacity objects such as video, audio, animation and images. Depending on the compression scheme and reliability video and audio require large amount of memory.

Network Support:

It includes internet, intranet, LAN, WAN, ATM, Mobile telephony and others. In recent years, there has been a tremendous growth of multimedia applications on the internet like streaming video, IP telephony, interactive games, teleconferencing, virtual world, distance learning and so on. These multimedia networking applications are referred as continuous-media applications and require high communication latency. Communication Latency is the time it takes for a data packet to be received by the remote computer.

Software Tools:

For the development of multimedia applications, the various software tools like programming languages, graphics software’s, multimedia editing software’s scripting languages: authoring tools, design software’s etc are required. In addition to these the device drivers are required for interfacing the multimedia peripherals.


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