The architecture and performance of a multicomputer-type digital signal processing (DSP) system are discussed. The DSP system, called NOVI, has been created to examine methods for organizing parallel DSP systems and developing parallel programs for a wide range of digital signal processing applications. NOVI presently consists of 36 processing elements (PEs), each using an Inmos Transputer as a CPU. Its parallel-program-development assistant (PDA) system facilitates powerful debugging functions to observe all PE states without any interference to parallel program execution. A parallel-program-development technique using the PDA is discussed. A load-balancing technique on a multicomputer-type DSP is also discussed, focusing on low-bit-rate motion-picture coding. The balancing technique is based on interframe prediction and layered large-grain data flow. The expected performance of the NOVI system is discussed.