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Movie playback slightly poor

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January 15, 2011 3:52:29 AM

HI,

When playing movies on my PC the playback is occasionally poor (not often so I hope it can be salvaged) - a bit of shutter and the display shows in small one centimeter squares on certain parts of the screen (hope that makes sense).

I have monitored the RAM in the task manager and it never seems to max out while a movie is playing - it is the cheapest RAM though.

I have two video cards (2 monitors on the 8600gt and two TV's on the 8400gs - the 8400 gs is brand new). The same problem happens if I switch the video cards around. CPU usage around 15% while playing a movie.

Just wondering which of these specs is likely to be the culprit - would high end RAM help or is this a CPU quality issue?

Windows 7 32 bit
Q6600 quad 2.4 ghz
2.00 gb ram
GeForce 8600 GT PCI-E
GeForce 8400 GS PCI
650w Antec Power supply
Gigabyte G31M-ES2L

RAM -

Manufacturer Corsair
Part Number VS1GB667D2
Capacity 1024 MBytes
Memory Type DDR2 (PC2-5300)
Speed 333 MHz (DDR2 667)
Supported Frequencies 200.0 MHz, 266.7 MHz, 333.3 MHz
Memory Timings 3-3-3-9-12 at 200.0 MHz, at 1.8 volts (CL-RCD-RP-RAS-RC)
Memory Timings 4-4-4-12-16 at 266.7 MHz, at 1.8 volts (CL-RCD-RP-RAS-RC)
Memory Timings 5-5-5-15-20 at 333.3 MHz, at 1.8 volts (CL-RCD-RP-RAS-RC)
Data Width 64 bits
EPP SPD Support No
XMP SPD Support No
a b à CPUs
January 15, 2011 6:14:24 AM

What is the player that you use to watch the movies?
What format are the movies in?
Does it happen even when you watch movies straight from a DVD?
Actually, if it's a ripped movie, then you need to get better quality rips, the small size rips will always have those boxes, especially is the ripped resolution is small.
Before ripping or downloading always check what resolution the movies are ripped at and basically a good rip for a HDMI connection without the boxes and blurs (720 or 1080) the size of the rip should be 14Gigs or more..... anything less is going to cause the same problems....
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January 15, 2011 7:34:11 AM

Quote:
What is the player that you use to watch the movies?

I use GOM player or WMP.
Quote:
What format are the movies in?

avi or wmv
Quote:
Does it happen even when you watch movies straight from a DVD?

Occasionally a rented dvd will stick, but I assumed that those were scratched. If I forward past or clean it the problem will go away.
Quote:
Actually, if it's a ripped movie, then you need to get better quality rips, the small size rips will always have those boxes, especially is the ripped resolution is small. Before ripping or downloading always check what resolution the movies are ripped at and basically a good rip for a HDMI connection without the boxes and blurs (720 or 1080) the size of the rip should be 14Gigs or more..... anything less is going to cause the same problems....

Ok that helps a lot - good to know that it's the file and not my PC. That will save me wasting time trying to improve the hardware.

Thanks.
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a b à CPUs
January 15, 2011 9:23:32 AM

Are either of the video cards overclocked? Sometimes even the video card manufacturers will overclock the cards to give them a boost, but if the video card's GPU or it's Memory is stressed, it will cause stuttering, tearing and also video fragments. Also, before checking too far into the hardware, download the k-lite mega codec pack with media player classic and try that. Sometimes bad codecs can cause weird problems too. If the quality of your files are low, you can use media player classic to correct them. You can right click the video, select Shaders, then pick De-noise or blend.

Let me know if that helps. You can also download GPU-Z to check the stats on your video card, see if it is overclocked or overheating.

:D 
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January 15, 2011 9:55:00 AM

There isn't any overclocking and I have KLite. Do you need to use Media Player Classic with KLite? I haven't been using it, must have downloaded somewhere along the way....

Just watched a movie and here is the temps from speed fan.

GPU 76c
GPU 50C
HD0 40c
HD1 40c
HD3 54c
Core0 44c

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January 15, 2011 10:04:48 AM

76C seems a little high. I just recommend the media player classic and possible VLC because you have more control over the final rendering. You can apply post processing to the video stream. You can use the shaders in your card to denoise and clean up the image on videos with fragments. But if it is doing that on DVD playback, something is out of place.

Do you ever notice this behavior while playing games or doing anything else? Is it only when playing videos?
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January 15, 2011 10:08:03 AM

Also, there are some newer K-lites out there... but I prefer the K-Lite 620 Mega Pack with Media Player classic. I installed option 7 (Installed lots of stuff with player). Then when I watch DVDs or even 720p rips of low quality, I will right clock the video while it is playing in Media Player Classic, then select Shaders, and try De-noise or Blend and you will smooth out lower quality videos. :D 
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January 15, 2011 10:15:34 AM

The computer runs pretty good other than this - I don't game, just Poker and it handles that reasonably well. I bought a Noctua 2 fan CPU cooler but haven't installed it yet, that should help with the temp of the CPU. I am also looking into case fans and will make some improvements there. My case only has a single rear fan at the moment.

I'll take the tip and start using the MPC for sure and try those options. It doesn't happen very often, just enough to be annoying.

Does better quality RAM help with this type of thing? My card can handle 4gig of the better RAM like HyperX (which would help with Poker too). Would it be worth investing in that to get a few more years out of this system? I realize it's been around for quite a few years now.

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Best solution

a b à CPUs
January 15, 2011 10:22:48 AM

In my DDR2 systems, I always make sure they've got at least DDR 800 or higher. Also, finding performance grade memory with better timing will increase the responsiveness of everything a little over all. And also, always use matching sticks, don't mix and match different brands, speeds, or sizes and you will ward off any memory issues.

But your specific issue doesn't sound like memory, sounds like a heat or possible a power problem. Because video cards will do exactly what you say when they run too hot, too much, or not enough power.

For now, try to download the K-Lite 620 Mega pack, it includes MPC and this version has worked best for me. I do have a machine running the K-Lite 670 Full pack, but I don't like some of the new setting on the codecs, the 620 version needs no tweaking or playing around, just install option 7 (lots of stuff with MPC) and everything just works!

That'll get you started... and like you said, keep a close eye on heat and cooling... even monitor your power supply, voltage spikes or dips can cause weird stuff too.
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January 15, 2011 10:48:31 AM

Ok, installed the mega pack option 7.

I just won an ebay auction for a Lian Li case with 5 fans, cooling solved - got a bargain :bounce:  With the Noctua CPU cooler that should sort the cooling.

The RAM I have is 2gb of the cheapest 667 Corsair and it's below the standard of the rest of the system I guess. I'll invest in 4gb of the better Corsair 800 RAM this week.

Thanks very much for the help!
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January 15, 2011 10:51:45 AM

You're welcome! Also, if you are upgrading the RAM, make sure to get some with low timings and heatsinks... that will keep it cool and stable!

:D  Cheers
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January 15, 2011 11:10:34 AM

I had been looking at 2x2GB of this Corsair RAM through the week - says it's compatible with my MOBO.

Seem OK?
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a b à CPUs
January 15, 2011 11:12:40 AM

It's 800MHz, and 5-5-5-18, 1.80V... Looks good to me. What's the cost?

Edit: I just checked them out on Newegg... $69... seems like a good deal. Too bad your board doesn't have DDR3, the cost has went down a lot lately. :bounce: 
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January 15, 2011 11:26:21 AM

There is 3 models close in price and the difference is about $30. They are all compatible with my board - I guess for $30 I should just get the most expensive; I think it is slightly over $100 for 4gb. I'm an Aussie, not sure if the prices are much different....


Corsair CM2X2048-6400C5C 4GB (2x2GB) PC-6400 DDR2

Corsair DDR2 CM2X2048-6400C5 2048M (single)

Corsair TWIN2X4096-6400C5C 4GB (2x2GB) PC-6400 DDR2
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a b à CPUs
January 15, 2011 11:30:22 AM

I never buy the most expensive or the cheapest. Get the mid price range. Perhaps you will change your board in the future and DDR2 is going away. DDR3 is becoming faster and cheaper every day.

With computers, the most expensive isn't always the right choice because market conditions always change. $100 today, $50 tomorrow, $75 next week. DDR2 prices have become like that.
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January 15, 2011 11:38:40 AM

Sounds good, I'll take your advice and go for the middle of the road option.

I think that can get me a couple more years from this system which I'll be happy with.

Once again, thanks for the help, much appreciated :sol: 
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a c 115 à CPUs
January 15, 2011 12:26:13 PM

Looks to me as if your hardware acceleration and setup is borked -- try experimenting with turning off de-interlacing and any other advanced processing. It may also seem counter-intuitive but changing around your H264/AVC/VC-1 settings/filters may provide the boost needed to fix your AVI/WMV playback. Changing DirectShow/DXVA/VMR setup, too.

You said working around by switching the vid cards failed, right? That has config issue(s) written all over it. And finally, some OEMs at the 8600 launch did not provide advanced DXVA on their initial cards (nVidia fudged this by noting the reference design provided the 'capability' which some vendors neglected to adopt).

One issue I consistently see (especially on the AMD/ATI side of things) are improperly installed drivers/codecs. Do you have your 'PureVideo' up to date and properly configured? PureVideo on the 8XXXs is needed to 'pass' off hardware acceleration and other capabilities to 3rd party decoders.

On the AMD side I consistently see folks whining about hardware acceleration on the IGPs and 'discretes' -- they haven't bothered to install the Avivo UVD :sarcastic: 
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January 15, 2011 12:43:28 PM

That's why I suggested a fresh install of the K-Lite pack and media player... All the codecs and default setting from version 620 mega pack seemed to always fix this issue for me in the past.

Sometimes other installs like quicktime and divx and screw things up with the settings too. I am thankful for the folks on the K-Lite team for squaring everything away without needing to tweak it all day.
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January 16, 2011 1:28:40 AM

Best answer selected by logmania.
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