mkv bluray file on 13" mbp (low end) - stutters and uses 130% cpu?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by thesmoth, Sep 18, 2009.

  1. thesmoth macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
    #1
    When I try and play these files, even at only half screen size, they stutter all the time and lag up and show artifacts, and my cpu usage shows beside 'launched' programs between 90-130%.

    Should this brand new computer be able to play these damn files? Quick time 7 stutter it before i upgraded to snow leopard, now quicktime x won't play them, and VLC also stutters. I have perian installed, which i used with quicktime 7 but it doesn't solve this problem.
     
  2. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #2
    Have you tried MPlayer OS X Extended and enabled multithreaded ffmpeg and fast libavcodec on it?

    Snow Leopard seems to break video playback.
     
  3. iLog.Genius macrumors 601

    iLog.Genius

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #3
    I find no difference in Snow Leopard, seems to be about the same as Leopard. It's the second time I've read that people are having trouble with HD media so I'm really interested in seeing what is causing it.
     
  4. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #4
    VLC seems to be choking on MKVs on my Macbook but not on my iMac Core Duo.

    Snow Leopard feels like a dice roll when it comes to diagnosing problems.
     
  5. thesmoth thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 7, 2008
    #5
    I'm installing now, i'll report back in a minute.
     
  6. thesmoth thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
    #6
    Using mplayer and those settings you suggested it runs great! Cpu usage is still between 130-150% for that task, and my temps jumped up to 79-80 degrees in a hurry, but it ran well!
     
  7. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #7
    Plex works great in Leopard. Not sure if it's updated yet.
     
  8. SpaceKitty macrumors 68040

    SpaceKitty

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Collins Colorado
    #8
    Yes Plex will play these with no problems. We had a MacPro that had a hard time playing these as well till we installed Plex.

    My 13" MBP seems to have no problems playing them in VLC so far.
     
  9. screensaver400 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2005
    #9
    I always install Perian for QuickTime 7. Then, I just export the MKV to MP4. I passthough the H.264 video track, but have to reencode the AC3 audio to AAC. That's not a big deal since I don't have a 5.1 sound system.

    Works great on both my Mac and on my PS3, and on my 13" MBP, the resulting files use the GPU to accellerate playback in QuickTime X.

    I typically only use about 10-20% of CPU usage with a 720p video file.
     
  10. kasakka macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #10
    That's a good idea, though certainly a lot of work.

    I suggest trying several players. Quicktime X, if it is able to use the GPU for decoding, will be fastest but with MKVs it doesn't work so you have to do the above or try other players. Movist might work.
     
  11. walkum13 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2008
  12. screensaver400 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2005
    #12
    Not as much as it might seem.

    Because only the audio is being re-encoded, it takes only minutes to convert. You only do it once and you have no video quality loss.

    So the process is as follows:
    1) Open MKV in QuickTime 7
    2) File>Export
    3) Save

    The first time you do it, you need to change a setting. You ensure that the Export Settings (what pops up when you click File>Export) is on "Movie to MPEG-4". You click Options, and under the Video tab select Passthrough. Under the Audio tab, I use 160kbps AAC.

    Once you apply those settings once, you don't need to again (unless you ever change something). Just make sure the "Most Recent Settings" option is selected in the drop down.

    I just played a 1080p H.264 MP4 of Planet Earth. It's encoded at over 10mbps, and in the scene with the flying birds (which, because H.264 is VBR, spikes the bitrate to probably 25mbps) it uses only 12% of my CPU. It's all handled by the GPU.

    I believe, if you open MKVs in Quicktime directly, it falls back to the old QTKit system, not the new, GPU-accelerated QTX. None of the other Mac video players use GPU acceleration, to my knowledge. By relying on the CPU, you get a hotter machine using more power, and also slowing down the rest of your machine.
     
  13. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #13
    I can't recommend Plex over a simple player like MPlayer OS X Extended. It's a good program but Plex is just overwhelming.
     

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