New MacMini user crushed by Flash trouble

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by spiritof45, Apr 15, 2005.

  1. spiritof45 macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2005
    Greetings :) A pity but my first post has to be a desperate gurgle for help.

    I've created a simple Flash slideshow with a few fades and zooms, with a single audio track. It's not complex, but it is large: 1280px by 1024 and runs for 12 minutes.

    I'm exporting this as both a swf file and an executable PC & Mac versions.

    The PC version (both swf and exe) plays fine even on my slow low-end test PC machine: 600MHz with 128Mb RAM.

    But my brand new Mac Mini just can't handle it at all. (It's the 1.25GHz 256Mb RAM verion).

    The Mac can't play the swf file without choking and eventually crashing; nor can it play the executable version (about 24Mb).

    Some of the things I've tried:
    - Updating to Flashplayer 7
    - Updating to the latest OSX version
    - Chopping out a lot of the dissolves from the file
    - Lowering the image quality
    - Cutting the executable file size from 24Mb to 17Mb

    But all this has only enabled me to get the file to play for a little longer before it fails. I can usually play about 4 minutes worth before the stutters start, and I rarely get beyond 6 minutes (halfway).

    I converted the swf (including the audio) into a Mac screensaver and that at least doesn't crash, but it does stutter a bit. But certainly better performance than the pure swf file or the executable version.

    When the Flash file crashes I always get the following report:

    Exception: EXC_BAD_ACCESS (0x0001)
    Thread 0 crashed
    0 Flash carbon player

    What does it all mean ? Why can't the Mac handle this file ? 17Mb surely isn't a big ask, especially if a PC with half that power has no problem ?

    As a final test I created a file with no audio (file size then drops to 9Mb) and the swf then happily loops forever. But that's only interesting, not a solution.

    I bought the Mac Mini specifically so I could offer Flash executable files to Mac users, but at the moment that ain't going to happen.

    Gotta say that after three days wrestling with this I'm totally crushed & disappointed .....

  2. caveman_uk Guest


    Feb 17, 2003
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    It looks like a bug in the flash player. What does the processor activity look like? Is it maxed out?
  3. gekko513 macrumors 603


    Oct 16, 2003
    Macromedia's implementation of the Flash player on Mac OS X isn't very good. The problem is probably in the player and not directly caused by you doing something wrong, but it seems like you have to find out what makes the OS X player choke and find a workaround.

    It seems to be related to the soundtrack. What if you try different encodings and different ways of including the sound?
  4. spiritof45 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2005
    Sorry for being so ignorant, but how do I check processor performance ?

    ( I just tried to go into system preferences while the show was running and that caused it to crash... But the response time to the mouse was very poor which seems to indicate the processor is strethced).
  5. gallivant macrumors member

    Dec 14, 2004
    The executable version will never play; Macs don't do .exe files.

    That doesn't explain the .swf problems, of course.
  6. Erendiox macrumors 6502a


    Oct 15, 2004
    Brooklyn NY
    You can monitor the performance of your mini with the activity monitor. Just go to your hardrive > Applications > Utilities > Activity Monitor
  7. spiritof45 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2005
    Gallivant, I'm just using the wrong terminology. :eek: It's the Mac flash file with the player bundled - I just don't know what "format" that is on a Mac.

    I've also now exported the 12Mb soundtrack as a single swf and played that by itself through Quicktime. Works perfectly. As does the 13Mb images swf by itself....

    So why is the machine choking so terribly when combining the two ? Surely not just the file size.
  8. spiritof45 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2005
    Thanks Erendiox. I did monitor the entire show until it crashed.

    The CPU went between 3% and 78%, and the system was using up to 85Mb of "real memory" depending on how many pan and zooms were happening. But when it crashed it was just puttering along at 25%.

  9. spiritof45 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2005
    So I take it that I'm about right ?

    The Mac Mini is simply not up to this task ???
  10. caveman_uk Guest


    Feb 17, 2003
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    I think it would be closer to say that the implementation of flash on the mac isn't up to it. It's not the machine's fault - it's the crap software - though for your purposes it means much the same thing...
  11. crap freakboy macrumors 6502a

    crap freakboy

    Jul 17, 2002
    nar in Gainsborough, me duck
    How much RAM have you installed?
    I'm currently on a G4 PowerMac Sawtooth with an ATI 16mb GPU that orginally only had 256 of RAM, since installing 1GB I've had little or no problems with flash except when I have a web page with 7+ flas adverst buzzing around.
    I'd be happy to see how my dinosaur system with high RAM compares to your entry level new system with low RAM. let me know if you wanna try that and I'll PM you my email to send the file to.
  12. spiritof45 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 15, 2005
    It's a base-level Mini with 256Mb RAM.

    One final thought has come to me: perhaps I could convert the swf into a Quicktime file ? Is there any simple / cheap software that can do that ? Perhaps QT would perform better ?

    And thanks for the offer Crap-Freakboy - I'd better check with my boss whether I can post it...
  13. decksnap macrumors 68040


    Apr 11, 2003
    You can export directly from flash as a Quicktime file. Just to reiterate, the stuttering is probably just flash on OS X- it's Macromedia's fault, not your mini. It's one of my biggest peaves. If you were to say, view your file at smaller sizes you would notice a speedup. However, that doesn't explain the crashes.

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