Snow Leopard kills Front Row on Mac Mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by kermit4161, Sep 14, 2009.

  1. kermit4161 macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2006
    Hi all,

    I just did a search and didn't see anything posted, so I thought I'd put this up as a warning...

    If you are using your Mac Mini as a HTPC, I would suggest NOT upgrading to Snow Leopard as it totally kills Front Row functionality.

    I can no longer play iTunes TV shows, or movies (I just get audio... no video), nor can I play ripped DVDs through FR. Apparently Apple has identified this as a known bug (according to posts on the Apple Support forums) and there are a lot of other people posting that SL has messed up their Front Row too.

    I'm running a Mac Mini 2.0 C2D with 3GB RAM. Things worked perfectly under Leopard... immediately quit working perfectly under SL.

    Just a warning... you might want to reconsider loading SL until the bug gets fixed. I'm going to reload Leopard as soon as I can...

  2. tiguk macrumors 6502

    Jun 12, 2008
    Weird, mine's been working fine. Guess I'm just lucky.
  3. kermit4161 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2006
    Wow... I wish I was as lucky. I'm not looking forward to going back to Leopard... not hard, just a pain.
  4. jaw04005 macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    It's not just the Mac mini. Does yours have the integrated GMA 950 graphics chip? Because Front Row freezes constantly on my MacBook (Black/Core 2 Duo/Early 2007) in Snow Leopard.

    I thought maybe it was just my SL installation.
  5. kermit4161 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2006
    Yes, I've got the GMA 950 graphics chip.

    Here is the link on the Apple Support Forum about this...

    There are a couple of others threads running about it too.
  6. jaw04005 macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    Yup looks like they are aware of the problem. I have a feeling the GMA 950 driver needs to be updated. Exposé, Spaces, Time Machine and other Core Animation effects in the OS are also choppy.
  7. brad.c macrumors 68020


    Aug 23, 2004
    50.813669°, -2.474796°
    Funny, not only does Front Row work for me in SL, but watching trailers has become bearable again. As soon as I upgraded to 10.5, trailers streamed through Front Row on both my Mini and MBP would only play 10 seconds of video at a time, then pause to buffer more. Now, it's as seamless as it was under 10.4.
  8. miha macrumors newbie

    Sep 10, 2007
    My FrontRow stopped to working after Snow Leopard update. Cannot play DVD's anymore. (Haven't tested other sources yet). VLC works OK.

    Running SL on MacBook Pro 2.4GHz
  9. kate-willbury macrumors 6502a

    Feb 14, 2009
    um people still use frontrow? apple has ignored it for ages, you should too. the GUI is completely un-apple like and incredibly ugly. do you guys not know about plex or something?
  10. thedoctor macrumors newbie

    Feb 24, 2006
    Got a new mini and still had to downgrade to Leopard

    I have a 2Ghz Core2Duo based Mini with NVIDIA GeForce 9400 graphics, bought as an upgrade for a G4 1st gen Mini and have been running Leopard fine with 3 x Elgato eyeTV tuners, remote controlled VLC playback and a fully working Front Row interface outputting to an HDTV at 1080p ... all working fine and no issues with video playback even at highest resolution with full de-interlacing or progressive scan.

    I upgraded to Snow Leopard and that's when things started to go wrong .. break up on playback and gradual (i.e. not instantly after a reboot) slowing of eyeTV output after a few minutes (running the latest 10.6 approved beta build from Elgato). No improvement at 10.6.1 and Front Row plays sound but no video. Clearly something has gone south and I can't watch it with Snow Leopard.

    So I have had no choice but to downgrade back to 10.5.8 and things are back to a working norm again. Shame but I guess it will be okay again by 10.6.3 !
  11. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    Well, maybe you can upgrade when Apple has ironed that out. Just an early development glitch I think. New OS, screws some things up, then Apple has to release some new versions with minor changes (free updates) to fix things like that.

    just have to hang in there till Apple gets it sorted...
  12. tbayrgs macrumors 603


    Jul 5, 2009
    Need to resuscitate this thread as I'm having the same problem but only on one of my computers. I have an early 2008 Macbook and a new Mini, both with 4 GB of RAM. All media is kept on an external connected to the Mini via FW 800 and streamed to the rest of the house (2 :apple:TV and the Macbook). Ripped DVDs play fine via iTunes on both computers and through Front Row on the Macbook but I only get sound (black screen), no picture through Front Row on the Mini.

    Other pertinent details:

    - Both computers have latest version of SL (10.6.1)

    - Macbook is connected using mini-DVI to DVI to Samsung SynchMaster T260 monitor with display resolution set at 1920 x 1200, 60 Hz. The display profile is Syncmaster.

    - Mini is connected via mini-DVI to HDMI to a 50" Samsung Plasma FP-T5084 with display resolution set at 720p (lower resolution set for easier browsing, also tried at 1080p with same result). The only available display profile for this display is SONY AVAMP.

    So other than the systems having different Graphics processors (and correct me if I'm wrong the but I thought Nvidia GPU in the Mini is superior to the GMA x3100 in the Macbook), the only difference is the displays being used. Do I have something set up incorrectly on the Mini?

    FWI, I saw suggestions on other sites that turning off the screensaver in Front Row worked for some people (these issues were in Leopard though) but had no effect for me.
  13. tbayrgs macrumors 603


    Jul 5, 2009
    10.6.2 seems to have fixed this issue!!

    Just tried watching video through Front Row on my Mini after updating to 10.6.2 and much to my surprise, Apple actually seems to have fixed this bug. Ripped movies/TV shows that previously would only show a blank screen with audio now play perfectly.

    Just thought I'd share in case those having the same problem haven't updated SL yet.
  14. ntrigue macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    10.6.2 2.26GHz Mini w/ 9400

    Everything is A-ok here. I'm sorry about your issues.
  15. chinesealbumart macrumors newbie

    Oct 26, 2009
    MKV files still not working for me in Front Row after I upgraded to latest SL (10.6.2). There is no video (maybe 1-2 seconds of video and then black out) but sound and subtitles.

    Perian is installed and it works in Quick Time X. Just does not work in Front Row.

    Good news though is that DivX (AVI files) work :)

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