Mac OS forum


Choppy Video Playback on Mac Mini

by MsHavisham / May 4, 2012 12:38 PM PDT

Hi, I don't know if anyone can help, but I've scoured the internet for an answer - to no avail.
I've got an Apple Time Capsule, and until recently ran movies through my macbook to my tv. However, after getting fed up with the long buffering time (and giving in to my son's begging for my macbook) I bought a mac mini. I hooked it directly via usb to the TC and through HDMi to my Samsung HDTV.
I've not been able to watch a single movie without it being choppy and totally unwatchable. I've tried QuickTime, VLC, iTunes, all the same effect. I've downloaded a couple of TV seasons to the mac itself and they seem to play fine, but doing the same with movies has no effect.
I've changed the resolution, reducing it significantly to see if that helped and it made no difference.
I'm tearing my hair out here. Can someone please tell me how to fix this?

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All Answers

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There must be how many versions of the mini?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 4, 2012 1:40 PM PDT

I see no mention of which one or how much ram.

Also running over USB or networking could spell trouble.

There's not enough detail to figure this out yet. Tell more.

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Sorry - guess I should have put that in! :)
by MsHavisham / May 5, 2012 12:14 PM PDT

I've got the basic mini - the plan being for it really just to be the media connection.
2.3GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 with 3MB on-chip shared L3 cache and 2GB of 1333MHz DDR3 memory. From what I've read online, it doesn't seem to matter how much ram the system has, and it seems to be happening across the whole spectrum of systems.
The apple tv is a TB and we've got it connected to the mini via usb, directly. Then the mini is connected to the Samsung TV (for which you posted an answer to another question - thanks) via HMDI.

I've tried moving the movies directly on to the computer itself, and it's still choppy. I've adjusted the resolution. I've confirmed that all my av systems up completely up to date - flash player, quicktime, itunes and the mini itself. I've repaired the permissions. I'm literally not running anything else on the system - it's connected to my icloud account, but I don't even run mail through it. I've downloaded no documents, and installed no additional programs or apps. It's a totally virgin system.

You say usb could cause trouble...what would you suggest instead? I thought usb was the optimum connection, no?

I appreciate any advice you can offer. Thanks!

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Just a thing to try.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 5, 2012 12:21 PM PDT

Copy the video locally and use VLC Player next time.

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by MsHavisham / May 6, 2012 4:04 AM PDT
In reply to: Just a thing to try.

Sadly, I've already tried VLC - it crashes every time I open any file with it.
I guess I got a $700 paperweight. Sad

Thanks for your help! Happy

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That's a good clue.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 6, 2012 4:11 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks....

Unless there is more to this story such as some oddball OS install, torrents or more this is just a machine in need of a warranty action.

Something's wrong with it but I can't diagnose it over the net. Let apple fix this machine.

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Restarting fixes mine every time
by catholcken / September 28, 2012 6:19 AM PDT

I've had the exact same problem with my mac mini and although it's annoying, restarting solves the issue every time. I've looked around for both software and hardware solutions, including installing 8GB of RAM...same result, choppy playback.

I should note I use the mini as a media center and not a daily work computer, so I'm only doing it once every day or so. But now, every time I intend to watch a movie I restart and the video plays perfectly. Unless I stumble upon a better solution, this is the best I've got.

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choppy mac mini video
by wongdejesus8 / June 3, 2013 6:35 AM PDT

my mac mini is similar .i had the same choppy video and long buffering until i turned off the firewall. no more buffering and fast video using fios 50/50 .wow its like a new computer.

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