I was hoping that someone could assist me setting up MPC or another viable media player.... I just assumed MPC was the best and most reliable as well as best in performance and overall picture, so if im correct in assuming that, can someone break it down basically, ive used mpc sparingly for years but have never used it enough to learn all the vast amount of settings, because I've always just used windows media player because having a smaller monitor it really didnt make much of a difference but now on a 27 inch lcd mpc and vlc for that matter look a whole lot better especially when playing lower rez(non hd)videos. I have a laptop with someone modest capabilities, but I know it can play 720p and 1080p cuz it plays them fine on the laptops actual display. But for the tv, Im connected via a vga cable at 1360x768 60 hz. I have 4 gb ddr2 800 mhz of ram. No video card really to speak of other than an integrated intel 4500m graphics media accelerator. also my processor is a dual core 2.1 ghz chip. To get into specifics of what settings im curious about in mpc would be the following(sorry its a lot)in the video frame menu should I have keep aspect ratio checked? Best override aspect ratio setting? Should I use correct monitor/desktop AR diff? Under Pan & Scan menu should I check scale to 16x9 TV? What filters should I use internally and externally both video and audio? What exactly is the difference between an external and internal filter? Also what is a shader? Do I need to change any shaders? Finally, anything I should change under rendering settings? Such as V Sync, Alternate V Sync etc. Im also curious is there a way to configure MPC so that is plays videos all at 60 hz and also 23 fps which is standard for a TV im assuming. K, im done. Sorry for such a long post. Im just confused as to what I should use and want to get the most out of my display. And the vh forum members have always been on point in helping me before in the past, so could think of no other place to ask this long winded series of questions LOL
take care & look forward to your responses
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Vlc is also like this but not nearly as bad.
The fact that vlc is playing video better should be telling you something.
I've gotten the best video performance by far with smplayer. In both windows and linux. It's also the real "play anything" program, and like vlc it doesn't need stupid 3rd party codecs/filters.
Smplayer has good settings for performance, especially on old or slow hardware:
Set the local file stream cache to 8192Kb. This makes a big difference.
Go to mplayer arguments and enter: -cache-min 50 ... it'll take a bit longer to load the video but it'll play it better.
For some videos you may want to enable frame drop or even hard frame drop. Sometimes even disable the h.264 loop filter.
On my i3 based 4Gb RAM laptop I use the double buffering option and cache settings but not the other ones I mentioned, and it'll play 1080p video with over 10000Kb/s, no problem. But that's in linux using the KDE desktop, which has amazing video performance.
It is unlikely that you can use either 24 or 23.976 fps for VGA. If you look at the manuals for your monitor and your TV, both will almost certainly tell you to set your video card to use 60 Hz for VGA.
"Keep Aspect Ratio" uses the video's own aspect ratio information to set the aspect ratio. You don't need to use "Override Aspect Ratio" unless the video looks distorted.
MPC-HC's default settings are otherwise fine for my purposes. I don't use the other things you are asking about.
MPC-HC and VLC both displaying the video better than WMP.
There's nothing confusing or poorly organised about MPC-HC's settings. Compared to most other players it's easy to configure.
Smplayer users heard of it yet?) and let the video card do the decoding. That'd keep CPU usage down to under 10%, including decoding the audio and compressing it. In fact if I open one instance of MPC-HC using CPU decoding and another using GPU decoding, I can play two 1080p videos with 10000Kb/s average bitrates simultaneously. One on each monitor.
Your definition of "amazing" must be one with which I'm not currently familiar.
I have a i3 based laptop...4 yrs old and it struggles with 1080p youtube video........not that it doesnt play it well but the onboard graphics really heat up...so I tend top stay away from using it for anything high bitrate. MPC is my go to player and has been for years. Recently I was watching some 1080i .m2ts files on a pc that had an amd 4100 and a ati 7700 and there seemed to be a glitch in all the files. An odd occurrence. Stuttering or hiccups...I can't describe it better. Thought it was MPC but I also tried Potplayer and the same thing. I read about smplayer and the issue disappeared but the picture quality was flat. To the point where I said no way...so I just went back to MPC and said oh well. I'm sure there are internal settings in all these players to give you a decent quality output. It just comes down to ticking and unticking boxes in the settings and watching a bit of the video to see what works best
I have 2 other PC's and MPC plays everything perfectly...no problems. Of course they're a bit stronger than this laptop.
MPC-HC's default settings should mostly be fine. I assume you're referring to MPC-HC and not the old MPC?
When MPC-HC is using an internal filter it's decoding the video/audio with it's internal decoders. If you deselect one, MPC-HC will then use an appropriate DirectShow decoder if you have one installed. Different flavours of Windows come with different "system' codecs. MPC-HC also allows you to add external codecs directly, effectively bypassing the Windows system for using "system" codecs. There's no need to worry about any of that though. The internal filters are fine.
Under "Output" I'd select one of the better renderers such as EVR (custom presenter) or WVM9.
There's an issue with "levels" when playing video using a PC. Video normally uses a limited range of levels (16-235) while computers use a full range (0-255). In order for video to display correctly on a PC monitor, the levels need to be expanded to full range. The same applies to using the VGA input on your TV. When you use the VGA input, the TV is effectively a PC monitor.
Without going into too much detail, if you find video looks a little "washed out" when displayed on the TV, or if you watch video with black borders encoded but they look dark grey instead of black, the levels need to be fixed. If that's not happening, ignore the last paragraph.
I don't know anything about Intel QuickSync and which CPU's support it, but maybe go into MPC-HC's options and under Internal Filters, click on the "video decoder" button. In the window which opens, you'll be able to select an option for hardware decoding. If QuickSync is available, hopefully it'll tell you when you select it. Or you might be able to use DXVA2. It's not supported on XP.
Wow, thanks to everyone who replied to my post. I really appreciate you guys taking the time to help explain things for me. I think as Moontrash said and there's much truth to this, it really just comes down to ticking/unticking boxes. Experimenting with the settings to find the correct match for each person. But at least now I can know what im actually changing among the settings, which will be a great help.
Oh and Hoser Rob thanks for the tip on smplayer. Ill go ahead and try it out too.