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  1. Member
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    Hi,

    I have some mkv files ripped from my blurays, and some downloaded files also in mkv, that when played on VLC or Plex players are choppy (not smooth) in scenes with movement. All files are H264.
    I updated the players to the latest versions, updated drivers on my PC (Intel integrated HD 530 graphics), but no change.
    It looks like my processor Intel i5-6600 at 3.3GHz with 8GB RAM is not capable of dealing with these files.

    One of these is a movie file 1920x1080 with VBR, but the overall bit rate is around 18 Mbps. Many scenes with movement are choppy.
    When I re-encode the file with the same resolution and codec settings, but bit rate of 10Mbps, the playback of those scenes is good.
    I use XMedia Recode.

    So it looks like my PC is not capable of handling the high bitrates. Is it realy so? And if yes, is reducing the bitrate the right way to go?

    Also, is there any rule of thumb how to rip, convert, encode etc for a particular processor capability?

    For 1920x1080 resolution, 10Mbps gives decent quality. But just from a point of interest, what sort of processor would I need to play smoothly 30Mbps rips of blrays?

    cheers
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  2. Bitrate probably isn't the problem. I play high bitrate (30+ Mb/s h.264) 1080p video on my i5 2500K all the time with no problems. Reencode one of your videos (using the same settings as your 10 Mb/s reencodings) but at 18 Mb/s -- you'll probably find those new files play fine.

    What's the frame rate of your videos? Keep in mind that higher frame rates require more power to decode because there's less time to decode each frame. Still, my old 2500K has no problem playing 30 Mb/s 60 fps video.

    Are you using hardware decoding or software? Try switching.
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  3. I agree. An Intel i5-6600 can VERY easily play 18 Mbps 1920x1080 H.264 or any other non-4K Blu-Ray. There is something wrong with the configuration (SW/HW decoding, video renderer, audio renderer) or the files.

    Can you show MediaInfo ("View"->"Text") of such a file before and after conversion?
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  4. @OP: My guess is that your video player is not set up to use hardware decoding, I run into the same problem with both my i7 4790 and my R5 1600 when trying to play back 4k content that is encoded with anything not gpu accelerated, like JPEG-2000 or certain ProRes variants, they won't play back smoothly at all, I can't scrub through the timeline, certain HEVC encoded files are like that as well.
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  5. Mr. Computer Geek dannyboy48888's Avatar
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    Something is very off with the file or player then as even a Intel atom x5 (tablet chip) plays 1080p avc no problem via hardware. Try using different players, remuxing it, and post the mediainfo for the file.
    if all else fails read the manual
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  6. Member
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    Thanks everyone for responding. Here are the MediaInfo reports-

    1. The downloaded file that plays choppy-

    General
    Unique ID : 178110096132447733370320704301551132850 (0x85FEC1BA9FECC2F084CEDFAB118D20B2)
    Complete name : I:\Downloads 2\Valmont (1989)\Valmont (1989).mkv
    Format : Matroska
    Format version : Version 4
    File size : 16.6 GiB
    Duration : 2 h 11 min
    Overall bit rate mode : Variable
    Overall bit rate : 18.1 Mb/s
    Encoded date : UTC 2013-12-28 05:50:17
    Writing application : Lavf58.33.100
    Writing library : Lavf58.33.100
    ErrorDetectionType : Per level 1

    Video
    ID : 1
    Format : AVC
    Format/Info : Advanced Video Codec
    Format profile : High@L4.1
    Format settings : CABAC / 4 Ref Frames
    Format settings, CABAC : Yes
    Format settings, Reference frames : 4 frames
    Format settings, GOP : M=3, N=18
    Codec ID : V_MPEG4/ISO/AVC
    Duration : 2 h 11 min
    Bit rate mode : Variable
    Maximum bit rate : 38.0 Mb/s
    Width : 1 920 pixels
    Height : 1 080 pixels
    Display aspect ratio : 16:9
    Frame rate mode : Variable
    Original frame rate : 25.000 FPS
    Standard : PAL
    Color space : YUV
    Chroma subsampling : 4:2:0
    Bit depth : 8 bits
    Scan type : Interlaced
    Scan type, store method : Separated fields (2 fields per block)
    Scan order : Top Field First
    Language : English
    Default : Yes
    Forced : No
    Color range : Limited
    Color primaries : BT.709
    Transfer characteristics : BT.709
    Matrix coefficients : BT.709

    Audio
    ID : 2
    Format : AAC LC
    Format/Info : Advanced Audio Codec Low Complexity
    Codec ID : A_AAC-2
    Duration : 2 h 11 min
    Channel(s) : 2 channels
    Channel layout : L R
    Sampling rate : 48.0 kHz
    Frame rate : 46.875 FPS (1024 SPF)
    Compression mode : Lossy
    Writing library : Lavc58.59.102 aac
    Language : English
    Default : Yes
    Forced : No

    2. Re-encoded down to 10Mbps with XMedia Recode, and it plays smooth -

    General
    Unique ID : 129009318365915593441721528684819386912 (0x610E4A7AB0769FB7A7DDD4EAE0CE1220)
    Complete name : I:\Downloads 2\Valmont (1989)\Valmont (1989)_2.mkv
    Format : Matroska
    Format version : Version 4
    File size : 9.26 GiB
    Duration : 2 h 11 min
    Overall bit rate : 10.1 Mb/s
    Encoded date : UTC 2013-12-28 05:50:17
    Writing application : Lavf58.33.100
    Writing library : Lavf58.33.100
    ErrorDetectionType : Per level 1

    Video
    ID : 1
    Format : AVC
    Format/Info : Advanced Video Codec
    Format profile : Main@L4
    Format settings : 2 Ref Frames
    Format settings, CABAC : No
    Format settings, Reference frames : 2 frames
    Codec ID : V_MPEG4/ISO/AVC
    Duration : 2 h 11 min
    Width : 1 920 pixels
    Height : 1 080 pixels
    Display aspect ratio : 16:9
    Frame rate mode : Constant
    Frame rate : 25.000 FPS
    Color space : YUV
    Chroma subsampling : 4:2:0
    Bit depth : 8 bits
    Scan type : Progressive
    Writing library : Lavc58.59.102 h264_qsv
    Language : English
    Default : Yes
    Forced : No

    Audio
    ID : 2
    Format : AAC LC
    Format/Info : Advanced Audio Codec Low Complexity
    Codec ID : A_AAC-2
    Duration : 2 h 11 min
    Channel(s) : 2 channels
    Channel layout : L R
    Sampling rate : 48.0 kHz
    Frame rate : 46.875 FPS (1024 SPF)
    Compression mode : Lossy
    Writing library : Lavc58.59.102 aac
    Language : English
    Default : Yes
    Forced : No


    Regarding the Hardware / Software decoding - I am not familiar with that, but will try to find out.
    Please note that I do not have a separate graphic card. I only use the Intel processor graphics. So where would the Hardware decoding be done?
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  7. Mr. Computer Geek dannyboy48888's Avatar
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    Intel graphics is fine, what my tablet has. Only glaring difference is the interlaced vs progressive, but should HW decode still. Have you tried mpc-hc? It should play this and deinterlace no problem
    if all else fails read the manual
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    I haven't tried other players apart from VLC and Plex. I will try the MPC-HC just for my desktop.
    I invested lots of work setting up Plex, converting all audio streams to AAC because my old AVR does not support AC3, separating subtitles etc.
    I want to make it work on Plex.
    If no other way, I will re-encode to lower bit rate.
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  9. Mr. Computer Geek dannyboy48888's Avatar
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    I've had several streams vlc borked up but mpc-hc handled. My second favorite is MPV for its smoothness, but havent tinkered with deinterlacing on it yet.
    if all else fails read the manual
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    I am just reading that all modern Intel i3, i5, i7 processors have a special core for hardware encoding and decoding.
    I just dont know how to enabled it.
    I can't see anything in the Intel Graphics settings.
    Or is it done in the video players??
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  11. Mr. Computer Geek dannyboy48888's Avatar
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    Its done by the player. If its Intel amd or nvidia 99% of players try it. Dunno about Plex itself though as I dont use it.
    if all else fails read the manual
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  12. Why do you need such high bitrates? your eyes can't possibly detect the difference. It's possible your bitrate is too high for your LAN with PLEX.
    It's not important the problem be solved, only that the blame for the mistake is assigned correctly
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  13. Originally Posted by aussie43 View Post
    I am just reading that all modern Intel i3, i5, i7 processors have a special core for hardware encoding and decoding.
    I just dont know how to enabled it.
    I can't see anything in the Intel Graphics settings.
    Or is it done in the video players??
    It's in the player. In VLC it's Tools -> Preferences -> Input/Codecs -> Hardware Accelerated Decoding... You may have to exit the program and restart it for changes to take effect. Hardware decoding doesn't support the full h.264 spec. So it may create problems rather than solve them.

    By the way, my i5 2500K plays a 29 Mb/s, 60 fps, 1920x1080p h.264 video in VLC smoothly with software decoding, and only about 25 to 30 percent CPU usage. With DXVA 2.0 decoding that dropped to about 3 percent.
    Last edited by jagabo; 16th Nov 2019 at 08:31.
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    I tried the suggested mpc-hc player, but it is much worse than the VLC experience.

    I have set the VLC preference to Automatic in Hardware encoding. No improvement. There are other two settings possible there, but I have no idea what they mean or do.
    My processor has Quick Synch. In my motherboard BIOS, I can't find any setting for enabling it or disabling it, so I assume it is enabled. The motherboard spec (Asus H170 Pro Gaming) says QS is supported.

    Playing the same file with Plex on my Shield TV is much smoother than with VLC on my PC. It is not completely smooth, but much better. Shield TV has Quick Synch support.

    So I came to the conclusion that the VLC player does not cope with the high bitrates adequately.
    But it is also possible that the downloaded file I am playing wasn't ripped properly.
    When I play a file that I ripped myself from my own bluray with 25 Mbps bit rate, VLC play is not too bad, but still a bit uncomfortable to watch.
    Re-encoding it down to 10 Mbps definitely gives more pleasant experience to my eyes watching it. Maybe my 75 yo eyes are getting slow!?
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  15. Stop worrying about VLC, your CPU, or your integrated graphics. All of them are sufficient for smooth playback of 1080p60 video with bitrates much higher than 18 Mb/s. The problem is elsewhere.

    Are you playing the video over the network? Try copying the file to the local drive and playing it. Any different?

    Did you try all the hardware decoding settings (including Disabled) in VLC? You must exit the program and restart it after each change. Did any of them make any difference?

    What frame rate is your video file? Post a text mode report from MediaInfo.

    Use Task Manager to view CPU usage while playing the video. How much CPU usage are you seeing? Is some other process eating up CPU time? Is there a lot of disk I/O in the background (virus scan, Windows' indexing service, etc.)?
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    if you read my posts you will see that I have done all that. Yes, I use VLC player to play files from hard drives on the same PC.
    My wi-fi network is fine. The Android TV Plex plays better on the Shield TV box over wi-fi than VLC on Windows desktop from hard drive..

    I am not saying that the high bit rate files do not play on VLC - they do. But I am saying that the quality - as in smooth play - is not as good as say 10 Mbps file.
    Because the 10 Mbps file is more compressed, there must be loss of quality somewhere else, but I can't see it with my eyes.

    If you read about Intel Quick Synch, you will find that it enables faster processing, but worsens the quality.
    Maybe the answer is a dedicated graphics card, but for me it is easier to re-encode with lower bit rate. 10 Mbps is considered pretty good for 1920x1080 anyway.
    Most of my movies are in that range or less.
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