W7 Media Center: Choppy video after working fine for a year - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 10-27-2011, 11:48 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm running Windows 7 Media center on the following computer:
  • Dell Studio XPS 8100
  • Intel Core i7-870 CPU
  • 8Gb Ram
  • ATI Radeon HD 5770 with 1Gb GDDR5 memory
  • 1 Tb Sata 2 HD
  • Avermedia USB over-the-air tuner
  • Blu-ray drive

I am using an over-the-air HD antenna, mounted outside.

Connected to a Vizio 55-Inch HD LED display via an HDMI cable.

I have had this setup for a year. I use it to record over the air HD programming for later viewing, NetFlix streaming and playing Blu-Ray using the ArcSoft Total Media Theater 5 plug-in to Media Center.

Up until one month ago, it did a beautiful job with this. Image quality was great and video was smooth.

Around the beginning of October things deteriorated. Video is now very choppy, especially when there is a lot of movement on the screen, such as football games. It is as if the frame rate is down to around 5 frames a second.

This occurs regardless of whether I am viewing live TV or playing recorded TV back or streaming NetFlix.

I know the antenna is fine, because when I plug the antenna into my TV's built-in tuner the video is fine.

I know it is not the Avermedia tuner, because streaming Netflix is also choppy on the PC. But when I stream Netflix directly on the Vizio (it is has a built-in Netflix app) it is fine.

Strangely, playing blu-ray through the Total Media Theater plug-in works fine. This has made me conclude that it is purely an issue with the Windows Media Center software, since the Total Media Theater software is working OK.

I have upgraded to the most recent video drivers. There is plenty of hard disk space left. There are no other applications using up CPU cycles. I have uninstalled all antivirus software.

Bottom line is that I can't figure out what caused the deterioration. The only thing I can think of is that maybe some automatic windows update change screwed things up. But when looking at historical updates I can't find any updates in the last month other than security updates.

If anyone has any other debugging ideas, I'd be grateful.
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post #2 of 4 Old 10-27-2011, 01:11 PM
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My guess is a conflict between the image processing (e.g. deinterlacing, motion enhancements, etc) being done by the video card and the TV.

In the Catalyst Control Center and the TV menus, try enabling and disabling the various image processing options. I usually disable the processing in CCC and let the TV do it.

Also, on my Sony HDTV, I had to disable Cinemotion (in the setup menu) to get smooth motion (Netflix included). The Vizion may have some similar option enabled.

If you find something, let us know.
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post #3 of 4 Old 10-27-2011, 05:22 PM
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If you have'nt installed anything recently when the issue started, my suggestion as a first step is to locate the driver cd for graphics card, uninstall the current driver, start in safe mode, run driver sweeper for your ati card, restart in normal mode and install ONLY the driver from your driver cd. Check if issue exists and then report back.

If it exists, the next step would be rerun media center setup again and report.

I notice that I have all kinds of issues with my ATI driver with the new ATI drivers. IMO ATI drivers 10.3 or 10.7 seems the most stable. My card shipped with 10.3 and am sticking to it although 10.7 seems stable as well. However my issues have been more to do with HDMI handshake with the AVR in the middle of the chain, but I digress.
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post #4 of 4 Old 10-28-2011, 01:34 PM
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I also suspect the video driver. Check your driver version number, then check the threads for what Radeon driver version others are getting to work successfully. Then roll back, or install a newer version as needed. The issue with graphic card drivers is one of the reasons I am now running the Intel integrated graphics on both my HTPCs.
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