What causes dropped frames with different media player apps on the same device? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 3 Old 01-02-2020, 11:22 AM - Thread Starter
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What causes dropped frames with different media player apps on the same device?

I recently replaced my 10 year old 50" plasma with a new 65" LED TV and I understand how the different tech handles motions. However, it is strange to me that different media players have much different results when it comes to judder and frame dropping.

I run all of my household TVs through different models of Amazon FireTVs and have Media Server (Mezzmo) that stores and streams BD/DVD Rips, etc.

Mezzmo Media Server ----> FireTV2 ---->TCL 65R617 (was a Samsung PN50B550 plasma)
Mezzmo Media Server ----> FireTV3 ---->Cheap 32" Samsung
Mezzmo Media Server ---->FireTV Stick 2 ---->Vizio M261VP

I have been using Vimu as the media player app on all of the FireTVs for video playback because the Media Server client's built-in media player dropped frames on all of the devices with all of the TVs. Vimu has been smooth and clear at all locales until I swapped the Samsung Plasma out with the new TCL LED. With the same install and a different TV, Vimu is dropping frames all over the place but only on the new TCL. Everything is still great on the other two setups. In fact, the frame dropping is worse with Vimu than it is with the media server's built-in client. There is no transcoding by the media server at any location since everything is ripped/transcoded in FireTV supported streams and codecs.

I just tried VLC this morning and things look a lot smoother but I just like the Vimu interface and would like to keep everything on the same setup throughout the house. I am not a home theater wiz and I don't understand intricacies of the inner machinations of video playback but it seems odd that the TV would be the issue. I would say that the change from Plasma to LED would introduce issues but none of these issues are present on the cheaper, smaller LED sets at the other locations in the house. Is there something in the TV settings that could introduced dropped frames?
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post #2 of 3 Old 01-06-2020, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
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So, just as an update in case someone is following or does a search for a similar problem in the future:
In the interest of being 100% transparent, there is a Vizio soundbar in the middle running CEC/ARC so the configuration looks like this:


Media Server ---> Router ----> FireTV2 --18" HDMI--> Vizio SB4051 Soundbar --6' HDMI--> TCL 65R617


I played around a bit more over the last couple of days and it just seems to be that the FireTV2 is the problem.


#1 - I swapped out the 6' HDMI cable even though it functioned fine with the previous TV and there was no change in performance; still dropping frames.


#2 - I did a factory reset to the FireTV 2 and nothing changed: still dropping frames.


#3 - I hooked up my FireTV 3 pendant directly to the TV and connected it to the network via WiFi. It streamed all of my 4k test media perfectly, not a single dropped frame that I could notice. So, now I am finally convinced that the TV itself is OK, thank goodness but now I am wondering if the soundbar is having trouble passing an HDMI 2.0 signal.


#4 - Disconnected the HDMI between the FireTV 2 and the soundbar. Plugged the FireTV pendant directly into the soundbar......... everything worked beautifully.


All signs are pointing to the FireTV 2. I ordered 2 new HDMI cables from Amazon and a new FireTV 4K stick. They should be here tomorrow (Tuesday).


So, the TV is great. With a few calibrations and a little troubleshooting I have the picture looking pretty good and the television seems to be handling motion very well as long as the source is good. It's not plasma good, but the bigger screen, brightness and 4K is worth the penalty.
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post #3 of 3 Old 01-11-2020, 05:06 PM
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TV-based media players are not the best. (1)TV tend to have low-powered processors, (2)TV Apps tend to be not updated often. Since the TCL is running Roku, I would try to run this Vimu on a dedicated Roku box/stick and see if it makes a difference. Oh, in case I missed, is always preferable using ethernet (all the way) than WIFI.
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