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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a small collection of VOB trailers that I like to play before watching a DVD on my HTPC. I previously was planning on just playing the VOBs off of CD-R but my DVD/CD-ROM cannot seem to keep up with the VOB data rate via CD playback (my best guess). So I decided to upgrade my 420MB HD (yeah I know, pathetic!) to a much nicer 20GB Maxtor ATA66 5200RPM drive. Playback of VOBs is now MUCH smoother and the audio doesn't lag at all anymore. The problem is that I can notice a dropped frame about every 10 seconds or so. I have a PIII 450 OC'd to 550MHz, 128MB PC133 SDRAM, PowerDVD v2.55, Win98 first edition, and the Maxtor 20GB UDMA66 5200RPM HD w/DMA enabled. Anything there look suspicious? DVD playback is fine - no dropped frames. I didn't invest in a 7200RPM HD because I didn't think it would be a requirement for playing VOBs back w/o dropped frames. Is that reasonable? Can someone explain how playback of VOBs via DVD-ROM is less prone to dropped frames than playback of VOBs on a much faster HD? Maybe Windows constantly accessing the swap file during playback? Thanks guys!
 

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I run a p3 450 and the vob trailers play fine from my 80gb 5400rpm Maxtor. Have you tried another player like Zoomplayer? You may need to grab the codec pack from Doom9 to get AC3 SPDIF working.
 

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Your cpu seems fast enough. Check for any other processes running in the background that might be grabbing cpu cycles. One of my not-so-favorites is Microsoft Office Findfast, which decides to do something every 5 minutes.


Al
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am running Win98 as stripped down as possible - used TweakUI to get rid off as much stupid $hit as possible, only 2 threads running on startup: explorer and systray. 94% of system resources free on startup too. Maybe it is dropping frames because I have one partiton with the OS and the VOBs? I'm stumped and getting a bit pissed off. Maybe I should get a new player? So is Zoomplayer good? What is the best player? I guess that might be open to debate. I have been fairly happy with PowerDVD but I can't seem to play VCDs or SVCDs properly with it and some VOBs that I have don't have any sound playing on PowerDVD. Is PowerDVD XP good? I've heard WinDVD is good too but all I have used thusfar is PowerDVD.
 

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Mike, try to disable write behind cashing, and turn down read ached optimization, also you may set your system as network server and add Video cash setting in win.ini and set it for min and max same. Also set virtual memory for min and max same value. check the tweaks at videoguys.com

Best regards Artur
 

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You didn't mention which video card you have - it makes a difference at the cpu level you're operating at. I assume that if you recently upgraded the hard disk from 420MB, you don't have a late model graphics card (Radeon or Geforce 3 or 4).


Al
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have an OEM AGP 16MB STB Velocity 4400 TNT. I think it has plenty of 2D balls for DVD playback. I tried playing with the Desktop vs. Network server settings and there doesn't seems to be much a difference. Tried turning off DMA - bad idea! :D I'll try those other things you guys mentioned.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I run 720x480x32bbp
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, I think I solved the problem. Replaced the 5400 RPM HD with a 7200 RPM HD. I also reduced my color depth to 16bbp. I think that may have helped. Man, rearranging HDs was a ***** and a half. 16GB of data takes a long time to back up even from HD to HD!
 
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