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Any idea why videos "skip" when played on my laptop?

Discussion in 'Hardware Components and Aftermarket Upgrades' started by 1shado1, Jun 13, 2010.

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  1. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    2 year old Tosh (see sig). Been a problem from day 1. Dual core cpu, 4 GB RAM. Set to "performance" mode. Not multitasking. Even though it isn't exactly a Kray, shouldn't be a problem, right? But any video file stored on my laptop's HDD skips every once in awhile when played, and more often during action type scenes. The problem persists even though the HDD has been swapped out for a new one (needed more storage space). I added a second HDD in my optical drive bay a couple months ago (many thanks for the guide, nando4!). The very same videos when stored on the secondary drive play flawlessly, and NEVER skip or stutter. Both drives are the exact same model 500GB Western Digital Scorpio Blue. Please keep in mind that this has been a problem since day one, when the original HDD had very little on it.

    Any ideas?


    EDIT: Just to clarify, the skipping occurs multiple times per minute, not as infrequently as I made it sound ("once in awhile").
     
  2. TANWare

    TANWare Just This Side of Senile, I think. Moderator

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    Since the issue is from the OS drive there apparently is something hitting the drive. To be sure first though do you have the wait for hardware cache off? If there are intermitent writes and the OS is waiting for the writes this could be an issue.

    You may also want to try DPC lateny timer to see if the system is having issues there. If it is be sure you are on AC and high performance mode, my U81-a gets hit every 10 seconds on battery saver with a 2000 ms latency that would be an issue.........
     
  3. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Many thanks for the reply, TANWare! To be honest, I'm fairly computer illiterate. Can you steer me to the things you mentioned? Sorry for the hassle. By the way, always plugged in on ac, and always in performance mode.

    EDIT: I have enabled write caching (it WAS off), and the problem has somewhat improved. A certain video (a vob of Terminator 2) that skipped every few seconds during action scenes has only skipped a few times in the last minute. So it isn't perfect yet, but certainly closer. thanks for the help! Now to just get it that last inch...
     
  4. newsposter

    newsposter Notebook Virtuoso

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    hard drive bandwidth, chipset bandwidth, memory bandwidth. look ay any other running applications running (including the OS and anti-virus/malware) that impacts that bandwidth.
     
  5. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Appreciate the suggestions! But you're dealing with a computer luddite here.
    Does remind me of a couple lines from the movie MAD MAX though. "Much damage?" "Metal damage, brain damage; are you listenin' Bronze?":D
     
  6. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Tried DPC Latency Timer. This is what I got (and I'm in WAY over my head):
    [​IMG]

    So it says I should disable devices one at a time in Device Manager to see which drivers are acting up. I open Device Manager, and the list is a mile long. Are there any that might be more likely to cause problems than others? Or do I need to go through the entire list? This is DAUNTING!
     
  7. hydra

    hydra Breaks Laptops

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    Well, until you find what is hitting your C drive, keep your video on the D drive. At least till someone gets lucky and hits on an easy fix for you?
     
  8. H.A.L. 9000

    H.A.L. 9000 308 Negra Arroyo Lane

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    Try looking at CPU-z and GPU-z while playing through one of these action scenes and see what is happening clock/temperature wise. If the Tosh is the one in your signature, then you have the HD4200, or better, and should have no problem playing movies on it.

    EDIT: ok, so this thread is moving fast... ignore that :)

    EDIT2: Have you tried updating your video drivers, or audio drivers for that matter? DPC checker doesn't look particularly healthy.
     
  9. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Thanks for the suggestion.:D I have been doing that. And the ones on my C drive that I want to watch, I simply copy to the D drive, watch, and then delete. It has proven to be a workaround, but not a particularly convenient one, lol.
     
  10. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    I go into device manager, and right click a device, and select update driver. It says it is checking online, but always comes back saying the drivers are up to date. Is there a different procedure that would be better?

    And yes everybody, I know folks like me shouldn't be allowed to operate PCs. Sigh.
     
  11. H.A.L. 9000

    H.A.L. 9000 308 Negra Arroyo Lane

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    What is your specific video card and audio vendor? I'm going to bet it's an AMD/ATI video card, with realtek HD audio. If you list them, I'll get you links to the latest drivers.

    EDIT: You can see what they are from the Device Manager, like from above. And Windows Update drivers are always behind.
     
  12. sean473

    sean473 Notebook Prophet

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    it might be a dying hard drive or something but if this is only happening for videos , i guess it is

    1. Driver problem
    2. wrong codec or player..
    3. CPU maybe crapping up if its a HD video.. after all TL60 is like a old core duo..
     
  13. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Says ATI Radeon X1250 for display adapter, and just Realtek High Definition Audio.

    Low end stuff, I'm sure. But my freakin' netbook can play the same videos without issues, lol.
     
  14. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Thanks for the input! Doubtful it is a bad HDD, as it has done this with both the original drive from day 1, and the replacement. Not HD video, even though 720P files play fine from the second drive. Don't think it is a codec or player problem, as the vids span many different types, and any of 5 different video players I've used still act the same. You agree with DPC Latency Checker. Says bad drivers. But the list of stuff in Device Manager is so freaking long, I don't know which to disable first to pinpoint the possible problem. Are some more likely to cause issues, or are they all equally likely to be the problem child?
     
  15. H.A.L. 9000

    H.A.L. 9000 308 Negra Arroyo Lane

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    *Here* are the latest ATI Catalyst Drivers for Vista HP x64.
    *Here* is the absolute latest Realtek audio drivers.
     
  16. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    I are a moron. Turns out I have Vista 32bit. But when I went to the link for the video drivers, it said something about not available for download anyway. So I did the driver search thing at that website, by filling in the boxes with info they ask. There was no choice for X1250, so I chose "all other radeon mobility products." I then got this:
    "Advisory:
    The display driver supplied by the laptop manufacturer is customized for the built-in flat panel display, and the graphics features and functions specific to the laptop. It is strongly recommended to use the supplied drivers.

    If installing a different operating system other than the one included with the laptop, the laptop may not meet all the requirements, and supported drivers may not be available.

    The laptop manufacturer is the exclusive provider of driver updates. If the required driver update is not available at the laptop manufacturersÂ’ website, it is recommended to contact the manufacturer directly, to see if an updated driver will be made available in the future.

    AMD cannot provide driver updates directly from AMD.com.

    AMD has provided a list of the major laptop manufacturers and corresponding support websites below for your convenience.
    -------------------------------------------------------
    I checked Toshiba's website, and found no video driver version newer than the one I already have for my model laptop.
     
  17. H.A.L. 9000

    H.A.L. 9000 308 Negra Arroyo Lane

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    No probs... *here* ya go. x86 Vista HP ATI Catalyst 10.2 from Feb. 2010.

    EDIT: BTW, the X1250 is now Legacy Hardware and any update you might find in the future will come from AMD/ATI's page only, as the OEM will not release anymore driver updates.
     
  18. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Thanks for your continued patience. FWIW, I edited my sig to show 32-bit, lol. Updated the audio driver, still no change. Will update video driver and get back to you. Thanks again.
     
  19. H.A.L. 9000

    H.A.L. 9000 308 Negra Arroyo Lane

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    LOL! They must not allow direct linking to their drivers, poor AMD. Their interwebz bills must be expensive. Anyways, here is the page link :)

    ATI Catalyst? Legacy Display Driver
     
  20. 1shado1

    1shado1 Notebook Consultant

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    Ok. Downloaded and ran/installed the Catalyst Suite. Would I be correct in assuming that when all was said and done, that it updated my video driver?

    I still get the same stuttering of video from my primary HDD, and DPC Latency Checker still shows major red spikes and claims drivers are acting bad.

    I really appreciate all the help and time involved in trying to fix this for me. I am someone that generally doesn't like to bother people for help, especially when the problem seems like it might be fairly complicated and time consuming for others to deal with. But after putting up with this issue for 2 years, I just felt like I had to get help with a possible solution.
     
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