Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

Can I get PC to play DVD movies more reliably?


  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 hikerdave

hikerdave

  • Members
  • 16 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 29 November 2008 - 12:41 PM

I have a Compaq Presario 5000 model# 5BW284, serial# 9044FPM9M229. It is Pentium III with 850 MHZ processor and built in DVD-ROM drive.

I have watched lot's of DVD movies on this PC. Almost all of the movies skip, freeze-frame and hesitate now. I use Power DVD for the software. I think I might want to try a new external DVD-ROM drive to play movies on. And maybe a change of DVD player software.

I don't want to buy a new LCD TV and DVD player. I have a tube TV that works fine for watching cable TV. I just want to watch DVD movies on my PC. The PC works fine and the monitor and JBL speakers work good for DVD movies.

Does anybody have any ideas for external DVD-ROM drives, software, or how to make DVD movies perform better on the PC? Maybe it's worth a try. I can always return a DVD-ROM if it does not work well.

Thanks,
Dave

BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 dpunisher

dpunisher

  • BC Advisor
  • 2,234 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South TX
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 29 November 2008 - 05:26 PM

Simple stuff first....go into task manager and see what CPU/Memory usage is. If either is maxed out when a DVD is played, you found your problem. Good to check what is using resources anyway to kill uneeded processes.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#3 hikerdave

hikerdave
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 16 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 29 November 2008 - 09:12 PM

Dpunisher, while DVD movie was playing I checked Task manager/performance. The CPU was fluctuating from 40-50%. I also looked at Task Manager/processes. Something called system idle processes was always running in the 90's. All the other process were zero or very low.

I also checked drivers of DVD ROM in device manager, and these were up to date.

DMA for secondary IDE channel was populated. Primary channel I am not so sure.

I use Power DVD software, which I thought was pretty good

What next?

#4 dpunisher

dpunisher

  • BC Advisor
  • 2,234 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South TX
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 29 November 2008 - 09:44 PM

That is normal for syatem idle processes. How much memory do you have, and how much are you using when playing the DVDs? The CPU usage is about spot on for DVD playback with that processor.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#5 hikerdave

hikerdave
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 16 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 30 November 2008 - 01:50 AM

I have 384 MB of RAM, 40.0 GB Hard Drive with Windows XP Pro. I wasn't sure how to measure RAM usage while a movie was playing. So I went back to Task Manager/Performance and got this:

PF Usage 395MB

Commit charge 395/920M

#6 DJBPace07

DJBPace07

  • BC Advisor
  • 4,869 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:04:18 PM

Posted 30 November 2008 - 02:46 AM

You might want to install more RAM, Windows is not only blowing through all of your memory but also a large portion of virtual memory as well. Unfortunately, the age of your PC prevents the amount of RAM you can use from exceeding 512MB

3939.png

 


#7 dpunisher

dpunisher

  • BC Advisor
  • 2,234 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South TX
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 30 November 2008 - 08:42 AM

Well, we know the problem, but your memory is maxxed out already. So you have to free up some memory.

Don't know what OS you are using. Been a long time since I used a 9X OS so my memory could be faulty.

With 98/98SE/ME, I look to use about 100-120 meg of RAM on a clean boot. Anything over that, and I start to look for background apps hogging my memory. Go into taskmanager, look at whats running, how much memory its using, and go from there. Google the programs listed to see what they are, and if they are essential. Chances are you can disable a fair amount of them and never know it. When you find out what is safe to disable, go into MSCONFIG>Startup and disable it. Realplayer, Quicktime, Adobe, printer driver/app suites, Nero and a lot of other programs install useless apps that take up CPU cycles and memory. You can disable those and never miss them.

With XP, I like to shoot for around 256meg of mem usage on a fresh boot. Like anything, it is variable. Directions are the same as above.

Sometimes antivirus programs (Norton) can be a real memory hog. Even then, running XP with 384 meg of memory is tough. 512meg is passable, but the integrated video eats up 128meg, and leaves you short.

Edited by dpunisher, 30 November 2008 - 08:55 AM.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#8 hikerdave

hikerdave
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 16 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 30 November 2008 - 08:29 PM

The RAM was even worse before I added another module. The integrated video was pretty bad too, so I added an eVGA graphics card (Nvidia GeForce2 MX400) back in 2004

I purchased my computer in 2000. It works fine, it just doesn't have any power by today's standards.

If I disable the recommended applications and increase to 512MB of RAM, could this make enough of a difference? I have Windows XP Pro

Thanks,
Dave

Edited by hikerdave, 30 November 2008 - 08:31 PM.


#9 DJBPace07

DJBPace07

  • BC Advisor
  • 4,869 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:04:18 PM

Posted 30 November 2008 - 09:30 PM

You should notice a difference with more RAM. Deactivating unnecessary background processes will free up more memory. Virtual memory, which is what a page file is, uses your hard disk instead of RAM. This keeps your PC from running out of memory and refusing to work, but the hard disk is far slower than RAM. To further boost the speed of your PC, consider getting an antivirus or security suite that has a lower memory footprint. NOD32 is such an antivirus.

3939.png

 


#10 hikerdave

hikerdave
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 16 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 30 November 2008 - 11:06 PM

Refresh my memory. My make/model PC uses the old SDRAM memory modules, and my system board has 2,3, or 4 slots?

I just disable Panda anti-virus when I watch a DVD movie.

Thanks for everyone's input.

Edited by hikerdave, 30 November 2008 - 11:07 PM.


#11 DJBPace07

DJBPace07

  • BC Advisor
  • 4,869 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:04:18 PM

Posted 01 December 2008 - 01:20 AM

The 5BW284 has two memory slots allowing for 256 MB of RAM in each. This should work: mushkin PC100 256MB 168-Pin SDRAM

Compaq Presario Memory Specs.

3939.png

 


#12 hikerdave

hikerdave
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 16 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:03:18 PM

Posted 07 December 2008 - 05:38 PM

I bought the RAM from that MemoryTen website. The cool thing is that they sent me a Kingston Module which is supposed to be one of the best. It's installed now.

Thanks,
Dave




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users