Why do .mp4 format movies not run smoothly on my computer?

Osama July 19, 2010

Windows XP SP2, CPU 450 MHz, VGA 64 MB. On this machine .mp4 format movies don’t run smoothly. Is that because of small VGA card size?

  1. Ray Nelson
    August 19, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    This computer has a 2ghz p3 processor windows XP w 2gb memory.   Videos run unless they are at a level of High quality where the CPU can not keep up with the requirments of rendering it.

    I have found the size of video makes the biggest difference.   1920x1080 can create huge gaps between sound and video.   If I keep it around 720x480 everything works ok with CPU at around 50%.

    • Tina
      August 21, 2011 at 4:25 pm

      Thanks for posting your experiences, Ray!

      • Waqas Ahmed
        April 12, 2012 at 10:59 am

        My specs are 64MB VGA, 1GB RAM, 200GB Hard drive and Processor more than 2GHZ but still I can't watch .mp4 movies :'-(
        My Machine is DELL GX240.....

  2. Osama
    July 20, 2010 at 3:37 pm


  3. Anonymous
    July 20, 2010 at 6:24 am

    I don't know whether a 450Mhz processor coupled with a 64 MB graphics card will be able to cope with the power needed to decode MP4 videos. Try upgrading.

  4. M.S. Smith
    July 20, 2010 at 1:42 am

    I don't know that you're ever going to play .MP4 videos smoothly on that computer. Given that the video card has 64MB of RAM, it must be fairly old, and so it probably does not support GPU acceleration of video.

    Even if it did, GPU acceleration does not take the load of playing video completely off the processor, and I don't think a 450Mhz CPU is fast enough to handle what would remain.

  5. Tina
    July 19, 2010 at 6:08 pm


    how much RAM do you have and is the the memory of your graphics card shared? I'm pretty sure that it is and you probably have no more than 1 GB RAM. Also your CPU is rather weak.

    If you cannot upgrade your hard drive, you should play with Linux. It needs far less resources and you might get a better result when watching videos. You could try Knoppix first (Linux from CD).

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