Movies Pause Briefly

Hi All
I have a 4 bay Drobo connected via FW800 to a Late 2009 Mac Mini.
When playing my movies that I ripped using Ripit they tend to briefly pause during playback. Usually several times and usually towards the end of the movie. Surely I have enough bandwidth or maybe I don’t. Or maybe the Minis not up to it.

Has anyone had this problem?


is there a search indexer (is it called spotlight?) or perhaps time machine backups, accessing the drobo at the same time?

Thanks Docchris
I’ll check it out.


Maybe it’s the firewire? Have you tried USB. I know mine does the exact same thing (windows 7 USB) when I’m writting a huge file to it (transfering a dvd while watching another one).

hi, one thing i always do (on windows) is to set the movie player with higher CPU priority, and that has fixed lots of “pauses” etc with media player classic.

but like the others said, if you can try with a usb cable, (and without any known other programs doing stuff at same time) they are good options too.

You can check if the playback is pegging the Mini by running Activity Monitor while the playback is in progress.

However, it’s been my experience that the Mini (even 1st Gen) can handle 1080p playback with no problems.

Is the Drobo the only device connected via the FW port? I originally had issues with my Drobo when it was connected to my i7 iMac and my ‘old’ 1TB FW drive was daisy chained through it. I removed the 1TB drive and the Drobo worked perfectly.

BTW- my Drobo is now about 88% full and I get 14MB/sec writes and 35MB/sec reads via FW800.

“1080p playback” can mean anything from AVCHD to MPEG-2 to uncompressed playback and all of those have differing requirements in terms of CPU and storage bandwidth…

@Tim Sydney, what compression format and bitrate are your 1080p files?

That’s an excellent point.

My 1080p means Blu-Ray source run through HandBrake (0.9.5) using the aTV 2 preset, which now that I think about it, scales it down to 720p.

I don’t have a clue if it’ll handle upscale, high-bandwidth 1080p formats. /:slight_smile:

So, now I have to encode one using the High Profile preset and see how my 1st Gen Mini handles it.

That’s a good way to pass some time on Saturday.

I had an original aTV hooked up as a media PC in the living room. Chaffed by the limitations of the aTV, I swapped in a Mini that was connected to the Drobo for all the media.

I never had a moments problem with the Mini. Played every format I threw at it.

By far, however, it was ripped DVD’s and BDs from my library and purchased content from iTunes.

I’m going to re-rip Sunshine as a High Profile and see how it handles it.

my drobo v2 on usb could quite happily handle un-re-coded blu-ray (including sunshine - one of my favourite films)

and this was playing back via an atom powered nettop (with nvidia ion - obviously!)