I have a Premiere Pro CS6 project that I haven't loaded since 10/22/2012 when it worked fine. Today, with Premiere Pro CS6 up to date at 6.0.3, the timeline playback of several MOV files encoded with H.264 format is impossibly slow (no video motion, just normal audio and play head movement, then after stopping playback, display catches up after about 10-15 seconds). This is not HD, this is DV. And other files work fine, e.g. AVI. I've done some research here and elsewhere and tried the shift-alt preferences reset, the clearing of all caches with Premiere Pro closed and fiddled with the playback preferences. I don't have any capture cards, just a 1GB ATI M Radeon HD5870 display card, so no MPE. However, this file played back fine before when it was last edited on this machine. Further, I have a second smaller but still powerful notebook with an Nvidia card with CS6 and it also had the problem. Both machines run Windows 7 Home Premium, one with Win7 SP1, the other not.
To be certain it wasn't due to the old project file, we tried creating a new project and imported that one file, but ran into exactly the same problem. And sometimes Premiere Pro crashes out when I close it and it is still trying to figure out the 'frozen' video playback. Adobe Media Encoder CS6 also chokes on the file, interface locks, same level of slowness, long period of time while the preview window to the left of the settings says 'Rendering...', a message I don't think I've ever seen before!
Problem Event Name: APPCRASH
Application Name: Adobe Premiere Pro.exe
Application Version: 220.127.116.11
Application Timestamp: 505748bf
Fault Module Name: ASLMessaging.dll
Fault Module Version: 18.104.22.168
Fault Module Timestamp: 505737ef
Exception Code: c0000005
Exception Offset: 0000000000001291
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.768.3
Locale ID: 1033
Additional Information 1: ba40
Additional Information 2: ba403a9cb94afac943361a7cfe180758
Additional Information 3: 6f07
Additional Information 4: 6f07e49e63b4f99ed2ab043fddc4f595
The important thing here is that this file was not a problem before and now it is. But there is more...
Both of these machines are subscribed to CC, so we downloaded Premiere Pro CC. Voila! The file plays perfectly, like it used to and should (and that is still with MPE off). And CS6 still doesn't. So now, I really, really want to know where this problem came from and if there is still a way to solve it? I am planning to start using the new Premiere Pro shortly, but am always cautious moving existing projects to new, new software in case a deal-breaker bug shows up and I'm stuck with half a project in each version while the bug is fixed. And I expect there are going to be some people using CS6 for a while yet.
The MOV file details are reported by Quicktime and Premiere Pro as follows:
Type: MPEG Movie
File Size: 227.7 MB
Image Size: 655 x 480
Frame Rate: 29.97
Source Audio Format: 44100 Hz - compressed - Stereo
Project Audio Format: 44100 Hz - 32 bit floating point - Stereo
Total Duration: 00:14:20:17
Pixel Aspect Ratio: 1.0
H.264, 655x480, Millions
I know it was exported by a Mac in July 2011. For interest sake, I tried an .MP4 H.264 file and it loads instantly. So I exported the problem file using AME CC (nice brisk processing) to another H.264 MOV, just to see if the specific files had some format issues. But CS6 still cannot handle the file. I then tested another MOV file I had this time in the format DV/DVCPRO of over 1GB in size (but only 5min long) and it plays fine in CS6, so it isn't all MOV files, so far just H.264 and in my testing so far it seems to be regardless of source.
I see a lot of people have asked about stuttering video, freezing video, and similar playback problems (from a variety of different formats), but I didn't find any answers so far that helped. I don't know if this is related to other formats or not. I can only guess that it has something to do with
a) Quicktime-I own QT7 on one machine and not on the other. Both are up to date with the latest version.
b) Windows updates-not likely since CC works and the two machines have different levels of updates, one is close to current, one is way behind.
c) Premiere Pro CS6 updates-this is possible, but I don't know how I would test it?
d) Some other application common to both machines that is clashing with PremierePro, AME and/or Quicktime at a low level? That's a tough one.
I could go into depth on my machines, but I don't think that is really relevant, there really seems to be something that transcends my hardware/OS going on here. However, if you want more detail, there is some in my profile and I'll answer questions to see if we can't pin this down.