Recently I have noticed a severe decline in my FCP's ability to play back sequences in NTSC/DV 29.97.
I'm running on a 15" MBP with 4Gb of RAM, using a LaCie 250Gb and a Lacie 1Tb drive over FW800. I have in the past cut a feature length doc in DVCProHD 720p24 on Iomega FW800 drives without any difficulties on this very same system.
I'm running FCP 6.0.3 under OS x 10.5.6 and Quicktime 7.6 (472).
I get dropped frames with RT set to 'Safe', 'Play Base Layer only', Playback quality set to 'Low' and frame rate set to 'Dynamic' or 'half', and Multiclip Playback 'off'. I'm playing a sequence set to NTSC-DV using the 'Easy Setup' preset and containing only NTSC-DV footage without effects or basic motion (scale/transform/opacity) changes. The sequence is about 20 minutes long, but I have been noticing problems even on very short sequences (<1min).
My first thought is that my computer is now 2 years older and has accumulated that much more detritus that might be choking the system. My second thought is that I might need to upgrade some part of the software chain: FCP, QT, or the OS.
These drives have been able to handle DV footage in the past, and the 1TB drive is fairly new.
Any input at all would be most welcome.
Thanks in advance.
I use DiskWarrior to keep my System and Media HDs optimized.
After just few days working, the performance of every computer lows.
rebuilding the HD's directories, normally revamp the performance.
You can use TechTools or DriverWizard.
1) Make sure the source footage is indeed residing on your external media drive and not hiding somewhere on the internal hard disc ( and if its rendered sections dropping frames then check your Scratch Disk > Render settings ).
2) Check the available hard disc space on your internal AND external drives ... as hard drives fill up then you can expect to see performance dropping off significantly