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When I try to play a video with 1920x1080 pixels and 60fps, in H.264 format using VLC player. It cannot keep up with this work and frequently drops frames (in other words, it's not playing it "smoothly").

OS X's QuickTime player seems to be free from this problem, but it's not a solution, since it's limited to a small subset of formats (can't handle 10-bit or 4:2:2 colorspaces, or MKV container, etc.)

Is there a way to fix that problem (without upgrading to macOS Sierra), or I should look for another video player if VLC's performance is not good enough?

The computer is a Retina MacBook Pro with a 2.3 GHz i7 processor and a NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 2048 MB dedicated GPU, and OS X version is 10.11.6. I'm not sure how to check if secondary GPU is being really used for heavy lifting instead of Intel one when playing videos.

VLC says it's up to date:

VLC 2.2.4 is currently the newest version available

  • Are you using the latest release of VLC? You should edit your question to include this information. – IconDaemon Dec 1 '16 at 14:52
  • @IconDaemon done! – Sarge Borsch Dec 1 '16 at 15:10
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    What's the video's bitrate? Is it a super-compressed 10Mbps, DSLR 40Mbps, or higher? – NoahL Dec 1 '16 at 19:55
  • @NoahL it likely doesn't matter, I tested with 36Mbps from camera and also 20Mbps recompressed, VLC struggles to play both. – Sarge Borsch Dec 2 '16 at 7:38
  • I was wondering if it was a read/write problem because I've played 40+Mbps 1080p60 videos without a problem using VLC on a MBPr with integrated graphics. I assume (but am just checking) that you know that the original video isn't jerky (check it in QT?), it's just the VLC playback? – NoahL Dec 2 '16 at 7:41
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Finally I solved this problem by switching to MPV for playing videos, which is also superior to VLC in many other ways.

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