On a Mac 10.13.6 I am usually listening to music using the command line command mplayer. However, when the computer is under rather heavy load, the music sometimes stops for a fraction of a second up to a second (or even longer) all the time.

The music is mp3 files stored locally and I’m guessing the CPU scheduling to priority is what is causing this interruption. In my use case, everything else the computer is doing is less relevant so I want to promote this app to the best performance.

The version is:

MPlayer 1.3.0-4.2.1

Can I change how I run this app to avoid slowdowns when the CPU gets busy?


Check out nice and renice which work on the command line.

You can change the priority level of processes, but to change other users processes you have to be admin level...

Just to provide a link with examples, see https://www.lifewire.com/uses-of-commands-nice-renice-2201087

  • I think I tried that already without any noticeable change of the behavior. I assume because its a mac...? – Alex Feb 9 '19 at 15:58
  • I just tried again with nice -n -20 mplayer ... and it happens again. – Alex Feb 9 '19 at 16:14
  • Ok, sorry, if I think of something else I will post it. – Solar Mike Feb 9 '19 at 16:16
  • I should have mentioned I tried with nice. But now it happened again, although I am not doing a astrophysical simulation of the Einstein equations. (I am just re-encoding a video...) – Alex Feb 9 '19 at 16:31
  • About the same thing for the processor :) handbrake always makes mine work hard... Have you tried renice-ing handbrake to slow it down? ie reduce its load... makes it longer though... – Solar Mike Feb 9 '19 at 16:33

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