Fix Premiere Pro Glitchy Video Playback - 6 Causes & Solutions

To fix choppy playback in Premiere Pro, start by checking your hardware specifications and ensuring your software is up-to-date. Then, delve into sequence and clip settings, close unnecessary applications, and consider using in-depth solutions like project consolidation and GPU acceleration for a smoother editing experience.

August 28, 2023
Fix Premiere Pro Glitchy Video Playback - 6 Causes & Solutions
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Premiere Pro Skipping During Playback

Let's dive right in. If you've ever edited a video and found the playback to be choppy, you're not alone. I've personally experienced this issue, and it can be a real hindrance to your workflow. The first thing you should do is check your hardware. Does your device have the specifications needed to run Premiere Pro smoothly? If you've been editing for a while and this issue is new, it's unlikely to be a hardware problem but could be due to a lack of space. Make sure there's enough room on your hard drive for your project to run seamlessly.

Steps to Fix Premiere Pro Glitchy Video Playback

Step Description Requirements
Check Hardware Ensure your computer meets the specifications needed to run Premiere Pro. System specifications
Check for Updates Update both Premiere Pro and your system software. Internet connection
Sequence and Clip Settings Check for discrepancies between your sequence settings and clip settings. Clip and sequence information
Close Extra Applications Close unnecessary applications to free up processing power. None
Restart Turn off and restart both the program and your device. Save your work
Consolidate Project Use the Premiere Pro Consolidation tool to ensure all files are in the same place. Premiere Pro Consolidation tool
Enable GPU Acceleration Turn on GPU Acceleration for smoother playback. Dedicated graphics card
Clear Media Cache Clear the Media Cache to improve performance. None

Check for Software Updates

I've always wondered why some people neglect this simple step. Software updates are crucial for the optimal performance of Premiere Pro. Both the software and your operating system require regular updates. A slightly outdated version can cause numerous glitches, including choppy playback. Trust me, checking for updates should be your first troubleshooting step.

Sequence and Clip Settings

From my point of view, this is where most people get tripped up. If you're experiencing choppy playback on a specific clip or set of clips, it could be due to a discrepancy between your sequence settings and your clip settings. For example, importing 4K or 50+fps clips into a timeline sequence with different settings can cause issues. Always check the clip settings by highlighting them in the timeline and checking the Info tab in the Inspector. If the settings don't match, you have a couple of options: either export the clip to match your other footage or create a Proxy clip.

Too Many Applications Open

I've noticed that even a simple web browser can slow down your playback in Premiere Pro. The software takes a lot of processing power to run, so close as many applications as possible. Only run those needed for your editing.

Turn It Off and On Again

It might sound cliché, but sometimes the best solution is the simplest one. If I were you, I'd save my work and then restart both the program and the device. This can often resolve minor glitches and improve performance.

In-Depth Solutions for Choppy Playback

Consolidate Your Project

I'm convinced that a cluttered project can lead to choppy playback. Using the Premiere Pro Consolidation tool ensures all your files and media are in the same place, making it easier for the software to access them. This is fantastic for archiving projects and decreasing their overall size at editing milestones.

GPU Acceleration

If your computer has a dedicated graphics card, turning on GPU Acceleration can significantly improve playback. Go to File > Project Settings > General and change the Renderer to Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration. This will make your editing experience much smoother.

Clear the Media Cache

The Media Cache is where Premiere Pro saves accelerator files to aid in playback. Over time, this cache can get filled, taking up a lot of space and slowing down performance. Clearing the Media Cache and re-rendering your project can drastically improve performance