Fix to DNxHD Quicktime stuttering in Premiere Pro CS 5.5.2

UPDATED 11/19/2011 at the end.

As reported in some forums, if you’re trying to use DNxHD Quicktimes in Adobe Premiere Pro CS 5.5.2 and you have an AJA Kona card installed, you might run into an issue where the playback stutters badly.   There’s an easy fix for this.  This is all on the 2.4Ghz 8-core Mac Pro, running OS 10.6.8, connected to our Small Tree Ethernet SAN and this is with DNxHD 145,  72op / 59.94 video.

First check your AJA Control Panel to ensure you’re running the latest drivers.  Got to Info and you should see 9.1 for the driver.

Then if you have not already.  Go to and download the AJA Mac Plug-ins for Adobe CS 5.5 version 9.1.


Launch Adobe Premiere Pro and in either the Source or Program Window, click the drop down menu in the upper right and then select Playback Settings at the bottom.

That brings up an internal AJA Menu.  At the bottom change the Quality from the default of “Medium” to “Low” and then click “Ok.”

You will barely notice a difference in the output to the external screen.  As a test, after I did some playback with it in the Low setting, I switched it back to Medium and then even to High and video playback remained smooth.   So it’s possible all you have to do is toggle this once per session, but if the stuttering remains, just leave it set to “Low.”

And note that I have “Agressive Cache” turned OFF as there’s no need for it on this machine.  Thanks to the gang at AJA for pointing me in the right direction.

UPDATE 11/19/2011

I was reminded by some folks that “Low” is the default setting for Adobe and the higher you set this, the less realtime functionality you’ll probably get.  So to keep realtime to a maximum, you probably want to keep the Playback Setting at “Low.”

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