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Camera video recording choppy with big pauses in video (and skips in audio)

Tracked by Jolla (In release)

asked 2016-11-26 15:32:05 +0300

mobilthor gravatar image

updated 2016-11-26 18:16:28 +0300

While evaluating the recording of long video files with SFOS (see, I noticed in horror that the videos from my original Jolla phone are nearly unusable because they feature rather choppy image overall and also have annoying long still picture phases every 12-15 seconds or so.

I was asked to cut down the question, so I will move the ranting to the comments. Try this to reproduce:

  1. Record a still scene while smoothly moving your phone (wave or use circular motion at your discretion) for about a minute.
  2. Choppiness in image should be apparent right away (even a bit in preview).
  3. The resulting video will feature generally somewhat choppy video, but also a big still phase after around 12-15 seconds.
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I was able to confirm that with a short recording … it is very regular that something cannot keep up during recording and the image freezes, among general non-smoothness of the picture. The audio mostly seems unperturbed, but re-watching the longer video, I notice that audio skips there, too. I watched the video on a Linux PC with MPlayer, not only on the phone. I did not even record in full HD, I used kimmoli's camera settings plugin to lower the resolution to 720p.

mobilthor ( 2016-11-26 15:48:52 +0300 )edit

I am so hoping that some tuning of gstreamer buffers, or process priorities is able to fix this. Or is the Jolla just not powerful enough for even 720p h264 capture? Does it have to do everything in software? I have to wonder if I should get another Raspberry Pi or, $DEITY forbid, a proper camera after all … jokes aside: I expect the lens and sensor on a 300 € smartphone not to be the best available, given the constraints… but I expect that the device is at least able to give me whatever mediocre picture quality it manages in a smooth video recording.

Perhaps that 12-15 seconds interval for the big pauses gives a hint … is there something regular happening in another process that shoves the camera gstreamer aside? Please note that I disabled any network during the initial recording, the phone was in flight/airplane mode. This is independent of recording to the sd card or the internal memory. No difference. Also, I got notice that the recording is also choppy with Jolla C and with the original Jolla phone with an older SFOS (more in the comments soon).

mobilthor ( 2016-11-26 15:49:10 +0300 )edit

ping @MSameer, I can confirm that I am seeing the same periodic freezing when recording with Jolla C on 2.0.5, as well as general poor recording performance on Jolla 1 with 2.0.1

r0kk3rz ( 2016-11-26 16:04:54 +0300 )edit

unfortunately i must agree...vvideo is choppy too with my was not with older releases so i assume is just a software bug...hope it will get fixed...

247 ( 2016-11-26 23:31:38 +0300 )edit

I have it on my J1 on ( still ;) ) SFOS

Bury ( 2016-11-27 13:58:45 +0300 )edit

Some more detail, and since I was asked … there is a small test video with default settings (1080p, 12 Mbit/s) on . The mediainfo for the frame rate is fascinating:

Frame rate mode : Variable Frame rate : 25.883 fps Minimum frame rate : 1.307 fps Maximum frame rate : 41.096 fps

I was hoping for straight 30 fps (or 29.997, as it's usual). So, if there wasn't a performance problem, the recording would be able to keep up? But then, there's even 41 fps, and in my original recording, I got a maximum frame rate of 750 fps. Someone really lost the timing here.

mobilthor ( 2016-11-27 15:20:29 +0300 )edit

C'mon guys, why have you not updated your Jolla1's to the latest OS version? We cannot investigate the issues with 2.0.1 at this point. We have the focus on 2.0.5 now. To narrow down the issues in 2.0.5, the following information would be helpful and needed in all error reports, please:

- device model and OS version in it
- device disk space status at Settings > Storage
- camera storage chosen in Settings > Apps > Camera.

- restart phone
- do not start any other apps but Camera and Gallery at this point
- record video clips with Jolla camera as it is, without any extra apps or settings, with clean Sailfish OS Camera
- play the video in Gallery - report how often the choppiness occurs (especially if it occurs in frequent intervals) and how long the pauses are

In this way it would be easier to compare various error reports, understand how frequent and severe the problem is, and eventually locate and fix the cause of the issue.

Thank you! Keep up the good work.

jovirkku ( 2016-11-29 09:45:25 +0300 )edit

Well, I do think the message that this problem occurs also in older versions is valuable to determine which change introduced it. I do suspect though that it entered with the h264 recording. But then, I have a hard time believing that nobody noticed it from the start, so some later change seems more likely. Oh, and since it also occurs with 2.0.1, this rules out the latest gstreamer update.

I did test things with both with external storage (first recording was with empty 32G card) and internal storage (about 6G free or so). Reboots were also in the game. Is there more detail needed for the device? It's a Jolla 1 … settings tell me that "device adaption" (Geräte Adaption) is

Since people are reporting this on Jolla 1 and Jolla C, with OS ranging from 2.0.1 to 2.0.5, this should be a sure thing to reproduce. Every video I record is choppy to some degree, and the big pauses are also obvious in less than a minute. I spent a night (really) chopping up that 45 minute recording to get the smooth parts of it.

mobilthor ( 2016-11-29 21:19:35 +0300 )edit

I use older SFOS, because the new version SFOS contain bugs important for me applications / functions.

I noticed that the problem when Camera App use white balance or auto focus.

Bury ( 2016-11-29 21:32:28 +0300 )edit

Did you mean the choppy video only appears with AWB or AF? I tested that quickly here and I see choppy video with both fixed focus and fixed white balance.

mobilthor ( 2016-11-30 02:08:59 +0300 )edit

Any testing by developers yet? Is this not reproducable?

mobilthor ( 2016-12-02 10:49:47 +0300 )edit

It is reproduced and there are 2 bugs tracking it but such large issues need time to be analyzed and fixed.

I know it is annoying at least but there is no magic switch unfortunately :(

MSameer ( 2016-12-04 03:44:59 +0300 )edit

1 Answer

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answered 2017-10-17 15:03:36 +0300

SymbianRefugee gravatar image

On the Xperia X with Sailfish too - just recored an event for work and it's unusable :(

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Asked: 2016-11-26 15:32:05 +0300

Seen: 653 times

Last updated: Oct 17 '17