I've made a 1080P video using After Effects, and after it has been rendered the playback is a bit stutter-y. Now I am fairly certain that this stuttering is a result of the computer struggling with the playback, but I need to be able to prove this.

I was kinda hoping VLC has a way of displaying the FPS of the video being played, but as far as I can tell it has no such thing (only display the FPS of the rendering).

Can anyone point me in the direction of some software that will give me the Playback FPS of a video?

Many thanks!

  • What codec did you render to? Could you maybe render to something a little easier to play back? Aug 11, 2014 at 16:19

3 Answers 3


Personally, I use fraps. The only reason I use fraps is because I used to record desktop footage a ton. However, if you get the free version of fraps, it should allow you to see the framerate of the video playing back while the program is open.

  • doesnt this give the frame rate for the entire screen, rather than just the video that is playing? (sorry if stupid question!)
    – Jimmery
    Aug 11, 2014 at 14:42
  • 1
    No worries, Jimmery! Fraps will analyse specific windows that have updating imagery. For instance, fraps can simultaneously show the FPS of a program (like a video game) you have open and a movie you're playing on your PC. They'll be unique and specific to the application. The FPS counter will appear in the top right corner of the application to avoid confusion. "[Giving] the frame rate for the entire screen" doesn't necessarily make sense, especially considering that portions of the screen are just pictures (like a desktop background) and not motion pictures. Aug 11, 2014 at 17:38
  • Note that this will give the number of times the video player refreshes the window per second, not necessarily the frame rate of video playback, but it should likely still be meaningful information for your purposes.
    – AJ Henderson
    Aug 11, 2014 at 18:46
  • @AJHenderson I work on a 120Hz monitor and I can say in confidence that my result is often not 120 when using fraps. When I watch movies it's 24, when I play games it's whatever my PC can muster. Are you saying that fraps is limited to the refresh rate? That would make sense. It is, however, not reporting the refresh rate but the frame rate of the application, unless I'm misunderstanding something. Aug 11, 2014 at 18:49
  • @ScottJamesWalter - FRAPS reports the number of refresh calls that are made by the application to the video buffer. For a game, this occurs once every time the game renders a frame, for a video player, this may occur once per frame or it may occur multiple times per frame if the video player is doing some kind of interpolation or if it sends a frame on time regardless of if it has finished decoding the next frame. It depends on how the player behaves. It is still likely a pretty accurate approach with most players, but it isn't completely error proof.
    – AJ Henderson
    Aug 11, 2014 at 18:51

You can try transcoding to a lower quality format that would be easier to play back. If the video itself is stuttering, then the lower quality will still stutter in the same way. If you are limited by your playback speed, then the lower quality version should play smoothly. If it plays smooth at lower quality, then you know that the original file is good.


Sometimes videos straight out of After Effects can be slow, or "stutter-y". What I've found is that bringing the video into Premiere Pro and exporting it from Premiere (essentially re-rendering the video in Premiere) can help with this significantly.

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