Troubleshooting:Performance

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Check error messages

Start mythfrontend from a terminal window, so that you can see if there are any error messages.

Prebuffering pause

If you get an error message like

<date> 

then see: Troubleshooting:Prebuffering_pause

BIOS settings

Default Settings.
Start off by not overclocking, don't run in turbo mode. Performance is nothing without stability. Once your system is working, you can return to the overclocked setting.
AGP Fast Writes.
Enable / disable. For some motherboards, enabling this option causes instability, it should help improve performance when enabled.
PCI Latency.
Set to lowest setting and gradually increase it if there are extra issues.

Kernel settings

Drivers.
Assuming a proprietary graphics card is being used, make use of the official drivers from the manufacturer. And make sure your cards GPU is listed as being supported with the driver version.
Timer Frequency.
By setting the kernel to use 1000HZ, it is suitable for both PAL and NTSC playback / recording.
Preempt.
Disable kernel preemption. Some people report faster systems with preemption enabled, but it might interrupt video playback more than it helps.

Disk settings

DMA.
If your disks can use it (and they really should), make sure DMA (Direct Memory Access) is enabled.