This guide will provide you with a number of tips and fixes to stop kodi buffering issues and improve the streaming performance via the media center for a smooth video playback.
Kodi is by far the best media center out there. Used by millions of cord-cutters around the world, this open source player allows you to stream every type of media content you can think of. It can even used as an IPTV Player where you can set up an IPTV M3u playlist or even stbemu codes.
With this amazing streaming application, you can play not only locally stored videos, but also online content using kodi addons. The good news is that kodi is compatible with a wide range of platforms including Fire TV Stick, Android, iOS, Windows Mobile, Windows PC, Mac OS, and Linux. and more.
While kodi has earned a great reputation for its convenient features and functionalities, it has some problems that make users complain. Buffering issues are the common troubles that has been causing so much frustration among kodi users. Fortunately, there are numerous tips and fixes that can be applied to kodi so as to stop or at least to minimize those issues.
If you’re here, you probably experience buffering issues on Kodi while streaming your favorite shows online.
Usually, this issue is caused by a problem with your network connection, but it can also be due to corrupted application cache, broken installation files, or outdated add-ons.
In this guide, we will show you how to fix buffering issues on Kodi.
- What causes Kodi buffering issues?
- How to fix kodi buffering issues?
- Restart Your Device.
- Check your internet speed
- Improve Internet speed
- Out-dated Addons can cause kodi buffering issues
- Optimize Kodi Cache size
- Change video settings: Frame rate and co.
- Change video settings during playback
- Clear Kodi Cache.
What causes Kodi buffering issues?
There is nothing worse than having your best TV Show episode or you favorite team match interrupted every now and then. This is very annoying when buffering issues invade your kodi center mainly if you have spent hours installing and optimizing to avoid exactly those problems. Using those streaming addons can usually be one of many reasons why your kodi playback suffers. And buffering issues are not specific to any kind of addons. Even official addons can undergo the same kind of stuttering.
Buffering issues have in the few cases something to do with the addon you are using. If a stream in an addon buffers, every other stream will also reload or stop.
>>> Read also: how to control Kodi over the internet using web interface
Since streaming content is transmitted in real time, you need to make sure that your internet connection is stable and running as fast as possible. If this is not the case, streams will buffer or, in the worst case, stop. The following reasons cause buffering streams:
- Slow Internet connection
- Connection problems
- Limited bandwidth of the streaming source
- Disturbances in the network
- Incorrect Kodi cache settings
- Internet provider throttles the connection
How to fix kodi buffering issues?
Experiencing buffering issues while using kodi is a real problem for many. If you are one of those, then the following methods might just be for you.
Restart Your Device.
Before heading to more advanced procedures, try rebooting your system first if you experience buffering issues on Kodi. Oftentimes a simple restart is a great way to force close apps and other programs running that can slow down the speed. This will eliminate addons that are not in use and remove everything that can slow down your software and device. Your device will reload all of its resources and fix any temporary errors that may have occurred during use.
>>> See also: how to reset kodi to default settings on Windows
Check your internet speed
Video content comes in resolutions ranging from “SD” to “Ultra HD”. The higher the resolution, the better the picture. However, this also increases the demands on your Internet connection. You should achieve the following speeds:
- Minimum speed: 1.5 Mbit/s
- Minimum speed SD quality (480p): 3 Mbit/s
- Minimum speed HD quality (720p): 5 Mbit/s
- Minimum speed Full HD quality (1080p) :10 Mbit/s
- Minimum speed Ultra HD / 4K quality (2160p): 25 Mbit/s
If you don’t know how fast your internet line is, connect to your router with a network cable and run a speed test. This is possible, for example, on the fast.com site. Note that a wireless connection via WLAN means that you won’t be able to reach the maximum speed.
Likewise, many users usually access a certain stream at once. If there are too many, the stream will probably also be jerky – even if you meet the minimum speeds.
Improve Internet speed
The following measures will ensure better connection quality:
- Try to establish a cable connection via LAN instead of WLAN.
- If you are dependent on WLAN, position the end device and router closer to each other.
- Make sure that no other person in the same building is downloading anything.
- Windows can also download updates in the background, just like your smartphone.
Out-dated Addons can cause kodi buffering issues
Sometimes, using out-dated addons can cause kodi playback to buffer. So, if the buffering issues persist while using addons on Kodi, try checking for available updates for your addons.
Here’s how to do this:
- Launch Kodi and access the Settings.
- Navigate to the Add-ons tab.
- Next, choose the addon you want to update. Press and hold till a context menu shows up and select Information
Then, click on Versions.
Lastly, install the latest version of the addon on Kodi.
Once the update is done, try streaming a video online to see if the problem is solved.
Optimize Kodi Cache size
If your device is ideally connected to the Internet and reaches the minimum speed, your Kodi is probably configured incorrectly or insufficiently. So your Kodi streams can still buffer. While you stream video content, the data is loaded into a so-called “cache”, quasi a buffer. If you lose your internet connection during a stream, the stream will continue to run for a few seconds as Kodi retrieves the data from the cache.
What many people do not know: The cache can be changed and expanded under Kodi. However, the “golden mean” must be found, because:
- A too large cache burdens the performance of your media player hardware and
- A too small cache causes reloading jerks and dropouts in the stream.
Luckily, under kodi the cash settings can be optimized to solve any buffering issues. The coming paragraphs will explain how kodi cash size can be correctly setup using maintenance addons.
How to optimize kodi cache size with the OpenWizard Addon
The OpenWizard Kodi Addon is an addon for the maintenance of your Kodi installation. With the addon you can primarily clear your cache and other temporary data. However, the OpenWizard also offers some additional features, such as the automatic adjustment of the Kodi cache.
How to install the OpenWizard Kodi addon is explained in this guide. Afterwards you have to follow these steps to edit the cache:
Open the OpenWizard Kodi Addon and click on “OpenWizard Maintenance“.
Then select the menu item “System Tweaks/Fixes”.
Click on “Advanced Settings” in the following submenu.
The function to automatically adjust the Kodi cache can be found under the item “Cache Network Presets“.
The Kodi cache settings depend on the amount of memory on your player. If you are using hardware that has less than 2 GB of RAM, click on “Low-RAM Device Preset“. If you are using a device that has more than 2 GB of RAM, click on “High-End Device Preset“.
Then click Install
To find out how much memory your system has, look in Kodi under Settings -> System Information -> Hardware -> Total Memory. There you will find the value in megabytes (MB).
For the changes to the cache to take effect, you need to restart Kodi.
If you want to reset the settings of the Kodi cache, click on “Default Network & Cache Settings“.
Change video settings: Frame rate and co.
Sometimes it happens that your stream shows frame cracks and skips frames. In a soccer game, for example, the ball may streak. It may look like your Kodi streams are juddering. However, the truth is that these are problems with your video settings. To fix such picture errors, you need to adjust your playback settings.
Go back to Kodi’s home page and click on the gear icon in the upper left corner to enter the settings.
Select the “Player” menu item in the settings.
To get all options displayed, you have to change the view to “Expert“. To do this, click on the lowest point with the gear symbol until “Expert” appears.
Open the settings for “Videos“. There you will find several items that are interesting for smooth playback.
Adjust display refresh rate” adjusts the refresh rate of your screen to the video. The European standard refresh rate is 50Hz. If your video has a different refresh rate, this difference will cause image cracks or streaks during fast movements.
If you select this menu item, you have three options:
Off: The refresh rate will not be adjusted.
Always: Your hardware continuously calculates the refresh rate of the video. This is only recommended for powerful hardware.
On Start / Stop: Kodi analyzes the existing refresh rate when starting a video and adjusts your refresh rate accordingly. If in doubt, select this option.
The option “Sync playback with display” is also interesting. If this item is activated, not only the picture but also the sound will be synchronized with the refresh rate of the TV. Only turn this option on if “Adjust display refresh rate” doesn’t have the desired effect. Note that audio passthrough is then not possible.
There is also the item “Enable HQ scaler for scaling above” in the playback settings. To counteract image cracking, choose a lower value than “20%”. The HQ scaler ensures that videos in lower resolutions are scaled up to achieve better quality on high-resolution screens.
It is also possible to disable the “Allow hardware acceleration – VAAPI” option if necessary. This option may have a different name. This depends on your hardware. With hardware acceleration enabled, some computational tasks are transferred from the CPU to your graphics card. If the option is disabled, the processor handles the image calculation on its own. However, you should only deactivate this option if your processor is powerful enough and ideally has a graphics unit installed. Otherwise, the Kodi streams may buffer.
In general, settings should be made in this menu when dealing with relatively slow hardware, such as found in Android boxes. This way, it might be possible to tickle out even more performance.
Change video settings during playback
It doesn’t always have to be your internet speed that causes Kodi streams to buffer. If you’re suffering from visible streaks or other stuttering video playback, you may want to take a look at the video settings that you can change while a video is playing.
While playing a video, open the control panel and then click the gear icon in the bottom right corner.
This button opens the settings that can be made during playback. Open the “Video Settings” in this menu.
First try to switch the “Deinterlace” method. Deinterlace means to convert interlaced video to full screen. The methods available depend on what operating system and hardware you are running Kodi on.
In most cases, changing the deinterlace method is sufficient. If you still have a bad playback, you can also change the video scaling method. This method ensures that videos with a different resolution than your screen are displayed correctly.
If these settings helped, scroll to the very bottom and select the “Set as default for all media” item. This way, the configurations you made will be applied to every playback.
Clear Kodi Cache.
If, with all the above settings, the buffering issues continue to happen on kodi, you may want to go further and the Kodi application cache and see if the problem goes away.
Like any other application, Kodi uses caches to enhance its performance, resulting in faster loading times and a smoother interface. However, caches can accumulate over time and could cause issues when they get corrupted.
>>> This is an in-depth guide on how to clear kodi cache for a better performance
Clear kodi cache on windows
- Press the Windows + R keys on your keyboard to access the Run Command.
- After that, type ‘%temp%’ and hit Enter to open the folder.
- Lastly, delete all the files inside the folder.
Clear kodi cache on Android TV & Amazon Firestick
For Android TV and mobile devices, you can clear Kodi’s cache by doing the following:
- On your main screen, locate the Kodi app.
- Next, press and hold its app icon until you see the selection menu.
- Tap on App Info and go to Storage & Cache.
- Finally, tap the Clear Cache button.
If you are using Amazon Firestick devices, you can clear Kodi’s cache by going to Settings > App > Kodi and click the Clear Cache button.
Once done, stream another video to check if you would experience buffering issues.